Does your boiler have a case of the O.F.F.S.?

Abbreviations or acronyms are used because they are quick and easy to remember. These days, thanks to texting, most of us use acronyms like – LOL, OMG, and my favorite – YOLO (You only live once). 
Companies often use abbreviations as names and here’s my shot at providing an easy to remember acronym that may give you and your team a hand when troubleshooting boilers.
Does your boiler have a case of the O.F.F.S.?
Check the O.F.S. - Oxygen, Fuel, and Spark.
Be sure to verify everything, but here are some quick tips that can help you out of most jams.
O - Oxygen  
Check the air intake and O2 levels in your combustion readings. Is the air clean coming into the boiler for combustion? We don’t want any exhaust or anything else coming back into the boiler. The exhaust is boiler poison.  Dirt, leaves, and birds aren’t very helpful either.
Check combustion levels. Go outside and watch the exhaust on high and especially at low fire. Of there is any chance that the exhaust can come into the intake, put on your cape, and save that boiler by adjusting the venting to ensure that can’t happen.
F - Fuel
Verify gas type, gas pressure, and everything with the fuel delivery chain. How strong is your flame? Check the ionization current and measured in microamps, right from the boiler information screen…no tools required. Very helpful.
  • What’s the gas pressure? Is it within range per manufacturer's specifications? Is it high or low?
  • Do you have more than 1” WC drop from static to Ignition?
  • How’s the fuel being delivered? Check your NFPA chart, then verify it. Can this gas pipe deliver the BTU’s required with everything else in the home is also running?
    • Is there trac pipe? Mega Press? How many Elbows? Full Port Gas Valve? Is the Gas Valve opening or closing all the way? What’s the Gas Pressure at Regulator? At the LPG tank? Is there a new LPG tank or was the LPG tank just filled?
S - Spark  
Verify, Verify, Verify!
  • How’s the ignitor look? Remember how I mentioned ionization current? If you are lower than 4 microamps, there is a solid chance you might just need to clean or replace the ignitor.
  • How’s the ground to the boiler?
  • How’s the boiler wired?
If I wasn’t clear before, I’d add this again.  Verify everything. Don’t assume anything. Get the facts and use your senses. Do you hear anything? Smell anything? See anything?
Finally, what’s your system? We would love to hear from you.  
Feel free to reach out directly  – [email protected]

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