Shop environment, rant


Once upon a time, we could buy a red liquid thermometer for a few bucks that was within half a degree or so. Usually Taylor. Went into HD. 5 same model, off by several degrees. No better in Walmart. Look on Amazon, It seems a simple glass tube can't even get a five star rating. Digital? not even close. How can the screw up over 25% of these things? ( Sure, happy customers don;t tend to report, but Gezzz)

Do I know what close is? Yes, I have a calibrated sling psychrometer. Both bulbs when dry read dead on the same. I have one OLD Taylor red fluid, and it reads as close as I can interpolate. Digitals? Sent FOUR back to Amazon in the last couple of years. Hygrometer? Only if +/- 20% is good enough. Garbage, even the expensive "Swiss sensors" brand. I try to keep tabs as the mini-split runs too warm to dehumidify and the cheap portables ( on my third one) fail so often and their built-in humidistat is usually wrong by 10% or more. My current one in auto mode reads 33% when the actual humidity is 55. But in manual mode, it does still run. As the coils run about 42, that is below dew point. Mini-Split runs over 50-52, above dew point. ( well close. DP for 72 degrees target of 55% is 50 degrees) Mini split Mitsubshi remote control thermometer reads 10 degrees high. At least the unit just adjusts up or down a notch and does not care what the remote displays.

Going through the remote monitoring game again as my craw space dehumidifier failed AGAIN. ( twice in 3 years and it was a $1200 unit)


Corporate Member
Well ............... you hit my hot button issue, I kinda know part of the answer.

Any of the electronics on any HVAC system are pretty much junk. All come from the cheapest Chinesium manufacturer. This is true on the Sub routine cards that are in elevators and true in High end lights even the ones for surgery. Nothing makes your day like having someone get struck in an elevator or have the HVAC go out all because of a defective 10.00 card.

With the mechanical systems like a elevator their process and line are rarely maintained. They run way more product between maintenance cycles, resulting in crappy products. If you get on in the 1st 50,000 being made it will be decent, then down hill rom there.
Welcome to "just trust our overseas operation, they will build as good as anyone else......... hmmmmmmmm


Senior User
I feel your pain Scott.

The 70 pt. dehumidifiers seem to last a little longer than their 1 year warranty. At > $300 a pop, it annoys me that they are considered disposable. At least I haven't been able to find anyone that repairs them. If anyone knows of someone, please let me know. I should have a ready stock of parts ! LOL
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Gleaning non-committal comments, seems the preference is for Santa Fe brand. I notice my Sani-Dry is not on anyone's list. Two large suppliers suggested the "commercial" and crawl space, as in $1200 units, are only expected to last 5 to 10 years. 10 is disappointing. 5 inexcusable. 1 or 2 for the "portable" is just plain insulting.
I have been checking. I don't think I need more than about 20 pint in either the shop or crawlspace.

Right now I am using two I got from a friendly forum member that the pumps had failed. I gravity drain so that works for me. Waiting a MONTH for Regional to come pick up the failed one and then, like last time will be over a month to get it back is also pretty inexcusable. More than ticks me off when I am in the CS fixing the lousy job they did installing the clean space envelope. Tape falling off, big gaps in the foam, failed to foam around about half the tops. Not sealed to the piers.

None are designed for repair. No fittings, so one has to cut in and solder them. Add in the EPA requirements and labor, it would take a couple hours total including logistics and paperwork to fix one. Then a part. So, no way to fix a $300 unit.

I am investigating ERVs. I am wondering if the majority of the time, exhausting from the CS, vent from the house, fresh air into the return, if that woudl not balance me all but a few months in the spring and fall when no heat, and very limited AC. As they only have a couple of fans, should be more reliable. Seems they are still a mystery to most HVAC folks though. I guess 50 or so years on the market is too short for the industry to catch up.

I won off e-bay a fan powered psychrometer. With a set airflow, they are more accurate than my sling, so I will have something to calibrate against.

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