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30 yo boiler - servieman recmds replacement - claims can't tune b/c "air leaks"

30 yo boiler - servieman recmds replacement - claims can't tune b/c "air leaks"

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Old 03-05-14, 06:54 PM
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30 yo boiler - servieman recmds replacement - claims can't tune b/c "air leaks"

30 yo Burnham RS/110 Beckett AF in southern NH.

started with 83% eff 30 yrs ago: last few years been at about 80.5.

Wasn't tuned before this season

Automatic oil delivery let the oil down very low but not out

past month hot water has only been warm, not hot
Burner ignition stopped

Had two emergency services in 4 days.

Second service did some cleaning of the boiler but as far as I know did not change oil filter nor strainer nor check oil pressure.

He replaced the cad cell eye.
He tried lots of nozzles before deciding on .75 80deg W to keep the boiler from shutting off because it was having trouble "seeing" flame.

Serviceman wrote "30 yo dry base boiler has air leaks. Unable to tune properly. Needs boiler replacement"

I told him I did not understand "air leaks". With the blower going, the only movement of air is out the flue. I would expect "air leaks" to cause drafts out the places it is supposedly leaking. He couldn't explain it. I'm suspicious of oil/filter/strainer/pump causing the tuning problems -

So my questions are:
What are "air leaks" in a boiler? How are they detected?

Is it worth getting a full service before giving up on this burner/boiler combo?

Any suggestions?
 
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Old 03-06-14, 07:29 AM
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The 30 yo

Air leaks in the heat exchanger could be serious. But that would probably cause CO readings in your house, headaches, nausea etc, plus you would be starting to see soot on your air grills, and other areas. Some times if the furnace is on or near the floor, you could have some rusting problems causing air leaks. If the furnace had not been [tuned up] in a long time I can't immagen how much soot there is in the fire side. Did the guy open it up, and clean it up? If not I think you need a second opinion. I'm sure some of the pros will post soon.
Sid
 
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Old 03-06-14, 07:43 PM
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The correct nozzle is a .90x80*A Delavan. A .85x80*A would work fine too. Pump pressure should be 100#.
A bad gasket around the burner could cause air leaks but is certainly no cause for suggesting boiler replacement. Over a 30 year span, I would not be surprised to see the efficiency drop from 83 to 80.5%.
If the oil level in the tank has been allowed to get low & the fact the system was not serviced this year, your suspicions of fouled filter & strainer are well founded. I think I'd call my service company & complain about the servicer only changing the nozzle & not the filter & strainer. Sounds to me like you have a salesman in serviceman's clothing on your hands.
With all due respect to Sidny, I believe he's thinking you have a furnace rather than a boiler.
 
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Old 03-07-14, 06:35 AM
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Yeah the category was stuck in my head, and I did not get it that the OP mentioned water being not warm enough.
Sid
 
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Old 03-07-14, 12:46 PM
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Thanks

Thanks for the replies... I'll get it fully serviced and look-on while they do it...I'll also move up to the .85 nozzle to get more hot water.
 
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