Harman Absolute 43 Ignition Charge Time Setting

barbcole

Member
Nov 20, 2010
14
MA
Hi everyone-

I have a Harman Absolute 43. I want to change the "Ignition Charge Time" setting, which is a "dealer" setting to change. Does anyone know if its possible for me to access the screen to change this (i.e. a certain key sequence)? In other Harmans without the touch screen, it's my understanding this was changed via dip switches on the back of the control panel.

I have had the dealer's technician to my house, and they insist such a setting does not exist and otherwise offer no solution to fix my problem. "It's normal for these" -- whatever that means. I told them the setting indeed does exist, did they mean they don't think it's going to help? Nope. There is no such setting is all I get.

They also insist that the "Feed Rate" setting will change this. It does not affect the feed rate at ignition, only after ignition. But they still insist on this....

When the stove is cold, it doesn't ignite until the second or occasionally third feeding cycle and by then there are way too many pellets in the pot and they overflow. (load pellets for a bit over a minute, sits with "Igniting" for several minutes, hasn't fired yet so it feeds again, sits for the several minutes again and then it's starting to ignite as it starts to feed a third time).

Stove has done this since brand new (installed by the dealer this Feb) in cold stove situations. Proper draft reading has been verified, stove cleaned, ignitor and fans checked, etc. Once it passes the initial ignition it burns fine. If the stove doesn't cool down completely between cycles it will reignite fine. It's a "swing season" problem, where the stove may be off all day and I want it to ignite for a bit overnight.

I have been pulling the hopper lid up to stop it from feeding a second cycle of pellets for a little bit until the pellets in the pot ignite and then letting it resume. That was holding me over until the dealer could make it to the house, but as I said they offered no help and acted like I was stupid to suggest there was a problem.

My pellets are Packsaddle Douglas Fir. They are small. Perhaps "harder to light"? I had understood this the exact situation the setting is for.. to dial it back just a touch for the specific pellets on the swing season.

Hoping someone can help!
 

UpStateNY

Feeling the Heat
May 4, 2008
369
Catskill Mountains
Set feed rate to 1 works best for me. Once it lights up then turn it up.

Have you removed the cover for the igniter and vacuum out the stuff in there recently?

Just a reminder you need to scrape down the burn pot with a chisel or screw driver, then clear out all that hard stuff we call clinkers.
 

Lake Girl

Moderator
Nov 12, 2011
6,940
NW Ontario
Thought I'd give this a bump. Make sure you try vacuuming the area suggested as it is super heated air that ignites the pellets ... if air is impeded, pellets won't ignite. You could try another brand of pellets just to rule that out.

I would suggest you try contacting another dealer to see if you get the same answer... or keep after your dealer to contact Harman.
 

Maladjusted

New Member
Mar 2, 2017
80
Richmond VA
Something isn't right. You should not be spilling unburned pellets over the pot into the ash pan. Mine (Absolute 63), from a cold start, will push pellets to the bottom of the burn pot only. It will light and then the auger will feed as the flame is established. Never have I had and unburned pellet in the ash pan. My feed rate is set at factory setting (middle).

Let me know if I can check any settings on mine for you.

Mal
 

P51mustang

Burning Hunk
Jan 7, 2014
101
Upstate, NY
Clean out the ignitor area thoroughly and even poke out the holes in the burn pot area that allow for the super heated air to hit the pellets. I actually reach inside with my fingers and really dig the ash from up and around the ignitor. I even lightly tap the side of the burn pot to loosen the ash. With the metal lid off you can do this tapping and watch how much ash falls out. It doesn't take long for ash to build up in the ignitor area and to pluck the air holes. Especially if your pellets produce large amounts of ash and/or sticky clinkers.

I've had the same start up issues as you and know when it occurs that it's time to clean the ignitor area. It's a habit I do every time I do my extensive 3-4 week cleaning in the dead of winter. However, I have had the ignitor area plug up well before such cleaning.
 
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barbcole

Member
Nov 20, 2010
14
MA
A follow-up in case anyone else is having issues:

The stove is not dirty. As I mentioned it did this from day one when it was installed. I have verified and cleaned all the additional spots (ignition clean out, etc.) mentioned above, just in case I was missing something. The dealer has also been out multiple times and verified the stove has been sufficiently cleaned and maintained.

Seems to be a known issue with this stove that Harman is trying to keep quiet and won't acknowledge. I was able to find several people through Facebook that had the same issues as I (in 2015 and 2016) and after lots of fighting and difficulty were able to get a resolution.

One possibility the dealer discussed with Harman (I've had to resort to calling Harman directly and trying to deal with them, since my dealer has not been helpful) was a "warped burn pot". Apparently there was an issue where "some" of the Absolute stoves shipped with bad burn pots. After waiting a week for the tech to come out to "verify" (didn't actually do anything except stand in front of the stove and call Harman and say you guys said it might be a warped burn pot lets try that), a week for the part to come in, and then for another visit to install -- it's actually worse.

Now in addition to not lighting until the fourth feeding cycle, now it makes a rumbling air sound at startup like a jet going. You can feel it vibrating the stove.

After supposedly escalating the issue at Harman, now I have to wait another week and a half for the dealer to come back out again to try and diagnose.

How many service calls am I expected to go through with Harman on a brand new stove? This will be my fourth and I have no reason to believe they're going to do anything different.

All Harman does it point the finger at the dealer, despite it being a Harman warranty. My dealer does not know this stove and has shown no knowledge -- so I'm stuck in limbo with a $6k door stop.

Harman Absolute 43 ignition troubles Harman Absolute 43 broken Harman Absolute 43 burns your house down Harman Absolute 43 broken
 

P51mustang

Burning Hunk
Jan 7, 2014
101
Upstate, NY
A follow-up in case anyone else is having issues:

The stove is not dirty. As I mentioned it did this from day one when it was installed. I have verified and cleaned all the additional spots (ignition clean out, etc.) mentioned above, just in case I was missing something. The dealer has also been out multiple times and verified the stove has been sufficiently cleaned and maintained.

Seems to be a known issue with this stove that Harman is trying to keep quiet and won't acknowledge. I was able to find several people through Facebook that had the same issues as I (in 2015 and 2016) and after lots of fighting and difficulty were able to get a resolution.

One possibility the dealer discussed with Harman (I've had to resort to calling Harman directly and trying to deal with them, since my dealer has not been helpful) was a "warped burn pot". Apparently there was an issue where "some" of the Absolute stoves shipped with bad burn pots. After waiting a week for the tech to come out to "verify" (didn't actually do anything except stand in front of the stove and call Harman and say you guys said it might be a warped burn pot lets try that), a week for the part to come in, and then for another visit to install -- it's actually worse.

Now in addition to not lighting until the fourth feeding cycle, now it makes a rumbling air sound at startup like a jet going. You can feel it vibrating the stove.

After supposedly escalating the issue at Harman, now I have to wait another week and a half for the dealer to come back out again to try and diagnose.

How many service calls am I expected to go through with Harman on a brand new stove? This will be my fourth and I have no reason to believe they're going to do anything different.

All Harman does it point the finger at the dealer, despite it being a Harman warranty. My dealer does not know this stove and has shown no knowledge -- so I'm stuck in limbo with a $6k door stop.

Harman Absolute 43 ignition troubles Harman Absolute 43 broken Harman Absolute 43 burns your house down Harman Absolute 43 broken
Damn, I feel bad for you and hope Harman makes this right for you. For such crap they should offer to replace your Absolute 43 outright with a brand new different model stove. Like an Absolute 63 at no cost to you!
 

fmsm

Minister of Fire
Dec 12, 2011
937
South of Boston MA
My troubles were similar to yours plus a very dirty burn pretty much from day one.

I had such trouble with my Absolute 43 that Harman exchanged it. Who is your dealer? My dealer went to bat for me and was instrumental in having the unit replaced. This being said I could also understand his frustration with how Harman (and all stove manufacturers) pay them for warranty work and was willing to work with him. It really sucks that while Harman will pay them to to fix their product they don't pay travel etc.

After my experience I will not do business with any other dealer besides Kirley In Mansfield MA. They are the best in my book.

When it came time to accept another stove I ended up taking an Accentra instead, I just didn't trust the Absolute.
 

lazer

Member
Dec 17, 2016
2
19425
I was having trouble with my absolute 43 lighting, sometimes it would light and most of the time it wouldn't. After 2 trips from the dealer they noticed that I was missing the front igniter bracket. They had it mailed to me and I put it on and now it lights in 3-4 minutes every time.
 

Pellettec

New Member
Mar 1, 2019
10
New Brunswick,Canada
Hope you got your absolute 43 problems rectified
I am a Harman tech and do know they have a issue with the burn pots on the absolute 43 and have totally redesigned it
They did do burner plate upgrades but they don’t work
All absolute 43 we sell I personally change the burn pot to the newer which has zero issues
 

bob bare

Minister of Fire
Oct 31, 2013
2,960
park county montana
Hope you got your absolute 43 problems rectified
I am a Harman tech and do know they have a issue with the burn pots on the absolute 43 and have totally redesigned it
They did do burner plate upgrades but they don’t work
All absolute 43 we sell I personally change the burn pot to the newer which has zero issues
You responded to a thread over a year old.What planet did you grow up on?Just get some magical 1 hour course,off the net,that magically made you a "Harman" tech? We have been repairing them for years,and we are not "Harman" trained.We We fix stoves the old fashioned way.we use logic.
 

Pellettec

New Member
Mar 1, 2019
10
New Brunswick,Canada
You responded to a thread over a year old.What planet did you grow up on?Just get some magical 1 hour course,off the net,that magically made you a "Harman" tech? We have been repairing them for years,and we are not "Harman" trained.We We fix stoves the old fashioned way.we use logic.
Sorry to upset you bob a 1hr course lol love it

Obviously you have Don’t know about the new burn pot keep on fixing them the old fashioned way
 

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Pellettec

New Member
Mar 1, 2019
10
New Brunswick,Canada
The pic you posted is actually the 3rd gen. The second was just a modified plate with a 90 deg bend to help with warping, but didn’t.

Yes your correct and works like a dream.

Just pointing out there is a fix to a known problem and all the burn pots on the absolute 43 need to be recalled and changed for the newer generation instead of dealing with the frustration of ignition and warping issues
 

lazer

Member
Dec 17, 2016
2
19425
Sorry to upset you bob a 1hr course lol love it

Obviously you have Don’t know about the new burn pot keep on fixing them the old fashioned way
I read that with the new burnpot you need to change the charge time from 1.8 to 2.6 How do you do this?