Florida Heat Pump Problems

Discussion in 'Maintenance and Troubleshooting' started by MichaelM, Dec 16, 2010.

  1. MichaelM

    MichaelM New Member

    Hello Everyone

    I hope to receive some input from the community on the problems I'm experiencing.
    I had a FHP ESO30 installed in the summer of 2009. Everything seemed to be working great. Within 6-8 months both pumps went bad. Things seemed to get better though the electric bills kept rising. This November as we turned the heat on we had no heat. Contractor came to investigate, and found a refrigerant leak in the factory sealed coil. FHP answer to this is pulling the unit out from under the house and install a new coil in the field. While having worked in the construction business I understand this is possible. Yet working in less than ideal conditions (in the field) I am worried about contaminents entering and causing problems down the road. This then follows my overall concern is two major problems in less than two years leads me to believe this unit will have a continued tendancy to malfunction over the course of it's lifetime.

    I have contacted FHP about the problem. They asked me to have my contractor call them so they can handle the situation for me. I almost thought they cared, but after my contrator called their answer still remains. He then tried another contact at FHP and still has not heard any replies.

    I have tried to keep this post non technical in order to get some professional conceptual advice on the problem topics in terms of what people think of the problems overall, and what they would expect or have come to expect from campanies standing behind their product.

    Thank You all....
  2. waterpirate

    waterpirate Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    I to believe that when doing "field surgery" a lot is left to be desired. I believe in the fhp product so I do not think your situation is that dire. Would the installer entertain taking the unit back to shop for better surgery? Is there going to be any charge for the coil change out? If the whole ordeal is being done gratis under warranty, I would let them proceed how ever they wish with the caveat that if there is another issue I am going to be looking for something more.
  3. engineer

    engineer Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    I'm not familiar with the model under question here. Swapping a coil in the field may require substantial disassembly which may or may not be done well in the field.

    If weather cooperates and the unit can be easily accessed for the repair I wouldn't be afraid of a field repair provided proper techniques are used. These include an inert gas purge while brazing, a careful leak test using nitrogen and pulling a proper deep vacuum, ideally triple evacuating it. Finally, the proper charge should be weighed in.
  4. Mark Custis

    Mark Custis Not soon. Industry Professional Forum Leader

    Pay attention

    One manufacturer builds 90% +/- of ALL the geo heat pumps in America. Look at the demensions. Look at the coil size. Look at the physical configuration. They are all the same.

    It is possible for a robot welder to be just a hair off target for months. That could cause lots of bad heat exchangers made in the same time frame. Only the best of the best knows enough of where and when and how to test a system for a coax leak. So no one looks there for problems.

    Then spread that through out the entire industry and the problem fades away as everyone has a few of the bad parts. The owners of those parts come here. Think about the build date on the unit in this thread and WMD's thread. If I am the only one who sees simalatities then I am bad.

    I love this business and these products I am looking at the possobility of the imposible has happened. It is my intent to help those with problematic units solve what is wrong.

    One never hears from happy customers, which is why we need to call them twice a year.

    ^^^^puts oon his tin foil hat and ducks and covers, (which proved to be the best thing to do).
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2011
  5. AMI Contracting

    AMI Contracting A nice Van Morrison song Industry Professional Forum Leader

    It is possible that a field repair can be well done. It is also not automatically worse than original work.
    RE. brand, virtually none will authorize unit replacement vs major repair.
  6. Palace GeoThermal

    Palace GeoThermal Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader


    you are right in saying that one company makes all of the compressors (Copeland). Maybe one company makes all of the coils, blowers, and heat heat exchangers, I don't know.

    However each manufacturer makes or buys the components and assembles them in their own plant. The similarity among competing manufacturers is striking, but so are the similarities among car manufacturers. Remember when you could tell if a car was a Ford or Chevy from two blocks away? Now I can't tell if I am standing right next to one. They don't even say on the car anymore:mad::mad:

    Happy Holidays:D:D
  7. Mark Custis

    Mark Custis Not soon. Industry Professional Forum Leader


    I can not remember where I saw this but I thnk the manufacturer is Coil Max. You are correct abount what goe into a chassie.
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2010
  8. Palace GeoThermal

    Palace GeoThermal Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    Hey Sark, who is Wewayne :D:D:D
  9. MichaelM

    MichaelM New Member

    Waterpirate I too expected in the very least FHP to stand behind their product in the long term. Even if it was through continued dialog as you suggested.
    As a consumer isn't that the reason we select the products we use. Not only in the correct functioning of the said product, but when a product breaks down or shows evidence of a trend in breaking down. We assume the manufacturer will take responsibilty, and stand behind their product. Florida Heat Pump evidently has decided to gloss over the fact multiple major problems have occured with this product, and now are unwilling to take corrective actions or dialog.

    This is a great disrespect to their customers whom have purchased their products.
    Thank you everyone for your responses.

    The following is their response:

    Mr. Maz, we have reviewed your request and I’m sorry to say that we have to adhere to our original standard warranty. The original warranty states that we will replace the failed part but not provide any labor reimbursement. These terms are stated in that “Limited Product Liability Warranty” that came with the equipment. The concern that the technicians in the field could not provide “factory controlled conditions” could apply to any product. A licensed Contractor, using the proper field repair methods is acceptable to FHP, thus still providing the remainder of the original factory warranty. I left a message for P. M. last week and did not receive a return call.

    FHP does not feel that any special consideration or concession be made in this case and stand by our original factory warranty.

    Best regards / Mit freundlichen Grüßen
    Greg Dunn
    FHP Bosch Group
    Thermotechnology, Technical Support
    601N.W. 65th Court
    Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33309

  10. engineer

    engineer Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    Lack of a labor allowance for warranty repairs sets FHP apart from WF. I wonder how CM and Hydron handle this?
  11. waterpirate

    waterpirate Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    I had this very same same problem with the "Grundfos people". At the end of the day we warranted "all the labor" to replace thier crap. Average 5 hours per occurance. We chose to not install thier product anymore, ever... Due to their wonderfull customer support and great corprate attitude. I truly hope this is not what the Bosch group does for FHP.
  12. engineer

    engineer Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    If the owner bought an FHP in full recognition of the warranty policy then so be it...a contract is a contract.

    That said, we bang on about how brand makes little difference relative to quality of installers. Since my last post I've read that CM has a labor allowance arrangement.

    So, it seems that presence of / lack of a warranty labor allowance arrangement is a clear differentiator among brands
  13. MichaelM

    MichaelM New Member

    Ah how true, a contract is a contract. Yet the world is not so black and white. In business the human element or client/customer appreciation, respect and support goes a lot further in terms of loyalty, recommendations, and so forth.
    I think it is very clear the data shows a continued habit of breakdowns of the unit, and will most likely persist in the future. Obviously something is different about my unit warranting a different approach. Thus an oppurtunity for FHP to stand behind the product they engineered, manufacturred, and endorse.
    It seems if FHP can't stand behind and believe in their product how can we as end consumers and future customers?
  14. AMI Contracting

    AMI Contracting A nice Van Morrison song Industry Professional Forum Leader

    All manufacturers have updated their warranties with the latest Energy Star requirements and their is indeed an allowance for repairs on our FHP relables.
    Labor warranties often do not cover 100% however so buyer beware.
    Labor warranties have been the responsibility of the installing contractor on much HVAC equipment for many years and certainly a product failing in less than a year should not cost buyer, also should not expect manufacturer to pony up retailers short comings.
    I never cease to shake my head at folks who blame a manufacturer when the finger should be pointed at the dealer. That is the person afterall that needs referals and good will most at this scale. It is also the person who can handle the problem for you by "eating" or discounting a few hours. Since you have your answer from Bosch, you might next try to get your installer to "meet you in the middle"/
    Our standard warranty has been 2 years for sometime now to carry folks past the manufacturers defect window.
    Good Luck,

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