Rheem gas furnace won't ignite

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  #1  
Old 01-23-16, 06:00 PM
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Rheem gas furnace won't ignite

Replaced furnace about 2.5 years ago with a Rheam high efficiency direct vent unit as part of a state energy reduction program. About an hour ago I felt cold, and thermostat says "call for service" and flashing across the screen says "check furnace". I am a CPA, so to me, my furnace looks fine... I turn off power switch to furnace and turn it back on, and after a minute or so it sounds like it's getting ready to ignite. I believe the fan kicks on first, and once running, the furnace will ignite. I hear the blowers, actually sounds like a jet engine, progressively getting louder, for about a minute, then it clicks off.

Coincidentally, or not, we are in the middle of a blizzard in central NJ, about 2 feet of snow, and drifts are over 3 feet. I read yesterday on FB that it is important to keep the lower portion of the gas meter unobstructed, not sure if it is a safety vent/valve. So first thing I thought of is maybe meter is obstructed, and a safety switch is kicking off gas and furnace. However... Hot water heater is working just fine. I checked meter and it was totally buried in snow, so I cleaned it off. I also checked the direct vent outside the house, but that was clear. Still not firing. Any suggestions? getting close to 60 in the house, and not sure if anyone will be able to make it out tomorrow, as we are still under state of emergency.

I will update post with model# shortly if that will help. (Update: Model# RE50660C210B2722AP)And for the first 13 years since house was built, never had a single problem with original HVAC.
Thanks!
 

Last edited by daronson; 01-23-16 at 06:23 PM.
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Old 01-23-16, 06:31 PM
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Welcome to the forums.

Coincidentally I'm in the same blizzard.

See if there is a sight glass in the blower door. Look thru it and try to identify the code the flashing LED is displaying.

You can remove the blower access door (down low) and look at the back to ID the codes.
You can also look at the back of the door to see what the codes should look like and then put the door back on. The furnace won't run with the door open and opening it erases the trouble code.

Post the full model number which can be found behind the burner access cover on the side near the burner.
 
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Old 01-23-16, 06:47 PM
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I did edit the post and it now includes the model#. I also removed the access door and saw the listing of trouble codes, and took a pic and put door back on. Didn't realize taking the door off clears the codes, and also didn't know where to look for the codes. Will now look through little window and report back. I also just heard the furnace attempt to start up again, I guess after a certain time period if it's still calling for heat it will try and start up.

Also, does it pay to call tonight for service? If I can't figure it out, and can at least leave a message, I will be in the queue for service either tomorrow or Monday. They advertise 24 hour service, but I wouldn't expect anyone to come out tonight (state of emergency) and doubtful tomorrow.
 
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Old 01-23-16, 06:56 PM
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ok, the window is showing code 57 - High Pressure Switch Open. Any ideas?
 
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Old 01-23-16, 07:01 PM
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That looks more like a serial number.

That's an involved furnace. The pressure switches are used to make sure the flue (exhaust) lines are ok.

Could yours have become full of snow ?
 
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Old 01-23-16, 07:55 PM
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It does look like a serial #, but it was preceded by "Model#". Maybe this is model/serial# for a component, not the furnace itself. Will check again.

Since it's a direct vent, the first thing I checked was for an exhaust obstruction outside. There was a little snow on top of the vent cover, but not much, and I brushed it off. It sits about 3 feet off the ground. Could there actually be an ice blockage in the vent exit? I guess I could check that...but don't really feel like trudging though the 3 foot drifts to get to the exhaust outlet again.
 
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Old 01-23-16, 08:42 PM
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Do you have two lines.... inlet and exhaust ?
 
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Old 01-23-16, 10:35 PM
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Yes, 2 lines, and the exit the house right next to each other. Just checked basement, one of the lines feels really cold right where it exits house, can this be filled with snow?? Any quick remedy to thaw it out if it's frozen/blocked?
 
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Old 01-24-16, 05:09 AM
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My final attempt last night was to warm up the intake line with a hair dryer, about 1 AM. Furnace attempted to run about 4 times during this 20 minute period, but continued to shut off, so I bundled up and went to bed. About 2AM I awoke to the wonderful sound of the furnace!!

So, THANK YOU Pete, for guiding me in the right direction and ultimately solving the problem, I am now sweating my butt off thanks to you!!

I am pretty convinced it was an ice block in the line, does it pay to have someone come out and look at it anyway? I am thinking no, but if I may just trudge through the snow and remove the cover plate for the lines and inspect.

Dave
 
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Old 01-24-16, 08:20 AM
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Sometimes an elbow is installed on the end of the lines so that nothing blows directly in. That would be explained in the manual for the furnace but I still wasn't able to locate anything based on that model number.

Another possible problem.... with a condensing furnace the flue line needs to be pitched back towards the furnace to keep ice from building up in it.
 
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