Freeze-drying fruits, dairy products, and even full meals is a great way to prepare an emergency food supply for you and your family. Without a doubt, Harvest Right freeze dryers are the most popular option for home use.
However, no system comes without the occasional problem. Here's how to troubleshoot and solve some common issues with Harvest Right home freeze dryers!
Harvest Right Freeze Dryer Won't Start
If you've loaded enough food onto your stainless steel trays, followed the directions, and pressed the start button and it still isn't working, there are a few ideas to try.
First, ensure that the system is plugged in and the lights are on. If it's plugged in but the lights aren't on, check your fuse or circuit breaker to ensure it's working. Remember, you will need a 110-volt outlet to run your freeze dryer.
Second, ensure that the door is properly closed, as it won't start if it senses that the door is open. If it is securely closed, open it and look at the latch to see if anything is blocking it.
Finally, check the controls using the touch screen on the side of the unit. Is it displaying any error codes?
Vacuum Sensor Stopped Working
Whether it's an oil-free pump or a regular vacuum pump, the display may read an issue with the sensor. In that case, turn the system off and on again, as this code may appear if you press the start button before it is done with the previous cycle.
Otherwise, open the drain valve to release the pressure and then try again. If the code is still there, you may need to replace your sensor, which is easy to do!
Food Isn't Drying All the Way
If your food isn't drying entirely after a full cycle, it's likely that you exceeded its fresh food capacity. The large freeze dryer can use up to 16 pounds of fresh food at a time, and the small can use up to 7 lbs of food. Don't exceed the product dimensions of 1-1.5 gallons of food for the small or 3.5 gallons for the large.
Otherwise, it's likely that you're not giving the system its necessary dry time. Home freeze-dried foods need to be as thoroughly dried as store-bought ones if you want them to have a long shelf life. Try not to overload your system, and allow your system to run its full cycle. After a year's time, you could have an average yield of 195 to 546 gallons of food storage, depending on the size of your model!
Vacuum Pump Is Inadequate
If your vacuum pump isn't working at optimal levels, then it won't dry your food thoroughly. Make sure you use your oil filter after every use for the best results and change the oil every 6 cycles. That's a small price to pay for having your own freeze dryer at home!
Also, if you use the oil-free vacuum pump, check for clogs in the vacuum hose. If that doesn't work, give it a deep clean and try again!
Vacuum Failing Mid-Batch
The most common cause of a vacuum failure mid-batch is an open drain valve. Ensure that it is closed tightly.
Otherwise, your premier vacuum pump may have suffered some damage, clog, or a sensor failure. In this case, you may need to replace these parts or contact the manufacturer.
Get a Harvest Right Freeze Dryer Today
Harvest Right freeze dryers are one of the best ways to preserve food on the market. No other food preservation methods allow for such a long shelf life while preserving the original flavor.
If small businesses or homesteaders want to increase their food supplies, there are no better options to choose from! They require minimal upkeep and, as you can see, their problems are minimal and easy to solve.
Stay up to date with our latest product tips, and freeze-dry your own food by ordering a Harvest Right freeze dryer today with free shipping and a price match guarantee!