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Time for the combustion analyzer...

Brad White_9
Brad White_9 Member Posts: 2,440
Atmospheric dust residue?


  • Constantin
    Constantin Member Posts: 3,796
    I opened up Ms. Vitola for a plumber today...

    ... and this thin layer of white soot inside greeted me.

    From the little I have been able to find out about white soot, I presume that it's not normal and may indicate too much combustion air... My contractor is coming tomorrow, so I'll get this looked at either way, but I'd love to get your thoughts in the meantime.
  • Constantin
    Constantin Member Posts: 3,796
    ... could be, except...

    ... that would not explain why a month ago Ms. Vitola had no such residue. The only thing that has changed in that time is that I vacuumed her out and that the fuel is starting to become more or less low-sulfur B5.

    The only other thing I can think of is that perhaps I didn't bolt her back down hard enough when I opened her up the last time.
  • Does the burner

    pick up its makeup air inside the boiler room ? Looks like the same residue I see in my Peerless . I think its just dust and whatever is hanging in the air outside the boiler getting thrown into the chamber . I got 2 smokers in my home too - I bet that contributes to the white ash .
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 15,345

    Looks pretty darn clean to me--not sure if you need to be concerned about this.

  • Weezbo
    Weezbo Member Posts: 6,232

    While your home has long since been primed and painted and the sheetrock ,tile and stone work finished... the stuff looks a whole heck of a group like these veritable products residue. should ,for example there be a build up of the same on the blower motor fan and on the end of the motor itself, i would hazard a guess that that would be the most likely infiltrator in the combustion processes.
  • Robert O'Connor
    Robert O'Connor Member Posts: 97

    There really is no standard for this fuel. Has third party testing been done with this this burner and bio fuel?

    All the best


  • Plumbob
    Plumbob Member Posts: 183

    They're microscopic mouse turds.
  • Constantin
    Constantin Member Posts: 3,796

    ... B5 is not approved yet because,as you point out, no one is really sure what "B5" ought to be. I'm trying it out simply for the benefit of the 11x lower sulfur content than what I'd have to contend with normally (we mostly get dyed Diesel up here).

    However, all the testing to date shows that dino/bio ratios above 80/20 seem to work well and w/o harm to pumps and seals. As such, B5 ought to be a very, very conservative first step in that direction.
  • scott inM.E.
    scott inM.E. Member Posts: 68
    check the NORA web site....

    it has a link on updated testing and research for low sulfer #2 fuel.
  • Constantin
    Constantin Member Posts: 3,796
    I wish...

    ... that was all done months ago, before I did the last cleaning in January. Given that the room in which the Vitola sits is quite clean as well, I doubt that it's dust.

    I have heard that it could be simply the cleanliness of the B5 compared to the other fuels. Thanks to the tireless work of Tom Butcher and his colleagues at BNL we know that sulfur content has a very big effect on the sooting of boilers... thus, perhaps the whiteness we see here is a shape of things to come once the grey/black soot takes a back seat.

    I hope to get some combustion numbers today, that should settle the issue.
  • Constantin
    Constantin Member Posts: 3,796
    Very funny...

  • S Ebels
    S Ebels Member Posts: 2,322
    Is it

    Is it like a dust that can be brushed off easily or is it baked on and hard to remove? My first guess is some kind of combustion by product from the B5. Maybe it has a higher "hydro" % than normal fuel and its leaving behind a little ash or condensation film.
  • Constantin
    Constantin Member Posts: 3,796

    ... reminds me of titanium dioxide... hopefully, our contractor will bring the analyzer today, then the whole thing will be put to bed.
  • Brad White_9
    Brad White_9 Member Posts: 2,440
    Titanium Dioxide...

    A major ingredient in.... paint. Getting to the bottom of this. Never did buy the mouse turd theory. :)
  • Ron Schroeder
    Ron Schroeder Member Posts: 998

    Hi Constantin,

    Since BD has a different Carbon/Hydrogen ratio than #2 fuel oil, you will get more accurite efficiency numbers from an electronic combustion analyser that actually measures O2 and infers CO2 from the O2 rather than a wet tester that is actually measuring CO2.

    Ron Schroeder
  • Jim Davis_3
    Jim Davis_3 Member Posts: 578
    White soot is usually related to moisture

    Over the past many years any time I saw white soot is was a moisture or condensation problem with some elevated CO, but not necessarily excessive. Excess air or low tmeperatures could be the problem. Many times I have seen this develop after the burners shutdown and the flue gases(draft)slow down or drop too much. Chech draft running and after burner shutdown.
This discussion has been closed.