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propane odor

sangreiasangreia Member Posts: 5
When force air heater system starts there is a strong smel of propane on first floor where outlets are located.Heater itself is installed on second floor and no odor there. This happen only from time to time on for short period of time when unit is starting.I checked flame when heater started and everything looked normal, no smel but client insist,that they had few incidents like that over last few weeks.What could be a problem?


  • Tim McElwainTim McElwain Member Posts: 4,358
    Have you smelled the odor?

    If yes then I would test in the duct work with a gas detector to in fact prove it is propane. For the odor of gas to get into the duct work the integrity of the heat exchanger has to be broken as it is sealed away from the duct work on the combustion side. That or a blower door may not be tight.

    There could also be a combustion issue in that the burner is not lighting right away. The burner should ignite in less than four seconds. This still should not allow an odor of gas to reach the duct work unless there is a breakdown somewhere such as a cracked heat exchanger. How old is this unit?
  • sangreiasangreia Member Posts: 5
    propane odor

    I did not detect any propane odor when unit started.Pilot ignited and started right after termostat was turn on.Flame was blue and even.I tested twice so far and never had smel anything. Also with cracked heat exchenger wouldn't be this happening every time unit is on? Heater is 15 years old.Thank you Tim for your response.
  • Tim McElwainTim McElwain Member Posts: 4,358
    Do you have

    a gas detection meter? If so with the unit running go to the register involved with the odor and stick the instrument into the register to see if you pick up anything.
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