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  1. #1

    quadra fire won't feed pellets

    I've had a Quadr Fire Santa Fe for 8 years and I've burned about 4 tons so far. The starting element burned out about 2 years ago, but otherwise it's been an awesome stove.

    But now it seems very finicky about when the auger will turn. It'll fire up, get hot, blower turns on, then it'll just stop dropping pellets (auger won't turn). I've cleaned the thermocouple and I've checked for loose connections and mad sure everything is clean. Nothing. Sometimes if the stove is hot and it stops dropping pellets, if I smack the side of the stove with an open palm, it resumes normal operation.

    Anyone have any ideas? Or a troubleshooting process I can follow? Thanks much!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Madison, WI
    Posts
    1,078
    Have you cleaned the tube going from the vacuum switch to the drop chute, and also the barb it connects to on the chute? This is not documented in the instructions.

    Just make sure you unplug the stove and never blow into the vacuum switch.

    If its anything more than that I would call a tech out to look at it.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by jtp10181 View Post
    Have you cleaned the tube going from the vacuum switch to the drop chute, and also the barb it connects to on the chute? This is not documented in the instructions.

    Just make sure you unplug the stove and never blow into the vacuum switch.

    If its anything more than that I would call a tech out to look at it.
    I just pulled this vacuum line, blew it out and checked for cracks, it was sound, so I reinstalled.

    No luck. Does the same thing.

    What component in the system would react to a thump? I swear, if I just tap the stove, the auger kicks in. It's very symptomatic of a loose connection, but I've gone thru every connector and nothing...

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Madison, WI
    Posts
    1,078
    Vac switch itself comes to mind. I have seen some where the plastic switch part disconnects from the metal housing causing it to cut in and out.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by jtp10181 View Post
    Vac switch itself comes to mind. I have seen some where the plastic switch part disconnects from the metal housing causing it to cut in and out.
    I jumped the vac switch and now I have heat. Now to troubleshoot for the switch or the seal...

    Anyway, thanks for your help!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Madison, WI
    Posts
    1,078
    If the switch is the issue, you probably just need to replace it. There is not really any repairing it. The new switches are an all plastic housing so they will not have the problem I mentioned above.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by jtp10181 View Post
    If the switch is the issue, you probably just need to replace it. There is not really any repairing it. The new switches are an all plastic housing so they will not have the problem I mentioned above.
    I should have been more clear...

    By "seal" I meant the rope seal on the glass. Visually it's compressed and maybe not allowing for sufficient vacuum. So my problem is either that, or I need a new vac switch...

  8. #8
    I'm wondering if the vac switch may be my problem as well with my model CB1200 Quadra Fire. I've had it since '98 and it's worked flawlessly (aside from maintenance replacements like snap disc's, an igniter, etc) until the beginning of this season, when it wouldn't feed, combustion blower wouldn't change speed regardless of fan setting and so on. Anyway, went ahead and changed out the control box and then everything seemed to be just fine.

    Now however, if the stove is stone cold (I use a programmable thermostat that turns it way down overnight and when I'm at work) it won't start up. I'll come home (or get up) to it quiet with call light lit. I reset it and it immediately feeds and lights up and cycles fine the rest of the day/night, again, until the next time it gets completely cold. I originally thought it wasn't feeding at all upon restart but this morning I caught it during it's initial start-up and here's what it does: Call light comes on, blower motor comes on and it begins to feed. Then however, only about 30 seconds into the feed (instead of the 98 seconds the owners manual says it should feed) it stops feeding and then the blower motor goes from it's "normal" speed down to that really low speed you get when you first plug it in. From there the few pellets in the firepot light, but it doesn't continue to feed so they eventually burn out and everything times out and it shuts down. This is the state I usually find it in when I get home.

    One final clue that this may be temperature related: after I installed the new control box, everything checked out (blue flashes, blower motor normal speed) but STILL wouldn't feed. So just to see if the igniter was working, I threw a handful of pellets into the firepot and they lit. And then, as soon as there was a bit of warmth in the firebox, the auger began to feed!

    Any thoughts? (and sorry this post was so lengthy!) Thanks!!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    edmonds wa
    Posts
    414
    When was the last time you went thru and cleaned it, including the vent pipe. A lot of pellet stoves have all sorts of areas ash get trapped in.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    206
    you just resurrected a 4 year old thread

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Posts
    13,538
    Yeah; the OP probably burned his house down long ago.

    PHM
    ------




    Quote Originally Posted by darthvader View Post
    you just resurrected a 4 year old thread
    PHM
    --------
    The conventional view serves to protect us from the painful job of thinking.

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