Mystery PID/SSR issue

HomeBrewTalk.com - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Community.

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

ryanhope

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 11, 2013
Messages
270
Reaction score
33
Location
Albany
This weekend I tested out my brew panel and did my first 100% electric brews. During the first brew I noticed an issue which I thought was related to having not done an autotune on the PID. I noticed that the boil kettle element light on my panel was pegged on even though the PID output light was off and the temp sensor read 212. I know it was still getting power because the boil was getting out of control. I turned my three way switch (that turns on the element contactors) off and then back on. This restored "normal" operation, the element light, ssr light and pid output light all resumed blinking at the expected rates and the temp. A similar thing happened to me the next day.

The issue only happens with my boil kettle. I have a 220v 4500 watt element on the HLT and 220v 5500 watt element in the boil kettle. There is only 1 SSR in the system. The SSR is only rated for 25 amps and with the 5500watt element I have seen my amp meter go up to 23 amps. Any thoughts would be welcome.
 

augiedoggy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 6, 2013
Messages
10,273
Reaction score
2,270
Location
North Tonawanda NY
This weekend I tested out my brew panel and did my first 100% electric brews. During the first brew I noticed an issue which I thought was related to having not done an autotune on the PID. I noticed that the boil kettle element light on my panel was pegged on even though the PID output light was off and the temp sensor read 212. I know it was still getting power because the boil was getting out of control. I turned my three way switch (that turns on the element contactors) off and then back on. This restored "normal" operation, the element light, ssr light and pid output light all resumed blinking at the expected rates and the temp. A similar thing happened to me the next day.

The issue only happens with my boil kettle. I have a 220v 4500 watt element on the HLT and 220v 5500 watt element in the boil kettle. There is only 1 SSR in the system. The SSR is only rated for 25 amps and with the 5500watt element I have seen my amp meter go up to 23 amps. Any thoughts would be welcome.
what kind of SSR. one of the $4 fotek knockoffs? if so thats likely your issue... a 25a ssr is rated for up to 25 amps and should work fine but the foteks have a high defect/failure rate. ( I have use them and got luck but they have the highest reported failure rate) I have been using a 25a fotek for 3 years now with no problems but I also use 4500w elements.

Also what kind of heatsink setup do you have and are you using thermal grease between the heatsink and the ssr?

is there a light on your SSR? does it always stay on?
 
OP
ryanhope

ryanhope

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 11, 2013
Messages
270
Reaction score
33
Location
Albany
what kind of SSR one of the $4 fotek knockoffs? if so thats likely your issue... a 25a ssr is rated for 23 amps and should work fine but the foteks have a high defect/failure rate. ( I have use them and got luck but they have the highest reported failure rate)

Also what kind of heatsink setup do you have and are you using thermal grease between the heatsink and the ssr?
Yeah its one of those amazon specials, and the bundled heat sink. I did put thermal grease on it.
 

Brumateur

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Jan 13, 2014
Messages
563
Reaction score
91
Looks like your SSR was overheated slightly.

What kind of heatsink do you have ? Have you put some thermogrease between the SSR and heatsink?
 

Brumateur

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Jan 13, 2014
Messages
563
Reaction score
91
The right one may work OK without a fan in some circumstances but fan is still highly recommended for both.
 

Chrisl77

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 25, 2011
Messages
892
Reaction score
87
Location
Jackson
For a 5500 watt element you would of been better off getting a 40 amp ssr. Are you putting the heat sink on the outside of your box? If your putting the heat sink inside the box it makes it harder to dissipate the heat.
 

Chrisl77

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 25, 2011
Messages
892
Reaction score
87
Location
Jackson
Is there a vent on the opposite side of the box from that fan to pull fresh air in? If not you may want to consider it.
 
OP
ryanhope

ryanhope

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 11, 2013
Messages
270
Reaction score
33
Location
Albany
Is there a vent on the opposite side of the box from that fan to pull fresh air in? If not you may want to consider it.
There is a 1" hole on the side of the box where I was going to mount a much smaller fan.
 
Top