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Discussion Starter · #21 ·
For a large number of ignitors, or any piece of equipment, the failure rate follows the “bathtub curve” shown below, with a higher “infant mortality” rate at the beginning than later on in life. You have to make an estimate, based on the anticipated lifetime of an ignitor, where your unit is along that curve. I wouldn’t replace a piece of equipment that is operating normally and is critical to heating the house, just before going away.

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Yeah I know this, and that's why I was hesitant to replace it. But I would argue that at over 9 years old (probably significantly more) my old igniter was probably quickly approaching the right side of that curve, and that's why I did want to replace it.
 

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Yeah I know this, and that's why I was hesitant to replace it. But I would argue that at over 9 years old (probably significantly more) my old igniter was probably quickly approaching the right side of that curve, and that's why I did want to replace it.
Don't worry, ignitors are consumable. They are common to wear out and be replaced and you were easily into that territory. It's working, you did a good job.
 

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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
Also just one other thing, I was able to find what I think is the resistance spec of this igniter at room temperature. Seems like it is supposed to be between 40 and 100 ohms.

The new igniter is 62.9 ohms. The old one I took out is 108 ohms. So yeah despite feeling a little leery about replacing a part just before I leave home, I don't trust that old one based on the resistance.
 

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Also just one other thing, I was able to find what I think is the resistance spec of this igniter at room temperature. Seems like it is supposed to be between 40 and 100 ohms.

The new igniter is 62.9 ohms. The old one I took out is 108 ohms. So yeah despite feeling a little leery about replacing a part just before I leave home, I don't trust that old one based on the resistance.
You'd benefit from getting a cheap clamp on multimeter. $30-50 range. There are some that are cat III rated at that price range. You'll want to measure the current at startup and write it down. It'll also be really useful for troubleshooting other parts in the future. No rush on it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
You'd benefit from getting a cheap clamp on multimeter. $30-50 range. There are some that are cat III rated at that price range. You'll want to measure the current at startup and write it down. It'll also be really useful for troubleshooting other parts in the future. No rush on it.
Actually I have a nice Blue Point meter and I swear there I have an amp clamp for it laying around somewhere, just can't find it, so I don't want to buy another. ;) And generally most work I do I don't need to measure amperage over the meter's limit of 10A, so I haven't made finding it a priority.
 

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I speak from experience here: The best thing you can do if you have to leave a residence for days or weeks, is to set up electric space heaters all over the house, maybe four of them. Set their thermostats to come on if the temp falls below 50. Then set your house furnace to 60 F. If your house furnace fails for ANY reason, the house temperature will gradually fall to 50 F, causing the space heaters to pick up the slack and prevent your house and plumbing from freezing.

You can monitor your house temps remotely in a variety of ways. It is no longer important to monitor temps continuously, because this system is fail-safe. It's sufficient to check the temps once or twice a week.

Since most space heaters just have a rotary dial temperature setting without numbers, I calibrate them in my garage near 50 F and tape or ink a mark on the knob that corresponds to 50 F.
 
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I speak from experience here: The best thing you can do if you have to leave a residence for days or weeks, is to set up electric space heaters all over the house, maybe four of them. Set their thermostats to come on if the temp falls below 50. Then set your house furnace to 60 F. If your house furnace fails for ANY reason, the house temperature will gradually fall to 50 F, causing the space heaters to pick up the slack and prevent your house and plumbing from freezing.

You can monitor your house temps remotely in a variety of ways. It is no longer important to monitor temps continuously, because this system is fail-safe. It's sufficient to check the temps once or twice a week.

Since most space heaters just have a rotary dial temperature setting without numbers, I calibrate them in my garage near 50 F and tape or ink a mark on the knob that corresponds to 50 F.
Consumer portable electric space heaters are not rated for unattended use. It voids their warranty and can lead to insurance issues. At least all of the models I've looks at say so.
 

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Discussion Starter · #29 ·
Yeah I think from a purely technical standpoint it's kind of a good idea to leave a space heater "on" but at a very low temperature setting so the intent is that it won't ever actually run except in an emergency. And I did think about that.

But, from a practical standpoint, leaving a space heater plugged in and "on" in any way when I'm leaving the house for weeks to maybe months? Naw, that doesn't sound good. :oops:
 

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Yeah I think from a purely technical standpoint it's kind of a good idea to leave a space heater "on" but at a very low temperature setting so the intent is that it won't ever actually run except in an emergency. And I did think about that.

But, from a practical standpoint, leaving a space heater plugged in and "on" in any way when I'm leaving the house for weeks to maybe months? Naw, that doesn't sound good. :oops:
Yea, your plan is safer. Drain the water, including toilet reservoirs, and maybe pour a bit of RV antifreeze in the bowls. If it's really cold where you live, you could run some pipe trace heating on the water line up to the shutoff, and insulate it. Freezing the mainline underground is still a possibility when you're not using it, but there isn't much you can do about that.
 

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I speak from experience here: The best thing you can do if you have to leave a residence for days or weeks, is to set up electric space heaters all over the house, maybe four of them. Set their thermostats to come on if the temp falls below 50. Then set your house furnace to 60 F. If your house furnace fails for ANY reason, the house temperature will gradually fall to 50 F, causing the space heaters to pick up the slack and prevent your house and plumbing from freezing.

You can monitor your house temps remotely in a variety of ways. It is no longer important to monitor temps continuously, because this system is fail-safe. It's sufficient to check the temps once or twice a week.

Since most space heaters just have a rotary dial temperature setting without numbers, I calibrate them in my garage near 50 F and tape or ink a mark on the knob that corresponds to 50 F.
What happens if the power goes out (tree falls on line or something) while he's gone?
 
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