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Air Leak under Igniter on Burner

Hey all,

I have a Beckett AFII burner that is leaking air. The air seems to be coming from between the housing assembly and the igniter, where the wires run through. I have a picture:

<a href="http://i.imgur.com/v0zwc.png">http://i.imgur.com/v0zwc.png</a>

Link: <a href="http://imgur.com/v0zwc">http://imgur.com/v0zwc</a>

The red box is where the leak appears to be, and the arrows is where the air is coming out. I assume there was a gasket between the igniter and housing assembly, but I'm not sure. The burner still apparently runs OK, and I don't smell any funny smells. However, I would also assume the air-to-fuel mixture isn't correct anymore... any suggestions? Getting a technician to come out is so expensive, especially when the burner still seems to work!



  • meplumber
    meplumber Member Posts: 678
    Not uncommon.

    The AFII is not a positive pressure burner.  so it is more likely that you have air leaking into the burner rather than leaking out.  What is the boiler that is it on?  Manufacturer and model number would be great.
  • Phr00t
    Phr00t Member Posts: 1
    Model Numbers

    It is an AFII 150 going into a Comet 145 Hot Water Boiler. It really felt like the air was blowing out, but I never held a string in the air current to verify. There is a blower attached, which I assume blows air into the housing assembly (where I suspected it was leaking outwards) -- but I certainly could be wrong!
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 16,476
    The AF-2 parts breakdown

    shows a gasket under the rear access door. If this is missing, air can leak out. Strangely, no part number is given.

    The AF-2 can develop more static pressure than an AF or AFG (but not as much as an NX) which is why it was used on earlier direct-vent units. I'm not familiar with Comet boilers, but if these units have a certain amount of back-pressure (resistance to the flow of air and combustion products) or if this is direct-vent (no chimney) you'd need the full static pressure capability. Otherwise the boiler will soot up.

    So it's probably time to have someone look at it. Try the Find a Contractor page of this site. Make sure whoever you get has a digital combustion analyzer and the know-how to use it!

    Where are you located?
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Towson, MD, USA
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
  • Air leak stopped.. now delayed ignition? :(

    "shows a gasket under the rear access door. If this is missing, air can leak out. Strangely, no part number is given."

    I first believed it was a missing gasket behind the rear access door and contacted Beckett support. The rear access door assembly comes with the gasket, so I *almost* purchased a new door assembly.

    However, if I covered up the area above the door, the air leaked out of other places out the side -- so the door wasn't the source of the leak. Looking inside the housing assembly, I saw a decent hole with wires running to the igniter.

    I unhinged the igniter and lifted it up, exposing the hole. I saw a black ring around the hole, where it appeared a gasket used to be.  I purchased some of this:


    ... and taped up the hole, which appears to have stopped the leak.

    However, now our furnace seems to be experiencing some delayed ignition (burner starts running, flame starts a bit later with a small "whoosh") -- when it started "just right" before. Did I seal the hole up "too much"? I don't see what else I could have done... :-\

    I do have a chimney, and I tested the air leak with a string -- it did blow out. I am located in western Massachusetts.
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 16,476
    Call a pro

    with the proper equipment. There are plenty of good ones in Massachusetts. You can find one on this site. 
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Towson, MD, USA
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
  • icesailor
    icesailor Member Posts: 7,265
    Delayed Ignition:

    The "hole" isn't something you could have lost sleep over. Whomever set up the burner, inadvertently allowed for the leakage. There was proper airflow down the tube. Now that you plugged where the air blow outs, the static pressure down the tube has gone up and it is blowing out the spark or the transformer ignitor isn't hitting the buss bar on the nozzle assembly. Either way, you need a burner pro with combustion analysis equipment to re-set the draft over the fire and other such good things. There is a lot of leakage around the transformer assembly on an oil burner. Regardless of how much leakage there is, it becomes compensated for when you adjust the burner. If someone comes along and tries to correct this leakage, you will automatically change the air/fuel ratio and burner adjustments.

    Some things are better left alone and left to a professional.  
  • PhrOOt
    PhrOOt Member Posts: 1
    I'm getting a Pro

    Looks like I do need a pro... *sigh*

    The air leak wasn't there when the burner was setup... it was quite the airflow coming from the burner. I agree I must have now upset the fine balance of air going into the chamber and need a pro to re-calibrate it :-\
This discussion has been closed.