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St Croix start issue

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by LuvMyPellets, Jan 31, 2013.

  1. LuvMyPellets

    LuvMyPellets Member

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    My Afton Bay is acting up on startup. 5years and not one problem so I am certainly not complaining and this may be something I caused. The first time I did the leaf blower trick I did not disconnect the vacuum line. That was about a month ago. The issue started a couple weeks ago but I did not realize it because I had it running on Smartstat. The blower comes on for the room momentarily at startup like it is supposed to and then I get a blinking #2 and it shuts off. The online manual says this is vacuum. I jumped the two wires to the vacuum and all it did was start feeding pellets when I hit restart so I nixed that idea. Somewhere I know I read here someone held down the "on" button to reset(I had been unplugging) and when I did that it started right back up.

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  2. woodsman23

    woodsman23 Minister of Fire

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    I'll bet its your exhaust blower check it to see if its spinning up to par... oil the very top of the blower with some wd40 just a bit on top.
  3. heat seeker

    heat seeker Minister of Fire

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    woodsman23 makes a good point.
    Also, if you had the door open when you did the LBT, the vacuum sensor would be okay; I do it that way every time. If you had the door closed, it's possible you damaged the sensor. Are you sure the ash traps on either side of the burn pot are clean? You may have disturbed enough crud to partially block them.
    Holding the "on" button does reset faults, and if your stove is now running, you're okay. I think unplugging the unit would reset it, too, but you have to leave it unplugged for a minute or two.
  4. LuvMyPellets

    LuvMyPellets Member

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    Pretty sure I had the door open as I was cleaning it all out inside etc before I even hooked up the vacuum. The exhaust fan is running fine. It will run fine in Smartstat cycling between 3 and then down on 1 then back to 3 when the thermostat calls for heat. The problem is when I move it over to TStat in mild weather and it shuts down between burns. It does not come back on but blinks the 2nd light which the online manual says is definitely the vacuum. Now when I jumped the vacuum switch I had not reset the board so that may be why it started feeding the auger and nothing else.
  5. wwert

    wwert Feeling the Heat

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    Remove the vacuum line from the round vacuum switch and blow towards the firebox. My guess is it has some crud in it. St Croixs are very vacuum sensitive. You may find you need to play with the damper setting a little.
  6. Ironhorse74

    Ironhorse74 Member

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    I'm a little confused on what is going on here. If you put the slide switch in manual, and jump the vacuum switch will it start normally?
  7. heat seeker

    heat seeker Minister of Fire

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    You do have a vacuum problem, so do the usual checks - combustion blower clean and turning at correct RPMs, ensure ALL the venting and stove passages are clean, do the dollar bill test on the door - and the ash pan door. It has a gasket and two latches which must be in good condition and snug. If all these are good, you should get enough vacuum to activate the switch. Your switch could be defective, but it's rare.

    ETA: stove will not shut down in Tstat mode, but it will in SmartStat mode, after a time.
  8. LuvMyPellets

    LuvMyPellets Member

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    Sorry had that bassackwards.. It will not start back up on SmartStat.
    Brad sorry the post was confusing. I did not check if it will restart when the switch is jumped as I had not reset the board prior to trying the jump so all it did was feed the auger.
    It is running fine in Tstat as it does not have to shut down. I have a new switch coming and some gaskets I need for the blower to really work on it..

    A question though how would it run if it has a vacuum problem but not restart. Is the vacuum more sensitive when a stove starts rather than when it is running.
  9. Ironhorse74

    Ironhorse74 Member

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    I think you may have a bad combustion fan. The stove is having a hard time starting because the fan is spinning slow.

    Brad
  10. heat seeker

    heat seeker Minister of Fire

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    No, but I think Brad has a good point. The switch is just a switch, it doesn't change sensitivity. Perhaps the combustion blower is balky, and coming up to speed slowly. You might have a marginal airflow problem. Again - are you sure the ash traps are clean? Depending on the year of your stove, you may have a third one up behind the ash pan.
  11. LuvMyPellets

    LuvMyPellets Member

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    I pulled the exhaust blower and cleaned it thoroughly. Does not seem to be in bad shape. Has a slight drag spinning the blade but really not too bad. Just because they are cheap I replaced the vacuum switch. I noticed the pathways look really pretty darn clean inside. I attribute that to my little hammer tapping all over the inside of the thing every time I clean it and having used the leaf blower twice already this year. As it has been fairly cold I have not flipped it over to let it shut down and really check the problem. One thing I did notice and I would like to confirm... That blower surely looks identical to the Whitfield. Appears to be the same plate with 6 holes and the same impeller.. Anyone look into that?
  12. heat seeker

    heat seeker Minister of Fire

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    I have no idea if it's like a Whitfield blower, but it should spin very freely. When I shut mine down, it takes quite a while to come to a stop. I've never timed it, but it probably takes a full minute or so. You might try a couple of drops of oil on the bearings, if you can get at them.
  13. magsf11

    magsf11 Feeling the Heat

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    had the same problem and it turned out to be the motor. took it out and when it was sideways or up side down it would turn freely, but when it was turned in the right position the shaft would drop down and it would bind up. cleaned it reall good and oiled all bearings at it worked great untill my replacement came in. still have the old one for a spare in i ever need it. you know these things allway go down in the middle of the night and on weekends and it takes forever to get replacement parts from the dealer.
  14. LuvMyPellets

    LuvMyPellets Member

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    My replacement exhaust motor arrived today and the stove starts like a champ.. I had already figured out that is what it was as I finally spotted it trying to spin the exhaust up and then it shut off and went into error. As long as it did not shut off it was fine. An FYI for everyone!
    The Whitfield Motor works like a champ. It to is simply a Fasco with a different plug on the end. A double terminal white plug. I just cut it off and spliced in the old wires with the spade terminals. You can buy one right on Ebay from Jason Munson. He shipped mine Friday from the West coast and I had it today. $145 is a lot better than what a dealer wants for one.
    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Whitfield-P...614?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item20af1d12be
    Xena likes this.

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