Can't Get Enough Heat Out of VF3000

Stoker Coal Boilers automatically feed the coal and have controls and pumps just like any conventions boiler. They are intended to be used as a primary heat and often have domestic hot water coils as an added bonus. They can be set up independently or in dual sytem with your existing oil/gas boiler. They can accommodate both hot water base board or steam plumbing.
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BinghamtonNY
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Stove/Furnace Make: Harman Magnum Stoker
Location: Vestal NY

Post Wed. Nov. 28, 2012 2:13 pm

Gonna Chime in on this. I have a Magnum stoker and had the exact problem Hillside is having. Just a lazy fire and no heat output. Only variable was I put newly picked up coal in my stove. Same dealer as always just bought it couple months later. Once that coal got onto the fire it just killed it. I checked everything, then checked the coal. It was just COVERED in fines. So my quick solution was to put a drying rack over my ash pan and sift all the fines off it, or as much as I could.It was amazing how much came off the coal. Once that "clean" coal was feed thru it was burning like it normally does. All these symptoms sound all too similiar. Please give that a look...

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Cap
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Posts: 1581
Joined: Fri. Dec. 02, 2005 10:36 pm
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harman SF 250, domestic hot water loop, heat accumulator
Coal Size/Type: Nut and Stove
Other Heating: Heat Pumps
Location: Lehigh Twp, PA
Contact:

Post Wed. Nov. 28, 2012 6:34 pm

Coalkirk's Boiler Fire!
I think I see the Blessed Mother! :o

Sorry, this is a long thread! :D
Cap
Lehigh Twp.
Northampton Co., PA

bde-19547
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Posts: 17
Joined: Thu. Sep. 11, 2008 12:08 pm
Stoker Coal Boiler: VF3000
Coal Size/Type: rice
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: VF3000
Location: Oley PA

Post Wed. Nov. 28, 2012 7:10 pm

OK, I checked the ash compartment and it was pretty clear as I expected it to be. So I emptied the bin and put in 2 bags of Centralia brand coal from Wilkes Barrie PA (says deep mined) but not really sure where or who the actual mine is but there is a big difference in the flame... now what to do with 6 ton of low performance coal?
Bryan
coalkirk wrote:
bde-19547 wrote:I too have the same problem, I can't get enough heat out of my VF3000. It has a lazy fire similar to the photo on this thread (although mine burn pretty evenly across the grate inserts. I have 1-2" band of ash before it drops off (running 2 3/4 pins). I have -.02 draft over the fire and -.04 at the chimney. Last week I cleaned the fan blades on the squirrel cage fan. The little damper on the fan is about 3/4 of the way open, (if I open it any more I get sulfur smell when it idles). The fan is seated correctly and running at what appears to be the correct speed. I also removed the grate inserts and cleaned out the fines.... there was quite a lot!. The bottom of clean-out is closed. The coal does seem to create more fines (in the little removable tray and under the grate inserts) than what I remember from before. This is the first coal I've bought from Sherman Coal Co. , Elysburg PA, Do you think the problem is the coal? or do I need to look for something else? It's really driving me nuts.
I'm assuming you previously had good results with this boiler in your home? There is a question I asked hillside a couple times that I don't believe he ever answered. In the ash compartment, there is a metal door that slides down over the area where the flue pipe exits the bottom of the boiler. Have you removed that and cleaned out the flyash behind it?
Bryan in Oley

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KLook
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Stoker Coal Boiler: Harman VF 3000
Coal Size/Type: rice, bagged, Blaschak
Other Heating: Gas boiler backup/main
Stove/Furnace Model: VF 3000
Location: Chattanooga, Tenn

Post Wed. Nov. 28, 2012 7:11 pm

Just use it up in the fall and spring.

Kevin

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dkononczuk
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Stove/Furnace Make: Harman VF3000
Location: NEPA

Post Wed. Nov. 28, 2012 7:44 pm

Hillside,
Where in PA are you?
I travel across PA for working, so if you are close I'll be more than happy to stop by and see if I could help.
I have a VF3000 running for the past 4 years non stop 365 days and I have to turn it down because it overheats
often.
Like everybody is saying, something is just not right.
I'm heating 2 1000 sq. ft. floors, plus I have a water heater coil installed for my domestic water, and my temps drop down to maybe 150.
I have the aquastat set at about 165 most of the time.
I live in Poconos PA, so it gets cold here, house is a new construction, but very crappy job, quarter inch space between playwoods.
VF3000 is more than enough for me. When I first started burning coal people helped me (coalkirk) late a night tshooting my issues ( I had overheating issues).
Now I feel is my time to help fellow coal burned.

Dan
"A democracy is nothing more than mob rule, where fifty-one percent of the people may take away the rights of the other forty-nine."
- Thomas Jefferson

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Rick 386
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Stoker Coal Boiler: AA 260 heating both sides of twin farmhouse
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: LL Hyfire II w/ coaltrol in garage
Coal Size/Type: Pea in AA 260, Rice in LL Hyfire II
Other Heating: Gas fired infared at work
Location: Royersford, Pa
Contact:

Post Wed. Nov. 28, 2012 8:10 pm

bde-19547 wrote:OK, I checked the ash compartment and it was pretty clear as I expected it to be. So I emptied the bin and put in 2 bags of Centralia brand coal from Wilkes Barrie PA (says deep mined) but not really sure where or who the actual mine is but there is a big difference in the flame... now what to do with 6 ton of low performance coal?
Bryan
Bryan,

You can always mix it in with some new better coal. Just vary the ratio depending on outside temps.

BTW was your Dad's name George ??

Rick
Master of "Trial and Error."

bde-19547
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Posts: 17
Joined: Thu. Sep. 11, 2008 12:08 pm
Stoker Coal Boiler: VF3000
Coal Size/Type: rice
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: VF3000
Location: Oley PA

Post Wed. Nov. 28, 2012 9:06 pm

Rick, in regards to the BTW, no it wasn't.

Bryan
Rick 386 wrote:
bde-19547 wrote:OK, I checked the ash compartment and it was pretty clear as I expected it to be. So I emptied the bin and put in 2 bags of Centralia brand coal from Wilkes Barrie PA (says deep mined) but not really sure where or who the actual mine is but there is a big difference in the flame... now what to do with 6 ton of low performance coal?
Bryan
Bryan,

You can always mix it in with some new better coal. Just vary the ratio depending on outside temps.

BTW was your Dad's name George ??

Rick
Bryan in Oley

Hillside
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Posts: 20
Joined: Mon. Mar. 07, 2011 10:02 am

Post Thu. Nov. 29, 2012 7:00 am

Hi Dan,, I live about 40 miles NW of Harrisburg, Juniata County,, small town of Richfield.

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titleist1
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Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Harman Mag Stoker (old style) one in basement, one in workshop
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harman Mark III on standby for long power outages
Coal Size/Type: Rice/Anthracite; Nut/Anthracite
Location: Cecil County, MD

Post Thu. Nov. 29, 2012 7:09 am

bde-19547 wrote:OK, I checked the ash compartment and it was pretty clear as I expected it to be. So I emptied the bin and put in 2 bags of Centralia brand coal from Wilkes Barrie PA (says deep mined) but not really sure where or who the actual mine is but there is a big difference in the flame... now what to do with 6 ton of low performance coal?
Bryan
sounds like you need a wash plant to get rid of those fines off the coal....i bet the Hoffman boys in Alaska have one they could sell you cheap....just don't depend on them to get it to you!! :D
I drive a VW TDI, heat my home & workshop with two coal stokers and have two vintage JD diesel tractors....
The EPA just loves me!!

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SteveZee
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Post Thu. Nov. 29, 2012 7:42 am

bde-19547 wrote:OK, I checked the ash compartment and it was pretty clear as I expected it to be. So I emptied the bin and put in 2 bags of Centralia brand coal from Wilkes Barrie PA (says deep mined) but not really sure where or who the actual mine is but there is a big difference in the flame... now what to do with 6 ton of low performance coal?
Bryan
coalkirk wrote: I'm assuming you previously had good results with this boiler in your home? There is a question I asked hillside a couple times that I don't believe he ever answered. In the ash compartment, there is a metal door that slides down over the area where the flue pipe exits the bottom of the boiler. Have you removed that and cleaned out the flyash behind it?
Centralia is pretty good coal. I had some stove coal from them for my hand and it was excellent. White/green woven bag.

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Rob R.
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Coal Size/Type: Lehigh Rice
Other Heating: Dad's 1953 EFM Highboy
Location: Chazy, NY

Post Thu. Nov. 29, 2012 8:10 am

dkononczuk wrote:Hillside,
Where in PA are you?
I travel across PA for working, so if you are close I'll be more than happy to stop by and see if I could help.
I have a VF3000 running for the past 4 years non stop 365 days and I have to turn it down because it overheats
often.
Like everybody is saying, something is just not right.
I'm heating 2 1000 sq. ft. floors, plus I have a water heater coil installed for my domestic water, and my temps drop down to maybe 150.
I have the aquastat set at about 165 most of the time.
I live in Poconos PA, so it gets cold here, house is a new construction, but very crappy job, quarter inch space between playwoods.
VF3000 is more than enough for me. When I first started burning coal people helped me (coalkirk) late a night tshooting my issues ( I had overheating issues).
Now I feel is my time to help fellow coal burned.

Dan
Now we're talkin'. Another set of eyes is always a good idea, especially if they belong to someone that runs the same boiler.

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coalkirk
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Stoker Coal Boiler: 1981 EFM DF520
Coal Size/Type: anthracite/rice coal
Location: Forest Hill MD

Post Tue. Dec. 04, 2012 8:29 am

So what's up Hillside? Did dkononczuk come by and check it out?
You have enemies? Good. That means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life. Winston Churchill

"I would rather have a German division in front of me than a French one behind me." —General George S. Patton

Burning rice coal in a 1981 EFM DF520, nut coal in a hand fired Jotul 507.

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KLook
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Stoker Coal Boiler: Harman VF 3000
Coal Size/Type: rice, bagged, Blaschak
Other Heating: Gas boiler backup/main
Stove/Furnace Model: VF 3000
Location: Chattanooga, Tenn

Post Tue. Dec. 04, 2012 12:34 pm

Bump it up, I want to know to Coalkirk!!!

Kevin

Hillside
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Post Sat. Dec. 08, 2012 8:12 am

Sorry I haven't gotten back to reply. The temps here in the area have been in the 30's so I am not sure if I have made improvements or not as the boiler kept up at those temps before. At least for the time being it is getting to temp and shutting down now. When the temps drop I will let everyone know how it is working.. I did everything everyone suggested. I really appreciate the replies and imformation...

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Wiz
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Stoker Coal Boiler: Keystoker Ka 6
Coal Size/Type: Casey Junk Coal :(
Location: Tannersville Pa

Post Sat. Dec. 08, 2012 8:51 am

could a bad aquastat or thermostat control cause low fire... Sorry if it was mention still haven't had my morning coffee... It seems Hillside has tried draft suggestions, but not much mention on electric part.
Randy
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