Harman pf100 igniter issues

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Duffman

Member
Feb 8, 2018
16
loc
Hey there! Long time no post.

i have two harman pf100s, one in my shop, and one in my house

the garage one just keeps on chugging along. Never clean it, never changed the igniter.

the house one is chewing through igniters like crazy! 3rd one this year just bit the dust.

my question, since I’m sick of dealing with these finned igniters is to put together a list of components needed to install the pressure ignition from the newer furnaces/boilers.

so far I need
Control board for pressure ignition systems
Air pump
Igniter (pressure style)

my thought was to copy my buddies pb105 rear plate, drill through and weld a nut that would accept the igniter. Is this a fool hardy idea? From what I can see on his the burnpots are identical, but the plate that has the auger assembly differs only in the one mounting point for the igniter.
I’d rather not pay to buy a whole new auger chassis, which I’m sure would be prohibitively expensive.

any thoughts?

edit: the rear mounting chassis is completely different than the boiler. Anyone have any pictures of the pressure ignition system on the pf100/120?
 

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rickwai

Minister of Fire
Nov 1, 2011
1,204
ohio
Are you using OEM Harman igniters? Once the furnace lights take a loop amp meter and make sure igniter is turning off. If it is still on it will show amperage. Is the unit taking a extended time to light? Has the exhaust venting and the flues ect been cleaned by pulling comb motor? Are holes in the burnpot open? Have you used a smaller mirror and looked at the burnpot holes and checked for the pot floor being bowed up or cracked? I would refrain from the pressure ignition, You will have probably have close to $1000 in parts to convert a obsolete unit... I guess what I am getting at is converting ignition may not solve your problem. I also recommend that once the furnace lights flip switch from auto to manual. That keeps a pilot fire going so when home calls for heat it ramps up quicker and keeps igniter from coming on many times a day. The heat little heat is is producing goes right up you duct work into the house by convection.
 
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Duffman

Member
Feb 8, 2018
16
loc
Are you using OEM Harman igniters? Once the furnace lights take a loop amp meter and make sure igniter is turning off. If it is still on it will show amperage. Is the unit taking a extended time to light? Has the exhaust venting and the flues ect been cleaned by pulling comb motor? Are holes in the burnpot open? Have you used a smaller mirror and looked at the burnpot holes and checked for the pot floor being bowed up or cracked? I would refrain from the pressure ignition, You will have probably have close to $1000 in parts to convert a obsolete unit... I guess what I am getting at is converting ignition may not solve your problem. I also recommend that once the furnace lights flip switch from auto to manual. That keeps a pilot fire going so when home calls for heat it ramps up quicker and keeps igniter from coming on many times a day. The heat little heat is is producing goes right up you duct work into the house by convection.


I did for last season (went through 2 igniters last year and figured that at $58 a rip that was going to be unsustainable.) Ive been using the cheapo chinese igniters but the one that is in my garage pf100 is a chinese igniter and its been going strong for 2 years.

The unit used to fire up within the first 5 minutes of being set to the automatic setting, yesterday it took like half an hour. Ive played with the dip switches to see if having too many pellets in the burn pot was the issue.

theres a new combustion fan in at the beginning of this burn season (the old one was warped and was rubbing)

The ignitor simply was just getting warm, like i put my hand on the burn pot and it was lukewarm. Ive repaired this burn pot before (cut, hammered and welded back to flat, and i keep it pretty clean)

I understand that this might be an expensive endeavor but honestly this things are fun to work on. I think my house furnace has the first iteration of the control boards they made. its an older unit and is showing its age in other areas as well.

Ill test for amperage when I get back from this work trip, for now the trusty bernzomatic torch is my igniter!
 

rickwai

Minister of Fire
Nov 1, 2011
1,204
ohio
The other thing I suggest is to get a OEM Harman igniter. I am sure the quality control of the chinese ones is not there. Matbe you got lucky and ended up with a good one in shop furnace. The OEMs typically last for years.
 

Duffman

Member
Feb 8, 2018
16
loc
The other thing I suggest is to get a OEM Harman igniter. I am sure the quality control of the chinese ones is not there. Matbe you got lucky and ended up with a good one in shop furnace. The OEMs typically last for years.

I ran a harman OEM igniter and it lasted a week. I don't know if like you said the machine isn't shutting off power to the igniter or if i am just the unluckiest guy with igniters! What should the machine push for power when the igniter is on? Volts and Amps, I know its like 355watts or something to that effect.
 

Duffman

Member
Feb 8, 2018
16
loc
I guess that was more my question is does the igniter get fed 120vac or did it have some sort of step down transformer inside the machine?
 

rickwai

Minister of Fire
Nov 1, 2011
1,204
ohio
Line voltage is correct. W/ the pf100 being wide open on the back you can just take a multimeter w/ amp loop and hang it on the yellow wire going into the back of feeder and watch it . I know this sounds trivial but is the air intake flapper swinging freely? As far as amp draw it should be 2.3-2.5 or so. Your line voltage and calibration of meter will effect reading. More just looking for a on/off with this test.
 

Duffman

Member
Feb 8, 2018
16
loc
Line voltage is correct. W/ the pf100 being wide open on the back you can just take a multimeter w/ amp loop and hang it on the yellow wire going into the back of feeder and watch it . I know this sounds trivial but is the air intake flapper swinging freely? As far as amp draw it should be 2.3-2.5 or so. Your line voltage and calibration of meter will effect reading. More just looking for a on/off with this test.

i will double check that. And as far as I know the intake flapper is free.Once running it runs nicely
 

Duffman

Member
Feb 8, 2018
16
loc
Also, now I’m having an issue where the control board shuts off like I pulled the disconnect then turns back on immediately. It did it almost 6 times before there was a lull.

anyone have any pictures of how the pressure igniter system works?I thinkthis stove need an update
 

railfanron

Minister of Fire
Nov 2, 2013
563
Perry MI
My thought is if you change to a pressure igniter system your problem will still be there. Why not put the known good igniter from the other furnace in the house unit and the house igniter in the garage unit. If you still burn up the igniter in the house it's pretty obvious there's something wrong going on. My guess is airflow isn't high enough or improper or there isn't 120 volts at the igniter due to a bad connection or faulty control board.
Ron