Control box dead after move

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lnlogauge

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A couple of years ago I purchased a control unit off of a friend who was upgrading. It's a simple unit, Auber control, SSR, toggle switch to go from the HLT to the boil. It's worked well for me in the past. A couple of months ago everything was disassembled and moved to the new house.

I remember at one point the box falling a few feet. After spending the weekend in the 105 degree garage running a new 220v line to the box and adding a 220 GFCI to the breaker, the unit trips the breaker as soon as I turn it on.

I took it apart, all of the wiring is fine, nothing lose. when the unit is off I measure 110v at each line coming in.

Would an impact like that kill the auber controller?
 

doug293cz

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A couple of years ago I purchased a control unit off of a friend who was upgrading. It's a simple unit, Auber control, SSR, toggle switch to go from the HLT to the boil. It's worked well for me in the past. A couple of months ago everything was disassembled and moved to the new house.

I remember at one point the box falling a few feet. After spending the weekend in the 105 degree garage running a new 220v line to the box and adding a 220 GFCI to the breaker, the unit trips the breaker as soon as I turn it on.

I took it apart, all of the wiring is fine, nothing lose. when the unit is off I measure 110v at each line coming in.

Would an impact like that kill the auber controller?
It's possible a drop would kill the PID, but I having a hard time speculating on a PID failure mode that would trip a breaker or GFCI. Have you tried disconnecting both elements from the control box, and seeing if it still trips when turned on? Do you have a wiring diagram you could post, or maybe some pictures of the wiring?

Brew on :mug:
 
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lnlogauge

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It's possible a drop would kill the PID, but I having a hard time speculating on a PID failure mode that would trip a breaker or GFCI. Have you tried disconnecting both elements from the control box, and seeing if it still trips when turned on? Do you have a wiring diagram you could post, or maybe some pictures of the wiring?

Brew on :mug:
This was with the elements not connected, and the toggle switch set to the middle, so no power is going to the elements.

I'll take a picture tonight.
 

doug293cz

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This was with the elements not connected, and the toggle switch set to the middle, so no power is going to the elements.

I'll take a picture tonight.
Would you feel comfortable disassembling the control box, so you could check the components individually? Do you have a multimeter you could use for testing?

Brew on :mug:
 
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lnlogauge

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Would you feel comfortable disassembling the control box, so you could check the components individually? Do you have a multimeter you could use for testing?

Brew on :mug:
Yes to both. I already took the box apart to check and make sure the power was getting to the rails. I have experience with hooking things up, just not checking components for faults.
 
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lnlogauge

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Is the GFCI wired correctly? I had this same issue and it turned out I had wired the GFCI breaker wrong.
If that were the case. I would think it would trip regardless of whether the controller was turned on? do you remember how you wired it wrong?
 

dmcman73

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Double check you're wiring. Falling a few feet like you described can jar things loose that may have already been a little loose to begin with. Make sure none of the hot leads are grounding out to the chassis. You can do a quick test with a multimeter, put the meter on continuity check and make sure it "beeps" when you touch the two test leads together. While the unit is NOT plugged in, put one lead onto a hot side of your power input and then put the other lead on a good ground inside the control box and turn the power switch to on (remember to make sure that it is NOT plugged in prior), if it beeps, you have a short somewhere and you'll need to trace it down.

If it was a faulty PID, I would expect some "magic" smoke to be released from the part before tripping the GFI breaker. The job of the GFI is to trip instantly like it is now as soon as it detects a voltage to the ground lead which indicates a short or water short.
 

TechyDork

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If that were the case. I would think it would trip regardless of whether the controller was turned on? do you remember how you wired it wrong?
I use a spa panel in between the 30A breaker in my main panel and the control panel. When i wired it up i didn't have the neutrals going to the proper place. I can't remember exactly how i had it wired up, but as soon as i turned on the main power to the panel it tripped. A quick review of the wiring diagram and fixing the connections and I was up and running.

Just triple check that you have the GFCI wired as it should. I had quite a few others tell me they had this same issue and it was due to mis wiring there GFCI breaker.
 
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lnlogauge

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would definitely check your gfci wiring...

image courtesy pj!

I bet that's it.

I replaced an existing 220v non gfci breaker, and wired it up exactly the same. Thanks for the super useful pic.
 
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lnlogauge

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No luck.

as soon as I got home from work, I added the neutral to the GFCI that I was missing. 2 hots plugged into the breaker, neutral going from breaker to the neutral panel, and ground going to ground. still tripping.



 

dmcman73

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I assume it's a plastic box it's all in? I would start by disconnecting the hot leads from the PID first, power on the unit and see if it still trips the breaker. If it dies, it's not the PID. Next, use a meter o continuity (beeps when you touch both leads together) and with the unit unplugged from the wall, touch one lad to the chassis ground (green wires) to one hot lead and see if it beeps, if it does, you have a short, if it doesn't, move the lead to the other hot lead.
 
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lnlogauge

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to update this, I spent some time going through everything, still no bueno. I moved the box back to my junction box, and it still didn't work. I swapped out the GFCI breaker for a spare non GFCI, and it turned on.

gfci breakers are expensive.
 

raouliii

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..... I added the neutral to the GFCI that I was missing. 2 hots plugged into the breaker, neutral going from breaker to the neutral panel, and ground going to ground. still tripping.

......to update this, I spent some time going through everything, still no bueno. I moved the box back to my junction box, and it still didn't work. I swapped out the GFCI breaker for a spare non GFCI, and it turned on.

gfci breakers are expensive.
If your control panel is working with a non-GFCI breaker and not with a GFCI breaker then it could be a problem with the new GFCI wiring or internal to the control panel.

Did the control panel function in its previous home on a GFCI circuit? Did you ever post a photo of the GFCI wiring? What neutral was missing?
 
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lnlogauge

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If your control panel is working with a non-GFCI breaker and not with a GFCI breaker then it could be a problem with the new GFCI wiring or internal to the control panel.

Did the control panel function in its previous home on a GFCI circuit? Did you ever post a photo of the GFCI wiring? What neutral was missing?
I took the GFCI breaker with my when I moved, and it conveniently was the same style. I was missing the neutral that goes from the breaker to the neutral, but even with that corrected it still didnt work.
 

raouliii

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.....I was missing the neutral that goes from the breaker to the neutral.....
The attached pigtail was missing? The neutral what? Bus bar?

I took the GFCI breaker with my when I moved, and it conveniently was the same style. I was missing the neutral that goes from the breaker to the neutral, but even with that corrected it still didnt work.
So, the control panel functioned with that exact GFCI breaker prior to moving that breaker to a new location? Don't assume it's wired correctly until it is visually reviewed. My bet is on the breaker being mis-wired.

IMO, an electric brewery should always be protected by a GFCI.
 
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