What Am I Doing Wrong? Too Much Coal Being Used

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e.alleg
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Post Tue. Feb. 19, 2008 12:13 pm

Too much coal usage = Too much draft, dirty boiler, thermostat set too high, aquastat set too high or malfunction, coal feed set too high, air set too high.

The easiest thing to check is the stack temperature. If it's too hot to touch too much heat is being wasted. This is caused by too much draft or a dirty boiler that can't absorb the heat. With the stoker running the stack will be hot, no doubt, but you should be able to touch it. When the stoker shuts off then you should be able to put your hand on the pipe above the damper and hold it there, the residual heat from the hot bed of coals needs to stay in the boiler to be absorbed by the boiler water and not sucked up the pipe.


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Post Tue. Feb. 19, 2008 12:18 pm

My inside brick chimney from the basement up thru the house and above the roof by 6-7' (approx 30'+ high) has a boatload of draft. He probably just wanted to sell you a new chimney. Plus it stays warmer vs. and outside metal one. I can run mine on 60 Degree days without it going out still have some draft.

My baro door is 1/4-1/2 open most of the time and running .04+ sometimes. Unless I prop the Baro FULL Open, can I get it down to .02.

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e.alleg
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Post Tue. Feb. 19, 2008 12:47 pm

here's how I set up mine. Note that I have a little more draft than optimum but I would rather have a little more than not enough. The top damper is just sealed shut, I will replace that whole section of pipe when I do the yearly maintenance.
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leowis1
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Post Tue. Feb. 19, 2008 12:59 pm

Dave, I see from your tag that you have an 1890 Victorian. Mine was built in 1884. These are beautiful houses, but rediculous to heat. Thank God for anthracite coal.

I installed a 7" stainless steel liner when I bought the boiler. It was just a stone chimney all the way up with the morter at the top being brittle. I didn't want any problems with the family being home full time, so I installed a new liner. The boiler was reconditioned when I bought it. Clean as a whistle. And I went through 10 tons last year! The feed rate and the air intake are both set a 6 teeth/air. This is one of the things the dealer checked when he came out to my house. My house t-stat is set at 67 most of the day. 64 at night. My aquastat is set at 160/200 with a diff of 15. It operates perfectly.

Maybe I'll add a washer to the door to try and make is swing 1/4 way open. Until I get the manometer. When the stoker turns off, I can put my whole hand on the flue pipe.

e.alleg, that's how mine is setup. Exactly. If that's the same damper I bought, I have the weight on the left side of the scale for Horizontal. Is that how I should be reading this? "Is the damper horizontal to the floor?"

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coal berner
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Post Tue. Feb. 19, 2008 2:33 pm

leowis1 wrote:Dave, I see from your tag that you have an 1890 Victorian. Mine was built in 1884. These are beautiful houses, but rediculous to heat. Thank God for anthracite coal.

I installed a 7" stainless steel liner when I bought the boiler. It was just a stone chimney all the way up with the morter at the top being brittle. I didn't want any problems with the family being home full time, so I installed a new liner. The boiler was reconditioned when I bought it. Clean as a whistle. And I went through 10 tons last year! The feed rate and the air intake are both set a 6 teeth/air. This is one of the things the dealer checked when he came out to my house. My house t-stat is set at 67 most of the day. 64 at night. My aquastat is set at 160/200 with a diff of 15. It operates perfectly.

Maybe I'll add a washer to the door to try and make is swing 1/4 way open. Until I get the manometer. When the stoker turns off, I can put my whole hand on the flue pipe.

e.alleg, that's how mine is setup. Exactly. If that's the same damper I bought, I have the weight on the left side of the scale for Horizontal. Is that how I should be reading this? "Is the damper horizontal to the floor?"
Change your weight to V if your's is like e.alleg His Baro is in a Vertical position If the Baro is on a slant or on a Horizontal pipe coming out at the bottom or the stove or the pipe going outside at the top it would be Horizontal H ;)

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e.alleg
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Post Tue. Feb. 19, 2008 3:54 pm

Post a picture of your house in the "old houses" thread. I love my 1887 Victorian, the original family/ relatives lived here 100 years heating with the domestically produced natural gas, then it ate 10 different families in a short period of time because nobody could afford the propane heat when the wells gave out, or they were scared off by the ghosts. I'm not sure whats worse; spooks or cold.

Ok off tangent ghost story, when I first moved in I would wake up at about 3:30-4am to a loud banging noise. It wasn't in the house, it sounded like it was coming from the pump house out back where the oil wells were connected to in the old days. I mean it sounded like a sledge hammer hitting a piece of steel, loud BANG! WTF? who's out in 10 below weather banging on abandoned wells? It would happen almost regularly, but the kids and gf couldn't hear it. I would hear BANG! BANG!BANG!BANG! in my sleep and then I'd sit up wide awake like a plane crashed in the yard or something, frightened actually. The dogs slept, the kids slept. I would go out for my daily morning walk past the pumphouse with a shotgun when I heard the noises, no footprints in the snow besides the normal wildlife tracks. Weird, must be a dream I thought. Doing some research I found out a guy that worked around here would go up to the pump house and insert a huge bar to pull the clutch every morning to start the wells going for the day. One day it flew back and wacked his head off, also breaking the machine. Probably made a hell of a banging noise when it happened. The roads weren't named back then so it's hard to say where he died, it was in the same town and on the same oil lease. I bet he bit it behind my place and is pulling a Betelgeuse on me.

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Post Tue. Feb. 19, 2008 10:20 pm

Interesting story.
There are visits from former residents here as well, although I've never witnessed anything, almost everyone else has. My wife says I'm too "black and white", no gray areas, that's why.
There are stories about a murder in the house, the farmer who caught his wife cheating and pushed her down the stairs or visa-versa. It really doesn't bother us much. Scared the hell out of a couple of my daughter's boyfriends, though.

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Post Tue. Feb. 19, 2008 11:01 pm

leowis1 wrote: My aquastat is set at 160/200 with a diff of 15. It operates perfectly.
I'd still suggest thats too high especially in your situation because you have boiler that is much larger than what you need.


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e.alleg
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Post Tue. Feb. 19, 2008 11:41 pm

it's worth a try, turn the high limit down to 170 the low limit to 120 and see what happens.

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Post Wed. Feb. 20, 2008 7:37 pm

OK. I got me hands on a manometer. Without adjusting the weight on the damper door, the manometer reads neg .01. If I push the damper door open as far as it'll go, the meter almost hits neg .02. Its close to -.018. And that's with the damper door all the way open. I'll post back with the hand temperature test later on.

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Post Wed. Feb. 20, 2008 8:03 pm

That doesn't sound right... If you hold the flapper door closed, you will have a higher draft, like .05 or .08. With the flapper held open, you should have a lot less draft, say .01 or .02.

Where did you put the probe for the manometer?? it should be above the stove/boiler, but before the barometric damper..

Did you hook the hose to the - side of the mamometer??? Which model manometer is it?

Look at this thread: Manometer Loaner Program
Is your manometer like the first one shown with the curved tube pathway? or like the second one shown with the straight inclined tube??

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Post Thu. Feb. 21, 2008 12:49 am

My mother grew up in Olean and Cuba, my great grandfather lived in Kossuth. We go back to Austin (Reesville) Sylvania Township in Potter Co. I never heard that story.

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Post Thu. Feb. 21, 2008 8:38 am

If you hold the flapper door closed, you will have a higher draft, like .05 or .08. With the flapper held open, you should have a lot less draft, say .01 or .02.
I thought the same thing too...? The manometer looks like the small black one with the needle. As per the instructions from stoker-man (who lended the manometer), I inserted the rubber hose in a small hole on the boiler door. I'm measuring the draft over the fire, not the draft in the flue. The temperature of the flue pipes did cool down a little. Its not as searing & scolding hot as before.

I'll drill a hole into the flue pipe and get the readings there later on today.

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Post Thu. Feb. 21, 2008 8:44 am

That's the over-fire draft reading. You need to take a reading from the stove pipe between the stove and the baro. Make sure you have a full fire burning in the stove, you want the temperature and flow at the maximum.

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Post Thu. Feb. 21, 2008 10:59 am

I just drilled a hole inbetween the boiler and the damper. With the damper door closed all the way, meter reads btwn positive .03-.04. With the door all the way open, the meter reads positive .01.

Is this good? Bad? Can somebody tell me why I have a negative pressure over the fire and a positive one in the flue? Thanks!


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