Diagnosing Problems with Outdoor Wood Boiler (Central Boiler 5036)

When we bought the house there was Central Boiler CL5036 already installed by the previous owner. Since we fired it up this fall, there have been issues with the boiler. In these series of videos, I attempt to diagnose the problems. And it turns out there were multiple issues.

PART 1:

PART 2:

PART 3:

 

7 thoughts on “Diagnosing Problems with Outdoor Wood Boiler (Central Boiler 5036)

  • October 28, 2018 at 7:19 pm
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    I enjoyed watching your video I’ve been a central boiler dealer and installer for about 14 years and although it was somewhat comical to me I do know that it happens often
    If you have any other issues you’re more than welcome to call me and I will do my best to step you through a solution over the phone
    804-536-3310
    Dale

    Reply
  • November 18, 2018 at 5:24 pm
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    Bro, did it ever occur to you that the outfit you had winterize your boiler put the pump on upside down…?
    Original owner used it to heat with, then you took ownership, had Miguel from eye ball heating and cooling screw your shit up.. Not the original owner…

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    • November 18, 2018 at 6:38 pm
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      Thanks, but we didn’t have an outfit winterize the boiler. The previous owner had winterized it for us before we took possession of the house. Also, complete removal of the pump wasn’t necessary for draining, even if blowing the lines clear.

      As you may have seen, there are plenty of other issues related to his self-install of the system. But we have got it all worked out now. All is well.

      To help confirm this, the people I spoke with who sold the original owner the system knew he installed it all himself because they were related to him.

      Just recently going through some paperwork in the basement I found hidden under the furnace, he had notes for himself to leave the breaker turned on for the water heater. That defeats the purpose of using the wood boiler for hot water. So instead he was using propane to heat constantly even though he has a sidearm hookup for the water heater.

      He definitely burnt wood in his boiler, that’s for sure! But to what advantage…

      Reply
  • January 19, 2019 at 8:22 pm
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    Did you ever get this figured out? I can see from the video he has it plumbed wrong on the water heater

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    • January 22, 2019 at 7:06 am
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      Well, we have not replumbed the furnace area or the way it’s setup. However, the issue with the boiler turned out that the previous owner had installed the circulator pump backwards. The pump was actually trying to pull water from the house and push it to the boiler. It is supposed to pull from the boiler and push towards the house. A lot of comments said that’s not possible, but the certified installer said it was highly possible. The installer also said that could very well be the reason why the previous owner went through so much wood and still had to use the propane.

      It’s ironic that I am replying to this now after finding what we found just last night after we had a serious vibration in the furnace unit and ductwork. Check out the video coming later this afternoon! I will title it “Yet another furnace problem. The saga continues…”

      Reply
  • November 21, 2019 at 11:46 pm
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    I saw your first video on refilling the Central Boiler from outside the house. This will only trap air in your supply lines. The correct way to fill your boiler in the future is to locate the capped valve that’s in your video that sits atop of your water heater and run a washing machine hose to the drain on your water heater. With the valve closed, remove the cap, place the flexible laundry hose onto the valve and then connect it to the drain on the water heater. Slowly turn the drain on the water heater. If no leaks, open the valve on the top of your water heater. AT this point you should hear water running into the system. Now go out to your boiler and make sure that all lines to the pump are open. Let the boiler fill by observing the fill mark. (IF THIS IS A REFILL, DO NOT RUN THE PUMP AT THIS TIME). Once the boiler reaches the proper level go into the house quickly and shut the valve off at the water heater. Then go out to the boiler and start the pump. Later you must go back out to the boiler and recheck the level. If it needs more water simply open the water on the bottom of the water heater. If not, shut off the top valve and you can leave the hose in place for future refills or when you have to add water to the boiler. Remember adding water from the water heater during operation will not harm the system because the water from the water heater is also hot. Hope this helps.

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    • November 22, 2019 at 6:11 pm
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      Thanks for that. The “installer” said filling was fine, but I wondered about air traps and such. Let me ask you this, would air in the system impact the hot water in the heater by chance? We never seem to have hot enough water or enough hot water when using the boiler system compared to having the water heater heating it itself. Currently the water heater breaker is off (electric water heater) and we’re solely using the boiler to heat the water.

      Reply

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