What’s Going on With Carrier and Goodman?

 

For a number of years, the Carrier Corporation has been manufacturing air conditioning equipment and selling their products all over the world.  Virtually everyone in the HVAC industry and a large part of the consuming public is familiar with the Carrier name.  To a lesser extent, the Goodman Company has also been manufacturing air conditioning equipment.  Although the Goodman Company is not was well known as Carrier, the two companies manufacture some of the same products.  Case in point: packaged terminal air conditioning units or PTACs as they are more commonly known.  These are units that are commonly found in motel rooms.  Recently, both companies recalled some of their PTAC units, Carrier on December 22, 2015 and Goodman on February 17, 2016.  But, the most troubling commonality is that the recalls are for the same problem.  That is, both companies recalled their products because their PTACS were equipped with line cords that could overheat and pose a burn hazard to consumers.  The only reason that line cords overheat is because they are sized too small for the unit’s load; i.e. the unit is drawing more current than the line cord can handle.  How does that happen?  This problem is not something that has been recently discovered.  It is not something that belongs to new technology innovations.  Any company that has been manufacturing an electrical device for any length of time has to know full well what the consequences are of undersized wiring for a specific load.  So, again how do companies like Carrier and Goodman get it wrong?  If the problem can’t be in the lack of knowledge, it has to be in the manufacturing process.  Maybe it’s time for some worker retraining.

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About rjhillconsulting
R.J. Hill Consulting is a forensic consulting engineering firm that specializes in performing failure investigations for attorneys and insurance companies. Mr. R.J. Hill is a registered professional (mechanical) engineer with over 37 years of experience, 33 years in private practice. Please visit www.rjhill.com to see the kinds of forensic investigations that Mr. Hill performs.

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