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Air band opening

VTsteamVTsteam Posts: 37Member
Have new, Burnham V905A steam boiler as supplied with Carlin 201 CRD oil burner. Did assemble exactly per manual. Very impressed with overall quality and completeness of kit. Per the Carlin manual did set Air band at 95%. Seemed to run well. Had fuel vendor send their burner technician to confirm operation with a combustion analyzer. Advised best results with approximate 20% air band opening. Within a week furnace was rumbling badly spewing soot all over the room. Then would not stay running. I returned the air band to initial 95% opening and it seemed to run well. Had technician return to diagnose. Was unable to explain failure, reset air band to 20% and invoiced me a 2nd time. Now, 2 weeks latter is spewing soot and shutting down. Questions are, is the Carlin manual incorrect? Isn't huge amounts of soot due to rich fuel mixture? How do I screen for a competent oil burner technician?

Comments

  • rick in Alaskarick in Alaska Posts: 809Member
    If it is spewing out soot, it is not burning right.
    If the technician did not use a smoke tester to set the air band, followed by a combustion analyzer to fine tune it, then you need to find someone else. If he did just set it to 20% and then walk away, I would seriously find out how to get my money back. Any burner needs to be set up with an analyzer, especially a bigger one like that.
    Also, If I set up your burner and it sooted in less than a week, I would not be charging you for it the second time.
    Rick
  • DZoroDZoro Posts: 723Member
    He may have a analyzer, but no clue... Did he leave you the analysis numbers with you or on the boiler. Should have CO, CO2, O2 and smoke #. I'd seriously doubt the manual to be incorrect.
    Have your next technician write down or print out the analysis for future reference.
  • VTsteamVTsteam Posts: 37Member
    Yes, analysis numbers and percent efficiency were provided during technician's first visit. Results slightly exceed advertised value. However during second visit was unable to reach advertised value. I was disappointed the new boiler was already degraded and I hadn't used it three weeks.
  • HVACNUTHVACNUT Posts: 1,904Member
    Pic of the combustion analysis?
  • VTsteamVTsteam Posts: 37Member
    HVACNUT said:

    Pic of the combustion analysis?


  • VTsteamVTsteam Posts: 37Member
    First visit to confirm operation. Air band at 20% prior to making soot.
  • DZoroDZoro Posts: 723Member
    O2 = too low, CO2 = too high, CO = too much.

    CO2 should be 10 - 12%, O2 around 6%, CO new system should be very little when those numbers are in proper range.

    Efficiency may look impressive, but you're experiencing the results of a poor set up, and the boiler is getting dirtier by the minute under those conditions.
  • STEVEusaPASTEVEusaPA Posts: 2,715Member
    edited November 2018
    Not enough air. Make sure the draft is perfect first, according to the manual, then adjust air to true zero smoke.
    Also make sure there is continuous supply of plenty of combustion air, and that combustion analysis is performed in the same condition as operating condition. IOW, don't do the analysis with the boiler room door open, then shut the door and leave it to run in a tight room where it runs out of combustion air.
    steve
  • rick in Alaskarick in Alaska Posts: 809Member
    Yeah, as others have said those numbers are terrible. No wonder it is sooting up. I can't believe he left it like that. He apparently does not know what those numbers mean. Get someone else in there to do it right.
    Rick
  • EBEBRATT-EdEBEBRATT-Ed Posts: 5,287Member
    And with a Carlin the position of the burner head is important. The position of the burner head has a dramatic effect on the air band setting. They have to be set in conjunction with one another.

    You need a better technician. It's not just about the #s you get
  • Tom_133Tom_133 Posts: 593Member
    VTsteam, where are you located? Whoever did that is not qualified to work on oil fired equipment. Too bad the company name isn't on the print out. I know its not fair to post it, but man, thats dangerous
    Tom
    Montpelier Vt
  • VTsteamVTsteam Posts: 37Member
    Tom_133 said:

    VTsteam, where are you located? Whoever did that is not qualified to work on oil fired equipment. Too bad the company name isn't on the print out. I know its not fair to post it, but man, thats dangerous

    Tom, I am in Springfield, VT. The technician works for my local fuel oil vendor. Wish you were closer.
  • HVACNUTHVACNUT Posts: 1,904Member
    @VTsteam
    Call their office and have a Service Manager or Supervisor and a seasoned tech come out to set the burner up properly.
    Then post the print out again.
    Excess air should be 25-30%.
    Ask if the stack temp printed is net or gross.
  • ZmanZman Posts: 4,691Member
    Here is a nice session on combustion analysis.

    Watch that and you will know far more about he process than your technician. I am not suggesting you make your own adjustments, just educate yourself so you can determine who is qualified....
    "If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough"
    Albert Einstein
  • GBartGBart Posts: 753Member
    WOAH WOAH WOAH

    CO OVER 500 PPM????

    ANY FUEL BURNING APPLIANCE RUNNING OVER 400PPM CO SHOULD BE SHUT DOWN AND REPAIRED

    IT'S CODE
  • GBartGBart Posts: 753Member
    The combustion analyzer they are using doesn't do a smoke test, that's a separate tool, Carlin is pretty much spot on on their settings, I've been to the factory and test facility, they run units for many many hours and do exhaustive testing for the manufacturers.

    Please get this corrected ASAP, technically and legally you should not be running this unit.
  • GBartGBart Posts: 753Member
    Just for reference your CO, carbon monoxide level should be around 20PPM, 400 PPM CO causes- Headache and nausea after 1-2 hours of exposure.
    Life threatening in 3 hours.
  • unclejohnunclejohn Posts: 1,356Member
    I have only seen one manufacture spec over 100ppm and that was munchkin and it's max was 120ppm.
  • SuperTechSuperTech Posts: 937Member
    Wow. I can't believe someone would print that out and actually believe it's acceptable. If someone died as a result of the burner setup -its very much a possibility- that company would be responsible.

    Even the first time I used a combustion analyzer I knew over 100 ppm is very bad. This "tech" should not be allowed to touch fuel burning appliances unsupervised.
  • VTsteamVTsteam Posts: 37Member
    Sincere thanks for the multiple, invaluable feedback. I would be in a bad place without your knowledgeable contributions here. Have forwarded this dialog to my fuel oil distributor. If they fail to correct, I will publicly out them here.
  • STEVEusaPASTEVEusaPA Posts: 2,715Member
    Publicly out them to the fire marshall.
    steve
  • SteamheadSteamhead Posts: 12,727Member

    Yeah, as others have said those numbers are terrible. No wonder it is sooting up. I can't believe he left it like that. He apparently does not know what those numbers mean. Get someone else in there to do it right.
    Rick

    Proving once again that you can't fix stupid. That guy wouldn't last a day working for anyone in this thread.
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    "Reducing our country's energy consumption, one system at a time"
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Baltimore, MD (USA) and consulting anywhere.
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/all-steamed-up-inc
  • VTsteamVTsteam Posts: 37Member
    Again, I wish to thank all those lending knowable advise. My burner service firm was unresponsive until I convinced then to read this thread. The leverage was impressive. To follow up, another service tech visited yesterday. Firm agreed the previous adjustments and sooting were an issue. Was able to correct settings and test for soot. Settings appear OK. Note attachment. However I am very concerned about efficiency loss, only 78.5%, and stack temp, 730.8 deg F. Lot of BTUs up the chimney. Possible the heavy sooting effectively coated the inside of this new boiler with carbon insulating the cast iron? What should be my next step?
  • SteamheadSteamhead Posts: 12,727Member
    VTsteam said:

    Possible the heavy sooting effectively coated the inside of this new boiler with carbon insulating the cast iron? What should be my next step?

    That stack temp is way too high. Get a different service company in there, one who will actually open up the boiler and make sure it's clean in there.

    if the boiler is clean, the breech damper may be set wrong.

    Your present "service company" should not be in the business if this is the best they can do.
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    "Reducing our country's energy consumption, one system at a time"
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Baltimore, MD (USA) and consulting anywhere.
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/all-steamed-up-inc
  • Tom_133Tom_133 Posts: 593Member
    Steamhead is spot on. Bring in another company with better oil personnel reviews. I also think the boiler will need a thorough cleaning to get that stack temp down.
    Tom
    Montpelier Vt
  • DZoroDZoro Posts: 723Member
    Thanks for the report back. The guys are right, unfortunately that ""new" boiler really needs a good cleaning...….
  • EBEBRATT-EdEBEBRATT-Ed Posts: 5,287Member
    What @Steamhead said. This "service company" is just awful.

    Your #s are ok except for the stack temperature which is ridiculous. If the stack temp comes down your efficiency will be fine.

    Not sure if just soot in the boiler is the only problem, that's a really high stack temp but it might just need a good cleaning. Is their any evidence of sootaround the smoke pipe, barometric damper or boiler?

    Service tech should not have left thejob with those #s with a new boiler, a 100 year old coal conversion would have those #s should have stayed and cleaned it. His company already looks like crap over this, he didn't help matters
  • VTsteamVTsteam Posts: 37Member
    First, I remain extremely thankful for the knowledgeable help so generously offered here. The issue with my boiler continues. Did discover the boiler was shipped from Burnham with the wrong burner. Was a Carlin 201CRD which has now been swapped for a 301CRD. Both have a 3-1/4" air cone and use a 4.5 gallon/hr nozzle for this application. Yesterday, the previous burner tech returned to clean soot and tune the new burner. The stack temp remains excessive and efficiency is off. (See attached printout.) Tech advised he could offer no further help. That the the burner as supplied is somehow defective. I desperately need to get someone in here that's formally trained. Did a read of local Yelp reviews. Not impressed at my options. Does Carlin have approved technicians available?
  • STEVEusaPASTEVEusaPA Posts: 2,715Member
    edited January 10
    I seriously doubt there is something wrong with the burner.

    Heading in the right direction. I'd have to bet the draft is not correct. The breeching damper needs to be properly adjusted to maintain positive over fire pressure of .01, measured at the port in the back.
    3/4" on the Head setting and Air Band @ 100% for initial set up.
    Pump pressure 150psi
    Original spec'd nozzle is a Hago 4.50 X 80 SS

    Call Carlin tech support and ask them. I feel they will definitely help.
    steve
  • HVACNUTHVACNUT Posts: 1,904Member
    Maybe stack temp can come down a bit. But for a commercial burner, that's not too shabby.
  • VTsteamVTsteam Posts: 37Member
    Seems to me 585 deg F is a lot of wasted BTUs going up the chimney. Like to be capturing more of that to make steam. Would dropping to a 4 GPH nozzle be ill advised?
  • EBEBRATT-EdEBEBRATT-Ed Posts: 5,287Member
    I would not hesitate to down fire to a smaller nozzle. But a phone call to Carlin is the way to go first before doing that. And you can ask them that question. I think they will ok that

    If they supplied the burner for this package then I "assume" it's been tested. They should have a good idea what the stack temp should be.

    Your ambient temp is up their (77 deg) which raises the stack temp.

    It wouldn't be the first time a burner manufacturer didn't test I have found this with other equipment but not with Carlin
  • HVACNUTHVACNUT Posts: 1,904Member
    I'm not familiar with the Carlin 301CRD but I guess they dont offer Lo-Hi-Lo firing. With that boiler I would think it would be an option. Pipe and wire in a "B" pressurtrol and done. Properly sized and piped, it'll probably never see high fire anyway.
    And the net stack is 507°. Could it be tweaked a little? Maybe. IMO, it's right there with a 0 or trace smoke.
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