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Oil questions

ratio Member Posts: 3,512
Ok, starting up my first oil burner. Waste oil, pre-heater, built-in air pump & atomizer, new install so I don't expect hardware failures. The manual wants 11-12% CO₂, but if I went over 10% the CO doubled, which I only managed to do by closing the air band up significantly. Stack temp was around 900-1000°. I got zero smoke, although I know the pores of the paper were loading up as you could feel it in the pump. The manual wanted -0.05 at the flue, I was more like -0.06 with the weight hard against the slot.

Any suggestions on what I should be aiming for? The manual was scant on hard numbers, & the unit is 'ready to run' as shipped, so I think I've got some leeway to make it better. No details about what we're burning except this is a commercial truck (not semi) dealer's garage, so lots of well-used motor oil with a little antifreeze for flavor I guess. My analyzer only has settings for light or heavy oil, I chose light.


    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 13,834
    I don't claim to know much about waste oil. Stack temps seem high but maybe that's the way they run.

    I wouldn't run it with the Co up high regardless of what they want for Co2

    I would get it to 0-trace take a Co2 and note it then open the air band until the Co2 drops 1%.

    Maximum Co2 depends on the fuel you are using. Heavy oil has the capability of more Co2 than light oil.

    So In my mind you do the best you can and keeping the fire clean is #1 when you run in uncharted territory you through the book out.

  • Robert O'Brien
    Robert O'Brien Member Posts: 3,512
    When burning unknown fuels, it's best to use O2. The analyzer measures that directly and calculates CO2 based on the fuel you enter. Shoot for 5.5-6.5 O2 with zero smoke and CO in range
    To learn more about this professional, click here to visit their ad in Find A Contractor.
  • STEVEusaPA
    STEVEusaPA Member Posts: 6,261
    With a waste oil burner, I'd assume you'd get a 5 gallon container of clean #2, connect it directly to the burner and do the combustion analysis off of that. I don't think it matters much at all how it burns when it's burning all the waste fuel.
    Get your replacement parts before you need them.
    Lots of maintenance with them. Most can be avoided by getting the water out of the waste oil.
  • Big Ed_4
    Big Ed_4 Member Posts: 2,377
    Waste oil heaters will run with high stack temps. It is designed to burn dirty used oil down to an ash .Not for fuel efficiency .Something good to know ,New synthetic unused motor oil will not burn . I prefer a higher draft on waste oil heater . You want a full fire with no sparks or smoke . CO under 50ppm with a 0 smoke would be a good bench mark . . What make unit , do you have to set the fuel and air pressure or is it a metered unit ?
    I have enough experience to know , that I dont know it all
  • ratio
    ratio Member Posts: 3,512
    It's been at zero smoke all along (as far as my virgin eyes can tell). Never seen even a hint of black/grey/any color at all. If I hold the paper at an angle, I might be able to see a different surface texture on the paper, but it's as white as the driven snow. I know there's something there, but it ain't carbon. I attribute that to the stack temp, I haven't seen it any lower than c. 960°. Curiously, the Aluminum probe of the included manometer took on a golden tint within a few minutes of operation, but looking in the barometric I can't see any smoke or anything.

    I've got a UEI C155, which measures CO₂ directly according to the manual. If that's true, then the O₂ is what's calculated by fuel so I shouldn't need to worry about entering the right fuel if I'm working towards CO₂ numbers, which is a relief to me as what's in the tank is most assuredly not clean #2. :smiley:

    I forget the mfgr (started with an 'E' I think), but it's a package unit, nothing in the manual about fuel or air pressure. It did start right up as soon as I primed the line.

    Sounds like all I should do is get the CO as low as possible without any smoke & a clean-looking burn? One more question: there are two air adjustments, a band around the intake and a shutter on the end. Looks like they are the same thing, maybe a coarse & fine adjustment?

  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 21,553
    That golden tint is overheating and a little chemical change... Aluminium isn't supposed to get that hot.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 13,834

    Sounds like yes to the air adjustment coarse/fine.

    I always thought all analyzers read 02 and calculated Co2 but I could be wrong
  • EdTheHeaterMan
    EdTheHeaterMan Member Posts: 6,132
    edited October 2021
    The one that starts with an E might be Energy Logic. Electronic analyzers measure O2 and calculate CO2 based on the fuel selected on the fuel type selector. The Eagle 155C has a Typo in the literature. It says CO2 direct measure is measured in PPM. The conventional measurement of CO2 is a percentage of the sample. CO is usually measured in PPM. I would like to check with UEI to get a better idea on what that specification actually means.

    Since the actual make up for a waste oil at any given time will depend on what motor oil or transmission fluid is in the tank, the CO2 reading may not be accurate. I would use an old fashion Fyrite CO2 bottle to get an accurate CO2 reading. If you don't have one of those, then I would go with the suggestion above of Less than 50 PPM CO and as close to a zero smoke at the fuel will allow. In your situation... i think you nailed it!

    I have found the Energy Logic has one of the easiest waste oil furnaces to work on.

    Remember this when pricing your service of this heater, the producer of waste oil needs to pay a fee to get rid of the hazardous waste. That same producer of waste oil would also need to pay for fuel to heat the building. So by burning the waste oil on site for heating the building, this entity is not only saving money on the cost of natural gas, propane, or oil to heat the building, they are also saving the cost of hazardous waste removal. So charging a premium labor rate for your time to not only work on the system, but the time it takes to learn about that piece of equipment (which often is not billable time) is well worth the price You charge for working on this equipment. Think About It!

    Yours Truly,
    Mr. Ed
    Edward F Young. Retired HVAC ContractorSpecialized in Residential Oil Burner and Hydronics
  • Big Ed_4
    Big Ed_4 Member Posts: 2,377
    I use to instal the Reznor but now installing Energy Logic since Reznor dropped their line . Besides the bleeding port have you come across any issues ?
    I have enough experience to know , that I dont know it all
  • ratio
    ratio Member Posts: 3,512
    Thanks, everyone.

    @EdTheHeaterMan, the current manual says "EAGLE X (C155 & C157) Measured reading in percentage (0 to 20%) displayed." for CO₂, so I think they must have clarified that; & again on the specs CO₂ is noted as "* Measured at STP (standard temperature and pressure)" vs "** Calculated value", so I think I should be able to take the CO₂ value as legit regardless of the fuel used. In any case, low CO & low smoke, got it!

    Thanks again!

    PS: I'm just a worker bee, so I don't have to worry anything about money. I am, however, taking as much time as I need to really try to understand this.

  • captainco
    captainco Member Posts: 767
    The UEI C155 has an infrared sensor that measures CO2.
    What is the air pressure and oil pressure settings on the burner. The ones I have seen use close to 15# each but need fine tuning. I found you had to get them balanced using the CO reading and then make your final adjustments. Of course your burner may be totally different.
  • BDR529
    BDR529 Member Posts: 269
    What unit? Running a -3? -5 What? Oil press? air Press?

    Who cares about CO2, it is controlled tire fire. Get a clean flame and keep it hot but not 900-1000

    Hope you don't have it in a boiler.

    Don't put #2 in it for it is a WASTE OIL burner. They do not self adjust.

    Not much carry over for running #2 to waste. Different animal