Oil-burning furnace defects

I need a good list of defects commonly found in inspecting oil-burning furnaces, including peripheral defects like those connected with oil tanks. Anyone have a list or suggestions?

Good question Ken. Last year I tried to make up a check list for furnaces, gas or oil, and gave up after it started turning into a novel.

Rather than list a bunch of things I might be wrong about (“common problems” seem to be associated with age and type of system), maybe do a little internet research. A lot of oil technicians belong to NORA, National Oilheat Research Alliance, (http://www.oilheatamerica.com/index.mv?screen=home) and they have a web site with technical info plus some links to other sites.

Oil-fired forced hot water, steam, forced air, etc; power vents vs natural draft vents, tanks outside or inside, etc. Lately, the only common things for me have been lack of maintenance (seems much more common lately with sellers skimping on spending the routine maintenance money) and age leading to concerns about the heat exchanger and such. And, then there’s the foreclosures where almost every one I’ve done has rust everywhere and no oil to even test anything… ick.

Anyhow, maybe someone else has a good simple checklist.

Hi Kenton,
Here is a checklist for a healthy oil tank from the NH oil heat council of NH
I use this 10 item checklist when inspecting oil heat systems.

Home Heating Oil Tanks.doc (21.5 KB)

I’ll send more stuff

Congratulations on your new position


Thanks Harry and Carla. I’ll follow up.