oil burner wont cycle water

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Old 12-24-12, 07:35 AM
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oil burner wont cycle water

I have an oil fired well mclain with baseboard heat. Woke up this morning, turned the thermostat on, heard the click but no heat. So far the only way I can get the pump to cycle water is if I use jumpers from the 120v input to the pumps inputs in the control box. Everything else works fine. I have hotwater in the house. The honeywell box is not even 2 years old. I took off the wires in the thermostat and crossed them and still nothing. I then used jumpers and crossed the thermo leads in the box and still natta.
 
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Old 12-24-12, 08:03 AM
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Careful you don't fry something Matt! your own azz in particular!

honeywell box is not even 2 years old
Remind us what aquastat you have...

turned the thermostat on, heard the click but no heat
The BURNER is firing, but the CIRCULATOR is not running? Is that what yer tellin' us?
 
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Old 12-24-12, 09:41 AM
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Dont worry, I turn the power off when messing with the box. The aquastat is a honeywell r8182. and yes the burner is firing but the circulator isnt running unless I put direct power to it.
 
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Old 12-24-12, 02:07 PM
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Which 8182 ? What letter? " D " ?

What do you have the temp settings on?

Is the HIGH setting at LEAST 20 HIGHER than the LOW setting?

Is the boiler TEMP ABOVE the LOW setting? If it is not, the circulator will not run... IF you have the D model, which I suspect you do.
 
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Old 12-24-12, 03:16 PM
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d yes. Havent messed with the temp setting but yes its like 25 degrees higher.
 
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Old 12-24-12, 03:31 PM
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At the time the circ wasn't running, was the boiler temp above the LOW setting?
 
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Old 12-24-12, 05:23 PM
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Yes sir. And i ran the hot water after so i know it was around 190.
 
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Old 12-24-12, 06:00 PM
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It does sound as though the aquastat has took a dump...

but why? it's only 2 years old you said?

Can you get a look at the relay contacts inside?
 
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Old 12-25-12, 06:01 PM
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I have the box cover off. What should I check for?
 
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Old 12-25-12, 07:00 PM
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TURN POWER OFF! 120VAC INSIDE! YOU CAN BE KILLED!

You need a BRIGHT light and your strongest set of reading glasses... you may need a small mirror too...

On the sides of the relay you should see two copper 'blades' with round 'points' on the ends... look at the surface of those points for pitting, melting, etc...

Do NOT use sandpaper to clean!

There could also be a problem with the LOW LIMIT switch.

Try turning the LOW setting all the way down and see what happens... if the circ runs then...
 
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Old 12-25-12, 07:09 PM
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You'll be looking for something like this, but there won't be contacts on both sides of the movable one, ... just two contacts, times two, one set on each side.


image courtesy wikimedia.org

If you do want to try cleaning them (I sorta doubt this is the problem given that the a'stat is only 2 years old), you need some CONTACT CLEANER, and a piece of 'shirt cardboard'... a cereal box, a piece of a match book, etc,...

cut a strip of the cardboard that will fit between the contacts. Saturate it with contact cleaner ("De-Oxit Gold" is good, rubbing alcohol may work in a pinch) and place it between the contacts. With finger pressure on the top of the relay push it closed and slide the cardboard back and forth between the contacts.

Again... do NOT use sandpaper! not even 600 grit! there is a plating on the points that will be removed if you do.
 
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Old 12-27-12, 03:21 PM
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Ok. I just moved the low limit switch all the way down and still nothing. When I turn the power to the aquastat on an off, the relay for the circulator is switching on and off but still nothing. So I looked at the contacts and they looked a little rusty so I did the cardboard thing with some contact cleaner for electrics and still nothing.
 
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Old 12-27-12, 03:55 PM
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Matt, do you own a soldering iron and know how to solder electronic stuff?

If so, you might find that you have a cracked solder connection where the relay connects to the pc board.

You might be able to verify this if you are VERY CAREFUL (remember, 120VAC INSIDE! YOU CAN BE KILLED!) ... when the thing is calling for heat and you know that the relay is pulled in, with an INSULATED TOOL carefully push on the relay from different angles to see if the pump starts.
 
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Old 12-27-12, 03:56 PM
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If you still have the old aquastat, you can examine that to see how it comes apart...

Don't kink that capillary tube!
 
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Old 12-27-12, 07:58 PM
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I actually did push on the realy a little but it didnt do anything and yes I can solder. Any tricks to pulling it apart? And how can 120 kill you cause of the amps cause Ive been shocks by 120 from outlets a few times and it aint that bad.
 
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Old 12-28-12, 06:48 AM
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No 'tricks' really. You will need to disconnect all the wires of course, might have to remove the connector clamps too so that the board can be lifted out of the chassis. Those metal 'tabs' that are on the sides are what holds the board in place, so you will bend them out of the way. Carefully slide the board out of the chassis.

how can 120 kill you cause of the amps cause Ive been shocks by 120 from outlets a few times and it aint that bad.
This is actually what gets folks into big trouble... they get a little jolt across a hand... from finger to finger say... and then they start to lose respect for the voltage.

Yes, it's the amps, and the danger is when you take it across the chest, through your heart.

Say you had one hand on the grounded boiler, and with the other hand you got across the 120. That current would flow down one arm, across your chest, and to ground through the other arm.

Or, maybe the floor is wet or damp (concrete floors can be dangerous even if NOT wet!) and you don't have EH (Electrical Hazard) footwear on. The current will travel through your arm, across your chest and down your legs into the floor.

Bottom line, respect the voltage! It only takes a few milliamps to stop a heart cold.
 
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Old 12-28-12, 09:39 AM
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Well I soldered the connections in the back for the circulator relay and still nothing. I dont understand how the aquastat could be bad when everything else works?
 
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Old 12-28-12, 09:59 AM
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Matt, the burner fires on the LOW LIMIT with no trouble?

When the circulator SHOULD be running, system firing and calling for heat, is there voltage at the " ZC " terminal ? 120VAC, measure from ZC to C2
 
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Old 12-28-12, 10:21 AM
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The burner has been firing when needed the whole time. I just checked voltage from zc to c2 and I have 120. There are no wire connections on zc though.
 
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Old 12-28-12, 10:32 AM
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You don't need wires on ZC... not all systems use the connection, just looking there to see where the problem lies.

If you have voltage at ZC, then the problem is between the ZC terminal and the C1 terminal, and the only thing there is the relay.

I can't post any pics because I can't load all my programs on the new hard drive... but let me try this...


[LOW LIMIT SWITCH-"W"terminal]--------> ZC terminal -------->RELAY-------->C1 terminal

The fact that you have 120 at the ZC terminal says that the Low Limit switch is working. Just that the voltage isn't getting from there through the relay to the pump terminal.
 
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Old 12-28-12, 10:55 AM
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Ok, so what do you suggest I look for? With the thermostat off and the circulaor relay off, I still have voltage from zc to c1 and c2.
 
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Old 12-28-12, 11:00 AM
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How come when I just turned my thermostat back on, my boiler fired up even though the circulator pump isnt running and the temp still wasnt at the low set point?
 
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Old 12-28-12, 11:08 AM
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My guess is the relay is bad?
 
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Old 12-28-12, 01:40 PM
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With the thermostat off and the circulaor relay off, I still have voltage from zc to c1 and c2.
That's expected. It means that the Low Limit is satisfied (boiler temp above the low limit - diff setting.

How come when I just turned my thermostat back on, my boiler fired up even though the circulator pump isnt running and the temp still wasnt at the low set point?
Also to be expected. The thermostat is calling for heat so the burner will fire and the circ is SUPPOSED to run...

My guess is the relay is bad?
It's narrowed down to a problem with the relay... I wish I could visually inspect it...

If you can SAFELY do so without zapping something, when the relay is pulled in try to see if the contacts are actually touching.

There are two sets of contacts, one on each side. One side is for the burner and one side is for the circulator.

When you cleaned it you did both sides, yes?

When you had it apart to solder, did you inspect all the connections from C1 terminal back to the relay? Maybe bad connection at the C1 terminal?

I find it hard to believe that a 2 year old relay is not making contact.
 
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Old 12-28-12, 02:35 PM
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I know me to. When I cleaned the circulators relay, I just stuck some cardboard with soem cleaner and rubbed it in there. I can only see one contact when its pulled. I did not inspect the c1 connection. I just resoldered all the connections that went from the relay.
 
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Old 12-29-12, 10:55 AM
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Well, I THINK I finally fixed it. Went back down and looked at the back of the board and noticed a break in one of the soldered joints from the relay that I missed. Soldered that. The I notice I was cleaning the wrong contacts. I was cleaning the one side that has the "bars" not the side with 2 sets of those little round copper contacts. I really couldnt get to the second set but I dont think that was the problem anyway. Put it back together and fired the boiler and the circulator came on then went right off. I loooked at the temp and it was at 135 below where the low was set at. I watched it get up to about 150 and the pump came back on and stayed on. Well its too damn hot in this house now so Ill try it later on again and report back.
 
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Old 12-29-12, 12:53 PM
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Yeah, I think you fixed it ! good to go is my guess.
 
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Old 12-30-12, 03:33 PM
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Yea its fixed. Thanx for all your help!!!
 
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Old 12-30-12, 04:43 PM
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Great! Knew you could do it! Happy New Year!
 
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Old 01-05-13, 01:31 PM
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Ok. Now that I got the circulator working, now it wont stay hot. Itll get plenty hot but we have to have the water turned to full hot to get a shower and it only stays warm the whole time. I have the lo set at 150 and hi I turned up to 200 and it cuts off at 170. Seems like its not keeping the temp up when needed.
 
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Old 01-05-13, 03:26 PM
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Matt, the HIGH setting doesn't control the hot water, only the central heating.

The LOW setting is for the hot water.

Turn the HIGH back to 180

Turn the LOW to 160 (but not higher, you need to be 20 below the high setting.

Turn the DIFF to 20

See how that works.

Those 'tankless coils' are the worst way to make domestic hot water... a terrible waste of fuel.
 
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Old 01-05-13, 05:22 PM
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we have to have the water turned to full hot to get a shower and it only stays warm the whole time.



Same with me!

I have the lo set at 150 ....

Same with me. Was 165 but when I installed a new Aquastat recently I set it to 150 to see how it would work out. Not good! I'm going back to 160 until I can say goodbye to the "thankless coil". They stink!
 
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