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Loose joints!


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Today is one of the warmest days we have had for a while now with a very strong sun up there. We realised that something was wrong in the pump room for the pool when OH noticed water running down the drive! I shot down to have a look and all of the screw joints around the heat exchanger were less than hand tight and water was peeing out from most!

I checked the temprature of the solar panel we have and was shocked to see it at 109ºC !! The solar panel pump was running along with the pool pump so the temp should never have reached that temp in the firt place. The  pool water is about 23ºC. It has happened once before several years ago and I thought that it was that the gland nuts on the joints and shut off c o c k s weren't as tight as they should be? This thime I knew that they were.

Has anyone any idea as to why the gland nuts should unscrew like that. The water running through them is straight from the pool, via the filter, pump, etc. So they aren't getting too warm?

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Did you drain the pool side circuit of the heat exchanger during the winter? If not, it may have frozen and you are lucky the only result was that the nuts were forced loose.

I ran the aircon on my boat 2 days ago. It is currently moored in the canal rather than, as previously, in seawater, and it didn't occur to me to drain its heat exchanger (condenser) during the winter. We have not used the aircon since before the previous winter, when the canal froze solid enough to walk on, but I was running it prior to showing the boat to a prospective buyer.

When I started the cooling pump the unit was sprayed with water, as the water hose to the condenser was loose. It is secured by a hose clamp, and luckily had been forced off when the water inside it froze, before any real damage was done.

 

 

 

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Nothing drained as we have an anit-freeze setting on the solar controller that runs the pump for various times depending on the temp. Everything has been fine un until today. The actual fixing nuts that connect it all together had actually unscrewed, but only around the heat ex. One stop-c o c k is still leaking badly so I will have to  remove it and check the seal in the morning. If it carries on I will get a replacement at the same time I get a new contactor, see below..

I found out why the solar was so very hot. The contactor for the pool pump is faulty and the pump is stopping when it thinks it will. When I was checking it earlier it stopped and I thought that it had failed but when I went to check the voltage on the connector it started. From there it was easy to find the fault.

It's still a mystery to me just why they had unscrewed?

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Not salt and no anti freeze anywhere, but then again the lowest we have had over the past few years has been -11ºC. The idea is that if the temp drops further the pump works on the principle that moving water is harder to freeze.

The cold has nowt to do with this situation, it the HOT [:-))]

We also had a floating security cover with a winter cover over the top of that over the winter. The winter cover keeps most of the winter rubbish, I was going to say c r a p,  out and when opened up again was crystal clear and blue[8-|][8-|]

As far as salt water pools and freezing are concerened I would be surprised if the amount of salt in the water would make much difference to the freezing point in an exposed pipe line? I stand to be corrected on this of course as I, a lowly retirie, don't know any better..

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WB, you can  pretost all you wish my slippery coated friend (as a matter of interest? You a friend of Belliskoonie, that Italeeen bloke in politiques?). When me nuts come loose and me joints leek an I need help to stop me drips I will ask [:P] so there[8-|]

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tqCuw3wMZ-8

Just for you

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Well, I sorted out the leaks and found out why the incident had happened in the first place. The pool pump contactor had become intermittant and was dropping the pump out when the solar was trying to use it and with the pump stopped the solar heat in the heat exchanger was not being taken away and it all overheated. It must have deformed the flanges on the stop valves and connections and they wouldn't seal properly.[:-))]

So I decided that the best thing to do was to replace all of the fittings around the heat exchanger and now we have a watertight system again [8-|] Contactor replaced as well..

Good game, good game [+o(]

I was very surprised this morning when I walked past the pump room and heard it running. Total cloud cover and 14ºC. When I had a look at the solar controller it indicated a panel temp of 48ºC ! And as the pool temp was 26º and the pump cuts in at 20º above the pool temp all was well. With that much cloud cover I hadn't expected anything like that temp!

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Interesting what you say about there being a 20 deg C difference when the pump cuts in.  I had imagined it would be much lower than that, maybe 5 deg difference but I suppose that if there isn't a big difference then it isn't worth the cost of electricity in running the pump.  Just as an intellectual exercise I'm modelling a heating system controlled by a Raspberry Pi, tracking sun, temperatures, time of year etc.  Version 98 or 99 with have an equatorial mount to follow the sun, as I say, just an exercise (at the moment)
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It has to be about that temp difference across the heat exchanger is 8 to 10º . So that by the time it gets back down to 10º above it is still putting warmer water into the HE and you aren't taking heat away from the pool water.

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