Space heater w/new gas control valve problem

Old 12-05-01, 09:44 PM
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Space heater w/new gas control valve problem

I have an older Dayton space heater, the kind that sits away from the wall and has an opening in the front(so you can see the flames?). It is reasonably large(30,000btu?) and I just installed a new gas control valve(Super Tradeline VS8194E Powerpile combination gas control valve) and a new PG9 Pilot Generator.

When I turn it on, I can hear and smell the gas flowing into the main burners, but after 5 seconds it still hasn't lit. I've tried it twice and turned it off after 5-7 seconds because in my experience if it takes too long it will eventually light with an explosion. My first question is what is the normal time delay from when the gas starts flowing into the burner, and when it should ignite.

The pilot light is plenty strong(and I can adjust it), and besides projecting out towards the burner, it also has a flame ring that surrounds the generator cartridge. I would like to ask for some specific information and try to figure out why this isn' lighting quickly.

I think there is plenty of gas pressure(manometer reads more than 8" wc) and it sounds and smells like there is plenty of gas.
The flame ring is right next to the burner and about 1/4 inch just off the side. The pilot flame(V shaped and blue) is at the closest about 1 inch directly above one end of the burner. I did clean out all the burner slits when I was preparing for this installation, but I think I'll double check on that.

Any ideas as to what could cause this. I don't know how long it will take to light because I'm nervous letting the gas flow any longer.

Thanks, John
Old 12-06-01, 03:50 PM
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Hello: John

Congratulations. EXCELLENT explaination and description of the problem condition and details of both parts replaced....

Often times the correct location of the pilot flame in relation to the burners gas must be correct to provide fast ignition of the gas.

If the PG9 pilot is installed into a pilot assembly, location should then NOT be a problem. The pilot assembly attaches directly back as it was installed prior. If the assmebly is missing, etc. correct pilot flame location can be a problem.

Correct air and fuel mixture can be another problem cause for delaying the ignition. Ignition of the flames should be almost instantanous.

8 inches of gas pressure TO the gas valve is correct. Out of the gas valve it should only be 3.5 or 4.0 inches {Natural Gas} as indicated on the gas control valve.

Be sure the replacement gas valve is the correct one for this BTU sized heater. Check the new control valves orifice size too. It should match the input rating of the heater and be sized for the type of gas used. {Propane or Natural}

Regards & Good Luck
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Old 12-10-01, 03:16 PM
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A few more questions...

1. When you first lit the pilot, did you immediately turn the heater to the ON position?

2. If so, there should be a small delay in millivolt systems. The PG9 must first generate 750 millivolts before the gas valve will open to the burner.

From a cold start up, check this. As soon as the pilot lights and will hold, turn on the heater. there should be a slight delay BUT no gas odor.

ALSO...if using LP gas, you may have a natural valve and the pressure is pushing past the seat.

Just my 2 cents worth
Old 12-10-01, 10:43 PM
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Thanks for both responses. I solved the problem by cleaning out the burner slits just below the pilot light, there was some rusts apparently plugging them up just enough. That done, the heater lights up.

I have another question now that it is working. There is an odor of unburnt(?) gas in the room when the heater is on, and I'd like to figure out what could be causing it. The venting is straight up and the above roof pipe clears the roof ridge so that part shouldn't be causing this problem. The flames consist of two blue flames, one smaller inside the other. The smaller one is about one inch higher and very blue. The large, outer flame is about 1 to 3 inches higher(some of the burner slits are still a little bit rusty) and has intermittent orange streaks but is mostly blue. I've played with the air control but there doesn't seem to be much difference in the flames with it all the way open, or half closed, so I've left it mostly open.

This Dayton space heater has an open front. And the flames don't seem to be as large as I remember when I last used it years ago, but this time there is a new gas control valve. I wonder if blocking the open front with a piece of sheet metal might stop the unburnt gas from getting into the room.

Or, can someone tell me what the possiblities are that could be causing this kind of problem.

Thanks, John

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