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Buderus G115WS/4 / Carlin EZ-1: lockout during TFI

jondaley
jondaley Member Posts: 7
History: I had my burner cleaned for the first time (after 9 years of
operation, time does go by quickly...) two weeks ago. The heating guy said
we should do it more often, but didn't say it was particularly dirty. My
pellet stove is the primary heat for the house, and I use a heat pump
during the summer for DHW, so the oil doesn't get used too much (at least
compared to some...) ~400 gallons of oil a year. It was working fine
before that, I just figured that I should get it cleaned.

It ran fine for the next two weeks; I didn't notice it running any
differently or anything. Today, I don't have any hot water, so went to
look at it, and it is lockout. I reset it and I can hear the flame turn
on, and it sounds normal (as far as I can tell, I don't think there is a
place for me to look at the flame, which would be useful), but the CAD
sensor doesn't see the flame, so turns off.

I took out the ignitor and nozzle, and there was a bit of thin black stuff
to be wiped off the nozzle and elsewhere, but nothing that looked
concerning to me (I was hoping to see a glob of something that would be
obvious). I measured all of the distances and the ignitors are at 5/64"
(manual recommends flush to 1/16"), and I tried to adjust it, but the
ignitors are blocked from sliding back farther by the ceramic block that
holds the wires, but maybe that isn't important.

I put it back together and I think maybe I didn't get it seated into the
hole very well, as then it didn't light properly (heard the igniitors, but
the actual burn noise/whoosh was pulsating and not normal. It turned
itself off (quicker than before) and then I thought well maybe it is
because there is air in the line since the tube emptied out when I took it
apart, so I reset it, and the pulsating noise was better, but still not
quite normal. It turned itself off again and then started smoking within
a few seconds. A minor amount of smoke, in hindsight, I think I didn't
get the nozzle seated well and fuel vapor was coming into contact with
heated parts after it is shut down and turning to smoke instead of
igniting.

I reseated the nozzle/ignitors, and it is working better, but the CAD
sensor still isn't seeing the flame.

The CAD sensor ohms out properly with darkness and daylight. It had a bit
of fuel inside the sensor (outside the glass cover), so definitely fuel
has been spraying around improperly. There is some wetness in the air
tube, though it isn't growing, so I think that was from the first time I
seated the nozzle.

Googling around, I find some people talking about different nozzles that
appear equivalent, but actually aren't, Hago ES vs Devalen B; I currently
have a nozzle labeled .60, and the heating guy wrote both names on the
paper, so I'm not sure which one I have (and I don't know which one I had
before).

The cleaning guy didn't put the cover on properly - there are two clips
that hold on the hinged top plate, and he had one clip under the gasket,
so there was at least an air leak for the last two weeks, and also broke
off the plastic clip that holds the primary control, the air intake
adjuster is noticeably dirty, and he didn't replace the oil filter. (I've
replaced the oil filter once, a few years ago). So I'm not thrilled with
his service.

And of course, now that it is Thanksgiving, I'll probably have to pay for
a holiday service fee if I have someone come out today.

Given that I have a pellet stove, I can probably get by for today; it
isn't too cold outside yet.

Any ideas?

Thanks. Happy Thanksgiving!
--
Homeowner
Buderus G115 / Carlin EZ-1 Oil burner
(6 zones: DHW, 2 radiant, 3 baseboard)
Pellet Stoves: Kinderhook FS, Kozi KSH-120 (6 tons)
Heat pump for summertime DHW: Nyle Geyser RO ($8/month)
Solar air heaters: 8 replaced $750 of propane annually

Comments

  • HVACNUT
    HVACNUT Member Posts: 4,209
    jondaley said:  Any ideas? Thanks. Happy Thanksgiving!
    Yes, call the heating guy back. You really shouldn't be playing with the burner, especially considering what happened when you didn't "get the nozzle seated well".
    It needs service by a professional. If they're worth it, they offer holiday emergency service. You don't have the equipment needed to properly diagnose and repair the burner. How will you know its burning a 0 smoke? 
    I understand the boiler doesn't get used much but you glossed over the fact that it sat neglected for 9 years. It should be at least checked/tested every 2 years even with limited use.
    Did the tech do a combustion test and leave a printed copy of the report? If no, then call someone else. 
    SuperTechSTEVEusaPA
  • SuperTech
    SuperTech Member Posts: 1,691
    Yikes. Sounds like you need to find a new oil service technician. Someone who is familiar with the use of a digital combustion analyzer and tuning a burner properly. This guy sounds like a clown. 
    Please don't mess around with it, oil burners aren't something that should be attempted DIY. You can easily make a problem worse and cause the boiler to soot up and possibly cause a puffback. 
  • jimna01
    jimna01 Member Posts: 14
    400 gallons of oil a year and this is your backup system?  I burn 550 to 600 gallons of oil a year to heat the house and all my DHW    And yes that boiler and flue pipe get brushed ever year , filters and nozzle changed, and combustion checked . 9 years is way to long for a tuneup. And yes I hire a pro to do the work . The cleaning and tune up fee each  year is cheap money to keep a ten thousand dollar system running efficiently and reliably .  Now if only my vehicles could be maintained for that small cost :) 
    SuperTech
  • jondaley
    jondaley Member Posts: 7
    @HVACNUT He did leave a report. It matches the one from the initial install.

    @jimna01 yeah, it's big house (~6000 sqft of insulated/heatable space, plus another ~2000 sqft of attic and basements) that was built 140 years ago.  The last owners used 2500 gallons a year, so I've improved the situation a lot with this new fangled stuff called insulation and air sealing. And here in NH, people are used to fairly high heating bills, so my bills aren't that bad (6 tons of pellets, 300 gallons of oil, 30 gallons of propane).



    --
    Homeowner
    Buderus G115 / Carlin EZ-1 Oil burner
    (6 zones: DHW, 2 radiant, 3 baseboard)
    Pellet Stoves: Kinderhook FS, Kozi KSH-120 (6 tons)
    Heat pump for summertime DHW: Nyle Geyser RO ($8/month)
    Solar air heaters: 8 replaced $750 of propane annually
  • BDR529
    BDR529 Member Posts: 197
    Some oversights to say the least. The ws/115 is an upfired version of the 115. Blended fuels don't lend themselves to the higher pump pressures.
    Stratification with bio blend is possible.

    Get a fuel delivery after service? Fuel quality has been a big problem lately.

    The least expensive fuel company tends to have the highest amount of bio. However, have seen greedy dealers selling bio at a premium.

  • jondaley
    jondaley Member Posts: 7
    @BDR529 hmmm. I hadn't thought about oil delivery. I have a new supplier who is new to town and undercutting everyone else's prices. I figured it was because they were new, so are desperate for customers but I wonder if your thought is correct and they are delivering a different fuel. I will ask around if anyone else is having problems along those lines.

    I got a small delivery to top off the tank just before the service. 50 gallons I think.
    --
    Homeowner
    Buderus G115 / Carlin EZ-1 Oil burner
    (6 zones: DHW, 2 radiant, 3 baseboard)
    Pellet Stoves: Kinderhook FS, Kozi KSH-120 (6 tons)
    Heat pump for summertime DHW: Nyle Geyser RO ($8/month)
    Solar air heaters: 8 replaced $750 of propane annually
  • STEVEusaPA
    STEVEusaPA Member Posts: 5,322
    It’s probably not the fuel. It worked fine for 9 years, got serviced and doesn’t work now.
    You shouldn’t have touched it yourself. Call the company who did the service and get them back out there.
    Let them know what it was doing, what you saw and what you did.
    It’s either going to cost you, or you get a cold shower until tomorrow.
    steve
    Robert O'Brien
  • STEVEusaPA
    STEVEusaPA Member Posts: 5,322
    BDR529 said:

    Some oversights to say the least. The ws/115 is an upfired version of the 115. Blended fuels don't lend themselves to the higher pump pressures.
    Stratification with bio blend is possible.

    Get a fuel delivery after service? Fuel quality has been a big problem lately.

    The least expensive fuel company tends to have the highest amount of bio. However, have seen greedy dealers selling bio at a premium.

    Hardly any of this is true.

    “Blended fuels don't lend themselves to the higher pump pressures“.
    Says who? Higher pump pressures and bio are used through the world with no problems.
    “Fuel quality has been a big problem lately.”
    Where? Companies trying to store their own fuel, blend their own bio, especially with non spec bio is the problem.

    “The least expensive fuel company tends to have the highest amount of bio.”
    Makes no sense.
    steve
    426hemiSuperTechRobert O'Brien
  • 426hemi
    426hemi Member Posts: 64
    I see this more and more every day the tech doesn’t have a clue what he’s doing or doesn’t care the problem is the residential customers are cheap and it’s ruining the industry no one wants to pay for the job to be done right. This is why I do mainly commercial work now       
    Don’t mess with it any more the more you do the longer and more expensive it will be to fix I don’t want to sound like a **** but when I get called out to this sort of job on and a what would have been a quick fix now takes 4 hours because I have to readjust head position because someone messed with the adjustment plate and now I have to pull the burner to reset and clean 5 lbs of soot out of the boiler I have to charge for my time and it gets expensive quick.
    STEVEusaPASuperTech
  • BDR529
    BDR529 Member Posts: 197

    BDR529 said:

    Some oversights to say the least. The ws/115 is an upfired version of the 115. Blended fuels don't lend themselves to the higher pump pressures.
    Stratification with bio blend is possible.

    Get a fuel delivery after service? Fuel quality has been a big problem lately.

    The least expensive fuel company tends to have the highest amount of bio. However, have seen greedy dealers selling bio at a premium.

    Hardly any of this is true.

    “Blended fuels don't lend themselves to the higher pump pressures“.
    Says who? Higher pump pressures and bio are used through the world with no problems.
    “Fuel quality has been a big problem lately.”
    Where? Companies trying to store their own fuel, blend their own bio, especially with non spec bio is the problem.

    “The least expensive fuel company tends to have the highest amount of bio.”
    Makes no sense.
    Everything I said is true. Because someone has blinders on dosen't change the fact.
  • STEVEusaPA
    STEVEusaPA Member Posts: 5,322
    Who has blinders on? Present you facts, instead of blanket statements.
    Your statements could simply be based on what your company is doing incorrectly and don't reflect the market as a whole.
    steve
  • BDR529
    BDR529 Member Posts: 197

    Who has blinders on? Present you facts, instead of blanket statements.
    Your statements could simply be based on what your company is doing incorrectly and don't reflect the market as a whole.

    Alright, I figure you are in PA. I'm in Boston/ Southern NH The fuel we got up here is junk sold by SOME dealers. It is a problem that has to be addressed on no heat calls.

    I guess I'm the only one that has these problems with the fuel. Well, shame on me.
  • Kickstand55
    Kickstand55 Member Posts: 32
    Not too many years ago when bio fuel blends were new and on the rise, awful things happened with fuel delivery to the burner.
    I must admit Sir, you have let things go too long.
    Some things I have done for a long time have diminished clogged fuel lines and, for me, have eliminated fuel related service calls.
    Add one or two more filters to the line. The first would be a yarn type FB4 right out of the tank and next a 10 micron spin on filter.
    Blow out the lines with compressed air and thoroughly flush until clear. If the line does not clear up well, add a third filter at or near the pump. (You have told the customer the pitfalls before servicing, had them sign the work order too).
    Thoroughly flush the line mechanically, replace the pump strainer and clear the high pressure port also. Set the pump pressure high, like 175 psi. I never have any trouble with light off or operation with this method. Just be sure to down size the nozzle correctly.
    Flue passages are cleaned as well as the pipe. Chimney is checked or power venter, if used, is disassembled and cleaned
    Everything is checked. Any issues noted and reported.
    System run and combustion checked.
    I am very thorough with my service.
    This takes between 2 and 4 hours. If customers don't like my estimate, I tell them to go with the cheaper guy. Cheap isn't good, good isn't cheap.
    It is my duty to provide a professional service to my customers. I've been doing it like this for 44 years and have a good following, I'm happy to report.
    SuperTech
  • jondaley
    jondaley Member Posts: 7
    My heating guy came and fixed a couple things - the first heating guy had positioned the points incorrectly, and calibrated the air flow for warmer air, so I as I suspected, the first night of cold air caused problems.

    So, it wasn't burning very cleanly, and then he also replaced the CAD sensor, which must have been borderline, so even though it ohmed out correctly, the flaky burn flame was enough to make it not sense the flame entirely, and caused it to lock out.

    I didn't know about the pretty cover on the Buderus that was covering up the window where I could have seen the flame, so I'll be able to check the flame quality next time.
    --
    Homeowner
    Buderus G115 / Carlin EZ-1 Oil burner
    (6 zones: DHW, 2 radiant, 3 baseboard)
    Pellet Stoves: Kinderhook FS, Kozi KSH-120 (6 tons)
    Heat pump for summertime DHW: Nyle Geyser RO ($8/month)
    Solar air heaters: 8 replaced $750 of propane annually
  • HVACNUT
    HVACNUT Member Posts: 4,209
    edited December 2020
    jondaley said: I didn't know about the pretty cover on the Buderus that was covering up the window where I could have seen the flame, so I'll be able to check the flame quality next time.
    Its impossible to check "flame quality" by looking through a window. I never clean the window. For spite.
    Did your heating guy happen to leave behind a copy of the combustion report?
  • jondaley
    jondaley Member Posts: 7
    The first guy did; I'm not thrilled that the second one didn't, but the second guy made it actually work. And his setting matches what the manufacturer recommends.

    I understand you can't calibrate efficiency by looking at it, but it makes sense to me that you can tell the difference between a starving for O2 vs too much OF by looking at it.

    And in this case, as soon as they took off the cover, it was obvious something was wrong with the flame and after adjusting the intake O2, it burns nicely.
    --
    Homeowner
    Buderus G115 / Carlin EZ-1 Oil burner
    (6 zones: DHW, 2 radiant, 3 baseboard)
    Pellet Stoves: Kinderhook FS, Kozi KSH-120 (6 tons)
    Heat pump for summertime DHW: Nyle Geyser RO ($8/month)
    Solar air heaters: 8 replaced $750 of propane annually