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Old 03-15-2013, 10:06 AM   #1
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Heat damage on gas boiler?


We had some warranty repairs done on our water heater a couple weeks ago, and in the process of completing the repairs, one of the techs noticed a spot on our boiler (Weil-McLain CGM-4) and wondered about getting it checked out. I was with my fussy infant son at the time, so didn't have a lot of time to ask questions, so I wanted to get input on here.

It's a discolored spot on the exterior of the boiler, seems to be located pretty close to a corner of the heat exchanger. Something running too hot? Is this an indication of something failing or already broken? Any other thoughts on what might be causing this?





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Old 03-15-2013, 11:41 AM   #2
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Heat damage on gas boiler?


You won't know whats up until you remove the flame shield just in front of the burners and can look at the refractory lining. You'd be looking for some of it having fallen apart or evidence of a slow leak thats evaporating before it gets outside the boiler.
If you can't see anything amiss then you can also check for CO at the top of the boiler between the boiler casing and the vent pipe. Finding CO there will mean you need to get it properly checked out.

Those rust through holes can be from a small internal leak, electrolasis or
if you have a high moisture count in your basement and don't have a crossover between the inlet & outlet heating lines, then the cooler exchanger running temps can create condensation that can rust out those panels.

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Old 03-15-2013, 01:15 PM   #3
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Heat damage on gas boiler?


not trying to scare you but there may be some SERIOUS safety concerns with that boiler and with an infant in the house they get 100X worse. first of all the vent to the chimney looks very rusty and almost rotten/ready to be perforated. should have it replaced with aluminum which won't rust. secondly if the flues/internal passages in that boiler are plugging up with rust or soot from bad combustion then it can force the flames backwards from the burners and create CO carbon monoxide and spill into your house. you need an EXPERIENCED tech with a combustion analyzer and sensitive CO detector attachment to check for fumes/CO spilling from it and find out why that burn spot is there. I suspect you have high humidity in your basement from the rusting and corrosion and that can cause internal problems like plugged flue passages. get it checked properly ASAP. your basic $25 CO detector from HDepot is meant for major problems and not small amounts of CO. Pro ones cost $300-1000 and are accurate to very small tolerances and get calibrated yearly. for $25 you cannot get that accuracy or reliability. CO is 100-1000X more toxic for infants than adults as they have 1/4 or less the blood in them than we do so the toxicity rises hugely.
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Old 03-15-2013, 01:47 PM   #4
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Heat damage on gas boiler?


lightly... but from the pics I don't believe the spot on the jacket is from combustion chamber leakage, possibly ring leak on the water jacket. I do however, question the venting of the unit. There should be a draft hood with spill switch located directly above unit and your pics do not show this. It would be wise and I highly recommend you have the unit checked by a competent professional. I am in NY but I know of Eric Aune, Aune's Plumbing/Htg. through the industry. He is in Zimmerman... is that near you? His website is: http://auneplumbing.com/Home.php if you want to check it out. Regardless who... have the unit checked out.
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Old 03-15-2013, 01:52 PM   #5
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Heat damage on gas boiler?


Yeah, not trying to be scary but if it does have internal problems then that is one of the major causes we have of CO poisioning incidents. NOT something to be taken lightly or saving a buck $$ on. You would be surprised that the majority of my customers no nothing about CO or how it gets produced and believe that their $25 CO detector is going to tell them when to replace the furnace so they can save money. By that time they have breathed it in for weeks. They also seem to think the tech is lying or they know better. I go home to a safe house is all that matters.
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Old 03-15-2013, 01:54 PM   #6
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Heat damage on gas boiler?


Just to update....proper venting was completed a couple weeks ago. all that is mentioned is out of frame on the picture.

Zimmerman is close, but the furnace is still under home warranty for another few months, so we'll start there.
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Old 03-16-2013, 10:09 AM   #7
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Heat damage on gas boiler?


One more update...

Thanks for the feedback all. Tech came out yesterday afternoon and found a hole in the burner box about 3 inches in diameter. Boiler red tagged, and warranty company paying for a new one. If any pictures for reference would be helpful, I can see about getting some as they remove the old unit.
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Old 03-16-2013, 10:39 AM   #8
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Heat damage on gas boiler?


Well I am sure glad they found the problem quickly and everyone will be safe. Sure looks like a burn mark to me and I have seen the insides of those boilers deteriorate and the outer jacket get burned.
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Old 03-16-2013, 11:56 AM   #9
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Heat damage on gas boiler?


Did they give you the list or amount of money you have to pay out for code upgrades and or disposal fee's yet.
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Old 03-16-2013, 01:35 PM   #10
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Heat damage on gas boiler?


I would not pay any disposal fee for removing it. There are people in the yellow pages who removal scrap metal for free and I have seen some who remove boilers for free as long as they have no asbestos on them and that one won't. Not remove it from the system but once disconnected someone may haul it out for free.

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