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Bill P.
Bill P., HVAC Mechanic
Category: HVAC
Satisfied Customers: 338
Experience:  Oil / Gas / A/C / Hydronics
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Lockout light is on and the oil boiler is not firing up. Why?

Customer Question

My oil boiler is not firing up. The Lock Out light is on. When I press the button that normally sorts it, it fires up for about 30 seconds; then locks out again. Please help!

Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: HVAC
Expert:  Bill P. replied 6 years ago.

Hi there.

Do you know if the system did run out of oil? or do you think something else is causing it not to start? When you say firing up for 30 seconds, is there actually fire in the pot, or is the burner just running but no flame? Also can you get the make and model of burner please?

Customer: replied 6 years ago.


The Make is Worcester and the Model is Danesmoor 12/14. I'm not sure if there is a flame as it is not visible but it's making all the usual noises!

Expert:  Bill P. replied 6 years ago.

Is there a different name on the burner assembly itself? It would make telling you how to bleed it easier.

Also, did you run out of fuel?

Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Sorry, forgot to say. I think we did run out of fuel again - the tank was very low anyway.

The only other name I can find is Worcester Nova Jet 1.

Thanks - hope this helps.

Expert:  Bill P. replied 6 years ago.

Ok well we will go with that. If you did run out of oil, you will need to bleed the system. On the oil burner, where you are pressing the reset button, find the oil pump (the oil supply line will be feeding into the pump). On the pump somewhere there should be a little nipple type thing, looks like a brake bleeder, or a grease nipple, something you would stick a hose on. you have to loosen this but don't take it out, and either put a container under it, or a hose on it into a container. when this is done, press the reset button, oil and air will spray into your container. It might take 30 seconds or even another press, but run it till you have all oil,no air. Tighten the fitting, and try it , see if it fires. If it still doesn't, we will have to look into other possibilities.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Hello again!

Husband has tried the above - we have unhindered oil supply from the tank and have bled the system. Still no joy though I'm afraid!

Expert:  Bill P. replied 6 years ago.


If you've bled the system, and still no fire it could be a few different things. Sometimes when you run out of oil, especially since its been a few times, the nozzle may have plugged and not be spraying correctly. When you press the button, can you look in the firebox with a flash light or something, and see if there is a mist of fuel? If you can see a mist, then it may be that your ignition transformer is low or has quit altogether. There could also be a build up of crud at the end of the gun where the nozzle and ignition points are. You don't want to be pressing it many times until you find out if it is pumping oil in there. Every time you press it and it doesn't ignite, it may be spraying more fuel in there, which will make for a messy burn off when you do get it going.

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Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Hello. I had to bite the bullet in the end and ask my dad for some advice. It turned out that the valve on the fuel tank itself wasn't fully open. Thanks ever so much for your help - we have heat!

Expert:  Bill P. replied 6 years ago.

Glad you got it going!