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How to Add Refrigerant to Chillers

Keeping the right refrigerant pressure in chillers is critical to keep them cooling properly and efficiently. If you notice that your set temperatures have been climbing slightly, you may want to add some refrigerant. You can do this yourself, but use a proper, preassembled refrigerant kit and make sure you can access the interior of your chiller and then reassemble it correctly.

  1. Rent or buy a refrigerant or recharging kit from your local hardware store. It will come with refrigerant, a pressure gauge and intake adapters to fit any valve that is on your unit.

  2. Move your unit out from the wall until you have access to the panel in the rear.

  3. Remove the rear access panel. Use the flathead screwdriver to unscrew the screws, if there are any, or to pry or pop the panel off.

  4. Set up the valve and hose so that you can feed in refrigerant. You will notice an intake valve on the main copper hose feeding the compressor. It sticks out of this hose at a right angle and looks like a giant tire gauge. In your recharging kit you will find several different adaptors that will make the refrigerant can fit on the end of the valve on the chiller. Match the one that fits and insert it onto the end of the valve. Screw the refrigerant can onto the end of the adapter, which will also have the pressure gauge attached to it.

  5. Add refrigerant using the pressure valve. On the inside of the door panel are specifications for how much pressure there should be in the lines. By opening the feed valve on the can, you are sending pressure into the line. Monitor how much pressure is going in by using the gauge. When the correct pressure is reached, turn off the feed valve. Once you reach the pressure specified on the door panel, remove the feeder line and close the panel. Your chiller should once again function normally.