I’m trying to find reputable dealers who supply laser chillers for co2 laser up to 100 watt. I have already been burned by chinese machine dealers, they promise a 1 year warrenty but when a failure occurs they have nothing in place to do repairs in the US. Spent weeks going back and forth because machine would not chill water and after sending a requested video was told freon had probably leaked out and I shold take it to local place of repair and they would give me a $30. dollar refund. I called a few apliance repair places and was told no one services cw5200 machines and just to service a fridge the service call would be $165. +tax and if they could add freon it would be another $150. but since there were no service ports on machine to add freon there would be other costs to install them !! what a joke if the warrenty were valid the seller would have a place to send it or some infastructure in the US to have it repaired ! I have seen similar complaints in reviews for many different machines such as veor,omtech,S&A ,etc and if I.m spending 6 or 7 hundred dollars for a chiller I want a seller that stands behind their product for real ! any feed back would be appreciated.
AFAICT, a laser water chiller has basically the same hardware as a room dehumidifier. Nowadays, they all use R410a in non-serviceable refrigerant loops: crimped shut and solder-sealed.
Dehumidifiers are optimized to last just over one year, are non-repairable, and must be considered a consumable.The HomeLabs dehumidifier I mention at the bottom failed just inside its 2.5 year warranty:
I’m beginning to think the best way to chill laser water involves fitting a copper tubing coil into cheap cube refrigerator. Replacing the refrigerator every year or two would set me back $150, rather than $500, and eliminate all the warranty angst.
very interesting, thanks. I,m certainly not going to jump into another one right away but I will be doing a lot more research on doing just what your talking about.
You may want to contact this site when you are ready to purchase a new Chiller. They do have US support and when I have called for information I have been able to talk to a knowable person.
If you do some research on the web i think you will find them to be well rated.
thanks so much, I will check them out
These are basically commodity units built to a price point and rpeirs for something like freon leak are probably going to the repair expense darned close to the price of a new chiller.
Did you buy a genuine CW chiller from a reputable dealer or something off Ebay or Amazon? Lots of of knockoffs out there, I’ve been told.
I biought a vevor cw5000. they turned out to be terrible and had no way of repairing or replacing the unit ,customer service contrary to their claims is nonexistent and I’ve seen similar complaints about S&A, omtec, and others. no appliance service would service it just for freon recharge. so I’m now looking at a lightobject Q800 chiller
I think most CW-5000 cooling machines come from the same factory. If you buy directly from a Chinese dealer, the chance of service is minimal to zero. If the deal has gone through Amazon or a reputable dealer, you will most likely get help in one way or another. After 2 years (EU), the guarantee has expired and you must seek help elsewhere.
Most refrigerators have a lifespan of many years and a CW-5000 is no different, just with a water circuit as coolant. All refrigeration fitters can easily change the compressor or check and service the coolant in the primary circuit. There aren’t that many parts in such a machine that can break, mine has been running for many hours, it makes a bit of noise but cools very well, holds the water and the pressure of coolant.
That depends on three assumptions:
- A nearby repair shop willing to work on it
- Test / recharge fittings in the refrigerant loop
- Available spare parts
When one of my dehumidifiers failed within the warranty period, the company required me to return it to a “qualified repair center” for diagnosis. Fortunately, the shop was nearby (so no return cost), but The Nice Man concluded the coolant leaked and, lacking fittings, it was not repairable even though everything else still worked. The company had gotten out of the dehumidifier business and sent a refund check.
When another dehumidifier failed, a different company required shipping it across the continent (in its original carton!) to their “warranty center” for “analysis”. The shipping would cost as much as a new dehumidifier and, if they decided (for any reason!) not to cover the failure, I’d have to buy a new dehumidifier at (effectively) twice the price.
Absent any evidence that a chiller has recharge fittings and its warranty includes shipping, I assume it is a consumable.
It’s worth noting that, unlike the R-134a in your car, you cannot recharge a chiller at home by hacking in the fittings, because only authorized repair shops can buy R-410a and the specialized equipment required to purge the loop.
thanks for the input
You are right that it is not that easy, but there are still refrigeration / air conditioning technicians who can do the job.
I think most of us bought our laser machines from China, either direct or through Ebay or Amazon or similar. What do you do when the laser tube or power supply breaks, after 2 to 4 years?, do you send the machines to China? - no, we change the vital parts ourselves. And the Laser machines easily cost 10 times as much as a CW-5000. It has its price that we will not pay double what American or European dealers or manufacturers demand for the same machines.
However, you are completely right that it is not satisfactory that it is difficult to get a refrigerator (or another product) repaired during the warranty period in an easier way.
Some years ago I recharged the air conditioning unit in our car. When the first dehumidifier lost its coolant, I thought I could use the same gauge manifold and recharge it myself. Then I discovered it uses a different refrigerant, I couldn’t find a source for the fittings, had no way to properly purge the air / water I’d let into the loop without specialized vacuum equipment, and no way to buy the refrigerant.
When I took the dead dehumidifier to the repair shop, the tech pronounced it non-repairable. If it made sense to recharge it under warranty, he would have done so, but it made more sense to refund all my money and move on.
Somebody who already owns all the equipment could certainly braze fittings into the thing and recharge it, but when that costs more than a new dehumidifier, it definitely doesn’t make any economic sense.
A chiller costs twice what a dehumidifier does, but IMO that’s just because it’s sold into a much smaller market willing to pay more. The repairs might be proportionally more expensive, too, simply because the unit costs more …
A genuine S&A is usually a pretty good investment. The problem is that there are so many fake S&A being sold on Ebay and elsewhere. If you buy an S&A, contact S&A within days of receiving to confirm it is a genuine S&A. As I remember, I had to send them a picture of a barcode or something similar. If it is not genuine, send it back to the seller at the seller’s expense. Always use a credit card to pay and then your credit card company will back you up. I used my credit card through ebay, ebay backed me up when I had a problem with a seller. Always use the ebay contact function so that everything is documented and the ebay people can see the trail.
If you have any problems that require warranty work, you contact S&A directly. They have been very good at communications in my experience.
Hey before you buy a chiller watch this by LA Hobby guy.
I have just bought a compressor cooling box 50l, they are very popular with camping and caravan people and a lot of these cooling boxes are sold. The price is about the same as I paid for my CW-5000. Here the goods also come from China and many are identical, just sold under different names.
The temptation for the seller is very high. If he has the finances to buy “in cash” a large shipping container full of cool boxes, the Chinese paint them in the desired colors and put your desired logo on the box. If the seller is fairly serious, he reserves 5-10% of the container for complaints. If the seller is more serious, he travels to the factory, agrees some necessary technical changes and negotiates a new price for 3 containers with cool boxes. The price he gives is so low and the complaint rate drops to 3-7%, then this trade can easily pay off for him and he gets a very nice profit.
However, the price for the end customers is also determined by the price that the customers are willing to pay.
It has been a known practice for CO2 tubes for many years, the same factory that produces “A” “B” “C” goods sells to the “competing” dealers on offer. Of course, B and C ware will get a different logo and label and A ware will be sold as original from the manufacturer.
Now that is the way to do it!
Some poking around suggests an “Amazon brands” version:
The new version is rounder, a bit prettier, and more expensive, but a black box suits my basement shop decor just fine …
Thanks for the pointer!
Hey no worries glad I could help out
You may look into a Tig Welder chiller they should hold up very well and are cheaper then you first choice.
AFAICT from the description and pictures, that is a radiator with a water pump, not an actual below-room-temperature chiller.