As an electrician, I am often called out to repair and troubleshoot Breezair evaporative coolers. Now I have one of these units myself and I just wanted to say never again will I purchase another Breezair unit. They are made cheap and fail a lot of the time. Not only that the replacement parts are very expensive.
I have replaced every single electrical part of my Breezair evaporative cooler over the last 5 years. Most were covered under warranty in the first 2 years. When I purchase an expensive appliance I want it to last. I have repaired more Breezair evaporative aircon models than any other brand. What does that say? Maybe the newer models are more reliable.
The parts that have failed are shown below. I will show you how to test each one further down in this troubleshooting repair guide.
- Tornado water pump
- Electric direct drive motor (Icon)
- Speed controller
- Breezair Electric dump valve
- 24V Water inlet valve
- Wireless remote control
Often it is easy to see why these parts have failed but other times it will need some Breezair evaporative cooler troubleshooting to work out the problem. So let’s look into how and why these parts fail so you can fix this piece of junk yourself. These swamp coolers are easy to repair so give them a go.
Now if you have a Coolair or Braemar evaporative cooler many of the parts are the same as the Breezair as they are from the same parent company Seeley International. So the parts and evaporative cooler troubleshooting guide will be the same for these brands.
Table of Contents
- 1 Breezair evaporative cooler service
- 2 Breezair evaporative cooler troubleshooting guide
- 3 Breezair evaporative aircon runs for a few minutes then stops.
- 4 Internal Speed Controller & Data Test (Wired/Wireless)
- 5 Seeley Tornado water pump not working
- 6 Breezair Water Inlet Solenoid Valve Test
- 7 Ball Float leaking
- 8 Breezair Salinity Probe Test
- 9 VSD Speed Controller Testing
- 10 Direct Drive Motor Testing
- 11 Breezair Fault Codes
- 12 How to reset Breezair evaporative cooler
- 13 Conclusion
Breezair evaporative cooler service
It’s a great idea to do a service on your evaporative cooler every year. This should minimize any problems. Check out my video below on how to service your Breezair unit.
Breezair evaporative cooler troubleshooting guide
- Digital Multimeter with the ability to test Diodes
- Flat Screwdriver
- Small Brush
The most common problem I come across is the dump valve is not seated. This can cause a whole heap of problems such as water leaking, and the evaporative aircon not starting.
Always isolate the power before working on any evaporative cooler. There are electrical hazards and mechanical moving parts.
Breezair evaporative aircon runs for a few minutes then stops.
So you may be wondering why my Breezair evaporative aircon runs for a few minutes and then stops. This is a classic case of the dump valve that is not reaching the limit switch. There are two limits in the dump valve one for the open position and one for the closed position.
The Breezair cooler will wait 8 minutes for the water to be detected at the salinity probes before it shuts down with a fault.
As such, if you are DIY testing the dump valve limit switches and it takes longer than 8 minutes, you will need to turn off the cooler at the main switch to reset it. This will let you restart the swamp cooler on COOL mode before continuing.
The most common failure of the evaporate drain valve is that the dump valve inside the drain valve assembly continually moves up and down. This means it is not reaching the limit switch in the open or closed position. It tries a few times before going out in fault.
Breezair drain valve problems
There are five reasons for a limit switch not reaching the closed position.
- Object or dirt stuck in the dump valve drain
- The dump valve plug has gone hard should be soft
- The dump valve electrical motor failing
- The return spring has come off the drain plunger.
- The limit switch failed.
The motor inside the drain valve is a synchronous motor that has the ability to run clockwise or anti-clockwise depending on the limit position. They are similar to the synchronous motors found in my automatic projector screen that stopped working just smaller.
I’m my case the 24V AC motor failed and didn’t have enough torque to drive closed the plunger. It would work on the beach but as soon as a load was applied the motor would stall and then open.
If you go up and take off the Breezair cooling filters to the evaporative cooler you can watch the dump valve. It should close and remain closed while the aircon is running. If it opens and goes up and down a few times you have a dump valve problem. What it is doing is trying to reach the limit switch. Replace the whole dump valve unit.
I have replaced many of these genuine Breezair 24VAC dump valves it is an easy job, but be warned it is not a cheap part. Just use your screwdriver to open up the top tabs and pull out the dump valve. You can now unplug the electrical connection and replace it with a new one.
- Evaporative Cooler Drain Valve and Shutoff 24VAC
- For Seeley EM series part numbers 107684, 105345, and other models.
- Seeley brand – Breezair/Braemar
Internal Speed Controller & Data Test (Wired/Wireless)
If your Breezair swamp cooler is not working the first step is to check that the remote is working. Turn on the unit at the main power and at the speed controller. Turn the evaporative unit to manual and cool. The cooler should turn on close the dump valve and fill with water. The fan should then start.
If you find that the evaporator cooling pads are still dry or that there’s no water in the reservoir then you may have a wall controller remote issue. A faulty water solenoid valve, a faulty dump valve, or faulty salinity probes could also be the problem.
The next test is to put the swamp cooler into manual and vent mode on the remote control. Check that the water turns off. Increasing and decreasing the fan speed should also be tested. Check that the dump valve button works and water flushes out.
Wireless remote controller
Make sure that the remote control is paired to the Breezeair evaporative cooler and that a signal can be received at the unit.
If you press the power or any other button on the remote control and the remote display turns off you may need to change the batteries.
Sometimes the remote battery terminals can get corroded and will need to be cleaned up with some fine sandpaper.
How to reset the ID code in the Breezair wireless Harmony remote
Sometimes the Breezair remote control fails to talk to the evaporative air conditioner. This can be due to a few reasons such as low battery power or the remote being too far away from the evaporative cooler.
Electrical interference can also cause issues like a faulty Tornado water pump. Once they get old and loud they can cause electrical interference. I have seen a Breezair cooler not communicate properly with a wireless remote until the old water pump was replaced.
If the batteries are not replaced quickly when they go flat the remote control can lose its stored info. This includes its ID code.
To set the ID code again and pair the remote to the evaporative unit do the following.
- Turn off power to the Breezair evaporative cooler for at least 10 seconds
- Remove all of the batteries from the remote control
- Repeatedly press the power button on the remote control until the screen goes blank
- Turn on the power to the Breezair evaporative cooler and replace the batteries in the remote control within 4 minutes.
- The remote control is now paired with the Seeley Breezair cooler.
Next time you are ready to replace the batteries make sure they are charged and ready to go. Otherwise, you may need to pair the Breezair remote again.
Another problem with these Breezair remote controls is corrosion on the battery terminals. You can use some fine 400 grit sandpaper to gently rub off any corrosion on the terminals.
Seeley Tornado water pump not working
The Breezair tornado water pump starts to run after the water level is high in the reservoir. This is detected by either a float switch or the salinity terminals.
Clean the salinity terminals first to make sure they work. Otherwise, you will need to replace the Breezair Tornado Water Pump No. 110783.
Make sure to only replace the pump with another genuine Breezair Tornado water pump as it has the correct plug connection. This makes it a true plug-and-play installation.
The tornado water pump will start once the speed controller detects that water has been in contact with the salinity probes for around thirty seconds.
If the speed controller can’t detect any water then the pump will not start this is a safety feature. The Tornado water pump will pre-wet the cooling pads for a few minutes before the main fan will start.
Compatible part numbers 110783 and 095806.
Tipple problems: This water pump will be extra loud when there is not enough water level. These water pumps will fail over time and will have an excessive current draw or internal sparking of the carbon brushes. This will cause the Breezair fault circuit to trip the cooler. Replace the water pump.
There also could be dirt, sticks, rubbish, or insects trapped in the impeller stalling the pump. Give it a gentle tap to see if it can start running again. If you have 24V AC at the pump and the water pump is not running but turns by hand it needs to be replaced.
Swamp Cooler not blowing cool air fix
Check that the water pump is working and that there are no leaks in the pipe work. A faulty drain valve can also cause the swamp cooler to not blow any cool air into the house.
Check out our video on how to troubleshoot your swamp cooler not blowing cool air.
Breezair Water Inlet Solenoid Valve Test
To check if the water inlet solenoid valve is working, you will need to do a few tests. Turn the evaporative cooler on and set the remote to Cool mode on the internal wall controller. You will find that the speed control module will try to close the drain valve.
Power of 24V AC (not DC) is then applied to the solenoid valve. It should open up and allow water to enter and fill the tank reservoir.
There is a safety time out of around 10-15 seconds for the drain valve to fully close. If it doesn’t close you have a problem with the drain valve. This is enough time for the limit to be made before 24V AC is sent to the solenoid valve. This is to save water going down the drain.
My Breezair unit waits around 7 minutes for the water to be detected at the salinity probes before it shuts down with a fault. A slow fill could indicate a water inlet problem.
Many water solenoid valves can become stuck in the closed position over time. Especially if not used for a long time. This means no water can enter the evaporative cooler. Replace the solenoid valve. If the solenoid valve doesn’t close when de-energized water can spill over into the drain valve. Replace the solenoid valve.
There is a test you can do to check the water inlet solenoid valve. Start by draining all the water by pressing the drain button on the remote control. Once all of the water has been drained and emptied, turn on the evaporative cooler and put it into Manual and Cool modes.
After around 10-15 seconds, the water inlet solenoid valve should open and water will flow into the evaporative cooler reservoir.
If no water enters the evaporative cooler sump, then make sure the dump valve has fully closed and not moving up and down.
You can use a digital multimeter to check that there is still 24V AC (not DC) at the electrical solenoid valve. The closed limit must also be activated in the closed position.
If you still have 24V AC (not DC) at the solenoid valve but no water is flowing into the sump check that the water inlet valve is turned on. Replace the solenoid valve if the water inlet valve is on and you have 24v AC.
If you don’t have 24V AC power at the solenoid valve (check with a multimeter) and the water is turned on you could have a speed controller fault or a dump valve limit fault. Most often it is a dump valve fault in my experience.
The water solenoid valves will have a water flow arrow, so make sure to install it the correct way around.
You can buy a new Breezair water solenoid valve from Amazon. They are cheap and should last another 10 years.
Ball Float leaking
Another common fault is the ball float leaks after the correct level is reached. This is due to the rubber seal getting worn out. Just like on a toilet ball float these will need to be replaced after about 5 years or more.
What you will find that is water is overflowing from the ball float and either coming over the edge of the water cooler or going down the overflow drain.
To replace this seal isolate the inlet water to the Breezair evaporative cooler.
Pop off the blue plastic cover on the ball float and remove the black plastic pin. Be careful as this is usually a tight fit. I like to use some lubricating spray and a small pin punch to manually push out this pin, Make sure to support the fragile plastic supports that the pin goes through so you don’t break them off.
Remove the float arm and remove the square rubber seal.
If you don’t have a spare rubber gasket you can flip this rubber seal over and use the other side. This will give you another few more years of trouble-free operation.
Replace the float arm and press the plastic pin back into place. The blue plastic cover can now be pressed back onto the top.
Turn the water isolation valve back on and test out the water level. Adjust the ball float as necessary.
You can replace the whole Genuine Breezair, Braemar, Coolair vertical float valve part No. 901114 but it is cheaper and mare easy to just swap over the rubber seal.
This is a common fault and with some basic Breezair evaporative cooler troubleshooting, it can be fixed in 10 minutes.
Breezair Salinity Probe Test
The Breezair salinity detector is used to detect water levels. It does this by testing how electrically conductive the evaporative water is. The swamp cooler will not start the Tornado water pump unless the water is detected by the salinity probes. This is a safety feature.
When the evaporative cooler is fully drained and emptied the SAL (Salinity) LED will be solid red on the speed controller. When the swamp cooler is full of water the SAL (salinity) LED on the speed controller will be blinking red once every 4-5 seconds. This is a normal running condition. Happy days.
I have found that if the evaporate cooler is full of water, and the SAL LED is solid red, (not blinking) then the salinity detector probes are faulty. They could also have scale buildup that may need cleaning. Another possibility is that the salinity-sensing control circuit inside the speed controller has failed. But this is rare.
A 2-wire and a 3-wire water detector probes are currently installed on most units.
You can do a quick test of the 2-prong salinity probe version by using a digital multimeter. Set it to ohms and remove the salinity probe plug. Check from the plug end to each contact. Look for an ohm resistance of fewer than 2 ohms. Any higher and there is a problem such as corrosion, scale, or break in the wire.
Test the 3-prong salinity probe the same way as the two-wire probe by using a digital multimeter between the plug and the salinity probe contacts. It should be less than 2 ohms.
I have yet to see one completely fail as there are no electronics in them but often the salinity probe electrical connections will need cleaning.
VSD Speed Controller Testing
Warning -High voltages are inside the speed controller.
You will be required to turn off the evaporative speed control box, using the switch on the front of the isolator or at the main switchboard isolator. It is a good idea to wait for at least 30 minutes for any electrical internal capacitance to self-discharge. High voltages are inside the speed controller. Make sure all of the LED lights are off on the speed controller. (No power)
These tests mentioned below will show you how to check the Breezair output control circuits for any short and open circuits in the evaporative speed controller VSD. Faults in the speed controller could indicate a problem with the fan motor so test that one as well.
Unplug the fan motor cable from the speed control box and test the output from the speed controller using a digital multimeter set on diode mode.
These multimeter tests should all show a high resistance mega OHM reading. We are basically testing the internal diodes. Some digital multimeters will show an OL (Over limit) on the digital multimeter. Low readings under 1meg ohm could indicate an internal short circuit within the speed controller.
Faulty speed controllers will need to be replaced as they have no user-replaceable parts.
To do this test set your digital multimeter to diode mode. Place the positive and negative digital multimeter probe leads between each one of the 3 plug output points and follow the small table test below.
Because of the internal electrical winding wiring capacitance, it may take up to 15 seconds for each result to charge up and display properly on the multimeter. We want a high mega ohm reading or over the limit.
Breezair speed controller motor output test
Positive is the red probe and negative is the black probe on your multimeter.
|Motor Plug End Out x3||Test 1||Test 2||Test 3||Test 4||Test 5||Test 6|
Check out the video below on how to use a multimeter to check a diode.
Direct Drive Motor Testing
The fan motors used in the Breezair direct drive coolers (EZD, EXD, EXH, EZH, EXQ) is a brushless DC fan motors also known as BLDC. These direct drive motors are wired in a “star” configuration even though they are single-phase input power to the Breezair main unit.
These older green-colored direct-drive motors in the Breezair evaporative coolers often develop short circuits in the windings due to vibrations. Especially with the older green-colored motors. The white motors are better but can still fail. I guess it’s the way they were made the windings tend to vibrate against each other and cause a short.
When short circuits develop over time in the copper motor windings, they can also cook and damage the speed controller. Often you will notice the following observations of a short circuit in the motor windings. The most common is vibration, overload trips, loud running noises, stalling, and buzzing sounds with erratic or no movement in the fan drive motor.
Check out these two easy ways I use to test the evaporative direct drive motor for short circuits within the electrical windings.
Evaporative Motor Test Part 1- The motor hand turn test
- Be sure to isolate the main power to the speed controller. Either at the switchboard breaker or the isolator switch on the speed controller.
- Turn off the mains incoming water to the evaporative cooler.
- Make sure all diagnostic LEDs lights are off on the front of the speed controller.
- Gently remove the motor power cable from the speed controller. Trace it to the fan motor if needed.
- Remove one or more of the side-cover water cooling pads. You will need access to turn the fan by hand.
- Give the fan a quick spin turn with your hand. Be careful.
You will get around 1 – 3 revolutions out of the main fan blades depending on how hard you spin the fan. If there’s an internal short circuit within the windings, the fan motor will stop. This is due to the magnetic drag often within ½ of a revolution. The evaporative fan motor should spin freely but you will feel some drag.
- Move on to the next step Motor test part 2 to confirm a shorted-out fan motor. You can double-check if you have a short circuit in the internal copper motor windings by checking the winding resistance with a digital multimeter.
Evaporative Motor Test Part 2: Winding Resistance using a digital multimeter
This motor test requires a digital multimeter set to ohms to check the resistance.
- Be sure to isolate the main power feed to the speed controller either at the main switchboard breaker or at the speed controller.
- Turn off the mains incoming water to the evaporative cooler.
- Double-check that all the diagnostic LEDs lights on the front of the speed controller are off. No power.
- Gently remove the 3-pin motor power cable from the speed controller. Trace it to the motor just to be sure.
- Use a digital multimeter to measure the ohm resistance between pins one and two. One and three, and two and three. This is at the 3-pin plug of the evaporative direct drive motor power cable. It doesn’t matter where the positive and negative leads go as we are only measuring resistance.
I find that the resistance of each winding should be all the same within a few ohms of each other in the range of 10 – 30 ohms. Each motor will be slightly different.
A low resistance ohm reading under 9 ohms could indicate a short circuit in the fan motor windings. You should replace the main fan motor.
Breezair Fault Codes
Identifying Breezair fault codes can be tricky as they are only displayed on wired indoor remote controllers and on the speed controller as a flashing code. The wireless remote control cannot display or read any fault codes which is a problem to help working out the issue. They also tend to be unreliable at long distances of more than 10 meters. Fault codes are also available on the newer MagIQtouch remote wall controllers.
I recommend wired controllers for all new installations.
Breezair fault codes can also be displayed and read from the front display LED of the Breezair speed controller. This is shown by the blinking red Diagnostic LED this is called DIAG on the speed controller.
When the evaporative cooler fan is operating normally, the DIAG LED on the front of the speed controller is green and will flash quickly twice. With a small delay between the fashes. This is good.
If a fault is triggered on the speed controller the DIAG LED will turn red and flash a fault code. This flash code sequence is the fault code number. A single red Diag LED blink would indicate fault code 1, two quick red blinking LEDs would indicate fault code 2, three quick red blinking Diag LEDs indicate fault code 3, four red blinking LED lights would indicate fault code 4, and so forth. Reset the fault code by turning off the unit and back on again once the fault has been rectified.
The DIAG LED can change from green to red and back again, but the SAL LED is always red in color. It will either be flashing or constantly on this is normal depending on the water level.
Breezair Fault Code 1
Error Code 1 Indicates a communications problem with the remote control. Check the data cable between the wall remote control and the evaporative swamp cooler for damage and continuity. Check the wireless remote that the batteries are good.
Breezair Evaporative Cooler Service Code 2 Fault
An Error Code 2 means that there is no water at the sump covering the salinity probes.
Fix: The mains water supply to the cooler could be turned off, the solenoid valve may be stuck closed, the dump valve may be open and not be closed, the salinity probes may be dirty/faulty, or the speed controller salinity sensing circuit may be faulty.
Breezair Fault Code 3
An error code 3 that there is a problem with internal EEPROM memory chip corruption or failure. The speed controller will store a small amount of code data to help the unit run and remember settings. This has default settings for the operation of the evaporative cooler. Replace the speed controller this is not a DIY replaceable part.
Breezair Evaporative Cooler Service Code 4 Fault
An error code 4 means that the evaporative swamp cooler is not able to drain the water from the reservoir sump quickly enough. You will get a fault error code after around 4-5 minutes of the water being in contact with the salinity probes. The Breezair will go into fault condition if water is still detected by the salinity probes. Possible causes could be a problem with the drain valve such as a material blockage, scale, failed drain valve motor, or limit switch fault. Excess foam can also cause this problem.
Fix and replace the dump valve if not reach the limit and or clear the blockage.
Breezair Fault Code 7
An error code 7 is a 50Hz frequency fault. This is due to the fact that the mains power supply frequency is not normal. Australia has a standard 50Hz power supply frequency that is constant and should not drift.
If the frequency drifts too much such say between 45-55Hz a fault code will pop up. This is rare and I have yet to see this fault. It is designed to protect the speed controller and motor.
Cause: This can be caused by corrosion inside the speed controller eg rust, corrosion, moisture, bugs, dirt, or failed electrical capacitors. Portable generators that drift can have a bad frequency that can damage sensitive electrical devices.
I have seen old tornado water pumps cause electrical arching which can cause this trip. Replace the water pump. Welding near the evaporative cooler can also cause this error.
Breezair/Breamer Fault Code 8
An error code 8 means that a power failure has been detected such as a blackout/brownout. Turn the unit on and of to reset.
How to reset Breezair evaporative cooler
To reset a fault code on a Breezair evaporative cooler you need to turn off the mains power to the cooler. Waite at least 2-5 minutes and then turn on the main power.
The Breezair evaporative swamp cooler will perform some internal self-checks. If the remote is set for cooling the Breezair unit will close the dump valve, fill with water and start the fan. This is a pass.
Hopefully, you can fix your Seeley Breezair swamp cooler with the above troubleshooting guides. They are easy to work on but the parts cost a fortune.
Many of the older units have a lot of problems. The old green motors tend to fail within a few years if run at maximum speed. The internal windings tend to short out. This is a manufacturing fault that should never happen. The white motors are much better.
I brought my Breezair Icon evaporative cooler to save money but over the years it has cost a small fortune on repairs. I’m just glad I could do it myself.
This is why I have written out this Breezair evaporative cooler troubleshooting guide so you can save on some labor costs.
Let me know in the comments below if you require any help or extra information.
I am a qualified Industrial Electrician for the past 20 years and I love to share my knowledge on home repair and maintenance jobs.
I love fast toys like Motorcycles, Cars, Jetskis, Boats, and Computers so writing about them is easy. Working on them is fun.
To keeps costs down I do all my own mods, repairs, and servicing. These skills I want to share with everyone. DIY is a skill everyone can learn.