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HVAC School - For Techs, By Techs

Dec 7, 2023

In this episode of HVAC School, hosts Bryan Orr and Bert discuss practical tips for preventing callbacks and failed inspections in residential HVAC installs and maintenance.

Bryan and Bert stress the importance of getting the basics right, like properly cleaning condensate drains, ensuring proper drain pitch, and sealing ducts completely before relying on tapes and mastic to cover gaps. They emphasize verifying full system operation at the end of a job, from checking that drains flow freely to testing float switches and pressure testing for leaks. Bryan and Bert also cover wire and breaker sizing for equipment changes, securing disconnects, proper thermostat wall seals, inspecting joints with bubbles to find microscopic leaks, and more thorough evacuations and leak checks.

Throughout the casual, conversational show, the hosts inject colorful commentary on doing quality work with a little sarcasm, including praising the merits of duct board and flex ducts. The tone is partly tongue-in-cheek but drives home the point that shortcuts lead to callbacks and leave clients dissatisfied.

Bert and Bryan also discuss:

  • Becoming masters of the obvious
  • Common condensate line issues
  • The issues with double traps
  • Ensuring adequate filter access for the customer
  • Wiring float switches in series vs. in parallel
  • Sealing ductwork effectively
  • Using your senses to find airflow leaks in the ductwork
  • Pressure testing for refrigerant leaks
  • Common leak points in systems and their causes
  • Correct electrical setup and markings
  • Securing outdoor unit placement
  • Sealing thermostat wall penetrations
  • Thorough evacuation and leak checks


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