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Thread: FIRE!!!!!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Posts
    293
    So after spending my lunch trouble shooting a fan motor for a friend. Telling her why no air is blowing ... classic.. the filter kept getting so dirty we thought we were better off leaving it out.

    so i come home... hot and sweaty... like i just filmed a porno and decide that yes... my air conditioning will come today. Yes... cool conditioned air. Mind you I just bought this house. Been in it since Feb. The system is an 80% but it looks rough. I knew it was going to need replacing sooner than later but I figured hell, I'm in school to fix these, I can drag out it's existance.

    So i turn on the AC. the fan outside is humming away. Then i go inside... but something smells funny. I go down stairs and look at the furnace, looks good. But it's really quiet. i put my hand on it and its vibrating slighly. Hmmmm. It was louder in the winter.
    i remove the door, and check the air flow. (system is so old there is no door interlock) Yes the fan is moving... although not entirely too fast. No way fast enough to move cold air like it needs to. i check to see if there are motor speed options ... the furnace though is so old that the nameplate info has faded away. i smell something funny.. something smells like fire... but i don't see any. I stare at the unit some more.

    hmmm.

    i go around to all the vents, they are blowing cool air... but it smells funny. Everything seems to be working right.

    i go back down to the fan blower... open the door again, check to see if anything is blocking the air intake. look at the motor.. everything LOOKS fine.

    i shut the door again and I hear... zip zaphhhfff zip zip zaphhh

    i open the door and flames are shooting out of the motor.. electrical fire... fricka frak!!!! I take care of the little blaze... and think... I can fix it!!

    but then the wife reminds me that we have home owners insurance... so i decide not to touch a thing.. drop 50 and get it replaced.

    Mind you all the above took place in 20 minutes. From the minute I turned it on I was running round the house checkin crap. That fire came quick. I'm just glad I was there and that the wife didn't turn it on when I was away... things could of been much worse.

    GO SCHOOL!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2000
    Location
    Waco, Texas, USA
    Posts
    6,153
    Home owners insurance or home warranty?

    You might be better off replacing it yourself than waiting days on a home warranty goof to change the motor and unknowingly leave the sticking relay.
    "And remember my sentimental friend......that a heart is not judged by how much you love, but by how much you are loved by others" - Wizard of Oz.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Location
    Colorado flatland native
    Posts
    15,067
    zip zaphhhfff zip zip zaphhh

    ... fricka frak!!!!


    You should be a writer! Nice. I'd just replace the moter unless you think you can get insurance to buy you a new furnace. Always a chance, I've talked 'um into stranger things.
    My doctor gave me six months to live, but when I couldn't pay the bill he gave me six months more.
    Walter Matthau

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Posts
    293
    yeah, my hopes are to get a whole new furnace out of the deal. A boy can dream.

    I didn't want to swear on here... I know this is a family establishment... well except for that time homeslice kept postin nudies of his wife.

    and I love sound effects: zip zaphhhfff zip zip zaphhh

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    5,773
    Originally posted by timmay


    but then the wife reminds me that we have home owners insurance... so i decide not to touch a thing.. drop 50 and get it replaced.

    get 'em to cover the A/C too!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Fort Worth, TX
    Posts
    11,317
    and I love sound effects: zip zaphhhfff zip zip zaphhh
    The late Don Martin, a great artist and writer for Mad Magazine, had to be the all-time champ of perfectly capturing sound effects with words. His response to your sizzling fan motor likely may have been:

    "BZZOWNT!" or "ZIZAZIK!"

    And the sound of the bottom half of your mouth hitting the floor once seeing the fire:

    "FLOIDOIP!"


  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Location
    East Stroudsburg, PA
    Posts
    13,215
    Originally posted by infwsdm
    Originally posted by timmay


    but then the wife reminds me that we have home owners insurance... so i decide not to touch a thing.. drop 50 and get it replaced.

    get 'em to cover the A/C too!
    Yeah, I smell a fire damaged evap coil...

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Iowa
    Posts
    2,652
    2 summers ago one of our guys found a fire on total accident. There had been a thunderstorm in the morning so in the afternoon he went out to do planned service and accidently stopped at the wrong builing in a Church job that had several buildings listed. Not knowing he was at the wrong building since it happened to be unlocked ( I gave him all sorts of hell for that by the way )he proceeded to service all 3 of the units. Got to the third, opend the closet door where the unit was and fire was spewing from a flexable gas connector that had been split by the lightning that morning. Luckily no major damage, just some charred wood and it blackened the side of the unit.
    There are 3 ways to do anything in life; Good, Fast, Slow: You can pick any 2.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    368
    Just wonder how that lightning got into a closed closet inside the building to split the flex connector?
    Is that an assumption because of a storm?
    Did the strike hit at the meter and travel thru the gas pipe and come out at the flex connector?
    Was this fire investigated by the fire dept and this was their determination or yours?
    Not busting your chops just wondering how?
    Vern P: 2003 MBC,MRC,IFGC,IFC
    An HVAC-Talk Michigan Chapter Mechanical Inspector, Jurisdiction-Ann Arbor

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Posts
    9,871
    Originally posted by i_got_ideas
    2 summers ago one of our guys found a fire on total accident. There had been a thunderstorm in the morning so in the afternoon he went out to do planned service and accidently stopped at the wrong builing in a Church job that had several buildings listed. Not knowing he was at the wrong building since it happened to be unlocked ( I gave him all sorts of hell for that by the way )he proceeded to service all 3 of the units. Got to the third, opend the closet door where the unit was and fire was spewing from a flexable gas connector that had been split by the lightning that morning. Luckily no major damage, just some charred wood and it blackened the side of the unit.
    Do you tell the owner that this is why PM contracts are so essential!!!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Iowa
    Posts
    2,652
    I'm not exactly sure how the lightning got to it though it probably wasn't hard. The closet is on an exterior wall. In the exterior wall there is a hole where the lineset and 1/2" blackpipe gasline come in from outside. The blackpipe comes in about 3" and then has the flex connector since the furnace is a tight fit and is right there. I figure the lighning could have hit any part of the gas line out side or even the lineset, the flex connector was just the weak link that gave out.
    There are 3 ways to do anything in life; Good, Fast, Slow: You can pick any 2.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    368
    I'd check the wiring then to make sure this won't happen again. If it was lightning the ground, assuming there is one, of the electrical circut should have tripped the breaker and absorbed the electrical charge. Thats the theory anyway. Double check that the wiring circut ground is proper.
    Vern P: 2003 MBC,MRC,IFGC,IFC
    An HVAC-Talk Michigan Chapter Mechanical Inspector, Jurisdiction-Ann Arbor

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    south texas
    Posts
    412
    "well except for that time homeslice kept postin nudies of his wife."

    Did I miss something?

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