Welded Contactors Nightmare

A few years back we received a down call from a customer that had just purchased a brand new unit from us. We were told that they had hit the start button but were having issues so they tried to troubleshoot it themselves and felt like they broke it since the compressor was now tripping the breaker. When the technician arrived on site and opened up the panel door he realized that the employees had accidentally welded all three of the contactors together on this 40 horsepower motor.

The customer said he was trying to get the dryer to work on the unit and they manually pushed in one of the starters while the unit was running so the electricity welded the contactors together. Fortunately the damage wasn’t as bad as it could’ve been. The welded contactors could’ve taken out the 40 horsepower motor that didn’t even have 2 hours of runtime on it. In the end it ended up costing them about $3000 because they didn’t call us for the initial setup. The customer installed the air compressor on their own which is never recommended because usually the warranty guidelines are not followed and just because this initial cost of $700 was avoided, it ended up costing them $3000 in repair costs plus all the downtime the cost them in their manufacturing costs.

Long story short – this customer lost about 24 hours of production which is a nightmare but fortunately we were able to get them back up and running within 24 hours which is pretty impressive. We’ve heard stories of where businesses are waiting 24-48 hours just to get a technician out. Luck was definitely on the side of this customer because thankfully, the motor was safe as well. If they didn’t try to save the initial investment of 500-600 dollars, this customer would have avoided this situation as a whole but each lesson is valuable so I hope we can all learn from their mistakes as well.