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Discuss Sooted up boiler and other tips in the Oil and Solid Fuel Forum area at UKPlumbersForums.co.uk.

  1. WHPES

    WHPES Trusted Plumber GSR

    Just a reminder to folks that when you come across a sooted up boiler (usually where a conventional flue is blocked, a balanced flue gasket breaks down (ex the early Trianco square balanced flues) or a pump wears out), after you have de-sooted the boiler and fixed the problem, it will take several hours for the loose soot to burn off and give you a reliable CO reading on your analyser.

    Use your smoke pump to get the smoke down, leave the boiler running and come back in a couple of hours to set up with the analyser.
     
    • Like Like x 8
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2013
  2. Bunker

    Bunker Plumber

    I'd add to that, leave the boiler running over aired or lower jetted for a few days if bad. Smoke tests early will show yellow which is your unburnt soot.
     
    • Like Like x 4
  3. Dotty

    Dotty Guest

    Great tips! Thank you. Any other tips or tricks please add to this thread

    Gonna sticky this one.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 30, 2013
  4. kimbo

    kimbo Guest

    Better still chuck in a soot stick or spray with dualx to get rid of it all
     
  5. Bunker

    Bunker Plumber

    Top tip:

    Black nozzles/ stems often mean late ignition. This doesnt mean the electrodes come on late, it means the oil actually 'catches fire' after alot of oil has already been sprayed in. This causes a whump on start up which, as well as being noisy, blows oil back down the blast tube.

    The best way to check is to take the burner out, remove the coil or the coil connector, and fire it up. A bit frightening at first but with the coil off it wont actually fire (although handle it as if it will, just to be safe). You can then watch the ignition arc and where the air takes it - it should be pushed by the air beyond the nozzle and into where the oil spray should be.

    This can be caused by a few things including:

    1. electrodes too close together so not much of an arc - bend apart, being careful if ceramic insulation.
    2. electrodes too far back or forward - adjust to suit
    3. electrodes too close to blast tube or nozzle and the arc not then being blown into the atomised oil - adjust to suit

    The above is not comprehensive so please feel to add to it.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  6. WHPES

    WHPES Trusted Plumber GSR

    Sooting up can be caused by several problems if it just happens suddenly.

    Blocked flue (birds nest etc)

    Debris on baffles if not serviced for some time

    Blocked air intake or fan (leaves, cat fur, dead mouse etc)

    Faulty nozzle
    oil leaking from behind nozzle (a few turns of PTFE round the nozzle thread will cure this)

    contaminated fuel

    Failed flue seal between the inlet and flue on a balanced flue. Common fault on the early Eurostars. See here: http://www.ukplumbersforums.co.uk/o...ianco-leaking-balanced-flue-fault-repair.html

    The part number for these gaskets is Trianco 221647 and you need 2 of them and a bit of silicone grease for assembly.

    Some of the early eurostars don't have the red gasket in which case remove the flue sections and reassemble with high temperature silcone
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2013
  7. Bunker

    Bunker Plumber

    or sticking a wrong nozzle in - I did that recently, lord knows how I picked up the wrong one - .85 instead of a .75...this is the result over 3 days:
     

    Attached Files:

  8. Roger Welton

    Roger Welton Plumber GSR

    Sooted up boiler and other Trick.

    The nozzle seals on the flat face of the nozzle assembly to the rear of the nozzle, not the threaded section, sometimes get a bit of dirt in the wrong place causing them to drip, if eroded then a replacement nozzle assembly is required.
     
  9. WHPES

    WHPES Trusted Plumber GSR

    If the nozzle assembly mating surfaces get slightly marked or deformed you can get a leak. A lot of the problems tend to be on old and obsolete burners where the nozzle has been taken out many times and as such spare parts are often unavailable.
     
  10. Bunker

    Bunker Plumber

    Perhaps we should have a section where, when taking out an old boiler, we can announce it and if anyone has a problematic version, they can ask for parts from it.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  11. Roger Welton

    Roger Welton Plumber GSR

    My garage does look like a burner graveyard at times, tend to keep a couple of old burners around for emergency use.
     
  12. SimonG

    SimonG Plumber

    I always have a standby ready to go.
     
  13. WHPES

    WHPES Trusted Plumber GSR

    I always save burners and have loads on my racking in various stages of dismantlement where I have raided for bits. I've got 2 RDB burners ready to go.

    I've got loads of baffles for obsolete boilers so if anyone needs anything drop me a line.
     
    • Like Like x 2
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2013
  14. SimonG

    SimonG Plumber

    I find rdb's are a bit like rocking horse poop as far as a standby burner. I've broken all my burners down bar a b9 and I'm down to my last BH011.
     
  15. Best

    Best Trusted Plumber Top Contributor!!

    I have so many BHO 11s, I have no idea what amount are lying about.
     
  16. Dannypipe

    Dannypipe Trusted Plumber GSR

    I kept a couple of really decent burners from a couple of boiler changes I did to a house, where the bloke moved in and just wanted new boilers. Didn't care that the old ones worked fine and were only 5 years old. He wanted peace of mind. So in they went.

    In the end, when I moved house last year, I threw them out.

    In fairness, I mainly do installs on the oil side. So please excuse this if it's a stupid question. But do you keep 'standby' burners for use in particular boilers. Or do you have standby's which you fit the right nozzle in, set up the pump pressure and air ratio and put them in just about any other boiler? (As long as the blast tube fits, ect ect).
     
  17. kimbo

    kimbo Guest

    You could always start up a boiler scrapyard
     
  18. WHPES

    WHPES Trusted Plumber GSR

    Standbys for most boilers. Just fit nozzles and set up to suit. The RDB will fit most boilers.
     
  19. WHPES

    WHPES Trusted Plumber GSR

    Couple of tips I'm sure I posted in the general section but specific to oil:

    Most motors take one 6202RS and one 6202zz bearings. These are the same as many alternator bearings and are readily available from car parts suppliers and as such a good deal cheaper than from plumbers merchants.

    For tanks below the level of a burner you need a priming pump to draw the fuel into the burner. This is a bulb shaped squeezy rubber thing. Again obtainable from most automotive tool & parts dealers. Fit a flexi hose with male swivel end at the fuel pump end then you can push a rubber pipe onto it between your priming pump without having to mess with fittings.

    When installing fuel lines to tanks below the level of the burner, remember to use the correct bore pipework, (usually 8 or 6mm diameter but given in your OFTEC installation file). 6mm plastic coated copper is cheaper to buy from a hydraulics merchants than an oil fired heating suppliers.

    If you are into night fishing or night activities, get a Tilley lamp as you can run this on all the waste kerosene from cleaning filters / emptying old tanks etc.

    If the ignition coil has failed, you need to replace the control unit as well, as the ignition relay has probably got stuck down which is usually the reason for the failure of the coil. Just replacing the coil is an expensive mistake as the fault with the control box will wreck the new coil.

    Always remember to put your nut onto the oil pipe before you flare the end over
     
    • Like Like x 6
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2013
  20. Warm n Safe

    Warm n Safe New Member

    For soot, I think DualX is the business!!
    Cleans it out like a new one!

    Nice one WHPES - How many of us have flared the pipe twice?? Doh!
     
  21. WHPES

    WHPES Trusted Plumber GSR

    I know I put this in the general section but I'll put it here as well.

    Don't leave bits of kit you have replaced lying around at the customer's place as it's bad practice. One local engineer I come across seems to leave debris and junk with customers and today I was presented with a shoebox of worn out oil pumps, used flexi hoses, nozzles, bust control box, broken solenoid etc. Fair enough if something still functions (such as an old nozzle, but only one), leave it there, but otherwise If you replace something faulty, show it to the customer and ask if they would like you to dispose of or recycle it for them. If they say they want to keep it, fair enough, otherwise take your junk away with you.

    It is one of my main pet hates, tradesmen leaving junk for me to clear away, whether they be electricians, joiners, plumbers etc. Wire trimmings, empty PTFE spools, rubble etc swept under floorboards really annoys me. I only use tradesmen for my own jobs who are tidy. Came to one property and there were half a dozen old flexi oil lines tied around a horizontal pipe like dead moles on a molecatcher's gibbet, totally ridiculous.

    In industry for commercial work, it is an absolute no-no to leave junk on site and if you do so, the customer will take a dim view of it. Domestic is no different. There's also a potential liability risk if you leave a broken component and someone later tries it and something goes wrong, they could blame you.

    On another note, as a previous post has said, make it obvious what you take off is useless by breaking it so it can't get mixed up with good stuff again. I always bend old immersion heater stats in half for example as soon as I take them out.

    I worked in a printing works once. In the past, a plumber had left a short pipe offcut on a gantry which months later had accidentally been knocked off and fell into a printing press, causing thousands of pounds worth of damage.
     
    • Like Like x 1
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2013
  22. Roger Welton

    Roger Welton Plumber GSR

    I quite like finding a little stash of old nozzles in a boiler, helps my scrap pile along a little :)
     
  23. WHPES

    WHPES Trusted Plumber GSR

    How many nozzles would you reckon you would have to find to have enough scrap to buy a pint of beer?
     
  24. Roger Welton

    Roger Welton Plumber GSR

    A fair few, but then I do replace a fair few, generally have a bucket full of the little fellas when I do a scrap run :)
     
    • Like Like x 1
  25. Bunker

    Bunker Plumber

    Im so glad you said that Roger, thought Id be alone in that one - I have hundreds of old nozzles i my scrap bin all the time, all adds up :)
     
    • Like Like x 1
  26. lame plumber

    lame plumber Plumber GSR

    l like clearing up after scruffy gits, it all goes in my scrap tank
     
  27. Bunker

    Bunker Plumber

    CHECK THE OIL LINE FILTERS...aaaaaarrrgghh! Mind you, keeps me in business on breakdowns if you don't..[​IMG][​IMG]
     
    • Like Like x 2
  28. lame plumber

    lame plumber Plumber GSR

    and you get to be the service engineer from now on:):)
     
  29. Dannypipe

    Dannypipe Trusted Plumber GSR

    Christ, look at the state of that pump. Nice.
     
  30. Warm n Safe

    Warm n Safe New Member

    And don't forget the tiger loop..
     
  31. Bunker

    Bunker Plumber

    Dont overtighten compression joints from HWOS :) (and yes, I should have used a copper olive but couldnt find one at that moment)

    IMG_1571.jpg
     
  32. lame plumber

    lame plumber Plumber GSR

    wot a leaky bunker, are you a bunded bunker, should be!! :44:
     
  33. kimbo

    kimbo Guest

    Nice to see the insert, I presume you didnt have any flared fittings with you either.
     
  34. Bunker

    Bunker Plumber

    I dont use flared, never have. Im not saying I wouldnt, just something I never got into.
     
  35. Dannypipe

    Dannypipe Trusted Plumber GSR

    I don't use flared fittings either. Just never have.

    Bunker the photos you take seem very good quality. This isn't being taken with a phone is it?
     
  36. Bunker

    Bunker Plumber

    yer, my iPhone. It staggers me the quality it can take. Thanks for your comment but I just point n shoot. :)
     
    • Like Like x 1
  37. WHPES

    WHPES Trusted Plumber GSR

    Wrap a load of PTFE round it and it won't leak.

    I don't use compression fittings as this tends to happen, never have. Rare to get a leak from a flared fitting. I only use compressions where there are space contraints.
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2013
  38. WHPES

    WHPES Trusted Plumber GSR

    If you can't find the test point plug / screw for the boiler after you've finished doing a combustion test, it's usually stuck to the magnet on the back of your analyser.
     
  39. WHPES

    WHPES Trusted Plumber GSR

    List of suggested oil engineers tools (by no means definitive)

    I only carry one type of flexi hose, the one HWOS calls Long01. If I find a different one on, I change the fittings to suit the Long01 hose. I don't see the point of carrying loads of different ended hoses. In all the time I have been doing boilers I have only ever come across 2 boilers which this hose did not fit and needed an elbow at the opposite end to the pump because of shortage of space.

    I recommend that everyone gets into the habit of using flared fittings as opposed to compressions. The best price seems to be HWOS or BES


    1. Combustion analyser and printer (I scrounge till rolls from my local pub for it as one lasts ages and I'd never get through a full box of them)
    2. Smoke pump and papers
    3. Pressure and vacuum gauge set
    4. Fuel priming pump (one from an automotive supplier is adequate) and rubber hose that will fit on the end.
    5. Bearing puller for removing fans and motor bearings - I find this is the best BERGEN Prof Heavy Duty Bearing Puller 'B' Type 24-55mm on eBay (end time 06-Mar-11 19:11:56 GMT)
    6. couple of pairs of 6202RS bearings (from Ebay - but only get good branded ones, SKF, NTC etc) You'll know when the bearings are worn as the burner motor will make a rumbling / whining noise. You can also purchase from an automotive supplier as they are the same as alternator bearings.
    7. Pump drive couplings from HWOS
    8. Selection of nipples, elbows, couplings etc from the fittings page at HWOS
    9. Pipe flaring tool
    10. OFTEC forms - servicing and commissioning, oil storage risk assessment, installation
    11. One of those magnetic pickup tools which looks like a radio aerial with a magnet on the end
    12. 1/4" ratchet set and extension pieces (get a good quality set such as Britool)
    13. T handle long reach hex set
    14. Screwdriver handled socket driver
    15. glass rope and glass rope adhesive
    16. STAG B jointing compound (prefer this to Heldite another post mentioned as Heldite is awful to get off your fingers etc)
    17. PTFE tape (normal and gas tite (yellow spool))
    18. rolls of 10mm and 8mm copper pipe (white plastic coated) and roll of uncoated
    19. spare 3m 65 and 90 degreesC Teddington KBB fire valves (you can get more of different sizes as you go on) 1.5m is too small for many sites.
    20. GOOD selection of nozzles (from 0.50 to 1.0 USgall/h - larger ones you won't come across often and can order them as required. Get just kerosene ones to begin with (ES & EH). Some boilers will specify W nozzles you can buy as and when on next day delivery)
    21. PLENTY of 10mm brass inserts for copper pipe (HWOS do packs of 100)
    22. Selection of steel nuts for when you loose some behind the back of a boiler so you don't need to spend ages looking for them.
    23. Heat proof gloves for dismantling hot combustion chambers (I use welders gloves)
    24. disposable vinyl gloves like the dentist uses
    25. Barrier cream
    26. Beaded hand cleaner
    27. Hand cream
    28. One of each of the cleaning brushes that HWOS do
    29. Container to put waste oil into when cleaning out filters etc
    30. Spare filter elements (just get the two Crossland ones to begin with)
    31. Vacuum cleaner and spare bags (I use an old VAX cleaner but any will do)
    32. Dust sheets
    33. Kneepads (a MUST HAVE!)
    34. Tub of fire cement
    35. Tube of heatseal silicone and gun
    36. Multimeter
    37. Spare 3 amp fuses (a lot of boilers just have 13 amp fitted so should be changed)
    38. Boiler manufacturers literature to show to customers when persuading them to change to a new boiler.
    39. long 18/19mm drill but for drillling holes through walls for oil lines / fire valve capillaries
    40. Parts organiser boxes for all your fittings
    41. Nozzle box
    42. Set of flat, pozi and philips screwdrivers
    43. 8mm copper pipe and fittings for where you have a tank lower than the boiler (lot of people post problems on here caused by too large diameter pipe where tank is lower than boiler - always follow the table in the OFTEC book!)
    44. Set of combination spanners from 6mm up to 21mm and inlcuding ALL the inbetween sizes
    45. Scraper (paint scraper)
    46. Selection of metric machine screws (probably be able to get an assortment box from Toolstation these days)
    47. Torch (head torches are useful)
    48. Tape measure
    49. Circlip pliers
    50. pump pliers
    51. Standard pliers/nippers
    52. Set of adjustable spanners
    53. Selection of brass bushes, 3/8 to 1/4, 1/2 to 1/4 and 1/2 to 3/8 for example
    54. Mini pipe bender
    55. Round profile drift for reshaping deformed pipe ends.
    56. Small flat, rat tail and half round files
    57. Set of T handled Torx drivers
    58. Selection of o rings including 13mm ID x 4mm for Sika flow switches
     
    • Like Like x 1
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 29, 2013
  40. Dannypipe

    Dannypipe Trusted Plumber GSR

    Good work WHEPES. A comprehensive list there mate.
     
  41. dontknowitall

    dontknowitall Guest

    Another tip:

    Intermittent cut out problem that happens only a few times a year with balanced flues.

    This could be wind blowing fumes back into the flue which starves the boiler of oxygen.
     
  42. b.lynch plum

    b.lynch plum Guest

    Good ones there:)
     
  43. Dotty

    Dotty Guest

    If you lose your smoke chart then help is at hand!

    http://www.soliftec.com/Ringelmann Smoke Chart.pdf

    Also a handy app for nozzle calculation - Both Android and Iphone.

    [DLMURL="http://www.eogb.co.uk/content/eogb-launch-nozzle-calculator-app-iphone-and-android-phones"]EOGB launch nozzle calculator App for iPhone and Android phones | EOGB Energy Products Ltd[/DLMURL]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 3, 2017
  44. b.lynch plum

    b.lynch plum Guest

    Lol cheers mate did steve PM ya mate
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 3, 2017
  45. Dotty

    Dotty Guest

    aye, he did.
     
  46. WHPES

    WHPES Trusted Plumber GSR

    Stuck baffles - smear the edges with open gear grease (aerosol type is less messy), put a rag on top of the baffle and soak rag with spray from a DIY pipe freezing aerosol. You will need a large adjustable or mole wrench clamped up tight on the baffle edge to give you some leverage.

    Have removed sulphur debris jamming baffles using swimming pool tile cleaner (make sure the combustion chamber is thoroughly washed down and dried out afterwards so you don't leave any in)
     
    • Like Like x 1
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2013
  47. Killy Bing

    Killy Bing Plumber GSR

    I cant believe this hasnt been said! Always...always....always kill the power to the boiler or unplug the burner!

    who knew a pair of snickers trousers could withstand a .60 es for a second...
    yeah kinda wondering why i continued on with my apprentiship after that!
     
  48. WHPES

    WHPES Trusted Plumber GSR

    It hasn't been said as we kind of assume that anyone working on boilers is not sufficiently clueless or intoxicated as to need to be told something like this any more than they need to be told to bring a toolbox with them when they go to work on a boiler, or to put their underpants on when they get dressed. Anyone who actually needs to be told to kill the power shouldn't be let anywhere near a boiler, or for that matter be allowed to drive a vehicle to get to said boiler either.
     
    • Like Like x 2
    Last edited: May 5, 2013
  49. Dannypipe

    Dannypipe Trusted Plumber GSR

    LOL - he didn't sugar coat that one!!
     
  50. RayPlumb

    RayPlumb Member

    Hi WHPES
    Great list ..one question what is
    55. Round profile drift for reshaping deformed pipe ends.
    Thanks
     
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