home boiler, chronic problem

   / home boiler, chronic problem #1  

Little Red Tractor

Gold Member
Apr 8, 2012
Gloversville NY
Kubota 2301
I've got a Utica Boiler, gas fired with a power vent; it's about 10-12 years old. I'm on the 3rd vent fan assembly. The last two have failed, with either the fan itself going off line and striking the housing an impeller in the motor itself going out of whack striking the side. They go far enough out of kilter to cause the motor to not start.
Anybody have any ideas?
   / home boiler, chronic problem #2  
Got any condensation comming back down the vent getting on the fan or motor ? What vent material is used ?
   / home boiler, chronic problem #3  
what brand? I have a sideshot forced exhaust fan. I've had to replace the wheel once, soot destroyed it over time.
   / home boiler, chronic problem #4  
Look for a dirt build-up that is changing the balance and creating vibration. Annual service should detect that. Is you service DIY or a contractor? Some service techs are not that diligent when pushed to complete a set number of calls per day.

   / home boiler, chronic problem
  • Thread Starter
All good thoughts. All tried. I used to work on boilers, so all the obvious has been looked at, and a few not-so obvious...
Third unit on it now, and running like a charm. I suppose it's possible that I had two bad ones.
   / home boiler, chronic problem #6  
First place to look is improper flue venting. Discoloration and oxidation near the fan are a dead giveaway.
   / home boiler, chronic problem #7  
Is it installed vertically or horizontally? Could be it was installed incorrectly in the beginning, i.e. meant for vertical operation but installed horizontally.
   / home boiler, chronic problem #8  
Vent fans don't necessarily last very long. Some do and some don't.

I don't know what particular brand yours is, the fans are not made by the boiler manufacturer, so do some research about the history of your model. Maybe they are just a poor design and all of them go out. Maybe you can get a different model.

The fan is one of the weak links on modern high efficiency boilers too. None of them last as long as we'd like or as long as the older atmospheric boilers do.