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I have a Bradford oil water heater. Purchased perhaps 10…

Hi...I have a Bradford...

Hi...I have a Bradford White oil water heater. Purchased perhaps 10 years ago. After a year or two (I only am in this house in the summer), the side of the heater where the circle sheet metal plate is started to show burns and carbon. When a repair man came he said that the "firebox" was missing.

Contractor's Assistant: How long has this been going on? And how severe is the problem?

This situation was seen at the beginning...the firs year. Is there a firebox in that space that could be missing? The solution at that time of the guy that said I was missing the firebox was to shore up the insulation that he found there. So the heater worked for years like that. Now I have a consist problem that the first repairman came twice to "change the cad cell eye" as the heater went off. So since it happened the third time, I went to another repairman. He spent some time and decided to give me a new control unit. The cost fo that visit with the new unit was $500.00. I don't use much of the hot water as I live alone in the house and only in the summer time. 4 months later the heater went off again. The same company came, different technician and he replaced the cad cell eye for another $250.00. The first repairman in this second company I told about the constant change of the cad cell eye by the previous repairman. Seems to me that changing my control unit was not the solution.

Contractor's Assistant: Do you plan on doing the work yourself?

You probably asked me this before I sent you my latest...

Contractor's Assistant: Anything else we should know to help you best?

You are Bradford White technicians...is there a "fire box" (as opposed to insulation material) in that hole where the metal plate is and where the fire is?

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Answered in 4 minutes by:
3/16/2018
Rick
Rick, Construction Supervisor
Category: Plumbing
Satisfied Customers: 23,808
Experience: Licensed Master plumber with 40+ yrs. experience.
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Welcome to Just Answer, my name is ***** ***** I will do my best to help you with your issue. If my initial response doesn’t answer your question then let me know and we can continue our conversation.The firebox is a generic term for the combustion chamber which is lined with fireproof insulation. It's possible the burner was over fired (nozzle too big)and that caused the initial damage. If you didn't have an insulated chamber the burner would burn a hole through the base of the unit is fairly short order.

Rick
Rick, Construction Supervisor
Category: Plumbing
Satisfied Customers: 23,808
Experience: Licensed Master plumber with 40+ yrs. experience.
Verified
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Customer reply replied 1 month ago
Thank you for your reply. So since it has not burned any more since that time, and that there is no, say, ceramic box in that chamber, then we can eliminate that as regards ***** ***** current problem. I don't belief changing the control unit was the answer, nor changing the cad cell eye again and again. What is your take?
Phone call session started
Customer reply replied 1 month ago
Rick...I am waiiting to see if you can send me your response in this chat room...otherwise please email me at***@******.***
thanks Eileen

Based on our discussion, it's apparent that neither the cad cell nor the ignition control were the cause of your problem. Replacing the cad cell several times makes me question the competence of your technicians.
At this point the most likely culprits, ones that are often overlooked, are a weak ignition transformer or a bad cad cell socket.
I am MA licensed oil burner tech with 40+ years of experience.

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Customer reply replied 1 month ago
thanks so much, Rick

You're welcome

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