Harman P52i Auger Vibration

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rob.mwpropane

Member
Dec 1, 2013
99
Baldwin MD
So I've had my stove since 2014. For the most part I love it. I've had a few instances where it makes noise and I've been able to fix all of them myself by reading on here (and have posted about them).

I have a "vibration" type noise that initially I thought was the combustion blower or maybe the impeller. I swapped out the impeller for a new one, but the noise came back. Here's what's odd, if I use the scraper and push on the auger the vibration goes away instantly and remains quiet until the auger goes to feed more pellets.

The noise itself is hard to explain, but it sounds like a fan that's out of balance. When it's making the noise I can place the scraper on the auger and I can feel the vibration through the scraper. If I push or wedge the scraper onto the auger the noise stops. What am I in for when I pull this out? What could be the cause? It's almost like the vibration is cause from the combustion blower running causing something in the auger to vibrate....

I keep things pretty clean and just did a very thorough cleaning (although I didn't pull it out of the wall). That's my next move, I just didn't want to do that and need parts ordered before going through all the work of pulling it out. I was thinking maybe the auger bearing might be worn? I'm not sure... looking for some guidance / experience.

Overall, I love my stove. It's my sould source of heat for the house for the last 5 years and sits directly next to a tv.

Thanks all!
 

SidecarFlip

Minister of Fire
Sloppy bearing?
 

heat seeker

Minister of Fire
Feb 25, 2011
3,214
Northern CT
It might be sympathetic vibration causing the auger to vibrate. The auger turns very slowly; only the two fans rotate fast - I'd say one of the fans is out of balance, and the auger itself is vibrating because of it. Have you cleaned both fans, especially if you have a squirrel cage fan?
 

rob.mwpropane

Member
Dec 1, 2013
99
Baldwin MD
It might be sympathetic vibration causing the auger to vibrate. The auger turns very slowly; only the two fans rotate fast - I'd say one of the fans is out of balance, and the auger itself is vibrating because of it. Have you cleaned both fans, especially if you have a squirrel cage fan?

It only happens when the combustion motor is running and then the auger kicks on, then it doesn't stop. No distribution blower running at all. Like I said though, I can push or pry on the auger and it stops right away, and again I can "feel" the vibration through the scraper when I place it on the auger.

I do have another combustion motor on the way.

Edit: after pushing on it it remains dead quiet up until the auger turns again. I replaced my combustion fan 2 years ago, but I know it gets the most use of anything.
 

rob.mwpropane

Member
Dec 1, 2013
99
Baldwin MD
I do 100% believe it's sympathetic vibration caused by the combustion motor, but I'm thinking something with the auger is slightly loose and allowing the sound to be made. I don't think that the combustion blower is out of whack, only because after I lightly push on the auger it stops 100% and is quiet as a mouse. I don't remember how much play the auger is supposed to have, but I can definitely move mine some.
 

railfanron

Minister of Fire
Nov 2, 2013
561
Perry MI
I had a similar vibration. It was one of the combustion mounting bolts. It had broken it's spot weld and it would vibrate against the case. My fix was to tighten the 3 mounting bolts tighter. against the vibration isolator bushings.
Ron
 

rob.mwpropane

Member
Dec 1, 2013
99
Baldwin MD
Could the auger have some carbon buildup and is chattering when it rotates?
Possibly, but the chattering doesn't stop after the auger has stopped, it continues forever until I push on it.

I had a similar vibration. It was one of the combustion mounting bolts. It had broken it's spot weld and it would vibrate against the case. My fix was to tighten the 3 mounting bolts tighter. against the vibration isolator bushings.
Ron
Interesting, I'll have to take a look at that.

I don't really want to pull the stove until I have the new comb. motor in hand in case I need to swap.

Does anyone know how much "play" that their auger has? I can move mine a fairly good bit, although it's not like it feels loose either.
 

rickwai

Minister of Fire
Nov 1, 2011
1,189
ohio
The auger should not have hardly any play. It has a large double bearing on the back where it goes into the tube. I have not seen a auger bearing fail yet. That portion is machined steel with a double sealed bearing pressed into it. But there is a first time for everything. I would guess it has to do with the comb. blower? I have seen the auger motor become loud. But it dont seem like that is your issue
 

rob.mwpropane

Member
Dec 1, 2013
99
Baldwin MD
The auger should not have hardly any play. It has a large double bearing on the back where it goes into the tube. I have not seen a auger bearing fail yet. That portion is machined steel with a double sealed bearing pressed into it. But there is a first time for everything. I would guess it has to do with the comb. blower? I have seen the auger motor become loud. But it dont seem like that is your issue

Yeah, Idk. I'm hoping more will be revealed when I pull it out (I hope). I guess my stove has seen about 24 tons total through 6 seasons? Anything is possible I guess... I just didn't know if anyone had come across this before.

Edit: It's not like my auger can touch the side or anything, but it definitely moves when pushed.
 

rickwai

Minister of Fire
Nov 1, 2011
1,189
ohio
Yeah, Idk. I'm hoping more will be revealed when I pull it out (I hope). I guess my stove has seen about 24 tons total through 6 seasons? Anything is possible I guess... I just didn't know if anyone had come across this before.

Edit: It's not like my auger can touch the side or anything, but it definitely moves when pushed.
Then it has to be the Comb. blower motor giving the vibration. Do you have side to side play or end play in the auger?
 

rob.mwpropane

Member
Dec 1, 2013
99
Baldwin MD
Then it has to be the Comb. blower motor giving the vibration. Do you have side to side play or end play in the auger?

Sorry for the late reply...at work.

There is some play, but I don't really know how much play is acceptable. I can "push" the end of the auger, but it's not like there's slop in it, or that it touches the sides.

Funny, I got home yesterday and the noise was gone, woke up this morning and it came back while drinking coffee, I lightly pushed the end of the auger to my left (looking into the stove, so the auger was actually pushed to the right if you were the auger) and the noise stopped immediately and didn't come back while sitting there. The vibration is cause by the combustion fan, but I'm leaning towards something being loose with the auger..... always a possibility the combustion fan is loose somewhere as someone else mentioned.
 

rob.mwpropane

Member
Dec 1, 2013
99
Baldwin MD
Short lived, I dealt with the noise all last night. Drove me almost to insanity. I've looked at the schematics and I just can't think of what in the world could be "loose" on the auger. After messing with it last night there is some play in the auger, I can use the scraper to turn it back and forth maybe 1/16"? I'm not sure if that's normal or not.

While the auger is not moving of course.
 

Ssyko

Minister of Fire
Nov 6, 2017
4,206
Lorraine NY
It might be sympathetic vibration causing the auger to vibrate. The auger turns very slowly; only the two fans rotate fast - I'd say one of the fans is out of balance, and the auger itself is vibrating because of it. Have you cleaned both fans, especially if you have a squirrel cage fan?
I would have to agree with HS. I would check the combustion motor for slop or end play in the bearings
 

rob.mwpropane

Member
Dec 1, 2013
99
Baldwin MD
I would have to agree with HS. I would check the combustion motor for slop or end play in the bearings

When I pull it (maybe this weekend, still waiting for parts) I'll know more. The only reason why I'm leaning away from the combustion blower is because it's my 3rd one, and this one was just replaced the beginning of last year. Couple that with the fact that I can stop the vibration with the scraper by putting it on the end of the auger and the unit is then dead quiet... like brand new dead quiet.

Idk, I don't claim to be an expert. I will for sure check the combustion blower.
 

gfreek

Minister of Fire
Nov 5, 2010
1,421
Attica,,New York
Anyway you can post a video of the noise ??
 

rob.mwpropane

Member
Dec 1, 2013
99
Baldwin MD
First video is the noise, second video is after just barely touching the auger.

I've had the bearings go out on the combustion blower before. The noise was very prominent near the rear lower right side. This noise is more prominent in the middle of the machine. Driving me nuts....


 

rickwai

Minister of Fire
Nov 1, 2011
1,189
ohio
That sounds like more than a rattle. Almost sounds like something is slapping around. When it is in symptom does the noise change if you reduce the dist fan? Or turn the dist knob clear down to low is the noise still as loud?
 

rob.mwpropane

Member
Dec 1, 2013
99
Baldwin MD
That sounds like more than a rattle. Almost sounds like something is slapping around. When it is in symptom does the noise change if you reduce the dist fan? Or turn the dist knob clear down to low is the noise still as loud?

That is what it sounds like when the dist. fan is completely off. Combustion fan in low (I think there's low and high for combustion fan, correct?). In both videos the stove was not calling for heat and so the distribution fan was 100% off.

My stove is set to room temp / manual.
 

gfreek

Minister of Fire
Nov 5, 2010
1,421
Attica,,New York
Well then it can only be the auger, bearings, auger motor or combustion motor/ fan....My internet sucks here so video stutters..Being an insert hard to trouble shoot.
Too bad you couldn't use a mechanics stethoscope or long plastic handle screw driver with an ear to diagnose..
 

rob.mwpropane

Member
Dec 1, 2013
99
Baldwin MD
Well then it can only be the auger, bearings, auger motor or combustion motor/ fan....My internet sucks here so video stutters..Being an insert hard to trouble shoot.
Too bad you couldn't use a mechanics stethoscope or long plastic handle screw driver with an ear to diagnose..
I have used the scraper as a mechanics stethoscope of sorts and the place that gets the most feedback is the auger itself. What's weird is that it's not while the auger is running, it's while it's stopped... like it itself is vibrating, but the auger is not the cause of the vibration.

New combustion motor is coming today (as that's what I initially thought it was... and still could be Iguess). Plan is to pull out this weekend.

Not saying you have to, but the best way to view the video's would be to download and then view if the internet is bad. Thank you for looking.

I love the insert when it's right, but cleaning, maintenance, and troubleshooting all have me thinking the P61 was a better choice. The insert is really nice looking in the living room, and the Majolica Brown coating really sets it off, but there are days that have me thinking, lol...
 

rickwai

Minister of Fire
Nov 1, 2011
1,189
ohio
That's strange... The Comb. motor is the only thing running so the source has to be that motor. The motors you have been getting, are they OEM or aftermarket? The fan blade is not to far out on the shaft where it is barely hitting the comb fan cover is it? The auger would be bedded in pellets so it should not be a source of noise I would not think. Kinda got me stumped...
 

rob.mwpropane

Member
Dec 1, 2013
99
Baldwin MD
That's strange... The Comb. motor is the only thing running so the source has to be that motor. The motors you have been getting, are they OEM or aftermarket? The fan blade is not to far out on the shaft where it is barely hitting the comb fan cover is it? The auger would be bedded in pellets so it should not be a source of noise I would not think. Kinda got me stumped...
When it's in a low fire there's barely any pellets in there. The fan is definitely not hitting the cover. The only way I can get the noise to stop is by pushing on the auger slightly and it disappears like it was never there.

I'm stumped also. Plan is to pull the stove, pull the auger and take a look this weekend...give everything a good clean, look at the comb. motor and go from there.