Most helpful critical review
26 of 30 people found the following review helpful
Worthless POS. Will not help you service HVAC/R equipment.
on October 7, 2012
If you want a head full of worthless knowledge buy this book. Not one HVAC/R mechanic in a hundred-thousand knows the meaning of words like "adiabatic" and "enthalpy." You can master this book and not be able to fix a single air conditioner. Moreover, the practical information in this book is wrong. It tells you for brazing copper tubing to set the oxygen regulator to 10-14 psi, and the acetlyene regulator to 5-10 psi. These settings are for cutting steel, not brazing copper. In reality they both oxygen and acetylene should be set at 4 or 5 psi. Moreover, they do not tell you how to purge your oxygen and acetylene hoses. They don't tell you to stand to the side when you turn them on, and to turn them on slowly. They do not advise you to use flashback arrestors.
Moveover, anyone using an oxy-acytelene torch to make HVAC/R repairs is crazy. Today, smart techs us a Turbo torch with an MC tank. Which would you rather carry up a ladder through a small opening in a roof, a bulky 50 pound oxy-acytelene rig, or a 5 pound Turbo torch with an MC tank. The guys who wrote this book never worked in the field, never used a cordless drill, and must be in their late 90s.
All the material is out of date. HVAC/R techs haven't used halide leak detectors in 50 years. None of the practical information you need to repair an air conditioning system is in this book. It doesn't even teach you how to wire or diagnose most modern day thermostats.
There is nothing in this book about hermetic analyzers, how to use a hydrolic swaging tool, modern tubing benders, K-type thermocouples, the ZebraStat, the ZebraStat ECM analyzer, how to check refrigerant for the presence of acid, moisture, and non-condesibles, how to test a reversing valve or bring a dead one back to life, where systems typically leak, how to use a flourescent dye to find a leak, the limitations of infrared thermometers, how to use an infrared thermal imager, and how to obtain 120 volts for your vacuum pump when you are evacuating a roof top unit. They don't tell you how many CFM your system should have. They don't teach you how to calculate Manual "J," or even what it means. They don't teach you how to unclog a condensate drain. They don't teach you how to install an a/c system or install a condensate drain. They don't discuss condensate drain safety shut-offs. They don't discuss how to clean a dirty coil.
They teach you the operation of a King Valve, which you are not likely to ever see. They don't really discuss the kind of service valves that exist today. They don't discuss how to install a saddle valve, a reversing valve, or the advantage of installing access ports at the air handler.
When you go to a commercial system and water is dripping from the duct work they don't tell you the likely cause. In fact, they really don't teach you how to diagnose what is wrong with HVAC/R systems. The examples they do give are woefully incomplete.
I teach air conditioning. I found this book hopelessly out of day, and unreadable. The authors brag that they are members of RSES. Anyone who pays a few dollars can be a member of RSES. I am a RSES Certified Master, which itself means absolutely nothing. The book is good as a paperweight.