Yet another EK System 2000 "problem".


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Old 04-11-09, 06:28 AM
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Yet another EK System 2000 "problem".

I've got a System 2000 that was installed back in '96. Been very happy with it. Last November or December it developed a high pitch noise and a high frequency vibration that seems to be coming from the tigerloop or oil pump. The 5/16" CU lines to and from the loop are vibrating. The technician that services the unit thought that the Gar-Ber filter was dirty so it was changed in January during annual cleaning. Didn't solve the problem. He checked the oil pp. discharge pressure and said it was OK. Looking back over the service records since it was new, the only thing that has changed a lot is stack temp. It's increased from 325* to 400* this year. The nozzle angle has been different over the years from .75X70A, .75X90A, .75X80H to .75X70H now. Efficiency 85%+, and CO2 11.5% haven't changed. The only other thing I've noticed is that the oil filter is running at 6 to 7" vacuum. Seems a little high for only been in service for 3 months. I'd appreciate any thoughts on where I ought to begin looking. Thanks
 
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Old 04-11-09, 08:50 AM
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Why would they keep changing nozzle patterns? That's weird. I would insist that they use the manufacturer's recommended nozzle.

I agree that 6-7" is high... possibly obstruction in the oil line... that could/might/would account for the pump whine. Did you happen to notice what the vacuum was _before_ the filter change? Where is the oil tank in relation to the system?
 
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Old 04-11-09, 09:11 AM
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The vacuum before filter replacement was about where it is now 6-7". I didn't see what it was after replacement. In the the past it's been about 1" when new. Both the tank and boiler are located on the same level in my basement. There's about a 50' run of CU between tank and boiler with about an 8foot head. Out of the tank it runs horizontally 2' to a wall then vertically 7-8' to the ceiling then 30'+- horizontally to the drop down to the boiler. The tank was new in '96 and is more or less level. I could probably blow back to the tank but I'm not sure what that would do other than to stir it up some. Think I oughta buy a few new filters, blow it back and change filters a few times? I called my fuel oil supplier yesterday to see if they could pump it out, filter it and refill it. Nobody was there that could answer the question. I'm a little surprised that there wasn't really any improvement when the new filter was installed. For what it's worth the tigerloop "glass" is full. That's been the norm during the heating season. Level usually drops during the summer when the unit's only heating domestic hot water. Thanks
 

Last edited by Grandma Dee; 04-11-09 at 09:29 AM.
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Old 04-11-09, 09:12 AM
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Nozzle/Pump Whine

Which burner is installed in your boiler?
A .75x70A & a .75x70H have the same flow rate & are both a hollow pattern. In general they are interchangeable.
Those lines sound small. Normal minimum is 3/8" & some areas require 1/2". Any signs of damage (dents, kinks, etc.) to the line from the tank to the burner?
 
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Old 04-11-09, 09:27 AM
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I've got a Beckett model AFG. I re-measured the supply line and it's 3/8" OD with no kinks or dents. The vibration/noise isn't really noticeable for the first minute or so after the burner lights but gets progressively louder the longer it fires. I'm not sure why they change nozzle patterns. It's been the same company but different techs. The burner calls for a .75X70A nozzle.
 
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Old 04-11-09, 09:38 AM
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Another thought, if the supply was obstructed at the tank it probably wouldn't improve operation by just replacing the filter. I'd think it would improve for a few minutes until it redeveloped a vacuum. The only thing wrong with that theory is wouldn't the tigerloop be operating with less than a full "glass"?
 
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Old 04-11-09, 09:39 AM
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Nozzle/Fuel Line

The company for which they work may have changed the brand of nozzle they use. In very few cases would one have a problem changing nozzle brands. The company for which I work used to use Sid Harvey (Hago) nozzles & a few years ago we went to Delavan without difficulty.

As Trooper asked, how far from the tank to the burner? Also, where is the tank in relation to the burner (both in bsmt, tank outdoors with burner in bsmt, etc.)?

You might want to consider blowing, flushing out the line or replacing it.
 
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Old 04-11-09, 09:42 AM
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Is there an OSV (Oil Safety Valve) installed in the oil line? (or possibly as part of the oil filter holder).

Firomatic valves? possibly not fully opened?

Oil tank is a standard steel tank with a bottom or side outlet?

Grady, do they call the H a 'semi' solid? (or hollow), and the A is all hollow (sounds like hollow-ween)... so A or H shouldn't make much diff, but why on earth would they switch to a 90 or 80 if the system calls for a 70? that part strikes me as much weirder than the A , H change.

gets progressively louder the longer it fires.
This suggests that the vacuum is building the longer it runs... have you watched the V gauge during the firing cycle? I betcha it's going over 10...
 
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Old 04-11-09, 09:46 AM
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Nozzle

A & H are both Hollow patterns. "A" is Delavan's designation & "H" is Hago & maybe also Steinen's. Semi-solid in Delavan is a "W" & Hago is S/S.
 
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Old 04-11-09, 09:51 AM
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Both the tank and boiler are in a heated basement. There's about 50' total run between the tank and blr. with about an 8' head. Haven't watched vacuum during firing. I will one day. Woodstove's going at the moment. The tank is a standard steel 330G vertical with the outlet on the end and at the bottom. I don't think there's an OSV valve. But I'm not really sure what they look like. There's a regular shut off at the tank with a firomatic vv. next to it, another firomatic before the gar-ber filter which is 3' or so before the boiler and another firomatic on the tigerloop.
 
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Old 04-11-09, 10:02 AM
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Oil line

I'd almost bet the line or Firomatic(s) are crapped up. You sure the valves are fully open?
 
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Old 04-11-09, 10:09 AM
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Yep, I checked all of them and checked all of the fittings to make sure they're tight. If there's crap in the bottom of the tank will replacing the filter eventually clear it or should I drain it and clean it somehow? When I put the tank in I had a 1 1/2" line installed in the bottom of the tank thinking I'd tie two tanks together someday. That never happened so I do have a convienient way to drain it. Don't know how I'd clean what remains out.
 
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Old 04-11-09, 10:59 AM
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Tank

The problem is most likely sludge & filtration will not help. Draining some off the bottom might do some good but not for long. There are chemical treatments but you have to choose the right one based on analysis of the fuel & sludge. Scully makes a "snorkel gauge" where the oil pick up tube is a attached to the float thus drawing the fuel from an inch or two below the surface. This is the cleanest fuel in the tank.
 
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Old 04-11-09, 11:14 AM
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The boiler started to heat hot water so I manually opened two other zone valves. There wasn't any change in the vacuum, running vs. not running. It held at about 7". After it shut down I broke the line between the filter and the tigerloop to see if the gauge would drop back to zero. It didn't go to nothing but it did drop to 1 1/2 - 2". So I'd say the gauge might be a little off but isn't plugged and inoperative. When I re-opened the two firomatic valves, the vacuum climbed up to 5" which makes me think you're right about an obstruction in the line or at the tank. That would probably be the only way there would be vacuum trapped in the line. I guess my best move would be to either find somebody to pump it out and filter it or run it through the summer to lower the level and try to drain it myself. Do you think I ought to try blowing back to the tank? Might move something out of the way for a while.
 
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Old 04-11-09, 11:25 AM
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I just checked out the snorkel gauge on line. Seems like the most logical/economical fix. Should be real easy to install it and repipe the supply lines. Thank you for your advice.
 
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Old 04-11-09, 11:53 AM
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Snorkel Gauge

I would suggest getting a spare pick up tube as well. I've had one installed in a customer's house for over 5 years without the tube cracking but if it does crack you will suck air & have no heat.
 
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Old 04-12-09, 05:08 AM
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Your earlier quote was 30' of horizontal run and the last one was 50'. Is it 30 or 50' of horizontal run. The up and down does not matter if they are equal. All 1" for the valve. I would replace the gauge and blow the line between the tiger loop and the tank but do not blow through an OSV if there is one.
See link for calculating vacuum.
http://www.comfort-calc.net/Fuel_pump_vacuum.html
 
 

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