burnham v8 series oil burner smells bad

Reply

  #1  
Old 12-28-10, 05:41 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: usa
Posts: 2
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
burnham v8 series oil burner smells bad

working fine heating well no sounds just awful burning smell have cleaned flu & under top canopy still smells really bad afraid to keep using any advice
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 12-28-10, 07:26 PM
Member
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Northwestern Ontario (Canada)
Posts: 549
Received 1 Vote on 1 Post
You might need to describe the smell more accurately..
is it an electrical burning smell, a truck exhaust kinda smell, dust burning off smell, critter crawled in the cabinet and died and is now being cooked smell ??
Did you just start up the unit recently for the season, or has it been running fine so far this year and suddenly started to smell ?
 
  #3  
Old 12-29-10, 06:19 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: usa
Posts: 2
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
thankyou for your help it has been running fine for 3 months then was refilled and one month later started to smell it smells like burning food even after cleaning what i can access it still smells thought it could be the smell of "death" but did not find anything inside just sediment the kids come home from school and say mom what did you cook and burn! after running for 10-15 min it emits smoke from btwn the flu connection and the canopy i have just stopped using it out of fear hope you have advice thanks for tryin
 
  #4  
Old 12-29-10, 09:35 AM
NJT's Avatar
NJT
NJT is offline
Member
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 23,539
Received 3 Votes on 2 Posts
It sounds as if you possibly had critters fall down the chimney... you won't see them unless you open the whole thing up... and by now wouldn't recognize it as a critter...

I would recommend that you call someone to clean the boiler and check it out... Oil fired systems should be cleaned and 'tuned up' every year... when was the last time yours was serviced?
 
  #5  
Old 12-29-10, 07:07 PM
Grady's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Delaware, The First State
Posts: 14,077
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
The cleaning & tune up Trooper talked about should also include a combustion analysis (preferably electronic). I suspect the odor you are getting is due to a very dirty boiler. Often that odor is accompanied by high levels of carbon monoxide.
 
  #6  
Old 12-29-10, 08:53 PM
Member
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Northwestern Ontario (Canada)
Posts: 549
Received 1 Vote on 1 Post
Not only will a good internal cleaning probably get rid of that smell/smoke.. it will also increase your efficiency ($).
Probably a good idea to leave it off until it's checked out, Grady has a good point about the carbon monoxide.. its called the Silent Killer for good reason.
Im curious about one thing though.. when the unit was smoking etc.. and then it would shut down, did the unit continue to smoke and was there noises from inside of the unit ?
 
  #7  
Old 01-30-12, 10:36 PM
Member
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Toronto
Posts: 70
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Old thread, same issue here.

I noticed yesterday when I went to the basement a strong smell that reminded me of sulphur / sewer gas, but not quite. I looked around the basement thinking I had a sewer backing up, but all was OK.
I cracked a window open to air it out. Then this morning I heard the smoke detector, which is located adjacent to the boiler go off. Again, that smell. Then again tonight the detector went off and the smell in the basement again. This time I started fishing around the boiler. I noticed chunks of soot below the exhaust air damper on the floor. I had a look at the clean out tray at the base of the chimney and noticed lots of black soot chunks there too. And the boiler sounds funny, like a grinding noise. I called our tech at 11;30 and he told me to turn the boiler off at the thermostat and crack some windows. He'll be by in the AM, I'm fearful the heat exchanger has cracked as I noticed lately that I am getting a lot of air in the rads on the 2nd floor..... Terry
 
  #8  
Old 01-31-12, 04:27 PM
Grady's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Delaware, The First State
Posts: 14,077
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
Doesn't sound good. What did the tech have to say?
 
  #9  
Old 01-31-12, 05:15 PM
Member
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Toronto
Posts: 70
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
He took the boiler apart and cleaned it thoroughly. Took the flue pipe off and cleaned that out as well. Put it all back together and so far, it works. That rattling/grinding noise I referred to was the small round inspection cover on the burner door just rattling.
He commented that the nozzles were clean and the heat exchanger was not cracked, because there would be water all over the floor if it was.

I had called a different place to see about getting the chimney flue swept. He arrived just as the tech was leaving. He was standing outside looking at my chimney and he says; "I'd be willing to bet, the exhaust pipe is too small". So he came into the basement and said; "I don't even have to take this flue pipe off to look inside, the problem is all these bends in the pipe and the cone reducer right at the boiler" He said the exhaust pipe is undersized for the boiler and it is restricting it. It will be $1600 to redo the exhaust. I told him we were planning to convert to gas because it was costing so much to heat with oil. He said to put that 1600 toward the new gas boiler but that if we were going to keep it, we'd likely find the oil boiler would work more efficiently with a larger exhaust pipe.

The tech is going to come back on Thursday to try a .85 nozzle from a 1.00 which it currently has.

Another thing I noticed after they left was that sometimes the draft door on the exhaust pipe can sometimes stick closed, wonder if that has been a contributing factor.

Terry
 
  #10  
Old 01-31-12, 05:48 PM
NJT's Avatar
NJT
NJT is offline
Member
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 23,539
Received 3 Votes on 2 Posts
It will be $1600 to redo the exhaust.
You showed him the door then, right? Dang that's a lot of money for slapping a few pieces of metal together!

So what are you saying, that you have a reducer at the boiler? From what to what?

How about a pic?

OK, it's not 'right'... but how long has it been operating that way?
 
  #11  
Old 01-31-12, 06:39 PM
Member
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Toronto
Posts: 70
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
http://img541.imageshack.us/img541/3889/boiler1.jpg

the base of the cone from the top of the boiler is 6 inches, then reduces to 5 inches. From the boiler to the base of the chimney is 7 feet. In that run is the 90 shown then a couple of 45 degree elbows into a 90 tee, then up the chimney 2 story's.

that 1600 was the whole system being redone from boiler to top and recap the top of the chimney all stainless steel.

Perhaps its been undersized all along. Could that contribute to boiler inefficiency ie; more fuel use? This boiler was here when we bought the house.

for the fall 09 to spring 10 we used 1730 litres or 457 gals.
in 08 to 09 we used 1758 litres 464 gals.
for an 1850 SF 2 story house with the t stat at 68F basement is un-insulated.

Thanks, Terry
 
  #12  
Old 01-31-12, 07:20 PM
NJT's Avatar
NJT
NJT is offline
Member
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 23,539
Received 3 Votes on 2 Posts
whole system being redone
I thought this was a masonry chimney? From what you are saying now it sounds like a manufactured product.

When you say 'redone', you mean he wants to replace the whole thing? Why does the chimney need replaced? Is it also 5" ?

Could that contribute to boiler inefficiency ie; more fuel use?
Your fuel usage doesn't seem all that bad to me. I use more than that in a similar sized home way further south than you.

I highly doubt that replacing the chimney is going to save you any significant amount of fuel, if any.

Is it wrong to reduce a 6" boiler outlet to 5" ? yes. Will it really make any difference? I dunno... I'm gonna let someone else answer that cuz I'm not real sure what the 'down side' would be. Reduced draft? maybe...
 
  #13  
Old 01-31-12, 08:23 PM
Member
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Toronto
Posts: 70
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Hi Trooper, thanks for all the feedback and knowledge you provide.

Inside the brick chimney is a 5 inch liner that runs up the middle. They would only replace that and the pipe off the boiler.

6 inch pipe all the way and he would do away with the two 45 deg elbows.

Terry
 
  #14  
Old 01-31-12, 08:36 PM
NJT's Avatar
NJT
NJT is offline
Member
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 23,539
Received 3 Votes on 2 Posts
Well... it might be the right thing to do, but I think taking a 'wait' at this time is a good idea, considering that you're planning on a switch to gas in the near future. You may well find that the new gas boiler won't require a 6" flue, and then that's money wasted...
 
  #15  
Old 01-31-12, 08:51 PM
Member
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Toronto
Posts: 70
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
My wife can't wait to get a gas boiler, because the current chimney will then be redundant. Currently it runs through a portion of the kitchen and the guest room on the second floor.....of course it will then need to be taken down.....Terry
 
  #16  
Old 01-31-12, 09:20 PM
Member
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: US
Posts: 552
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Reduced draft would likely result in higher efficiency.
As long as there is a negative draft, i doubt the chimney is a problem.
Going to a .85 will make a difference if there is not enough draft.

It very well could be the boiler just needed cleaning.
Hopefully that is all.
On the other hand, there might be positive draft and that's why the smell.
Did the oil guy leave a tag that has any draft numbers on it?

I' be willing to bet a coulpe of cases of NJT's finest Sam that a bigger flue will not decrease the fuel usage one single drop.

I'll even go out on a limb and say the seemingly low fuel usage is helped by the small chimney.

Peter
 
  #17  
Old 02-01-12, 03:24 PM
Grady's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Delaware, The First State
Posts: 14,077
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
Even if Trooper does consume swill, I agree with Peter.
If you went with a gas fired boiler, depending upon make & model, often dictated by the location of the boiler & layout of the house, you may still need a chimney.
 
  #18  
Old 02-01-12, 03:38 PM
NJT's Avatar
NJT
NJT is offline
Member
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 23,539
Received 3 Votes on 2 Posts
Even if Trooper does consume swill
Doohhhhhhh! that hurt!

For punishment, you now must consume at least a six pack of "Cave Creek Chili Beer"...

Jeeze... at least my beer doesn't have anything floating in it!

the current chimney will then be redundant.
How's come? Gonna go to a direct vent?
 
  #19  
Old 02-01-12, 06:15 PM
Member
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 2,459
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
If and when you do convert to gas, MAKE SURE to do or have done a proper heat loss calculation (and plenty of us here who can help you with that). DO NOT simply size the gas boiler off the size of the oil boiler. Chances are that you can go to a much smaller boiler, which will lower the initial cost, be more efficient over the long haul, and thus save $.

Venting options abound. Some could use the chimney as a chase, others might require it be lined, others could be direct vent out a sidewall. At least a couple options could use outside air for combustion, which is a very good thing for a variety of reasons.

Now is a great time to start doing your homework. Never replace a boiler in the winter unless it's a crisis.
 
  #20  
Old 02-01-12, 07:40 PM
rbeck's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 2,466
Received 2 Votes on 2 Posts
You are allowed to drop the vent pipe size 1 size if the pipe size is less than 12". Of course this is true as long as you can maintain the OF draft of -0.02. With that said the problem I see is you must reduce it at the chimney base not at the boiler.
Do not for a minute think that changing to a larger chimney will save any money unless you cannot produce the proper draft with what you have.
As stated earlier that if switching to gas you will have plenty of options.
 
  #21  
Old 02-02-12, 06:42 AM
Member
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Toronto
Posts: 70
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Thanks for all the info. For the time being, since the cleaning, it is working fine and no odour or smoke alarms going off.

The same people that supply our oil also sell and install the equipment too.

I had them come and have a look at replacing the oil boiler with a gas unit.

They suggested an HTP MC series (model 80) condensing boiler and the sales guy said it no problem to direct vent out through the wall.

I will need to have the asbestos pipe wrap removed prior to them doing any work at all, so that will be job 1.

I was amazed at the size of the these gas boilers, about the size of a large suitcase and they mount on the wall.

Not too excited about the cost for all this though, almost 9000 with taxes.....which includes relocating it from current location so water pipe work involved and gas piping too.
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: