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Oil Furnace locking out

oilbox23oilbox23 Posts: 5Member
edited December 6 in THE MAIN WALL
I have an Armstrong Air Ultra 80 oil furnace that is locking out every so often. If I push the red button to reset from lockout it will run for a day, two, three or whatever then eventually locks out again and I have to push the reset button. Once I push the reset button it fires right up. It only seems to do this when the heat runs in the winter. In the summer with the AC running I never have this problem.

I pulled the filter today and it was dirty but I could have sworn I changed it not too long ago. I guess only time will tell if the filter was the issue but I would be surprised if it was because I regularly change them. I had someone out a year or so ago when this started happening but they couldn't find anything wrong with it. But now the problem is becoming more and more prevalent.

Is there something I can check or look for to figure out what is causing this?

Comments

  • STEVEusaPASTEVEusaPA Posts: 2,316Member
    Well I don't recommend working on this yourself without proper tools and experience.

    There are far too many variables to give you a proper diagnosis.
    An experienced well-trained tech could figure it out by seeing what is happening when it is reset, and properly checking all the components.
    This requires:
    -Knowing how to use and check components with a VOM meter, incoming voltage, transformer, primary control, burner motor, and oil valve (if used).
    -Pressure & vacuum gauges to check pump pressure, cut-off, vacuum (vacuum leaks) or restrictions.
    -Combustion analyzer to check combustion-draft, CO, O2, Excess Air.
    -Smoke gun to check air band adjustment.

    After you changed the filter did you properly bleed the filter, fuel line and fuel pump?
    steve
  • EBEBRATT-EdEBEBRATT-Ed Posts: 4,499Member
    Sounds like you need a qualified service tech. They are hard to find.

    Not a good idea to keep pressing the reset button. You have a problem that needs fixing.

    Hopefully you wouldn't keep replacing a fuse on a wiring circuit that was shorted or overloaded......could start a fire....same thing with a reset button, it's telling you something is wrong.
  • oilbox23oilbox23 Posts: 5Member
    Why would I have to bleed it when I just changed the air filter? I have a tech coming tomorrow morning to check it out. If it isn’t locked out when he shows up does it matter? Problem is so intermittent that if it has to be occurring for someone to be able to fix it I may be SOL.
  • STEVEusaPASTEVEusaPA Posts: 2,316Member
    I thought you meant fuel filter, as an air filter would have nothing to do with a burner locking out.
    The tech could still check all components. You could even put a modern primary control like a Carlin ProMaxx, Genisys, or Honeywell, that logs history and could provide some troubleshooting information.
    steve
  • oilbox23oilbox23 Posts: 5Member
    Well tech came and pulled the igniter and nozzle out and the nozzle was black as night. Probably never been cleaned in 11 years that I have owned the place. He thought that was most likely the issue so he cleaned it and charged me $125. Hell I could have done that for free.

    Only time will tell if that fixed my issue or not.
  • STEVEusaPASTEVEusaPA Posts: 2,316Member
    edited December 7
    He didn't replace the nozzle, fuel filter and pump strainer, nor did he check any other components? Combustion test?
    If he changed the nozzle he should've at least did a full combustion test.
    steve
  • Jon_blaneyJon_blaney Posts: 33Member
    Oil burners are like cars. Check for fuel and ignition. Sounds like you have fuel so it is in the ignition. How old is the igniter? These can fail intermittently under stress, same for points. Sometimes it is hard to tell. If it always starts cold, I would guess it is the igniter.
  • STEVEusaPASTEVEusaPA Posts: 2,316Member

    Oil burners are like cars...

    Oh it's that simple...all the years I wasted learning and experience.

    steve
  • oilbox23oilbox23 Posts: 5Member
    edited December 8

    He didn't replace the nozzle, fuel filter and pump strainer, nor did he check any other components? Combustion test?
    If he changed the nozzle he should've at least did a full combustion test.

    No man, just cleaned it. I don't have a filter on this furnace, never have, they said they could install one for $, I passed.

    Like I said all he did was clean the nozzle.
  • STEVEusaPASTEVEusaPA Posts: 2,316Member
    You can wipe off a nozzle, but you can't 'clean' it. The orifice (hole) size is (I think) about 1/10 the diameter of a human hair. I'm sorry you had a hack come to your home. If that price is just to install a filter, he's a crook too (BTW pricing isn't allowed, so if you can still edit your post you should remove it). You should find another service provider.
    You really should have a fuel filter. If they are not replacing the oil line, they should blow it back to the tank with a hand pump, install filter at the tank.
    Where are you located? Maybe someone on the Wall is nearby and can help.
    steve
  • SuperTechSuperTech Posts: 468Member
    Nozzles do not get cleaned, they should be replaced every year. You really need a filter at the tank that should be replaced every year as well. I can guarantee that you will have the same problem again in the near future.

    Try the find a contractor tool on this site. You should be able to find a much better service technician. That guy wouldn't last five minutes where I work. A good technician will save you money by getting your furnace running safely, reliably and efficient.
  • oilbox23oilbox23 Posts: 5Member
    edited December 8
    I am in Maryland, anyone local? And he told me it was an '80' nozzle but what flow (gph) should I be looking at? Hell if I knew what he was telling me at the time was true. I would hope I didn't spend $125 in vain.

    I reached out to a couple contracts listed here local to me. Will see what they come up with.
  • HVACNUTHVACNUT Posts: 1,589Member
    Heck after 11 years, all it really needs is a good nozzle buffing. Maybe adjust the "points".
  • STEVEusaPASTEVEusaPA Posts: 2,316Member
    edited December 9
    If @Steamhead is near you, and is available, you’d be in good hands.
    steve
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