Do-it-yourself gas heater repair

Most gas heaters found on the territory of Russia are made in the traveling version. Home in fact a little, for example, fireplaces. Touching them yourself is not recommended, repair of gas heaters, in this case, should be done by an expert from the relevant service. This applies to any gas equipment. And the simplest water column contains a lot of parts, if improperly assembled, the consequences can be dire. Consider today imported gas heater BigBuddy on propane, which served as the prototype of another device of the same kind. We will briefly discuss the device, because without theoretical knowledge it is better not to go inside the device.

Gas heater device

First about cylinders for an imported gas heater. Do not at all resemble collet or other tourist, popular in Russia. According to American standards, everything is threaded, screwed into the receiving corolla of a gas heater, reliably protecting the joint from leaks. When installing the manual strongly insist to check the tightness with soapy water. Collet cylinders are not screwed into the gas heater, but simply pierced through the intake. At the time of maintenance of the heater, it is allowed to remove it, and at the end of the work - back.

The BigBuddy gas water heater is equipped with a “quick” connection plug. Russian equivalents are supplied with just a fitting, we will stretch the hose on it. Uncomfortable, but:

  • is cheap;
  • universally;
  • does not require unnecessary fuss.

Already upon purchase, pay attention to the type of power supply to the heater.

As for BigBuddy, there are two American propane gas cylinders in there, and the “quick” connection fitting mentioned is located on the left. This will allow you to easily supply yourself with heat. The BigBuddy gas heater is equipped with a 6 V rechargeable battery and a fan designed to blow two ceramic grates, bathed in the fire of the leading burners( left and right).The pilot light is ignited at the start, pressing and holding for 1 min.gas flow adjustment knobs. This time is required for charging the solenoid valve using an emf of a thermocouple installed on the pilot flame.

Over a period of 1 min.the semiconductor junction is heated, and the resulting voltage holds the valve in the open position with the help of a coil. This scheme is widely used in Russia, exclusively in gas columns. Russia is characterized by simple, portable gas heaters, rather than sophisticated appliances, like BigBuddy. And it is in vain, because for the harsh Russian conditions, a heat gun would be useful, producing more efficient heating of the room due to forced airflow than infrared devices. At least due to the presence of forced convection of air masses.

From what has been said it is clear: if the pilot burner is extinguished, the thermocouple cools down, as a result of which the EMF is lost, keeping the electromagnetic valve for the gas supply in the open state. And when you press the ignition button( and hold), the lever presses down the coil core for as long as the design cocks to a working state. Three positions are now available:

  1. Min.
  2. Mid.
  3. Max.

We believe that the purpose of the abbreviations is clear. In minimum mode, one burner is working - the left one. Accordingly, the left ceramic grate is heated. The fan turns on separately and does not apply to the gas flow adjustment knob. After ignition of the pilot light, it is not necessary to set the flow to Off, as the pilot burner will go out. Consequently, the thermocouple cools down and the process will have to be restarted. The gas heater device does not provide for other protective measures. Therefore, it is recommended to check problem areas with soapy water( after connecting a cylinder, do not light the fire), and in the presence of bubbles, take measures for sealing. We do not recommend soldering, because the temperature of the heater can exceed 250ºС, maintained by solder.

Repair of gas heaters

If the BigBuddy gas heater ignition burner produces red flame tips( or flashes and sparks) when the light is off, you should start from here. The protective net is easily removed( when the device is cold), then you need to find cotton swabs( sold at the pharmacy), moisten it with alcohol or cleaning fluid, and just climb into the nozzle to clean the course of soot and soot. This should be done carefully so that the cotton does not get stuck inside. After this procedure, the flame will turn blue, cleaner than before the service events.

To warmly go in the frontal direction, behind the ceramic arrays there is a reflector, separated by an air bag from the back wall. Here lies the second point. You will need a torx screwdriver to remove and then purge the panel. Use an ordinary compressor, how to make a unit with your own hands, already told, we add that there is enough pressure of 3 atm. This is relatively small. For convenient use, wear a Chinese pneumogun on the hose( equipped with your own scale).Carefully blow off the dust, then you should look at the grates. If you do not regularly clean the device, they will become black, and soot will appear on the walls of the room( the gas itself burns without smoke, but contains sulfur and other impurities).

Ceramic grates are thoroughly purged. And now about the breakdowns:

  • First, the pilot light may not burn. There are several reasons. We start by checking the presence of gas in the cylinder. Easier to do it by weight, if you find a suitable device. Or change the cylinder to a new one, where gas is guaranteed to be poured. The second number is recommended to test the thermocouple: release the contacts, then check the voltage with a voltmeter and a match. These are tens mV.As the thermocouple heats up, the voltage rises, if not, it's time to put a new one. Rather, fit any similar spare part for the gas column. Detail looks like a spark plug in the car. Please note that BigBuddy is there and ignition. In this case, the spark plug wires are thick, power, and do not go to the valve. Finally, a breakage occurs in the valve coil, the core is not retained even after the formation of thermo-emf. A new valve is requested from the dealer or manufacturer. We are confident that today on e-bay and in similar electronic catalogs you will find what is required for the repair of a gas heater regardless of the country that produced the device. It is unlikely that the core rod is jammed or the ignition handle is broken. These are purely mechanical faults that are found by visual inspection.
  • The fan is equipped with an asynchronous motor( the collector is able to operate from DC, but too noisy).If the propeller does not spin, the first suspicion falls on the power. We check the tester, at a rate equal to zero, go to the voltage adapter( 6 V).There will be a chance that the pulsed power supply unit of the device has broken, it is not easy to fix. Repair of gas heaters with their own hands will not cause difficulties. If properly, then we aim at the engine. The findings show a resistance of tens of ohms. If not, time to figure out the cause. In small motors, there is hardly any protection against overheating; most likely, a winding has burned out. Sometimes the recovery does not take much time, since the motor consists of a single coil. By the way, the battery is replaced by a similar one.
  • If the flame of the leading burners does not appear, the fault probably lies in the gas unit. Repair of infrared gas heaters in this case comes down to finding a new one. We do not recommend restoring such a complicated part on our own. The ignition subsystem is still breaking. Sometimes it is a piezoelectric element( eternal crystal), less often a circuit like an electric stove or on a battery. Less often, because for this scenario, you need an external power supply, or a battery.

We hope that now every reader will be able to repair the gas heater by himself. Moreover, most of the models found in Russia are far from being as complex as the one described. Repair of outdoor gas heaters is reduced to thermocouples and solenoid valves. For those who want to learn more, we recommend reading on the site about gas columns.

Not told about the security subsystem. Thermocouple is used in the columns for the reason that the bimetallic plate will not withstand high temperatures. The combustion control subsystem is an indispensable part of heaters. In order not to waste fuel and avoid accidents, gas is supplied with an odorant to detect leakage by man. Without this, hydrocarbons cannot be detected.

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