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Riello Burner questions again

leonz Member Posts: 1,135
Update on my Riello oil burner,

I finally found the leak-the last compression fitting loose on the final copper connection to the burner nozzle and it stopped air locking yesterday. I also found the turbolator setting worm and and locking nut had backed off almost to the number 3 position. I reset and locked the turbolator to the number one position per the manual and I restarted the burner and the burner no longer wanted act up but it still smokes and the 1 Gallon Per Hour nozzle is clean.
The electrodes are also clean as well and they have not loosened and or slipped.

With regard to the smoke issue; is it entirely possible that the 4 year old red dyed kerosene fuel in my tank is the issue??? I quite a full tank when I started burning this year and with having the lock out issues with the loose fittings
I filter down to 10 micron and have a water separator in the filter and there is no water in the collection bowl of the RACOR 500FG filter .

I would imagine I wasted fuel from the leaking fitting as I could not see the leak without removing the nozzle and electrode assembly.

I added a quart of diesel 911 to the tank when it was slightly less than half full.

I have to start burning coal tonight as I have an 1/8 of a tank of fuel in the tank now not including the six inches of waste kerosene for the dirt and crud in the tank to settle in.

The air damper setting is controlled by the oil powered pump jack on my Riello burner and the bottom edge of the air damper door is exactly at the arrow location on the squirrel cage combustion fans housing.

I want to install a .65 GPH nozzle in my burner as my boiler as the oil firing system is a back up for the coal stoker boiler. My system has a combined 54 gallons of water in the heating loop, the steel expansion tank and the boiler steam chest.

Thanks much


  • Big Ed_4
    Big Ed_4 Member Posts: 2,785
    With regard to the smoke issue; is it entirely possible that the 4 year old red dyed kerosene fuel in my tank is the issue???

    Yes the #2 fuel oil of today is stable for 6 month storage, and then starts breaking down..Not sure if you live in an state that allowed corn oil to be added , then you have an tank full of S......

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    HVACNUT Member Posts: 5,841
    If the leak was at the nozzle line to bulkhead fitting, then you were dumping pressurized, unatomized fuel into the chamber. That could be where the red is coming from.
    You can fire the boiler at any rate within the boiler and burner specs.
    Keep in mind that with a Riello, when you change nozzle sizes, you need to adjust the pump pressure according to the Riello chart to achieve the correct firing rate.
    Also, the air and turbulator settings in the manual for a specific firing rate is just a starting point guideline. Final adjustments must be done with a combustion analyzer, and of course a 0 smoke reading.
  • STEVEusaPA
    STEVEusaPA Member Posts: 6,505
    You have compression fittings and an overhead line, and you were wondering why you were getting nuisance lock outs?
    As mentioned numerous times, you really need a pro in there to set up this burner.
    To eliminate the fuel issue, get a clean 5 gal can of clean fuel, run a short fuel line from can to burner, properly bleed, run to steady state, and first check your combustion. If you can set that to proper draft, true zero smoke, then you know its the fuel.
    Also, don't under fire the burner, you'll get poor combustion numbers as well as possibly too low a stack temperature (condensing). You'll do more harm than good, possible damage, and won't save any money.

    There was an error rendering this rich post.

  • leonz
    leonz Member Posts: 1,135
    I have an update with regard to my Riello burner issues.

    We are running out coal stoker full time now with the oil burner has been shut down and the oil burner tube plugged with insulation to prevent damage to the oil nozzle
    from coal fly ash.

    We are running the single loop heating system at 4-12 PSI at 12 GPM with the NRF-25 at speed one with summer temperatures being 160 high 140 low with a 15 degree differential.
    Our dump zone temperature is 190 degrees with the 15 degree differential.
    We have nice even heat at 64 degrees in the house and we can always turn the thermostat up.

    We are currently consuming 40 pounds per day of rice coal
    and also producing domestic hot water with coil in the steam chest of the coal stoker boiler as needed and feeding the hot water heater with the water coming from the coil in the steam chest and we are using a Watts mixing valve set at 120 degrees coming off the coil loop to the hot water heater inlet.
  • Leon82
    Leon82 Member Posts: 684
    That's going to be over a half a ton a month. You shovel it in?
  • leonz
    leonz Member Posts: 1,135
    edited November 2017
    Hello Leon82, happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.

    I shoveled the coal into my old hand fed boiler and now all I do is cut open the bags and dump one in to the 6 bag hopper every 24 hours to heat this old house that at one time was a one room school house. I lay the empty plastic bags flat in the hopper to dry out to get the rest of the coal and coal dust out of them before I pour in the next bag.

    I wish I had cast iron radiators instead of baseboard as the heating load would be even less of an issue with the added thermal mass from the cast iron radiators.

    I purchased my first half ton of bagged rice coal yesterday as I ran out of kerosene and I had no coal on hand to start the coal stoker side of the boiler. I will be buying it in bulk by the ton next month.
  • STEVEusaPA
    STEVEusaPA Member Posts: 6,505
    Are you firing both into the same flue/chimney?

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  • leonz
    leonz Member Posts: 1,135
    edited November 2017
    The Keystoker KAA-4-1 boiler is a dual fuel boiler suitable for use with clay tile lined block chimneys.
    I can burn kerosene or rice coal by simply switching the power between either the coal side or the oil side by using a 3 position 6 tab Robertshaw toggle switch.
    I have to let the boiler cool down before I remove the insulation plug to burn oil or to use the coal stoker.
    The oil burner is completely separated from the coal stoker with a metal baffle plate. The oil burner tube is the stuffed with insulation to protect the oil burner nozzle before I switch over to coal burning with coal. These dual fuel boilers can use propane natural gas or heating oil.

  • Robert_25
    Robert_25 Member Posts: 527
    I have retrofitted Riello burners on a few different boilers, and they all ran perfect at the settings suggested in the Riello manual. Something simple is wrong with yours. Either bad fuel, or one of the adjustments are out of whack. The fastest path to a clean burn is to call in a pro with the proper diagnostic equipment, but if you insist on troubleshooting it yourself I would do the following:

    Double check the turbolator setting (remember, the first hash mark is actually the zero setting, not one!) and air adjustment. If those both check out, see how it does with some fresh fuel.

    By the way, 911 is only useful for correcting gelled up fuel - it does not prevent this from happening, nor does it stabilize the fuel. You would be much better off using a multi-purpose fuel additive like Power Service Diesel Supplement (white bottle), or a product intended for heating oil.
  • leonz
    leonz Member Posts: 1,135
    edited November 2017
    Hello Robert,

    Thanks for the tip about the turbolator setting, I have to change it
    as I have it set on the first hash mark.
    I had no issues with the Riello unit last year for what little time that I burned My K-1 dyed red kerosene last fall.
    I think its a combination of four items three of which I corrected the minute I found them.

    I asked the spouse to pick up a bottle of the Diesel 911 as TSC did not have the smaller bottles of Power Service.

    I will have to see about purchasing a small bottle of Power Service when I can afford it.

    With the four year old kerosene in the tank (1)and finding the turbolator adjustment loose and backed off(2) when I did as well as the compression fitting nearest to the nozzle assembly loose(3) I am sure that these 3 issues plus the top draw for fuel delivery(4) added up to the problems I had while running on the old K-1 dyed kerosene heating fuel this fall.

    I also found that there was a loose self tapping screw loose on one flue pipe elbow that let soot escape into the boiler and laundry room.

    I am burning rice coal now to heat the house and I can purchase 100 gallons of kerosene at a time when I need it so we will see how things progress through the winter.

  • midcarair_1
    midcarair_1 Member Posts: 1
    Great article. Love the comments, thanks for sharing.

  • leonz
    leonz Member Posts: 1,135
    edited November 2017
    I appreciate the help you folks have given me over time and I wanted to let you know what was going on with my system.

    I readjusted the the turbolator and tightened it down with the locking nut and I have it set at the second hash mark which according to Robert is the actual number one position and I know the damper door with the oil jack is level when the burner is operating so I know that is correct according to the Riello manual.

    The replacement Honeywell mechanical controls I bought to replace the hydrostat 3250 plus have been operating very well with no attention needed on the oil and coal side both.
    My Mcdonnel & Miller RB-122-E low water cut off is running green so I know it is working.
    I replaced the hold fire timer motor on the Intermatic 30 minute timer last year as it was shot and it is doing what it is supposed to do to keep the fire going by starting the stoker and combustion fan to hold the temperature when there is no call for heat. The flat grate keystoker coal stokers will lose a fire quickly unless they have a hold fire timer set to start the stoker every few minutes.

    The Keystoker flat grate stokers employ a pusher bar that is regulated using an adjustment rod with its spur to spur gear box to control the speed of coal delivery to the flat grate stoker or the inclined grate stokers they have. The combustion motor is a simple squirrel cage motor with a flange that is bolted on the exterior of the boiler to force combustion air through the coal grates which have perforations to permit the passage of combustion air through the coal as it advances to the end of the fire grate being pushed forward by the fresh coal being gravity fed from the hopper that is at the rear of the boiler.

    The above does not happen with pot stokers like the EFM DF520 which has an underfed combustion burn pot/tuyer with the combustion air coming through the coal feed auger tube to the bottom of the pot as needed by the hold fire timers call for the combustion fan to activate and the auger to deliver coal as needed to keep the fire going
    The same can be said for the Alternate Heating Systems S130, S260, S500 and the S1000, and the Axeman Anderson S130 and S260 as they have a traveling grate with a deep bed of burning coal that continues to burn as needed and the ash and clinkers are cut off as the traveling grate advances to the stationary knife edge which cuts the ash and clinkers away as the traveling grate advances to the end of its stroke.

    The major difference between the AHS and the Axeman units is the coal delivery method to the combustion chamber wherein the Axeman Anderson Coal stokers have an open flight auger that delivers the coal to the combustion chamber from the coal dog house in the basement coal bin wall or a simple barrel using a hole in the side of the barrel rotating the coal tube for the stationary feed auger with a high physical break between the open flight auger and the combustion chamber/burn tube where the rice coal is only delivered as needed to the burn tube in small amounts to keep the fire going on the traveling grate

    The AHS S130,260, 500 and 1000 Model Coal Guns have a gravity fed hopper feeding the rice coal to the burn tube above the traveling grate stoker and like the Axeman Anderson units they employ a swirl chamber to knock down the fly ash and take all the heat from the flue gasses.

    The AHS units use either a direct drive combustion fan or a belt drive combustion fan and use a separate electric motor to power the gearbox that extends to the ash knive edge and retracts the traveling grate as the coal burns bringing rice coal into the combustion tube in the forward and reverse strokes of the traveling grate.

    The Axeman Anderson units use a combination of a roller chain on the rotating coal tube and a belt drive to power the combustion fan and the gearbox that extends and retracts the three step solid traveling grate to the stationary ash knive while the rice coal is being burned to slice off the burnt ash and coal clinkers.

    The EFM units use a combination fan and spur gear drive system to rotate the coal auger using a gear tooth speed setting method to rotate the coal delivery auger with a ratchet and pawl and at the same time also deliver combustion air using a small turbine fan which has a regulating damper door that is set and locked with a thumb screw on a cut gear that is stationary.

    The above units can be used for steam heat as well when they have the H stamp on the builders plate.

    Hopefully I did not forget anything when I was explaining the operating methods of these three types of coal stokers.

    I appreciate the help that I have been given by the members of the forum.

  • leonz
    leonz Member Posts: 1,135
    Hello and good morning Burner Riello Indonesia, thank you for the compliment. Insh Allah!, we will have a good crop year this coming year as the ground has been frozen several times and that kills all the bad bugs in the soil.

    To all my friends on the forum; I wanted to let you all know that I have been burning a rice/buckwheat mix of anthracite coal to heat the home since October.
    With this last batch of cold weather I have saved a lot of money by burning anthracite coal as I would have had an empty oil tank in 10 days on average. I do not miss running out of Kerosene nor do I miss suburban propains excuses as to why they did not come by to fill the oil tank.
    I removed the Riello burner since the fumes back up into the home as the firebox on the coal stoker is almost 5 times as large as the Buderus Logana G205 boiler I had. My removing that boiler and buying the keystoker dual fuel unit was a was huge mistake.
    I have no extra money to buy oil anyway and the house is much warmer with the coal stoker making the hot water heat.
    I wish I had cast iron radiators instead of 225 feet of 3/4" fin tube baseboard for heating this leaky old house. Once I reinstalled the burner port cover the issue with fumes backing up into my home has been eliminated.

    So far so good, I sleep well now since I have the mechanical controls for the coal stoker boiler as the hydrolevel units I had failed twice.