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Older Honeywell residential gas furnace controls?

I have a gas residential furnace from mid '70s. It has a cluster of Honeywell models attached to each other. At the top is a C5296A which has the copper pilot tube. It also has a round knob to shut off the gas, or to press down to light the pilot.

That knob is a little sticky/sluggish when returning from the pressed down position, and a small amount of gas leaks while it springs back (slowly) to the topmost position.

That knob seems to be an assembly which drops into the C5296A. That assembly seems to drop into the top of C5296A, held in by 3-4 screws, held flush with the surface of the C5296A.

My question: Is the knob assembly removable and serviceable? (Is it just a matter of cleaning it? Or, are there seals inside which can be replaced?). Or, does the C5296A have to be replaced? Or, does the entire cluster of modules have to be replaced?[1]

I know I should call for professional service. But, I want to have some knowledge so I'm not taken advantage of. (I've heard too many stores of people sold new furnaces when they don't need them. I know a 30-year old furnace has lived it's life. But, I'm in Phoenix. I run the furnace about 3 months per year. And, even then I only keep the house about 65-67 degrees. I've also been laid off for 3 years. So, I'm trying to reasonably get more time out of it.).

[1] The base is "V5108A 35AG."

A block to the right says "V8280A1013 3 (new line) 1/2x1/2int. (new line) JC4."

Another block above that says "V8254A."



  • Tim McElwain
    Tim McElwain Member Posts: 4,556
    I am not quite sure what

    you are talking about. A photo or two would help. What is the make and model of the furnace.

    To answer what I believe you are asking component parts can no longer be changed on gas controls. If the control fails they have to be replaced as an entire unit. In some cases it may require a changeover control system which would mean parts plus labor for a pro to do it. We do not discuss prices here by the way.
  • Azdays
    Azdays Member Posts: 4
    With photos

    I uploaded 3 photos.[1]  It's a Goettl model GC80D.

    When I push down on the knob to rotate it, it springs back sluggishly, leaking slightly until it completely returns to its top-most position.

    As mentioned earlier, I hate to spend a lot replacing the entire unit (or furnace).  In Phoenix, I only need to heat the house from an average 60 degrees to 68 for only 2-3 months. I think I'd buy a space heater before dropping a bundle on a new furnace. :)

    Therefore, I'm particularly curious about whether that valve is serviceable. The

    three screws give me the impression it is. I wouldn't try to do it

    myself. But, am curious what to expect from professional service. I

    don't want to be pushed to an expensive replacement unit if it's

    customary to remove that valve and clean/lube it.

    Please let me know if there is a more appropriate area to post this.

    [1] Photos:

    - The unit: http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/822/unite.jpg/

    - The control valve on top: http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/6/controlwknob.jpg/

    - The control valve with knob removed: http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/33/controlwoknob.jpg/
  • Tim McElwain
    Tim McElwain Member Posts: 4,556
    Replace the gas valve

    with a Honeywell VR8300A 24 volt standing pilot thermocouplee operated gas valve and save your self from the possibility of a gas leak or fire. WE DO NOT TAKE GAS VALVES APART AND REPAIR THEM!
  • Azdays
    Azdays Member Posts: 4

    Thanks! That gives me a good idea of what I'm facing. (I googled and found some prices. Not as bad as I thought.).

    I don't mind spending money to have my furnace checked out and the valve done right. It's way overdue for service.

    But, out of curiosity, how reasonable is it for a homeowner to replace the control unit like that? (Say, a homeowner who has some DIY experience, such as replacing gas water heaters, plumbing, electrical, etc.). Is that totally insane (Darwin award material?) or merely inadvisable from a professional's point of view?

    Thanks again.
  • John Mills_5
    John Mills_5 Member Posts: 935

    Looks like a flexible gas connector running into the furnace cabinet to the gas valve. That's very dangerous. Totally against code now even if it wasn't then. Whomever changes the gas valve needs to correct that and run black iron pipe out of the furnace cabinet. Then if you want to use a NEW connector between that section of pipe and your incoming line, you can. But I'd get rid of that old connector entirely. 
  • lchmb
    lchmb Member Posts: 2,997

    If you dont have one at the furnace add a sediment trap to protect the gas valve....
  • Tim McElwain
    Tim McElwain Member Posts: 4,556
    It is a good idea to

    have a professional check your heating system once a year. Design atmospheric gas systems do not always need cleaning but a vacuum of the burner area and the burners being brushed off is a good idea. From time to time the pilot needs cleaned. The gas pressures both inlet and outlet need checked every year. A combustion analysis using an electronic analyzer is a must every year. All of this will prevent problems down the road and help to keep your system running efficiently. I also recommend you have a spill switch added to your draft hood to alert in case of downdrafts or flue gas spillage.

    The fact that you have a warm air system you should also have a carbon monoxide detector in the living spaces, living room, TV room, Bedrooms.
  • Slimpickins
    Slimpickins Member Posts: 327
    faulty gas flex
    1. Beside what John Mills said, the flex connector itself is dangerous and should be replaces ASAP. http://www.archive.org/details/gas

  • Jean-David Beyer
    Jean-David Beyer Member Posts: 2,666
    a flexible gas connector running into the furnace cabinet to the gas valve

    From the meter to my boiler is mostly black pipe, but there is a yellow CSST section in an essentially straight run across my garage ceiling. It is now grounded, though the inspectors passed it when it was just installed and in plain sight. There is a sediment trap about a foot before it enters the boiler.

    Once inside the boiler, there is another sediment trap and then a short piece of flex pipe to the gas valve. it is quite short and does not get flexed much. I suppose each time the gas valve is removed from the venturi where the gas and air get mixed before entering the burner. Is this the flex pipe you say is against code? I assume the CSST is within code, because it is in plain sight and the inspector could easily see it -- though he did not see that it was not bonded or grounded. It is difficult to imagine the boiler manufacturer would put flex pipe in there if it violated code.
  • Tim McElwain
    Tim McElwain Member Posts: 4,556
    Flexible connectors

    are not themselves a code violation. The old brass ones should be removed and replaced as they tend to get very brittle and break easily and they are part of a consumer protection alert. There are flexible connectors which are acceptable for simplifying connection of equipment. I personally do not like them on water heaters, or heating furnaces and boilers. These are not however CSST which is an entirely different code standard and are acceptable if you choose to use them, again not my favorite way to pipe equipment. Flexible connectors to my way of thinking are best used on slide in gas ranges to make installation easier and cleaning when the floor needs it. It has been my experience over the years that when you finally do touch them they tend to develop cracks and each time they are moved I recommend replacement.

    Yes folks sediment traps are still required on equipment contrary to rumors.
  • Azdays
    Azdays Member Posts: 4
    Flex pipe

    Is it just the older brass flex pipe that is problematic. Is the newer chrome-plated stuff ok? (The article seemed to call out the brass colored stuff specifically, giving the impression what's sold in stores today is ok?.).

    John Mills's also said black steel should be run out of the furnace cabinet. Is that typically a code requirement too? I mean, if new flex tubing is safe, is it common for localities to not permit such connection to enter the furnace enclosure?

    Or did I misunderstand his comment?

    I don't plan to have the furnace worked on until next March or September (when things are slow for HVAC people here). I'm sure whoever I use will know what to do. But, I like to be educated. It helps when talking to others, conveying what to watch out for, etc.

  • Tim McElwain
    Tim McElwain Member Posts: 4,556
    Here is what

    you do when youi get ready to replace the gas valve have back pipe run all the way with a sediment trap just before it enters the furnace cavity to connect to the gas valve. They will do this with a black pipe union to insure being able to service later. Do not connect with flex connector period.
This discussion has been closed.