In this article, we will be taking an in-depth look at the Elitech IR-200 Dual Sensor Leak Detector. This model is quite unique as it comes with both an infrared and a heated diode sensor. That is a rare find. In most cases, you’ll find one or the other.
This leak detector allows you to detect and narrow down leaks in a much quicker fashion. It is recommended to start looking for leaks using the heated diode sensor. Then once you have narrowed it down a bit more you can switch over to the infrared mode so that you can narrow down the leak even further. These two modes can be switched back and forth by hitting the ‘Mode’ button on the detector.
Before we get a bit further into the other product features lets take some time to understand the different types of sensors here. The heated diode works by heating the refrigerant and breaking the molecules apart. When the molecules are broken a positively charged Chlorine or Fluorine ion will appear. The heated diode will detect these ions and sound the alarm. The downsides to both of this type of detector, and the Corona Suppression, is that they can be overwhelmed if the refrigerant leak is too large. If the area is saturated with refrigerant then these alarms won’t be of much help and you may actually end up damaging your sensor and having to replace it. These sensors typically have a two-year life before they have to be replaced.
The other sensor on this unit, the infrared, works by drawing the air sample across an optical sensor that then analyses how much infrared radiation there is in that given area. The benefits of this technology is that the sensors last much longer, they are less prone to false alarms, they cannot be overloaded in an area saturated with refrigerant, and they are great at finding those very small leaks that other detectors just won’t sense. Infrared detectors are the premium types of detectors on the market. These sensors are expected to last around ten years.
This IR-200 can detect all manners of refrigerants ranging from CFCs, HCFCs, HFCs, and HFOs. These refrigerant classifications will cover most refrigerants you run into in today’s world. Some popular examples would be R-12, R-22, R-410A, R-404A-, R-134a, R-32, R-502, R-125, R-1234yf, and on and on. One point to mention here is that this detector will actually detect hydrocarbon refrigerants as well such as R-290 Propane or R-600a Isobutane. A lot of other detectors will NOT detect these. That being said, this product will not sniff out natural refrigerants such as ammonia or carbon dioxide.
This detector has three sensitivity settings: High, Medium, and Low. The highest sensitivity on the infrared sensor will detect four grams per year (0.14 ounces per year), the medium seven grams per year, and the low will detect fourteen grams per year. The highest sensitivity on the heated diode detector is thirteen grams per year. The detector also comes with what’s known as a ‘peak’ function. When used it will record the absolutely highest leak point during your scan. The detector can work in temperatures ranging from fourteen degrees Fahrenheit (Negative ten Celsius) to one-hundred and twenty-five degrees Fahrenheit (Fifty-two degrees Celsius). Also will work in humidity levels up to ninety percent.
When a leak is detected you will be notified through a buzzer, light, and also bar graph on the detector display. As the leak gets larger the buzzing will increase, the bar graph will grow, and the lights will flicker faster. If you are on a noisy job site there is also a headphone jack so you can plug in and listen for the buzzing closely. If you find that you are working in an area that is saturated with refrigerant and it is hard to detect the source this detector has a zeroing function as well. What that means is that you can set the current air as zero so you can then focus on the larger concentrations. Works just like zeroing out a scale.
The sniffer, or probe, is twelve inches long and is very flexible. I took it out of the box and bent it every which way. Very easy to move back and forth. You will also get a second probe in case the first one is broken or lost. One thing to mention here is that the probe is shorter then some of the other competing models out there. It is worth mentioning that there is a secondary sniffer that comes with this unit that can be attached to the first. This allows for a total length of twenty-four inches. Coming with the sniffer is also a mountable ultraviolet and LED light. It comes with an attachment that can just pop right onto the sniffer. It allowed you to see what you were doing and the fact that there was a UV light would make things even easier if you wanted to really narrow down your leak by doing a UV test.
This detector comes with two 18650 lithium-ion batteries. These batteries will last for eight hours on a continuous charge. You also do not have to worry about accidentally leaving the detector on. It will automatically shut itself off if there has been no activity within ten minutes. When the unit does run out of charge it will take about four hours to fully charge it. The batteries that come with the product are replaceable as well. Most other detectors do not have this option.
The unit itself comes in a hard durable plastic case. Take a picture of this case and it can be found earlier in the article. You will be really impressed with this case, more so then other detectors you’ve handled. When you open it up the tool and other accessories are protected by foam insulation. It is a very light case as well. You can pick it up by the handle just by using your thumb and it was manageable. Lastly, the shipping on this product is very professional. Take only a few days and it will come in perfect condition.
Now a lot of the ‘Pros’ that we wanted to cover in this section were already covered in our Product Features section. There are still some that we can put in here… We just do not want you to be concerned that there aren’t a ton of Pros. The first and biggest Pro is the overall price point of this product. In most cases, an infrared detector can be over two-hundred dollars. A heated diode detector can be in the mid-one-hundreds. You are getting both types of detectors here for right around that two-hundred-dollar price range. (Prices subject to change at any time.) That is a heck of a bargain when you look at the competing models out there.
The other real big pro here is that this product works with hydrocarbon refrigerants. We mentioned this earlier in the features section but let us emphasize it again. Hydrocarbons are the new tomorrow when it comes to refrigerants. You’ll find propane/isobutane vending machines, ice machines, and even some refrigerators and freezers nowadays. There are more applications expected to begin using hydrocarbons as well. So having this on your leak detector is an added benefit.
The last point here is the 24/7 technical support via e-mail or phone. Our customer service phone number is 1-408-844-4070. They can also be reached via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org . Lastly, if neither of those options works you can also reach out directly on our website by filling out a contact us form which can be found by clicking here. If you go through all of this support and you are still not satisfied with the detector we also offer a thirty-day no questions asked return. We are confident enough to stand behind our product and back it up with this money-back guarantee. We offer a full one year warranty. You’ll also notice that when you buy the product you’ll get a flyer with instructions on how to get an extra year warranty on the product. This was right in the case when you receive the item.
What’s In The Box?
This is always an important question when purchasing a new tool. What exactly comes in the box that you are ordering? Is it just the bare-bones product or do you get the extra necessities that you will need down the road? Let’s take a look at what comes with the Elitech IR-200:
- The leak detector itself
- UV LED light attachment
- User’s Manual
- Plastic case
- Charging cable
- Five replacement filters
- One replacement probe
If you are interested in purchasing this unit then please visit this link. Here you can review more information on the product as well as purchase the product straight. The typical lead time once placing an order is between three to five business days for the product to arrive at your door. If you are in a hurry you can also call our customer service and request for first or second-day shipping.