Jan 2021 – Purchasing chillers manufactured outside of Canada can present its own set of problems even if though they may be lower in price.
The frozen chiller in the picture above is just one of the many chillers that we had to repair because they couldn’t survive our cold winters. But that’s just one of the problems you might encounter with “off shore” chillers.
For one thing, chillers manufactured “off shore” do not always use UL or CSA approved electrical components. When they don’t, you might end up with a chiller that won’t be approved for operation in Canada.
Upgrading these chillers can be expensive. So expensive in fact that it’s not even worth trying. If they are approved, the components may not be selected to the same standards as we use in Canada. Condensers and fans can be undersized, pumps and tanks can be too small.
Moreover, the chiller may not perform as you expected and in the conditions you expected, i.e., it might be too hot in the summer for the chiller to run without tripping off or there is not enough water flow or pressure.
Chillers made in the USA will probably meet Canadian standards but may not be approved when purchased and this will need to be done by you at your facility.
And what happens when you need new parts? They will have to come from the USA which involves Canadian customs and brokerage coming in to Canada and USA customs and brokerage when returning parts for warranty approval. In a lot of cases, the cost of customs and brokerage charges will be much more than the price of the part itself.
Another issue for outdoor chillers is our cold Canadian winters. A lot of manufacturers do not design their chillers to operate in our cold conditions. Unfamiliar as they are with what has to be done and you could find yourself with no support and a chiller that cannot operate in the cold months.
You might think that this only applies to chillers for applications like breweries and wineries, but it applies to process chillers as well.