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Steam boiler heating issue

Cerberus Member Posts: 9
I recently purchased a home that has 1994 Burnham IN5 Steam boiler that worked fine until the last month...

Under the normal operation you can hear click as the cycle begins, pilot

flame comes on, then ignition begins, usually 10 sparks,  after which

gas valve opens as heat boiler kicks in... Recently boiler randomly

stalls... thermostat calls for the heat, pilot flame comes "ON", ignitor

(electrode/flame sensor shown in picture) only sparks 3 times before it

goes silent after which loop ends... thus no heat... it might takes

minutes or hours for heat to kick back in by itself  or another solution

is to manually restart which can also take few tries.

I am trying to figure out whats the problem, module or bad electrode?

Any help would be great,

Thanks a lot



  • unclejohn
    unclejohn Member Posts: 1,811
    Is The

    Pilot lit? and not switching to the main burner. Or the sparking stopping before the pilot lites. If its the first [ pilot is lit ] clean the flame sensor. If the sparking is stopping check for debris's on pilot or bad spark wire.
  • Cerberus
    Cerberus Member Posts: 9
    Pilot is

    Thanks John for reply.

    Yes pilot is lit, it always lights up...i thought thermocouple/sensor has something to do it... i assume alcohol should do a trick?

    I have also noticed that pilot head is slightly tilted to the left side rather than centered on to the probe. Is it supposed to be straight and  aiming on the the sensor or does this  depends on the model? It look strange and not right.
  • unclejohn
    unclejohn Member Posts: 1,811
    If it dosen't

    Look right it probably isn't. Someone may have replaced the pilot with a non OEM. If you have to remove the pilot to clean I would have a professional do it. The pilot flame must contact the sensor AND be in the correct position to lite off the burners.
This discussion has been closed.