Had to open air band all the way to keep it running


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Old 09-10-18, 06:49 PM
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Unhappy Had to open air band all the way to keep it running

Hi all- back in 2012 I used these wonderful forums to get my Armstrong furnace running top notch after the "Service Guys" screwed it up pretty badly (long story).

Here's what's up: suddenly last Spring the burner would not stay on. I hit the button and it would fire, but not keep running. The flame was dull and there was lots of soot forming. I had to open the shutter and the air band a LOT to keep it running. It's still not great, but it runs.

Background: Moved in to the house in 2012, and the furnace was not working correctly. After the repair guys I called installed a 'rebuilt' Beckett burner, it would boom, and make noise and just wasn't right. I had them back a couple times to 'fix' it, but once I saw that they didn't know what the heck they were doing, I decided to Do It Myself.

Long, long, story, (and lots of help from this forum) I ended up completely rebuilding the Beckett AF burner, and converted it into an AFG burner, which is what the furnace was supposed to have in the first place.

I installed all the correct parts: gaskets, squirrel cage, igniters, burner tube, head, new Clean-Cut pump, Genisys controller, the works. The only things I didn't change were the motor and the transformer.

I bought a smoke tester, and a flow meter. I eventually got the furnace running perfectly. Every year I change the nozzle and the fuel filter, and monitor the system to keep it tip-top. It's been fine for 6 years, until last Spring, when it started acting up, and I had to open up the air band and the shutter to give it enough air to keep it running. Now heating season is approaching, and I need to get this running great again.

Specs: Armstrong furnace, and as I said, Becket AFG burner, we live in the northeast near Syracuse, NY. The house is a raised ranch. Honeywell programmable t-stat. And like I said, nothing as far as I know changed, except that suddenly the furnace needs tons of air to keep running. I tried installing a new nozzle and it did not make a difference.

So my question to the Forum: What should I be looking at to find out why it's suddenly not getting enough air? My guesses would be motor rpms have dropped, (but it sounds completely normal to me), or possibly the chimney is clogged somehow? ANY help or ideas will be appreciated. I sure would hate to have to call a repair guy if I don't have to.

Thanks in advance.

Wingman
 
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Old 09-10-18, 07:36 PM
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I'm not a pro on oil burners but if you can't give it enough air..... then maybe the nozzle is too big.
 
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Old 09-11-18, 06:16 AM
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I would look for a partially plugged heat exchanger (most likely the secondary passage ways). They are tough to clean and are easily overlooked. Check the chimney to make sure it is clean and functioning correctly. Also make sure that you are not buying "cheap crap oil" to save a few cents. Sorry for my cheap comment . Please buy oil from very reputable companies. Also check the oil pressure to make sure it is correct. Hope this helps.
 
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Old 09-11-18, 07:25 AM
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Originally Posted by Steamboy View Post
I would look for a partially plugged heat exchanger (most likely the secondary passage ways). They are tough to clean and are easily overlooked. Check the chimney to make sure it is clean and functioning correctly. Also make sure that you are not buying "cheap crap oil" to save a few cents. Sorry for my cheap comment . Please buy oil from very reputable companies. Also check the oil pressure to make sure it is correct. Hope this helps.
Thanks steamboy. That is one thing that I have never been able to figure out how to do. Clean all of the passageways. I don't know how to access them. I like your answer, as it could very well be the problem. The furnace has probably never been completely cleaned properly.

Can you give me some direction on how to get at the areas to clean, such as the "cross-over tubes" that I hear about, but have no idea how to find?

Thanks again for your reply.
 
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Old 09-11-18, 09:34 AM
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I have never serviced an Armstrong oil furnace so I can't help with this. On most oil units there are access holes or passages that can be accessed by removal of gasketed caps. I would recommend that you call an HVAC company and ask if they service your type and mfg of your equipment since cleaning of a sooted unit was always my least favorite job due due to how dirty the job is. If the problem is soot and you decide to proceed on your own "good luck" you will need it.
 
 

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