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Heat-N-Glo SL-550TV DSI Fireplace Ignition Problem

Post in 'It's a Gas!' started by Dega, Mar 7, 2013.

  1. Dega

    Dega New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2013
    Messages:
    2
    I’ve been having a problem “lighting” my Heat-N-Glo SL-550TV DSI Fireplace.

    When I turn on the switch, I can hear the gas valve open and then the igniter generates a spark across the two electrode probes. The burner ignites and everything looks normal, except the igniter continues to spark. After about 3 seconds, the spark jumps from the left electrode probe (the one with the insulator) downward to the metal floor of the chamber. After about 5 more seconds the whole thing shuts down in lockout mode.

    I checked the venting, cleaned the openings in the burner and generally cleaned out all of the dust throughout. I did notice that a wafer thin layer of top the of the ceramic insulator has flaked off and that there is quite a bit of rotational movement of the electrode probe inside the insulator. I’m not sure if there is supposed to be some movement or adjustment. There is about 1 inch of movement, with little resistance to keep it in position. The manual indicate that it should be ¼” between the probes, and I tried lighting it in various positions all of which made no difference. There are no other electrical or sensors inside the fire box. Best I can determine, all of the wiring connections seem to be secure, including the ground.

    I am inclined to buy a new igniter, but it is a pricey part! Anyone familiar with Heat ’n’ Glo fireplace units and seen this issue before?

    Pictures:
    1. Igniter probe overall note top layer of insulator to the right of igniter
    2. Ignititer spark at 2 seconds.
    3. Burners lit, Igniter spark jumps to floor at 3 seconds.

    Attached Files:

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  2. DAKSY

    DAKSY Patriot Guard Rider Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2008
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    4,896
    Loc:
    Averill Park, NY, on Burden Lake II...
    Generally, if that unit continues to spark there's a flame rectification problem. Been awhile since I worked on one & I know that all of the parts in there are pricey. It's almost cheaper to junk the valve & the module & switch it over to a standing pilot unit. A lot less problematic, & it'll work in a power outage...
    Fred Wright likes this.
  3. mygasfireplacerepair

    mygasfireplacerepair Member

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2011
    Messages:
    37
    Loc:
    Midwest
    If the pilot continues to spark it is definitely a rectification issue. Take some emery cloth or a dollar bill and try to clean off the rectifier as best as you can. If that doesn't work, you would need to replace the ignitor. Also, many times the manufacturer recommends that whenever you replace the ignitor, you replace the control module as well.
  4. jim100

    jim100 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2013
    Messages:
    2
    Loc:
    MA

    Hi, I have the same problem. I got a new module and the same problem exists. The igniter sparks fine and the gas valve turns on. the flame is then lit. The igniter continues for several seconds then the system shuts the gas off as it thinks the flame is not lit. I have been told to replace the igniter wire (again). I have tried to understand the system and as far as i can see this is how the system works. With no thermocouple to detect the flame the module monitors the current it takes to make a spark. The spark needs to conduct through the air to the ground rod an inch or so away. Once lit, the igniter is in the flame and there is no longer any air between the electrodes and the system is unable to make a spark. This is then detected by the module and hence it determines the flame is lit. Being an engineer, I can see where they tried to be a bit too clever and it came back to bite them (or us) as I believe they no longer use this method. I find it hard to believe a new wire will solve this but I will try as the next option is to scrap the entire system which will cost thousands. If anyone knows more on this, please help me out.
  5. Dega

    Dega New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2013
    Messages:
    2
    Did you replace the igniter already? The dealer told me that typically they see both the igniter and the module seem to go bad at the same time, and when the service techs replace just one of them, they usually end up replacing the other a well - either on the same call or as a follow-up shortly after. I tried replacing just the igniter first, hoping that would do the trick, but ended up replacing the control module as well, the following day. 40 minute drive each way to the dealer and $$ for the parts, what a pain! We only use the darn thing maybe a dozen time each year. When I installed it, I wanted to avoid the mess and hassle of a wood burning fireplace, but in retrospect, it would have been much cheaper, and (I think) less hassle. Good Luck!
  6. xtrordinair

    xtrordinair Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2012
    Messages:
    232
    Loc:
    southern indiana
    you will need both igniter and module as mentioned above .The dsi models that heat-n-glo made were far from reliable. ill take a regular standing pilot anyday.
    DAKSY likes this.
  7. jim100

    jim100 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2013
    Messages:
    2
    Loc:
    MA
    I have not replace the wire yet, as it is on order. The parts for this system are crazy expensive.
    I am temped to design my own controller board but the thought of controlling a gas valve is a bit scary. I guess I could shut the gas valve off when not at home to be safe. What really pisses me off is that when I had the dealer come out to look at it, the tech never took his hands out of his pocket and just said "you need a entire new system" How about taking a few measurements???

    I really can't see how replacing the wire is going to fix this problem. If the igniter did not create a spark, then I agree, but the HV wire is doing it's job.


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