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02-10-2011, 10:42 AM #40
02-11-2011, 02:03 PM #41Permanently Removed
- Join Date
- May 2002
I agree with Hearthman. The construction of this unit is rather suspect.
So, let us know which state in the US you found a "professional". I know there's one in Wisconsin. Also, don't expect QF to be much in the way of help. Their website is probably very good at pushing you to the mostly uneducated and unprepared local dealer...
Yep, that's the case. I just gave it another test run. The first one that popped up I don't even think has any service personnel unless they have a new hire.
Quadrafire Quality yet again.
EDIT- but I have to say Hearthman is softening a little to the plight of the little guy here.
03-07-2011, 11:20 AM #42New Guest
- Join Date
- Feb 2011
Thanks for your replies gentlemen.
IT WAS the snap-disc in back that prevented the electronics from working. The hopper fire?? CAUSED by the auger motor failing. The seal failed and leaked oil down the auger, caught fire & was thankfully partially snuffed out by the negative pressure, though almost (!!!!) took fire as the bottom of the hopper was 100% charcoal.
What kind of design has uses flammable fluid perched as a time-bomb waiting to go off as soon as the seal fails?
To others, if you have Quadra Fire Castile (& others???)-- please be wary to the extreme fire hazard if your auger seal fails.
It took a professional 30 seconds to tell me what happened as apparently this type of failed seal/fire isn't new.
Quadra Fire isn't answering emails.
03-09-2011, 06:13 PM #43Regular Guest
- Join Date
- May 2005
- Madison, WI
Never heard of, or seen such a thing. What I have seen is the auger totally melted and deformed from an auger chute / hopper fire. Which in turn could cause some of the oil to leak out (after everything melts). The fire itself in the few cases I have come across, was most likely caused from a maintenance issue. Either not cleaned at all, often enough, not properly, or not thorough enough. We had one recently where the top baffle "fell" into the fire causing all sorts of stuff, but it fell because it was not installed properly by the owner when they cleaned it last.
03-09-2011, 08:17 PM #44New Guest
- Join Date
- Feb 2011
Interesting observation JTP, on the other fire. I wonder if your client's wasn't caused by something other than what you suspect?
Mine appears to have been caught just in the nick of time to find the culprit. The auger is perfectly fine, just blackened. Same with the chute. The motor was greasy at the stem and left an oily slick at the chute inside the firebox (tell-tale). Uncoupling the auger from the motor & lo & behold... clearly unburnt oily residue, protected from fire in that one area. Since the auger/motor is protected that high up in the chute the ONLY possible(!) place that oil could come from was from the gearbox, not something falling into the bin.
That info btw also coincides with what the professional told me what happened , that these gearboxes leak.
As for maintenance - I had just completely vacuumed & cleaned the entire pellet bin the week prior, with less than 8 hours use on it. This is an older Castile so the auger has quite a bit of use on it. I couldn't say how much as I'm the 2n'd owner - but do know it was a primary heat source for a small cabin and it has slightly older parts than my other 2-year old stand alone Castile downstairs.
Regardless of maintenance, how can it be safe for a respected pellet stove company to pack their gearboxes with flammable oil? Eventually augers will fail and (apparently) some will leak! Sooner rather than later if the owner doesn't perform maintenance & cleaning but is that(any?) risk acceptable? Should we be replacing our augers every 3 or 4 years just from safety?
03-10-2011, 07:34 AM #45
Draw up a concise time line then detail the incident much as you did here and send it to Quad Certified Letter Return Receipt requested. Tell them since a hopper fire is an unfriendly fire and not to be an expected condition of normal operation, you want a qualified representative of their firm to come out and investigate your stove and replace the auger at no charge to you. Give them a chance to be heroes here. Let them fail. If they step up to the plate, great! If not, you can then procede with whatever you wish to bash or attack them with a clear conscience.
Most mfrs. DO want to hear if their products have failures and know why. Most pellet stoves dating up to 6-8 yrs ago were susceptible to hopper fires, which prompted some design changes and the inclusion of a snap disc to shut the unit down in this event along with the recommendation to have some vertical vent rise to clear out smoke in the event of loss of power.
Have you contacted the dealer who sold you these stoves? I see there is a Platinum dealer in Conifer and a regular dealer in Franktown.
In an earlier post, you mentioned a spark on the auger wires---how did you determine this? Are there melted wires? Signs of arcing?