SS Liner Woes

This forum is for common products and questions such as chimney installations, CO detectors, coal bin designs and a variety of other general topics that do not fit into the other forums.
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Rick 386
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Post Fri. Jun. 12, 2009 9:54 am

Caution notice to all SS liner users:

We had a SS liner installed approximately 5 years ago. At the termination inside the house, the contractor had installed a "Y" with a cap over the unused leg. The idea being it would be easy to disconnect from coal and attach the oil burner after moving the cap to the other leg. The contractor had used single wall SS to connect the AA 260. That section is approximately 12' long mainly horizontal.

Last fall it appeared that the liner was having issues at the top of the chimney. I removed the cap to brush it as usual and the liner was starting to disentegrate. No problem, it is warranted...........well not exactly.

After several calls to the installer/contractor, they stated that the liner was only for oil use. However I reminded them that THEY HAD INSTALLED THE SINGLE WALL DIRECTLY TO THE AA-260. Next attempt to deny was that the warranty states that the installer MUST clean and inspect the liner each year. I was told that it should be done each year when we shut it down for the season. I explained that the AA is run 24/7 365 days per year to also do the DHW during the summer. They claim to use a baking soda wash as part of the service. We may have used the oil burner the first season but I can't recall the total amount of time. It used to be that the AA ran from Thanksgiving to May but the AA has been in use for 3 years constant now due to oil prices.

So since last fall we have been attempting to get the installer out to inspect and repair the liner. 2 months ago they came out and inspected it. One of the employees stated that he thought that they may have installed the wrong type liner and would go back to the office and they would contact me. No calls so I started calling them 4 weeks ago. Finally they called back and started all over again about the warranty problems. Got past that part so they finally agreed to come out and replace the top 2 feet with single wall and we would be all set. Well they came out Wednesday. They tried to repair it and the whole liner supposedly collapsed down the flue. we were advised that it was now an emergency, we could not use the flue and they would contact us to discuss it further.

No phone call until I made it at 3:30 pm Thursday. According to the owner, they convinced the manufacturer of the liner to honor the warranty and would be replacing the liner. However the warranty only covered the liner itself but not installation. Price quoted for install was $ 1200. Seems a bit high to me. We have not had DHW for 2 days and it feels I'm under the gun to shell out more money !!!!!

So last night I tried to look up the flue with a mirror but it was too dark to really see any blockage if there is any. I noticed that they had reinstalled the flue cap so that may be part of the reason. I lit some paper right by the flue and watched the flame being pulled toward the flue. I do have a Dwyer Mark 25 so I hooked it up. Jeez, I still have draft !!!!!

So I fire the AA back to life and get the DHW back up again. Draft seemed OK but to be on the safe side, we opened the cellar doors and put a fan at the doorway blowing out. Shut off the breaker for the AA and slept through the night. Neither CO detectors are recording anything after the flue was warmed a bit.

So we have another contractor coming out to inspect the original flue. I question the need for the liner in the first place and my father-in-law's memory is slipping and he cannot recall why we got the liner in the first place.

Since it is summer time and we only use the AA for DHW, I have a little breathing room. But I'm really upset with the original dealer.

So a word of caution to other SS liner owners, read the warranty and check if there are any restrictions listed !!!!

To be continued............................

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Rick
Master of "Trial and Error."


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009to090
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Post Fri. Jun. 12, 2009 10:06 am

Rick, good luck with the dealer. Wow, the Liner is warrented, but not the labor to install it! :mad:
Sounds like you need an inspection of the original flue by a independant, NOT SOMEONE WHO SELLS LINERS. Its very possible you may not need the liner at all.

Keep us posted. :D
Last edited by 009to090 on Fri. Jun. 12, 2009 1:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Royboy
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Post Fri. Jun. 12, 2009 10:17 am

Rick,

What brand liner, and what type (316TI?)? The liners I use for coal are warranteed for coal use.

Mike

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Post Fri. Jun. 12, 2009 11:38 am

The original chimney may be fine have it inspected by a reputabable chimney cleaner.
Liners do have a purpose...
but you need the right tool for the intended job.
Three years is way too soon for failure.
Read the warranty most have the 'conditions' for replacment.
Labor of $1200 seems high to reinstall but you may have an unusual chimney or have some exceptional conditions.
On the face of it they may just be trying to cover the liner cost with labor for your free replacement.
A 6" liner at 25' is less than $400.
Check the link there is good info on this site.
**Broken Link(s) Removed**
I am not an engineer, train or otherwise!
I stay at a Holiday Inn at least once a year!
Most of all I do have common sense and a practical application of logic.
Oh, add humor, on the dry side, along with a wee bit 'o sarcasm.

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Rick 386
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Location: Royersford, Pa
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Post Fri. Jun. 12, 2009 1:37 pm

Royboy,

I don't know the manufacturer of the liner. I tried to locate info but cannot. I really doubt that it was 316 Ti.........

I do have someone coming out tomorrow to inspect the flue. The chimney is straight up outside the building , no bends.

I too suspect that the install charge included some extra.

The bitch for me now is that I will have to chop out the mortar that they used to terminate the liner as it comes through the wall. And then remove the pieces of liner through the basement. Oh well, as it appears right now, I do have enough adequate draft to schedule it for a cool weekend.

But my main concern is that we had the same contractor install a liner in my sister-in-law's flue last fall prior to her installing an Alaska Cast Console in the fireplace. There had been a chimney fire when there was an old fireplace wood burning insert . I really suspect that this outfit just automatically installs a liner every chance they get. Probably eliminates a lot of liability on their part when inspecting flues for possible damage. Just install this here liner and all of your worries are over, right ?????

I will keep everyone posted.......

------------------------------------------

Rick
Master of "Trial and Error."

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Richard S.
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Post Fri. Jun. 12, 2009 2:46 pm

Unless the chimney is in bad shape you don't need a liner, if you need liner you install a new chimney. That's my opinion. New chimney and all your worries go away for the life of the unit if not longer. I'm surprised it only lasted five years but you're still going to be replacing it anyway. From posts here I gather most people get 10 years out of them...
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Post Fri. Jun. 12, 2009 9:35 pm

DVC500 at last wrote:Rick, good luck with the dealer. Wow, the Liner is warrented, but not the labor to install it! :mad:
Sounds like you need an inspection of the original flue by a independant, NOT SOMEONE WHO SELLS LINERS. Its very possible you may not need the liner at all.

Keep us posted. :D
It's very common for parts to be warranted, but not labor by manufacturers or dealers. Nothing new there.
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Post Sat. Jun. 13, 2009 7:19 am

The installer probably used a 304 SS liner and should have used a 316 for coal.
‹(•¿•)›


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Rick 386
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Location: Royersford, Pa
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Post Sat. Jun. 13, 2009 10:40 pm

Well,

Finally got the old liner removed after an all day job. We decided to try to remove everything from the basement rather that going up on the roof. Good thing, we were constantly hit with showers and thunderstorms all day.

Biggest problem was trying to cut apart the "T" used at the bottom. I finally discovered what a "retractible band connection" is and how to remove them. :taz:

We then had to cut the "T" in half to make the bend through the 8" thimble. After wrangling with that for 3+ hours, we got to the liner itself.

Interesting in removing the liner.....perforation holes first noticed about 8' up from the thimble. That piece got so bad that it separated from the rest. Then another 8' until that fell apart. The rest of the liner was just pieces of coils. :blowup:

I'll post pics tomorrow.

The liner installed by the same dealer last fall for my sister-in-law was a Home Saver Pro. I don't know what they installed for us but it was just a typical liner, no smooth inside to it. I'll try to check further into it. It really doesn't impress me at all with all the corrosion evident today. :mad:

-----------------------------------------------

Rick

ps I realize that most warranties only cover the product itself, but really only 5 years on this liner and then a HUGE labor cost to replace the defective product ??
Master of "Trial and Error."

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Post Sun. Jun. 14, 2009 8:33 am

Have the dealer look at the pipe.
They may have f****d up, put the wrong pipe in by accident and then hoped you would move before the pipe went bad rather than redo it.
They would gain more in goodwill by replacing the pipe for free.
They should have upgraded you to the 'top of the line' liner for labor only due to your 'unusual' circumstances
The $1200 seems high for a 25 foot chimney liner.
I get $770 for all new parts at chimney liner depot; Deluxe cap/guard, Flex King Pro liner 25' and bottom tee.
**Broken Link(s) Removed**That leaves $430 to cover labor.
Two laborers @$50/hr for 2 hrs should cover the install.
I am not an engineer, train or otherwise!
I stay at a Holiday Inn at least once a year!
Most of all I do have common sense and a practical application of logic.
Oh, add humor, on the dry side, along with a wee bit 'o sarcasm.

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Post Sun. Jun. 14, 2009 10:02 am

I use a rigid liner as a flue connection from my stove to chimney -- 304SS.

After the first season -- JUST 1 season -- it was completely perforated. Now, this sat in a moist basement (uncleaned) for 6 months in the off-season. I now remove it & clean with baking soda/water & let dry. It just slows the inevitable, but I was able to get 2 more seasons out of it. This year I'll more than likely replace it with 316 -- I should have done that to begin with, but was trying to save a buck... :roll:

This will be pipe #3 within 4 seasons.

So if it's 304, which it probably is from the sound of it, 5 years is actually not bad -- but of course, the installer would NEVER tell you that!
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Post Sun. Jun. 14, 2009 10:21 am

If you use anything other than type 316L stainless you are wasting your time. Anything less is very susceptible to acid corrosion especially sulfuric and nitric acid . In all reality you are best off with a clay liner for coal. If you chimney's clay liner is in good shape you don't need a S/S Liner. I've worked with S/S profesionally for 15 years and the only true way to make it really impervious to sulfuric acid is to passivate the steel. Also a corrigated liner will corrode all the faster. If your oil boiler needs S/S power vent the oil boiler.
Last edited by jpen1 on Sun. Jun. 14, 2009 7:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post Sun. Jun. 14, 2009 10:26 am

You're better off with galvanized if that's the life you can expect from it.
"The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits."

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Rick 386
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Post Mon. Jun. 15, 2009 10:58 am

Pics.......Everybody likes pics !!!!!

Evidence of a liner failure. After removing it, I found a label on the pipe listing it as Homesaver Ultra Pro 316 Ti liner material.

The install instruction did state to insulate the liner but none was found.

The first pic shows all that is left of an approximately 25 foot liner from the "T" at the junction of the thimble section to the first break, then there was the next section and then all that was left was put into the square tub.

I have another chimney inspector due within a day or 2 (weather permitting) to check the original flue prior to making any other decisions.
Liner 06-13-09.02A.jpg
Total amount of remnants
Liner 06-13-09.05A.jpg
Manufacturer's tag
Liner 06-13-09.07A.jpg
Location of first break from the "T"
A picture is worth a thousand words as they say !!!!!!!

----------------------------------------------------

Rick
Master of "Trial and Error."

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Post Mon. Jun. 15, 2009 11:46 am

Rick,

Are you sure the sticker says 316TI and not "304"? I just got off the phone with Copperfield Chimney Supply, they are the manufacturer for Homesaver, they were prepared to send me a new liner for you, so warranty will not be an issue. Talk with your dealer, he should be able to get you a new liner for free (they will not deny the claim) and I can tell you how to install it. It is a lot easier going in then coming out.

Mike
Heating with coal, driving with waste vegetable oil. Screw OPEC.


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