So Hellas came out again, and tore the unit apart; turns out there were two more things wrong (at least). Apparently there is a low and high pressure compressor cut switch, which is basically meant to keep the compressor from running in temperatures too hot or too cold to be safe. The technician wired a thick jumper over these switches so they can’t do anything, which eliminated the problem of them getting stuck. This made me a bit nervous when I heard it described, but figured it must be standard practice.
I was also down freon, apparently, and that was a problem too.
Since they should have checked this stuff yesterday (technician’s words, not mine) I was only charged for the four pounds of freon, which was only $70.
So I head upstairs, start shutting down stuff with the plan of finishing my day at work because they were so fast.
And then I smell burning.
And there’s heat coming out of the air vents.
I put my hand on the refrigerant feed line into the air handler, and it felt nice and cold. I then touched the exhaust line and it burned my finger, which tells me one of two things (in my head):
- The heat inside the air handler is on
- There’s a valve closed on the exhaust side and right now it’s building pressure and causing heat as a result, and something is about to explode
I think my air handler is still working, and I don’t think there’s any circuit coming back from the pump the way things are currently wired to tell the air handler to do the defrost work or anything like that. So Occam’s razor tells me the second option is the only one that makes sense.
Now, outside, the heat pump compressor is running, making a loud hissing (read: leaking) sound like an overpressure valve that’s blown and gushing freon, and the cooling fan is not running in the coils. This seems very bad; the Hellas guys are on the way back. Hopefully my conception of what is wrong and what is really wrong is entirely different.