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THINGS TO CHECK IF THE SUCTION PRESSURE IS TOO LOW:
|Normally, the suction pressure on a refrigerant-22 system will be between 60 pounds
gauge pressure (which keeps it above the freezing point) and about 80 pounds. This depends on the temperature conditions. Make
sure the superheat and subcooling are correct to see what is to be considered normal for the conditions you have presently.|
Refrigerant undercharge of the system will
cause the suction pressure to be abnormally low. The head pressure will be low as well.
Check the superheat and subcooling (refer to Refrigeration and charging). If
the condenser coils and fan are okay but the head pressure and suction are low and
the superheat is high and the subcooling is low, then you likely have an undercharge
Restricted indoor airflow will also cause low suction
pressure. Check the fan speed to make sure it is on the higher speed for cooling and thus
will be likely to be on a lower speed for heating.
Check the cleanliness of the evaporator coils and blower wheel. If either or both is
dirty, you will have a major restriction of the airflow and thus you will have a lower
suction pressure because not enough heat is being added to the refrigerant from a correct
amount of air as it passes over the cooling coils.
Make sure all the supply air grills are open, or at least mostly open. Make certain that
the return air grill and opening is clear.
Check the filter. Be aware that the so-called permanent and "free of allergy" type filters
will restrict a lot even when perfectly clean. Don't ever pull the filter out and set it
aside until you can buy a new one. The unit will get very dirty in a hurry.
<Crushed ducts are not real common, but do occur.
It is even a possibility that insulation inside the ducts has become unglued and is
blocking the flow of the air inside a section of the ducts. Installation booklets
have been left inside the evaporator cabinet or under it and caused restricted airflow.
Restriction of the refrigerant flow can also be the cause and there
are many places this can occur.
Look for tubes at the end of one or more of the capillary tubes not sweating. If
capillary tubes become restricted with carbon, enamel or foreign objects, that tube
or tubes will not allow its coil tubes downstream of it in the evaporator coil to
cool well and they will not sweat like the others.
Sometimes a thermostatic expansion valve (see Refrigerants and Charging) will
not flow enough refrigerant.
|| Look for the REMOTE BULB and make sure it is secured to the suction line well by CLAMPS and the surface of the suction line under it is reasonably clean. Try removing it from the cool suction line by loosening the clamps and dangle it there in the hot closet or attic for a while and check the gauge pressures at the condensing unit. If the suction pressure is now higher and the subcooling and superheat become more normal, then you likely have a problem with the TXV.
Look also for "kinked" refrigerant lines and check the filter/dryers to make
sure they are not restricting the refrigerant flow. The downstream end of the
drier will be noticeably cooler if there is a restriction inside it.