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earl burnermann

earl burnermann

Joined on December 12, 2010

Last Post on August 8, 2014

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Time to play

@ November 21, 2013 9:34 AM in Ideal low and high temp for a biasi oil boiler

I have a similar setup except my indirect is a phase III. I would start by making sure the water heater has priority. Next, I would lower the indirect's aquastat to the lowest setting that will still deliver the needed amount of hot water. Lastly, I would lower the aquastat to a point that can still supply the needed temp for your tank to recover. My boiler aquastat is set at 160 degrees and the indirect's aquastat is set between low and medium. Have mine adjusted to be able to fill my bath tub.

Expansion tank

@ November 13, 2013 12:31 PM in Weil Mclain Ultra/DHW Issues again

Usually the old parts that you leave on a new install are the one's that will bring you back to the job. But that old expansion tank and the old Air scoop shouldn't create a problem. As long as you completely drain that expansion tank you should be good. If the tank only drops a small amount of water it may be completely waterlogged. You have to get all 15 gallons out of it or the problem will be right back.

If after completely draining the tank the relief valve starts to leak again in a short time you may have a leak between the domestic and boiler water tanks in your water heater. This can be checked if you have a drain valve between the water heater and the isolation valves of the hot and cold water going to the water heater. Just pick up a presure gauge with a drain connector, They sell them at hardware stores and home depot, connect to the drain valve and open that valve. Next note the pressure on the gauge. Next, shut the isolation valves to the tank's hot and cold water. Check the pressure gauge.

If, with those valves closed, you see the pressure drop, you know the high pressure water from the domestic side is leaking into the much lower pressure boiler side. If this is happening the water heater must be replaced.


@ November 13, 2013 8:41 AM in Biasi boiler

Yes, this boiler is positive pressure. There are passageways between the combustion chamber and heat exchanger that may need to be cleaned. I've only cleaned them out once on a boiler that had clogged with soot. My Biasi is about nine years old and I have never needed to do this. I clean the combustion chamber every time I clean the boiler though


@ November 12, 2013 2:54 PM in Williamson Boiler Help!!

It seems strange to try and solve an electrical problem, resetting the burner, using plumbing parts.

Rel valve leaking

@ November 12, 2013 2:43 PM in Weil Mclain Ultra/DHW Issues again

There should be a domestic expansion tank on the unit. Modern water meters now come with back flow preventers. A back flow preventer can cause the pressure to triple from cold to hot.

Good advice

@ November 12, 2013 2:39 PM in Weil Mclain Ultra/DHW Issues again

Disconnecting the thermostat will prove wether it is the stat or not. I have the same water heater and keep it turned down almost completely. Would like to install a mixing valve when I have the time and the money. It is rare when I both though ;-)


@ November 12, 2013 2:32 PM in combustion test

A cracked heat exchanger will effect the combustion gas by raising the o2 and lowering the co2. Just watched a webinar by RSES on this topic and they said that air from the air handler is going to push into the exchanger pushing CO up the chimney. Too much or too little oxygen will cause th CO to climb. If the chimney becomes blocked then the CO will find its way into the home.


@ November 12, 2013 12:32 PM in Quality of help on the Wall

I think most members are pretty generous about sharing their knowledge. I belong to another site that has a forum called ask our professionals. The most common reply to threads in this forum is "contact a professional."

They do not want to give away their knowlge for free or seeing anyone hurt themselves or others. Here it seem that, for the most part, we try and keep people from hurting themselves.

testo please

@ November 10, 2013 1:26 PM in combustion analyzer

I've owned a testo 325-1 digital CA for over 10 years and have had no real problems with it. If I was going to buy one today I would go with the testo 310. I'd like a 320 but the 310 would do everything I need done.

Here's a youtube link to a demonstration of these analyzers:


@ November 10, 2013 7:01 AM in Maintenance of Wayne Flame-Retention Oil Burner



@ November 10, 2013 6:59 AM in beckett cleancut pump

You should

that white chalky stuff on the floor

@ November 9, 2013 5:24 PM in Maintenance of Wayne Flame-Retention Oil Burner

I think the stuff on the floor is left over odor kill powder. There may have been a pretty good size oil leak down there at one time. The mechanic most likely picked it up with speedy dry and when finished, put down a coating of odor kill, a white powder, and rubbed it into the floor.

I feel your pain.

@ November 9, 2013 5:11 PM in Gas companies in CT make big push into oil territory

Like you, I was in the oil industry for close to 25 years. Then came the layoffs in 2008 and 2009. I got caught up in the 2009 layoffs. The company I worked for let us know about two days before the cuts that an epa 608 certification would save our jobs. Never heard of this cert before.

Thought learning AC would get me a good job with an oil company again. But it didn't work out that way. I'm out of oil now and I do miss it. But with about 7% of the country heating with oil and over 60% using natural gas I had to make the change to working on gas and ac. Oil is going to be around but it hasn't grown in years and I just see it continuing to shrink.

Don't see prices really dropping

@ November 8, 2013 8:41 PM in Gas companies in CT make big push into oil territory

As gas conversions continue to squeeze the home heating companies the producers most likely won't feel the pinch. From what I've heard, there is a large world-wide demand for diesel fuel. So if the oil doesn't end up in a home's oil tank it will end up in some truckers' fuel tank someplace in the world.

Gas companies in CT make big push into oil territory

@ November 7, 2013 5:18 PM in Gas companies in CT make big push into oil territory

Just heard on WSHU this morning that CT gas companies have come up with a plan to push their gas lines further.

The story stated that a typical oil home that burns $2000 of fuel would only burn about $650 of gas. So the gas companies are going to bring the new lines right up to the house. But instead of charging the new customers up front for the service they are going to put a 10% surcharge on gas used for the next 10 years on these new installs.

The oil companies up in CT are screaming about this.

sooty film problem

@ November 7, 2013 5:00 PM in Maintenance of Wayne Flame-Retention Oil Burner

Looking at the full boiler picture I see black marks on the sides of the top cleanout door. That is one spot where soot is most likely escaping from. On a delayed ignition you may have some soot also escaping from the draft regulator and the seams of the vent pipe.
These boilers are easy to clean but they aren't very tight as you can see by the easy access to the heat exchanger and combustion chamber through the doors.
You could seal around the doors with furnace cement and tape up where the vent pipe joins the next section with aluminum tape. Also make sure the chimney base is completely sealed with cement.
That will cut down on the mess, but this system is never going to run as clean as the newer equipment.

This Wayne is an early flame retention head burner

@ November 6, 2013 9:14 AM in Maintenance of Wayne Flame-Retention Oil Burner

It still has an iron end cone from the standard burner design. It also runs at 1725 rpm. But if you pull the nozzle assembly out of the tube, you will find a permanently installed turbulator on the end of the assembly. I remember it because it was one of the very few nozzle adapters that where 11/16" instead of 3/4".

I have or admit that I have never seen one that had been set up well enough not to prevent soot build up. So the right way to service this boiler is to vac it every year. Since it is probably the easiest boiler to clean, that shouldn't be a problem.

Here is the problem with upgrading the equipment: Let's say this system uses 800 gallons a year and upgrading saves 50%, if the upgrade cost $6500.00, it would only take a little longer than 4 1/2 years to break even. Not a bad deal, but as our customers' get older they don't think they will live long enough to get the payback. So if the home is comfortable, keep the equipment. One of these days the iron end cone will fail and then the only way to keep this unit going will be a burner upgrade.


@ November 5, 2013 8:26 AM in Combustion Analysis Results

Have posted your oil burner question in the gas forum.

Cheap vs safe way to proceed...

@ November 4, 2013 1:50 PM in converting a two line system to a single line

Ok, damage is done. There is a bypass screw in the old pump that allowed the oil, not sent to the nozzle, return to the tank. When you plugged and started the burner the oil found a new path--through the pump seal and all over the heating equipment. The cheap way is to just go out and buy an exact replacement pump. They are usually sold set up for one pipe operation.

The safe way to proceed is call a qualified professional and have the repair done right. Since you didn't know about the bypass plug, I am going to assume you don't know how to properly adjust the new pump, or test the unit after installation for safe and efficient operation. This would include testing for steady state efficiency and carbon monoxide spillage or backdraft.

Extol tank

@ November 3, 2013 7:32 PM in does everything look Okay?

How many feet of half inch copper do you have holding that expansion tank. When that tank fails I wouldn't be surprised if it slipped out of it's holster(?) and ripped off the boiler.

Do your research now

@ October 30, 2013 6:47 PM in Need help identifying old Burnham Holiday Series 1 Boiler

If I where you I would do as  much research relating to replacing that boiler now. Most people that want to stretch another season or two out of their heating and cooling systems usually run them to failure.

If you do the research now you won't be throwing in a possibly oversized boiler when that day comes. I would recommend getting an energy audit first. That way you know exactly how well your home holds the heat. You may end up saving a few bucks insulating and air sealing your house before the boiler is replaced.

Whether you decide to upgrade your insulation or not, with this information, you will be able to have a manual j heat load calculation done. You will then be able to have the proper sized unit installed when the time comes.
If the boiler is running ok, then here's your chance to get way ahead of the game.

Refractory debate

@ October 29, 2013 10:31 AM in Riello/Buderus G115

Think it depends on the boiler and burner. Just installed a blanket in a five section liberty slant fin/Beckett af and it made a word of difference.
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