Heater will not ignite, help!


  #1  
Old 12-19-03, 10:50 AM
Shoshanna
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Unhappy Heater will not ignite, help!

Hey everyone,

It's winter in Chicago and my heater is acting up on me (Heil sp80) The blower works, but it won't ignite, I opened it up and reset the switch and it helped for a day, but now it isn't working again... I do need to replace the filter, but I think it may be something more, I know NOTHING about HVAC, and I don't want to spend an arm and a leg if I do not need to, so any help would be greatly appreciated
 
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Old 12-19-03, 10:57 AM
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You say you need a filter.See if it will continue to run without the filter if it does just replace it. A new one should only cost you about $5.00.
 
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Old 12-19-03, 10:59 AM
Shoshanna
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Actually, I did try that, but it did not work
 
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Old 12-19-03, 11:14 AM
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OK then, starting at the beginning. What does it do when you reset the switch? Exaust blower should come on then pilot then main burner then main "house" blower.
 
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Old 12-19-03, 12:01 PM
Shoshanna
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Hey thanks for the nice reply Matt I was treated rudely by a mod at another forum

Anyway, the furnace does not have a pilot, it only lites when needed, resetting the switch enabled it to work the one time, but it didn't work the second time I tried it... When it works or it doesn't I guess the blower comes on then it lights and I have heat, LOL, sorry if I have so little info, I feel like a fish out of water, a COLD FISH! LOL
 
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Old 12-19-03, 04:36 PM
Shoshanna
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Update, I bought a new filter, and looked around the furnace, it looks like its just the igniter thats broken?

I disconnected the power again and turned off the gas valve. I then disconnected the igniter connectors and put them back in and tapped the piece that actually ignites... and it lit. But, this seems to be short-lived. i.e. when the flame goes out it won't lite again on it's own, and I would maybe have to do that all over again :| Does anyone know any fixes or how much one of these will cost? Anyplace to get one inexpensive? I don't want to call some repair man and have him rip me off....
 
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Old 12-19-03, 05:35 PM
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Why do you assume a repair man will rip you off?

A gas appliance is nothing to fool around with, especially if you are not knolegable at all about them.

If it is an HSI (hot surface ignitor) they are around $30-$50 and not real hard to replace, if you get the exact replacement. So for an HVAC technician it's an easy job.
 
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Old 12-19-03, 05:45 PM
Shoshanna
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Well, perhaps rip me off is strong...

I know that I know next to nothing about this and I do not want to have someone say I need a myriad of parts when it's something small that just needs to be replaced. Also, if the furnace was -totally- out, most places are going to charge an emergency visit, which while I understand the reasoning, is not cheap in my experience.

I think perhaps it could be an HSI, as there was no spark crossing a gap or whatnot, though there was a glowing element? something?, LOL in the back of the furnace though...
 
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Old 12-19-03, 05:52 PM
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The glowing element is the HSI. If it is glowing it is OK. If it is OK you have other problems. Could be the valve.
Does this unit have a fan that runs before the flame ignites? On mine the fan was not creating a good vacuum and the flame would blow itself out. I replaced the fan unit and it was OK. The unit alone was $130.
I'm not saying thisis your problem but like I said, it could be a number of things. Draft inducer, gas valve, HSI, control box,......
 
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Old 12-19-03, 05:55 PM
Shoshanna
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Thanks!

Well, the thing is it usually doesn't glow. The last time when I flipped the master switch on the unit and did the reset procedure, I also made sure all the plugs were seated fine and tapped the part that normally glows... Then it glowed when I turned it on. The rest was fine prior, the fans and all that. So I think the HSI is at least flakey at this point (but who knows, maybe reseating stuff fixed it).
 
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Old 12-19-03, 05:56 PM
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Originally posted by Shoshanna
I know that I know next to nothing about this and I do not want to have someone say I need a myriad of parts when it's something small that just needs to be replaced.
Unfortunately these are the problems we face when we don't know everything about everything.

Do you fix your own car?
 
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Old 12-19-03, 05:58 PM
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I had an HSI go bad. I was under the impression that they are either bad or good. Mine was broken as most I see do break. Maybe you can get the exact replacement and change it yourself. If you do and it works get another as a spare. Usually when they go you are left heatless!
 
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Old 12-19-03, 06:00 PM
Shoshanna
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Originally posted by Speedy Petey


Unfortunately these are the problems we face when we don't know everything about everything.

Do you fix your own car?
And this is why I posted here At least I would know something and thats better than knwoing nothing at all Do I fix my own car? No, I take it to the dealer to be serviced, it's under warranty
 
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Old 12-19-03, 06:03 PM
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Touche!

Good luck with the furnace. Let the board know how it works out.
 
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Old 12-19-03, 06:06 PM
Shoshanna
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Hmmm, Well, if its $30-$50, that's not so bad, I would definitely get 2 to be safe, but I don't know what else could be wrong, because once its working it works well
 
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Old 12-19-03, 06:13 PM
Shoshanna
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Originally posted by Speedy Petey
Touche!

Good luck with the furnace. Let the board know how it works out.
Hehe, we seem to be playing message tag, Thanks, I hope it works out well LOL
 
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Old 12-20-03, 06:45 AM
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Try replacing the HSI 1st as it sounds like that's giving you your problem. Just be sure and get the exact replacement. I understand being afraid of getting ripped off but it's highly reccomended to have a pro clean and safety check your furnace at least once a year in the fall for piece of mind. Get with friends and neighbors and see who they use. A good seasonal clean and check should run you under $100.00 most people pay more than that for a tune up and oil change.
 
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Old 12-21-03, 08:22 PM
Shoshanna
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Another update...

The furnace seems to be working... for the past 2 days it has functioned normally *knocks on wood * though I still will replace the HSI, because even though it is working, it may not for much longer... Anyway, thanks for the help Matt and Pete
 
 

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