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  • New furnace's Hot Surface Igniter failed after 4 years. Replacement HSI at 6 years.

    My elderly friend says his furnace's HSI gets red hot by being in the gas flame.
    Is such flame impingement causing the HSI to fail prematurely?
    Thank you.
    (He'll tell me furnace make and model when he gets it.)
    Last edited by Robert Gift; 12-26-2013, 09:54 PM.
    I'd take an educated guess - but I'm unqualified.
    It ain't just soot, it's paydirt.
    "I swear, wherever Gift goes, argument follows." -Youtube comment

  • #2
    Re: New furnace's Hot Surface Igniter failed after 4 years. Replacement HSI at 6 yea

    carbide and the new nitride igniters are designed to withstand the heat of startup and flame. they get much hotter during the ignition sequence than the normal flame. if the igniter wasnt in the flame path the furnace would ignite with delayed ignition, causing a large BOOM! some units also sense main burner flame via this igniter bar.
    Last edited by Plumber Punky; 12-26-2013, 03:53 PM.
    ~~

    ... it was plumbed by Ray Charles and his helper Stevie Wonder

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Just bought a spare HSI for our 12 year old Rheem furnace

      Originally posted by Plumber Punky View Post
      carbide and the new nitride igniters are designed to withstand the heat of startup and flame. ... some units also sense main burner flame via this igniter bar.
      Ours is also in the flame. But it does not glow from the flame.
      Spare is $20.45.
      Can one discern if the existing HSI in the furnace is original?
      I'd take an educated guess - but I'm unqualified.
      It ain't just soot, it's paydirt.
      "I swear, wherever Gift goes, argument follows." -Youtube comment

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Just bought a spare HSI for our 12 year old Rheem furnace

        Originally posted by Robert Gift View Post
        Ours is also in the flame. But it does not glow from the flame.
        Spare is $20.45.
        Can one discern if the existing HSI in the furnace is original?
        Every furnace is different. even the same furnace in another area may act differently. It's very difficult to determine if it's original. You may be able to tell the wear on it by taking an ohm reading. Though, it won't tell you how long a life it has left.

        One thing I forgot - if the igniter is ON all the time during the heating cycle it would indicate a stuck relay on the control board. A normal cycle would be off, warmup (15-45 secs), ON, ignition, cool down/off (burners on). it may or may not be heated by flame to a visible color.

        $20 is not a bad proice for a carbide igniter. I would expect more for a nitride bar.
        ~~

        ... it was plumbed by Ray Charles and his helper Stevie Wonder

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Just bought a spare HSI for our 12 year old Rheem furnace

          Originally posted by Plumber Punky View Post
          $20 is not a bad proice for a carbide igniter. I would expect more for a nitride bar.
          I do not know:
          PROTECH 62-22868-93
          120 V; Less than 5.0 amps
          I'd take an educated guess - but I'm unqualified.
          It ain't just soot, it's paydirt.
          "I swear, wherever Gift goes, argument follows." -Youtube comment

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Just bought a spare HSI for our 12 year old Rheem furnace

            Originally posted by Robert Gift View Post
            I do not know:
            PROTECH 62-22868-93
            120 V; Less than 5.0 amps

            pricing ranges from $19-26 retail. a bit less for me wholesale.
            ~~

            ... it was plumbed by Ray Charles and his helper Stevie Wonder

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Just bought a spare HSI for our 12 year old Rheem furnace

              use a multimeter and check for power to the igniter after the flame is established. there should not be any voltage present, if there is you likely have a faulty ignition control which you will need to replace. ignitors do not glow red from the flame, something is not right, check it out before the control fails further leaving you with no heat all.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Just bought a spare HSI for our 12 year old Rheem furnace

                Originally posted by shock1964 View Post
                use a multimeter and check for power to the igniter after the flame is established. there should not be any voltage present, if there is you likely have a faulty ignition control which you will need to replace. ignitors do not glow red from the flame, something is not right, check it out before the control fails further leaving you with no heat all.
                this is not correct. some furnaces use the igniter for flame sensing so there would be voltage here. also, since the igniter is in the flame, it may glow in the area heated by the flame. not all furnaces will cause the igniter to glow when the flames hit it. Igniter type will also affect if it glows a bit. A small area of dull cherry red is not uncommon. having it lit up end-to-end white/yellow hot as if it was trying to light the flames is not common and should be addressed.

                As long as the igniter cycles as it should ON-OFF, the flames hitting it will cause no problem. The most important thing to remember is that the HSI has to be in the main flame path in order for the furnace to light off reliably. It needs to be in the main flame path of at least one burner. The cross-over bars or ribbons will then carry the flame to the other burners.
                ~~

                ... it was plumbed by Ray Charles and his helper Stevie Wonder

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Just bought a spare HSI for our 12 year old Rheem furnace

                  interesting. I have never come across an hsi that is used for sensing the flame. Can you point me to some examples of this? My experience is that at one end of the burners the hsi will provide ignition and on the far opposite end a metal flame-rod will have a small current applied to it which when the flame envelopes it will recitfy the signal and feed back into the flame safeguard indicating that flame has been established across the burners and it is safe to allow the gas to remain on for the heat call. If you have come across an appliance that uses the hsi element to prove flame I would be interested in checking it out so please post some examples.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Just bought a spare HSI for our 12 year old Rheem furnace

                    the one that comes quickly to mind is older peerless 80% boilers. some of the older raypak boilers and a few misc furnaces also sense this way. the honeywell s8910u controller for HSI can do it.

                    look at the manual for the 8910, there's a pretty good picture in there of how it's wired. the black jumper is not cut for (local) HSI based sensing. The sensing works pretty much the same way - power is fed to the hsi, where it is rectified by the flame and sensed on the burner ground.
                    Last edited by Plumber Punky; 02-13-2014, 01:11 AM.
                    ~~

                    ... it was plumbed by Ray Charles and his helper Stevie Wonder

                    Comment

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