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Buried Refrigerant Lines


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I see refrigerant lines buried mostly on older homes, I never thought to call it out, some are 40 years old and still apparently not leaking. Usually newer homes ac lines are in the flexible black 4 inch pipe (pvc?), the non-perforated version of foundation drain pipe. Then they shoot a can or two of "great stuff" in the ends.

Is there some limitation to the distance the electrical flex conduit can extend across the ground or in the air?

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It can be a problem, depending on certain other factors.

Many years ago, I contacted a manu. rep about an installation that had about 15' of buried lineset. (They wanted the outdoor unit behind the pool fence) He explained the issue and why many specs don't allow or at least recommend against it.

If the air handler is in an above grade floor of the home, the lineset is lower than the evaporator and condenser. In the off cycle, with the ground being cooler, the refrigerant can condense into a liquid. When the system kicks on, the liquid can then be pumped into the compressor. Liquid doesn't compress.

He mentioned troubleshooting many systems that had gone through several compressors, before they contacted him to identify the problem.

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