Pelton Crane Sterilizer - Fix It Yourself
By Wally Ashbaugh
If your Pelton Crane Sterlizer is not heating like it should, the problem may be one that you can fix yourself. Diagnosing & repairing it is not as complex as you might think.
But first, a basic understanding of what it does is in order: You turn the knob to fill until the water reaches a predetermined level. You place the instruments inside and turn it to sterilize. The Electric Heating elements (3 of them) heat the water in the chamber past the boiling point (212 degrees) turning the water into steam.
The chamber is airtight so when the water turns from solid to gas, the entire chamber is filled with steam and pressure begins to build. By turning itself off and on, the sterilizer maintains the temperature, which in turn keeps the pressure at the desired level. This combination over a period of time (the cycle) kills all living organisms and effectively sterilizes what ever is in the chamber.
The most common problem causing the loss of heat is a heating element going out. You can test to see if this is the problem with any kind of ohmmeter. Unplug the unit before going any further and leave it unplugged.
Remove the cabinet by removing the screws from the bottom of the sides and the back. Once the screws are removed, lift the back of the cabinet slightly and push it forward (there is a small lip in the front that is about ˝ inch wide). Once the lip is cleared, just lift the cabinet off and set it aside. You will want to remove the insulation surrounding the chamber. Just lift it off and set it inside of the cabinet so it is out of the way.
Now, check all the wires around the controls and chamber to make sure none of them have broken. Located on the front of the chamber towards the bottom is the temperature-limiting switch. You will notice wires under the screws on the top of the over temperature switch. With the ohmmeter set to read ohms, place one lead on one screw head and the second lead on the other screw head. If the needle on the ohmmeter stays to the left (doesn’t move) that means the reading is infinity. There is a dead short and the over temperature switch will have to be replaced.
The next and most common problem is the heating elements. To check these out will require a little more work, but is not difficult. The three heating elements are positioned on the bottom of the chamber so there is one close to you, one on the bottom (referred to as the center element) and one on the side away from you.
Each of these heating elements has a screw attached at each end with wires attached. Place a lead from the ohmmeter on each end. If the meter stays in the infinity position as described above, there is a dead short and the element will have to be replaced. The center element is the most common to go out, but check all 3.
If the heating elements are okay, but the temperature-limiting switch is bad, you can replace the switch alone. But if you are replacing a heating element, the switch should be replaced at the same time.
We would be happy to supply you with any replacement parts you might need along with detailed installation instructions. Included with the heating elements is 3 feet of high temperature wire so you can replace all the wiring involved in this procedure. You are also welcome to email us with any questions you may have and will be happy to help you
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