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  1. #1
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    Mar 2018
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    Standing Pilot Issues

    I was sent out to check on some Beacon/Morris BMF-75 hanging gas heaters at one of our locations. I have very limited experience with these but that is another story. The guy before me reported that he could not get the standing pilots to stay lit on several units. He changed the thermocouples on those particular units with no change.

    I checked the to see if the blocked vent shutoffs were reset and had continuity and they did. Flame from the pilots were on the thermocouples but I had no more luck than the guy before me. There are a total of five of these units having the exact same issue, so I know I am missing something but what it is, I have no idea.

    I did test the thermocouples and they were producing 30 plus millivolts. I plan on picking up a thermocouple adapter so I can test the solenoids in these valves.

    Any help as to where and what I should check next would be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
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    Central Arkansas
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    Have you checked the gas pressure? that would be one thing common to all the units

  3. #3
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    Sep 2007
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    edmonds wa
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    Verify gas quality and pressure first, pilots cleaned, i guess you could just have worn out valves but i would start at the beginning points first. At least new valves or at least one would be handy if you go thru the effort to get up to them.
    UA Local 32 retired as of Jan 2020

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
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    if you have an issue that is common to all units, the problem likely isn't with the units.

  5. #5
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    Nov 2006
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    Wisconsin
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    Check gas pressure and draft.

  6. #6
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    Aug 2009
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    Beatrice, NE
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    Do these unit have an ECO (energy cut off). They have 2 wires that go into a slot on the gas valve where the thermocouple attaches. I have seen the ECO open and also seen where the end that goes into the slot doesn't make a connection. If it has this pull it out of the slot on the valve and screw the TC directly into the valve and see if it holds. It would be doubtful that valves went bad on 5 units at the same time.

    One final thought and I hate to post this but just ran into it so forgive me. You did hold the reset button long enough, at least 30 seconds? I had a call at a rental, the tenant told me a guy with the gas CO had been there and couldn't get the pilot to stay lit. There must have been a whole box of the small wood matches laying on the floor. I lit the pilot, held the lever for 30, released it, checked the drop out, ran the furnace, the only problem I found was the blower motor was bad. The tenants told me the other guy never held the lever that long, he would release it shortly after the pilot lit.

  7. #7
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    Thread Starter
    Quote Originally Posted by rkevins View Post
    Have you checked the gas pressure? that would be one thing common to all the units
    I have not yet, was unable to get back to these today because of higher priorities.

  8. #8
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    Mar 2018
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    Thread Starter
    Quote Originally Posted by buford View Post
    Verify gas quality and pressure first, pilots cleaned, i guess you could just have worn out valves but i would start at the beginning points first. At least new valves or at least one would be handy if you go thru the effort to get up to them.
    I know how to check pressure but unsure of how to check quality. I will say that these five are scattered through three adjacent school shop areas. Each shop has four units located at each corner of the room. Each also has units that are fed from the same mainline that are functioning without issue.

    Glad you mentioned getting up to them, as that sure does make it a bit harder to troubleshoot them for sure.

  9. #9
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    Mar 2018
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    Thread Starter
    Quote Originally Posted by 71CHOPS View Post
    if you have an issue that is common to all units, the problem likely isn't with the units.
    I am still so green that any info is a help. Thank you for answering.

  10. #10
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    Mar 2018
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    Thread Starter
    Quote Originally Posted by fordrules View Post
    Check gas pressure and draft.
    I will check the pressures, but I will say that the pilots had a nice blue flame and fully enveloped the thermocouples.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
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    Thread Starter
    So I ordered one of these, https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1, to assist me in troubleshooting these units.

  12. #12
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    Mar 2018
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    Thread Starter
    Quote Originally Posted by BNME8EZ View Post
    Do these unit have an ECO (energy cut off). They have 2 wires that go into a slot on the gas valve where the thermocouple attaches. I have seen the ECO open and also seen where the end that goes into the slot doesn't make a connection. If it has this pull it out of the slot on the valve and screw the TC directly into the valve and see if it holds. It would be doubtful that valves went bad on 5 units at the same time.

    One final thought and I hate to post this but just ran into it so forgive me. You did hold the reset button long enough, at least 30 seconds? I had a call at a rental, the tenant told me a guy with the gas CO had been there and couldn't get the pilot to stay lit. There must have been a whole box of the small wood matches laying on the floor. I lit the pilot, held the lever for 30, released it, checked the drop out, ran the furnace, the only problem I found was the blower motor was bad. The tenants told me the other guy never held the lever that long, he would release it shortly after the pilot lit.
    I did not see anything connected to the gas valve where the thermocouple attaches. I totally agree with your assessment that it is unlikely that five valves went bad all at the same time. I will say that I found out today that the previous tech had issues with several of these units last winter and no one knows if he actually got them fixed or not.

    Great question about holding the reset long enough. I was so self-conscious about it that I actually used my watch and timed up to 90 seconds before releasing the button.

  13. #13
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    Aug 2009
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    Something else you can do is if you have a known good valve hook the thermocouple up to it and see if that valve holds. I have not seen very often were a thermo putting out 30 mV would not hold a mag coil. I would look real close to see if there is anything in the pilot safety circuit that maybe hidden somewhere. I have never seen 5 valve with bad safeties let alone in 1 year, but I guess anything is possible. You could also check the mag coil resistance to see if it is open or shorted, can't tell you what known good is. Just put one probe in the bottom/center and the other on the threads.

  14. Likes Fender60 liked this post.
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