Only 1 of 5 furnaces burners light after first cycle

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Old 12-01-14, 09:08 PM
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Only 1 of 5 furnaces burners light after first cycle

Hello,
I have a 10-15 year old furnace that has not been used for a few years. I forgot to get the make & model # but I will tomorrow.

The first time it turns on, all 5 burners light & run for as long as it needs to until it shuts off. The problem occurs 10-15min later when it turns back on, only one burner lights, the one furthest to the right. It will run like that for a long time if I leave it on, putting out barely warm air.

If I turn it off & come back a couple hours later, they will all light again for the first cycle.
Could this be a dirty burner issue?

It also seems to be using a lot of propane, would the 4 non lit burners still be letting gas out? I've never smelled propane around it.

Thanks
 

Last edited by shortstuff121; 12-01-14 at 09:34 PM.
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Old 12-01-14, 10:50 PM
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Is the single burner that is lighting close to the igniter ?

If it's a draft induced furnace you may not smell propane as it could be sent outside.

That is a serious problem. There is a carry over tube with holes in it that caries the flame from the closest burner to the igniter to the furthest one away. It may have rust or propane byproducts clogging the holes. You may also have a propane pressure problem.

I'm all for DIY repairs but I highly recommend you bring in an HVAC company to check out that issue ASAP. They'll also be able to check the propane pressure at the gas valve to see if that's the problem.

I also have a concern as to why the control board is not shutting the burner down. There is a flame sensor that usually monitors the furthest burner from the igniter for flame presence.
 
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Old 12-02-14, 09:32 AM
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Thanks for the reply, Yes I believe it is the one closest to the igniter. I checked today & there's actually 6 burners. The furnace is an Armstrong Ultra SX 80. I'm very mechanically inclined can fix about anything but I do not have a lot of experience with furnaces. I am also not a fan of blowing myself up. I'll call a repair guy this evening unless there's any ideas for a simple fix. Thanks



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Old 12-02-14, 02:31 PM
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The reason the furnace isn't shutting down is because of the location of the sensor. With those wonderful SmartValves the flame sensor is part of the ignitor assembly. As long as the pilot stays lit, the valve thinks all is well.
 
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Old 12-05-14, 10:09 AM
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The repair guy banged around on the burners for about 5min, said he cleaned the burners & crossover. Seems to be working so far, we'll see. Thanks for the replies.
 
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Old 12-05-14, 02:25 PM
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He didn't take the burners out & clean them? If not, call the company back & complain bitterly.

BTW: The gas shut off valve should NOT be inside the furnace cabinet. Nor should the union.
 
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Old 12-05-14, 05:01 PM
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For that matter.... the service switch shouldn't be inside the furnace cabinet either.
 
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Old 12-05-14, 05:29 PM
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For that matter.... the service switch shouldn't be inside the furnace cabinet either.
OOPS, didn't see that one. Good call PJ. While we are at it, the wire between the service switch & the junction box on the right side is supposed to be in MC cable.
 
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Old 12-05-14, 08:24 PM
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The tech may have pulled the burners, I didn't watch him, the furnace is located in a closet. I thought it was odd the switch & valve were in the box. I use the breaker as the service switch. It's in a rural area with no building codes. The house is easily 100 years old with the latest remodel 10-15 years ago. Thanks for all the information, I will apply it when I get the chance.
 
 

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