100 PPM Cabon Monoxide in oil fired boiler vent pipe

Originally Posted By: jruppert
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I understand that there should be no CO coming out of a clean firing oil or gas burner. Is this correct? I got 100 PPM out of a unit today. icon_question.gif


Originally Posted By: kmcmahon
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Could be a Definate warning sign…although it’s not at a dangerous level yet.


anything around 200ppm and there’s a start of real danger…headaches, etc.



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Originally Posted By: jruppert
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Thanks Kevin - I think I should re-phrase my question. I got the reading from inside the exhaust stack.


Jim


Originally Posted By: jsavino
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Jim


All fossil fuels emit CO. As long as the flue pipe is tight and chimney base is clear, there should be not problems. A good way to check is look at the front of the boiler around the fire box inspection door. If it is scorched or has been cemented closed, the boiler or flue may be plugged. Also check around the draft regulator, with the boiler running, If you feel heat or smell exhaust fumes, there's a problem. Get a draft gauge, and with the oil burner running, the draft should be between .03 to.06" of water column. Anything below .03 may be a weak draft chimney. Anything above .06 is too much draft and burner needs adjustment.


--
John Savino
HomeWorks Inspection Services, LLC
St. James, NY
631.379.4241

Originally Posted By: jruppert
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Hi John - I understand that there will be some CO in the stack gases but I also understood that over 10 PPM may indicate a “dirty fire”. I read 100 PPM. Is that normal? I own a Monoxor III with the metal wand for insertion into the stack. If CO levels vary so much what’s the use of the probe?


Thanks for your thoughts John


Originally Posted By: jsavino
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Jim


Don't confuse the monoxor with a combustion analyzer. Monoxor will give you CO readings. Combustion analyzers will give you total efficiency of the oil or gas burner and if the fuel is burned properly. Combustion analyzers give draft, CO, CO2, stack temp, smoke. This will vary with burner and boiler combos, but not by much. 100ppm could mean a dirty flame or too much air being delivered to the burner intake. I always preformed tests before and after servicing the oil burner and boiler to see any improvements. Beckett burners would run at 12% co2 in a Peerless or any high efficiency boiler. 13% is too much air, and increase in CO. In other words to lien. When ever I picked up a new account, the first place I would look is the chimney base. Most of them were 1/2 to 3/4's filled with soot.


--
John Savino
HomeWorks Inspection Services, LLC
St. James, NY
631.379.4241

Originally Posted By: jruppert
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I just spoke with an engineer with Bacharach (very knowledgeable). He said that as a rule of thumb, up to 10 to 25 PPM would be normal, and over 50 PPM should be called out for a check by a service technician. FYI - This unit also had an auto-damper that was adjusted improperly (always shut).


Originally Posted By: jsavino
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Jim


Good rule of thumb. I will remember that.


On the motorized damps, there is an internal switch that wont let the burner start until the damper is opened fully. It may not have been wired correctly also.


See you tomorrow night.



John Savino


HomeWorks Inspection Services, LLC


St. James, NY


631.379.4241

Originally Posted By: poffenberger
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I agree with the 50ppm and a second look by a //////////


One chart as a FYI says, but will not be responsible for accuracy
in air NOT in stack

9 ppm The maximum allowable concentration for short term exposure in a living area according to ASHRAE????

35 ppm The maximum allowable concentration for continuous exposure in any eight hour period according to federal law?????????

200 ppm Maximum concentration allowable at any time according to OSHA. Slight headaches, fatigue, dizziness, nausea after 2-3 hours

400 ppm Frontal headaches within 1-2 hours, life threatening after 3 hours. Maximum allowable limit in flue gas according to EPA and AGA

800 ppm Dizziness, nausea and convultions within 45 minutes. Unconsciousness within 2 hours. Death within 2 - 3 hours???

1600 ppm Headache, dizziness and nausea within 20 minutes. Death within 2-3-hours

3200 ppm Headache, dizziness and nausea within 5 - 10 minutes. Death within 30 minutes.

6400 ppm Headache, dizziness, nausea within 1 - 3 minutes. Death within 10 - 15 minutes.

12,800 ppm Death within 1 - 3 minutes.
Effects may vary depending on size, age, sex and health with axposures of 200 ppm and over.


Originally Posted By: dcampbell
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Paul your right!!! I am a full time firefighter also when we get a call for a co related call at 35ppm we will call the gas company and advise the resident to leave till the cause id fixed.


Originally Posted By: kmcmahon
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Not if the reading was taken in the stack you wouldn’t…I’m a FF also icon_cool.gif



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Originally Posted By: dcampbell
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That’s true Kevin I missed the stack part icon_redface.gif


Originally Posted By: kluce
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That’s interesting. I had to perform tests for the city around here and the requirements for a stove is 25 ppm at each burner. They didn’t require taking readings from an oil furnace. Gas water heater and gas furnace was required. I wonder what the reasoning for not taking readings on an oil furnace? eusa_think.gif


Originally Posted By: dbowers
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Everybody has been talking oil heating units - most of the country doesn’t use oil. Lets talk gas for a bit. When you 1st fire a gas furnace (before the fan comes on) if you put your CO monitor wand in the top portion of each heat exchanger - or in the flue, you can get 20-35 ppm easily. Once the fan comes on those readings should drop down below 6-7 ppm.


If I ever hit 60 - 100 ppm in the top of any HE chamber in the static mode (fan off), I'd recommend a competent Heating contractor check the unit for a probable HE damage / problem.

My testing methods came from (1) Bacharachs 8 hour course on CO Testing; (2) The Illinois Power Companies 2 day CO & Gas Testing Seminar; and (3) From a 3-4 hour Seminar at the Great Lakes ASHI Chapter put on by a very knowledgeable instructor from Kentucky.

Dan Bowers


Originally Posted By: jsavino
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I came across this article in one of my trade magazines on CO monitors.


www.petroretail.net/fon/2004/0405/



John Savino


HomeWorks Inspection Services, LLC


St. James, NY


631.379.4241