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Old 05-28-21, 05:40 PM   #1
Lurking Renovator
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Seattle
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Default Is this heat pump ruined?

Long time lurker, first time poster...

I picked up a used Pioneer-branded 18K BTU ducted minisplit heat pump system last year. The seller's story was that an HVAC buddy had a very good deal on a fancier Mitsubishi system, so he decommissioned the Pioneer system and replaced it. Wise or not, I gambled on what I hoped would be a system cheap and functional enough that I could justify trying my first DIY install to replace electric baseboards.

Life got in the way and my attic air sealing and re-insulating projects took drastically longer than I had originally planned. I've only just pulled the air handler up into the tiny insulated "room" I built for this purpose in the attic. It's been a terrible year, and everyone in the family is tired of this never ending project. When my 5yr old draws our family, she draws me in a tiny box in the attic.

I called a couple HVAC companies to see if I could convince someone to finish for me. One guy pointed out that a service valve stem on the outdoor unit doesn't look seated, as if the last person to work on the system disconnected the lineset and did not reseal the outdoor unit. He predicts hydrophilic oil has absorbed enough water to ruin the unit via corrosion.

That sounds plausible. The outdoor unit spent the entire winter on a covered porch, exposed to whatever blows in off nearby saltwater. However, I would really like a second opinion from someone who isn't trying to sell me a new heat pump. There are enough experimenters in this forum that I figure *someone* must have had the misfortune/experience necessary to give an informed opinion about whether this unit is ruined or not.


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