need help with oil fired beckett burner

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  #1  
Old 12-25-15, 04:57 PM
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need help with oil fired beckett burner

Hi all
Sometimes the burner will run fine all day and on some mornings the burner will be off and the water temp has bottomed out.
If I press the reset on the Primary it lights right off. Flame looks good.
I have been maintaining this unit myself for over 20 years, annual service,filters, vacuuming of the interior etc. The cad eye is clean. I haven't checked its ohms.

This unit took a bath during SANDY. I put a new motor on it and it has been fine for 3 years.

I suspect the primary is the problem.

I read here that there is a way to test the strength of the relay, but it did not have any details.

When this unit runs there is constant spark as opposed to intermittent ignition.

If I replace the control which one do i use. It's a Honeywell little gray box now, but I cant find an exact replacement.

If you need more info let me know

Thanks in advance

Ralph
 
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  #2  
Old 12-25-15, 07:16 PM
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Have you tested the ignition transformer to ensure it is not weak? If it is, it is usually overnight the cause the most problems. I suspect because the temperatures are lower. If it is and you have a clean nozzle, clean filter, proper electrode adjustments, good pump coupling, no oil flow issues (such as water in the line freezing overnight), good pump pressure, and proper smoke level and CO2 then I would also suspect the primary. Honeywell still makes a primary like that as well as a solid state model. ICM is also a good one to use.
 
  #3  
Old 12-26-15, 05:47 AM
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I would start with changing out the primary, go with a Honeywell R7284U 'reset' control, they are awesome for all types of heating equipment. READ the instructions to configure the control properly...IMPORTANT!! The ignition can be set to only fire for 10 seconds, instead of all the time. The control has a most convenient display which aids in diagnosing a problem.
FYI: the primary should have been changed if it got wet in SANDY anyways.
If it were me, I'd put a new ignitor on the unit as well, the old one is well past its prime.
 
  #4  
Old 12-26-15, 07:54 AM
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vabluemtns and ctoilman- thanks for the quick response- haven't had cool weather yet. but it has happened at night and during the day
yes I know that it should have been replaced, but at the time my objective was to get it up and running. so I blew everything dry started it up- motor fried-replaced motor. was going to acquire all the necessary parts tomorrow but tomorrow didn't come., but the damn thing kept running. here we are 3 years later.
I will replace the primary after this weekend when everyone opens for business.
must it have constant ignition or can it run with intermittent.

thanks again
Ralph
 
  #5  
Old 12-26-15, 09:08 AM
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I hate seeing anyone trying to diagnose a problem by throwing parts at it. The next time it fails to fire, reset the primary & promptly open the flame observation port door. If the flame is more orange or a duller yellow than normal, it would indicate excess fuel and thus likely a transformer problem.

A crude but often effective way to test the relay in the primary is, while the burner is firing, rap the side of the primary firmly with a screwdriver handle. I don't mean beat the crap out of it but a good firm rap. If the relay drops out, even for a split second, the relay is weak & the primary should be replaced.
 
  #6  
Old 12-26-15, 06:44 PM
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I haven't come across an oil burner yet (residential at least, less than 5 gph) that couldnt be run with interrupted ignition. Best benefit of 10-15 seconds of ignition spark only is that it will greatly extend the life of the ignitor/transformer and electrodes. The savings in electricity $$ will easily pay for the price of the control all by itself. There are more benefits still, but that's for another day .
 
  #7  
Old 12-28-15, 02:28 PM
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Hi Guys
This afternoon it shut down again.
Before I ran out and got the control I decided to go through the whole burner. instead of assuming because I checked it a month ago that everything was ok.

I first blew out the lines back to the tank, checked the filter, reset the electrodes
checked the spark, I even put in a new Nozzle.
Then I checked the pump pressure-I'm thinking I found the issue , all I got was 100PSI. I guess the pump is getting tired. I adjusted up to 140 but I think the adjustment is bottomed out.
The burner lit right off and sounds different then it did.
I'm going to pick up a spare pump to have on hand.

Which pump should I get?

This burner is at least 30 years old, all original except for the motor which is 3 years old.

What do you think about this

Ralph
 
  #8  
Old 12-28-15, 03:10 PM
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Did you ever change the $2.00 Strainer in the Pump ?
 
  #9  
Old 12-28-15, 04:02 PM
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The pump doesn't have a filter it's a rock crusher
 
  #10  
Old 12-28-15, 05:00 PM
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If that pump is old and never been changed 100psi is the normal pressure. You might be running rich now.Please have it checked.
 
  #11  
Old 12-28-15, 05:50 PM
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At 30 years old, it was probably intended to run at 100#. By increasing the pressure to 140#, you have increased the oil input by almost 20%. As Guyold said, you could be, & likely are, running rich.
 
  #12  
Old 12-28-15, 06:59 PM
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The very first time I started servicing this burner, about 25 years ago, the pressure was 140 and has been 140 ever since. It was 140 a month ago when I serviced it last. I have the tools for the smoke test and CO2, draft and temp, I don't guess.
I will know in a few days if that was the problem or not, I think the mistake I made was assuming, assuming nothing changed since a month before, I didn't start with the basics, I assumed the problem was finally caused buy a three year old incident.
Just because you've never had a heart attack before doesn't mean your not having one now.

I was kind of surprised when it was only 100.
It is running better and heating quicker since it started giving me trouble a few days ago.
I will update in few days.
Thanks
 
  #13  
Old 12-28-15, 07:52 PM
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Hi
My old Arco-liner boiler has a firing rate of 1.25 gph with a tankless coil, which is my configuration.
I use an 80* solid nozzle 1gph. According to the charts at 140 psi pump pressure it's delivering 1.20 gph.
I did an efficiency test and it was running about 75% . which is about what I have gotten after each service.
zero smoke
I don't think it's over fired.
If the no start problem goes away I bet on a failing pump,with the low pump pressure.
What do you all think?
 
  #14  
Old 12-28-15, 08:18 PM
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Was just checking on you rh. If you have been running 140 and it dropped to 100 then yeah that's throwing more air.Agree with weak pump if that's the fix. If it does not ,1/2 dozen other things. Good luck with that and let us know.
 
  #15  
Old 12-29-15, 10:07 AM
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Good afternoon.
It ran all night fine.
It has been starting instantly all day so far.

Checked for smoke- zero
reset for a trace then reset to zero
stack temp 625- it has always run that high

didn't check co2 yet, it was lunch time.

but so far so good
 
  #16  
Old 12-29-15, 12:45 PM
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Just ran co2 test- 8%-did twice just to be sure.
stack temp 625
room temp 70

Burner efficiency= mid 70's

I have to say I'm happy with that- Even happier it hasn't not fired.

Any suggestions on which pump I should get?
 
  #17  
Old 12-29-15, 01:21 PM
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My personal favorite is Suntec's A2VA-3006. This pump is the same as their A2VA-7116 except it has a back up solenoid.
I DO NOT like the Beckett (Suntec) Clean Cut pumps. They have only an external solenoid & no interior valve. I've seen too many fail either by failing to open or worse, sticking open.
 
  #18  
Old 12-29-15, 05:10 PM
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No solenoid on my old pump
 
  #19  
Old 12-29-15, 06:39 PM
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You don't have to get a pump with a solenoid. I like a solenoid for cleaner starts & shut downs as well as for insurance against diaphragm valve failure. Here are the single stage Suntec pumps you can use:
A2VA-3006, A2YA-7916, or A2VA-7116. I don't know if Webster still makes residential pumps or not. I have not seen a new Webster in at least 15 years.
 
  #20  
Old 12-30-15, 09:09 AM
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Geez, an Arcoliner burner? OMG, I replaced sooo many of those with 'high-speed' Carlins and Becketts over the yrs....ahhh, memories!!

That being said, if you're set on keeping the burner, a fuel pump change with the solenoid option is applicable, and makes a good match for the new Honeywell primary that has the pre/post option in it (R7284U).
I do agree, throwing parts at this issue is really not the right way to 'fix' the problem.....but ya sure can't beat updating some 'ol equipment with 'modern' technology. If it were me, i think I'd fix the problem with a new boiler!! LOL
 
  #21  
Old 12-30-15, 11:45 AM
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Hi ctoilman
It's not an Arcoliner burner- it is an AF Beckett retention head- the Boiler is an Arcoliner.
I probably should have replaced it 45 years ago when I bought this house, but now I don't think I would live long enough to ever see the replacement pay for itself. especially with oil prices where they are now.
That being said.
After two days of solid performance, I will say the tired pump was the issue.
I will pick up a new pump today.

My feelings about a solenoid pump is I'd be adding another electronic device to go bad.
 
  #22  
Old 12-30-15, 05:14 PM
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If you don't want the solenoid, go for either the A2VA-7116 or A2YA-7916.
 
  #23  
Old 12-31-15, 04:39 PM
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My old pump is a Webster rock crusher
I got a new Webster. The old one lasted 30 years, what the heck. I probably won't last 30 years.

The pump I got has 2 inlets, can I mount a vacuum gauge in the unused inlet port.
I have a one line system.

There is also a 1/8" port for a pressure gauge.
 
  #24  
Old 12-31-15, 05:30 PM
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Around here if you walked in to most supply houses & asked for a Webster fuel pump, they'd look at you like you had three heads. A what????

You can mount a vacuum gauge in the unused intake port. I do not suggest permanently installing a pressure gauge. I've seen a couple of them fail & spew fuel everywhere.

When replacing a pump, a new coupling is a good idea.
 
  #25  
Old 12-31-15, 06:15 PM
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Thanks for the info
I wasn't going to mount it permanently. I was going to pipe it out from underneath and put a plug in so I can access it. So I can turn off the oil and attach the gauge for test purposes, same with the pressure gauge.

I'm also looking to put in a barometric damper because my draft is high- .8 at the breach and .5 over the fire.

problem is space. The 8" flue exits the rear into two 8" elbows then into a straight 8" pipe about 10 inches long into the wall. even if I can insert one end of the tee into the wall hooking up the 2 elbows might not fit.
is there a work around???

All the dampers I see are mounted on an 8" tee about 12" inches long.

Let me also wish all you guys a very Happy New Year

Ralph
 
  #26  
Old 01-01-16, 07:42 AM
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The Field Controls Type RC comes with a collar which mounts onto the existing pipe. You cut a hole in the pipe, mount the collar over said hole, & mount the barometric in the collar. There are pictures here:
6-RC - Field Controls 6-RC - 6" Draft Regulator for Wood, Oil, or Coal
 
  #27  
Old 01-01-16, 07:18 PM
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that is perfect= thanks for the info

My flue pipe is 8" what size damper should I get, it only goes to 7"

The smaller the better for installation but which one for best operational reasons.
 
  #28  
Old 01-01-16, 07:34 PM
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By the way tree days and nights not a burp

In the past I have gone the entire season after service without on failure.
 
  #29  
Old 01-02-16, 07:00 AM
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You should use the same size as is your vent pipe. Here's a link to an 8".
8-RC - Field Controls 8-RC - 8" Draft Regulator for Wood, Oil, or Coal
 
  #30  
Old 01-02-16, 05:04 PM
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That's what I thought.
Thanks again.
 
  #31  
Old 01-02-16, 07:54 PM
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Stack pipe size is based on firing rate

The stack size needed is based on the actual firing rate. Beckett and others have charts showing the necessary size. Beckett page 24 reads " Flue sizes generally are 4" to 6" under 1 gph, 7" to 1.50 gph, and 8" for 1.50 to 2.00 gph

Many older boilers have had their firing rates reduced over the years as better insulation, etc reduced building heat loss.

My 70 year old Weil-McLain with 8" stack outlet was rated at 1.8 gpm. It now fires at 0.8 gpm with a 6" stack and it is easier to main proper draft. The resulting lower stack temp also means greater efficiency. Along with out door reset and electric stack damper it matches new boilers in efficiency.
 
  #32  
Old 01-04-16, 02:41 PM
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High limit setting

Hi all
At what temp should the high limit aquastat be set at.
Mine is about 185*
The low cuts in at about 155*
according to the thermometer on top of the boiler.
 

Last edited by rh913rh; 01-04-16 at 04:42 PM.
  #33  
Old 01-04-16, 05:54 PM
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Water temperature limits

Generally 180F is the max high temp to avoid scaling. Because of overshoot and lags in controls, the temperature measured by a gauge should be used, rather than some control reading.

Condensation occurs around 133F so boiler water temps are usually set at 140F minimum. Low temp cut offs for circulators should be set above l35F.

Last year I set up an new out door reset unit at 180F max with automatic delta. On a very cold day it overshot to 190F+. Took it off automatic and set max temp to 170F. Now it stays under 180F.

A believer in Murphy's law I have installed a PID controller with separate temp sensor to disable burner at 190F and circulator below 135F.
 

Last edited by doughess; 01-04-16 at 06:27 PM.
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