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Efel Harmony Problem...Got an Idea??

Post in 'It's a Gas!' started by RayRayYJ, Feb 22, 2011.

  1. RayRayYJ

    RayRayYJ New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2011
    Messages:
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    Loc:
    Southern BC
    OK, so I think I've read most of the posts on this site, lots of great info, but I'm at a loss.

    Here is what I have - Efel Symphony model 491.64 Propane

    Problem - this thing won't stay on! Pro's have been up twice in 3 years, cleaned both times and replaced thermocouple both times, one time they did thermocouple and the safety switch. Last for a bit...but over the course of 3 years in the house I have had 4 new thermocouples, it's been cleaned plenty...and I keep having issues with it starting up, staying on and recently sooting completely up after 5 minutes of use after a full on cleaning.

    Here is what I've done - Fully cleaned (every nook!), removed burner tube and cleaned (looked like one tube was barely lite...now it roars!), cleaned up pilot, thermocouple, igniter. Took logs out and left out b/c one is broken so wanted to see how it burned without.

    So far I have a nice flame, pilot stays on with flame on high, with logs out and burner cleaned I'm not getting any soot...but it stays on for 5 to 25 minutes, then cuts. When this thing is going good it will stay on for hours and heat up the entire house, I love it...but it is so much work!!

    Any guesses on what it could be? Propane tank is full. Any help would be greatly appreciated...tired of $300 service calls to have it cleaned and a new thermo...any clue why thermo's might be going so quick as well???

    Thanks in advance for any help, much appreciated!!!

    Ray

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  2. DAKSY

    DAKSY Patriot Guard Rider Staff Member

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    Loc:
    Averill Park, NY, on Burden Lake II...
    Sounds to me like it's something to do with the log placement.
    You can cause sooting by having the flames restricted by,
    or in too much contact with the flames from the burner.
    Wrong log positioning can also cause the interruption in the burner circuit.
    The thermopile works on a temperature differential. They are normally engulfed
    by the pilot flame at the top 3/8". This allows the lower portion to stay somewhat
    "cooler." If the logs are too close to the pilot, you can form what's called a "heat pocket."
    The heat from the pilot is contained & won't allow for that temperature differential
    & the millivolt generation will drop below what it takes to keep the gas flowing.
    This number is generally 135 mv with the burner on...
    Have you verified the t-pile performance with a multimeter?
  3. RayRayYJ

    RayRayYJ New Member

    Joined:
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    Loc:
    Southern BC
    Right now the logs are removed, been trying it that way to see the difference with regards to soot build up. So far no black on the glass, which is promising, but also won't stay on for more than 20 minutes or so (and 20 is long).

    I haven't checked the thermocouple with a multimeter yet, will do so this evening when I get home...but this thermocouple is only a few months old - purchased from a different fireplace store than the last 3 thermocouples. The model number is right, but no clue why I've been through so many thermocouples...thought I read that they last a few years.

    I'll get some meter readings and let you know. Thanks!
  4. Wood Heat Stoves

    Wood Heat Stoves Minister of Fire

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    iirc, thats a b-vent with a euro-sit valve

    the spill switch was added for the us market and has been a huge issue ever since

    basically the terminal block that interrupts the t-couple leads to the spill switch, and making a perfect connection is hard or impossible over time.

    after confirming a good draft many dealers removed the interrupter block and eliminated the spill switch
    (which can be a safety issue...)
  5. RayRayYJ

    RayRayYJ New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2011
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    Loc:
    Southern BC
    Thanks Dave,

    I'm not going to pretend I fully understand your comments (iirc, etc)...

    But I think you're saying there have been issues with my stove and the safety switch, which some pro's end up removing all together...right? Is there a way to better the connection between the t-couple and the switch or least test it to see if it is the problem?

    When all is working properly the stove will run for hours, really heats up the entire house, to the point I have to turn it off...so the switch doesn't kick it off all the time, if that helps.
  6. RayRayYJ

    RayRayYJ New Member

    Joined:
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    So no clue on this, but turned the stove on tonight when I got home and the thing ran for about 2 hours...to the point that I turned it off b/c it was getting too warm before bed! I never know with this stove, so unpredictable! I'll try running it in the morning again and see what happens...but right now it seems to be running without the logs installed, no soot. We'll see tomorrow as this is the first time in a bit that it has run for more than 20 minutes.
  7. Wood Heat Stoves

    Wood Heat Stoves Minister of Fire

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    sorry: iirc- means- if i recall correctly
    (damn kids and their text chat stuff)

    an easy test is remove the interrupter block from the back of the stove, and install the t-couple directly into the valve
    (set co2 detector close by(and be sure it works!))

    i dont know of a source for the interrupter block, so i hope you can take it apart, and use steel wool to clean up the terminals.

    also, to avoid as much line loss as possible, the wiring should be replaced with bigger gauge, and maybe ever soldered- at least clean and fresh connections metal to metal
  8. Wood Heat Stoves

    Wood Heat Stoves Minister of Fire

    Joined:
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    ps, if this is the euro sit, there is no t-pile, only a t-coupler

    but Bobs discussion of flame covering the t-pile tip still pertains
  9. RayRayYJ

    RayRayYJ New Member

    Joined:
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    Ok, so as I mentioned, the stove works...but sometimes! For the past two days it's a no go and I think I know why (but not how to fix). I'm getting a strong pilot when I start, it reaches the t-couple tip and I can turn the stove on. BUT...when the stove is on the pilot goes from a nice blue flame to a weaker orange and isn't reaching the t-couple tip...and the stove shuts off. There has been the occasional time when the pilot won't reach the t-couple (weaker orange flame) when I attempt to start it, but more often than not I get a solid blue pilot for the first few minutes.

    I took out the pilot assembly, cleaned thoroughly - is this an issue with my gas valve? The propane tank is at 55lbs so plenty of fuel. It is -12C today and has been for the past few days if that matters.

    Any thoughts? Thanks in advance!!
  10. DAKSY

    DAKSY Patriot Guard Rider Staff Member

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    What have you got for gas pressure at the inlet & outlet sides of the valve?
  11. RayRayYJ

    RayRayYJ New Member

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    About that...haven't the slightest idea for checking that! Certain tool for such a job??
  12. DAKSY

    DAKSY Patriot Guard Rider Staff Member

    Joined:
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    Messages:
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    Loc:
    Averill Park, NY, on Burden Lake II...

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