Question about Empire GWT-50 Wall Mounted Panel Heater

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Empire GWT-50 creating soot and sometimes flashs when starting

Our Empire GWT-50 two-sided heater has started creating soot on and around the ceiling of the unit. The ceiling is 8 foot and the unit is installed to specifications. We have had a service guy come out recently. He said pilot and the heater flame was burning correctly. He cycled the unit several times and found no problems based on his knowledge. He did not charge us for the site visit.

The other night my brother had a “flash” from the heater starting up. It was described as a “whoosh with a yellow glow outside of the burner tubes”. This flash has happen two times now. The unit is very clean with no cobwebs or dust. We are at a loss on this problem. Ken

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If it giving off soot then it is wrong it sounds like the air mixture is wrong and the flames are light back to the injector that would be the woosh , no heat er should give off soot if combustion is correct

Posted on Jan 10, 2009

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Our Rinnai gasheater is in 'n working condition but since we used it the white walls and ceilings are covered with black marks - I am worried that it could be dangerous - any advice?


Unfortunately, you failed to mention the Model Number and whether its a flue-less or Vented unit. In either case, the black streaks you see on the walls and ceilings is soot. If it's a flue-less unit, this is an indication that the unit has not received routine maintenance on a regular basis. The sooting is caused by a dirty or clogged burner or low gas pressure.

Also, burning scented candles and operating the heater at the same time, will cause soot. Not from the heater, but from the candles. All candles soot, but scented candles soot more than others. Combine them with the warm moist heat and they will soot 50 times worse. If this is the case, it's the candles sooting, not the heater. Stop burning the candles while the heater is in operation.

Is the soot dangerous? Yes, to the point that you are breathing it in, when it;s floating in the air. The sooting didn't occur over night, it has been doing it for sometime. You finally realized it, when you saw the black streaks. Stop using the heater until it is professionally serviced by and authorized Rinnai Service Technician and the walls and ceiling are cleaned.

You can either remove the soot yourself or have it professionally done. Then, you should prime paint the walls and ceiling with a sealer like Kilz, before repainting. All curtains or draperies should be washed or dry cleaned. All furniture and carpeting should be vacuumed thoroughly.

I hope this helped you and thanks for choosing FixYa.

Aug 10, 2011 | Heating & Cooling

1 Answer

Had a problem with the thermostat connected to GW-50-4 Wall furnace. One fan is not working at all, the other fan runs continuously even when the furnace isn't running. Is there a control swith or...


Jake, it sounds like the motor coil wiring on the blower that doesn't work may be damaged or has been disconnected.

Regarding the one that is still running. The automatic fan control is located on the bottom of the blower assembly. The fan control is a nonadjustable, automatic type. The fan control will require between 3 and 7 minutes of main burner operation before the fan control "closes" and activates the blower. The blower will continue to run between 3 and 7 minutes after the main burner shuts off, before the fan control "opens" and deactivates the blower. In which case, if it continues to run and run and run, the fan control switch (part # R-2503) may have failed and will need to be replaced. You can order the part from Empire Comfort Systems Tech Service 800-851-3153. Have the Model Number, Serial Number of the heater handy, as well a the Part Number. when you call.

To help you further, I have included a link to the Owner's Manual for that model wall heater. You can download and print it for future reference.

http://www.empirezoneheat.com/assets//EHS/manuals/GWT-%2825,35%29_Manual.pdf

I hope this helped you troubleshoot and solve the problem. Please let me know. Thanks.

Jun 11, 2011 | Empire GWT-50 Wall Mounted Panel Heater

1 Answer

How do the wires from the thermostat connect to the heater? It will not turn on - the pilot light is ON


Sounds like a millivolt system. If it is, there is only two wires that go to the thermostat. There should be two wires to connect the thermostat wires either down by the valve or on top of the furnace. Make sure the valve is turned to "on" and not just "pilot"

Apr 11, 2011 | Empire GWT-50 Wall Mounted Panel Heater

1 Answer

Black soot every were how do i clean it and what with


Well, Boat Bob, you can clean the soot off by using a Shop Vac with a brush attachment on the hose. That will take off the biggest portion of it. Then you can clean the remainder of the outside with a damp cloth, but be sure to dry the cabinet afterward. Remove the screws the are holding the face of the of the cabinet on and proceed to clean all of the interior of the heater cabinet fire, with the Shop Vac , being sure to vacuum the burner(s) thoroughly, as well as the pilot assembly and all the mechanical 's. What soot isn't removed with shop vac, should be removed with a DRY cloth. Then use a can of compressed air with a straw nozzle (like you clean your computer with) to blow out the pilot and all around the pilot assembly.

For the remaining soot on walls, ceilings, furniture, etc. Gently vacuuming is the best way to remove the lion' share of the soot. Then, if necessary, the walls and ceiling can be washed with a diluted solution of Simple Green and water. Clean small areas at a time.

After that, you need to turn your attention, as to why the heater sooted? Several things come to mind ... No annual professional cleaning and service; Incomplete combustion; Vent pipe partially obstructed; Low gas pressure; Clogged burner(s), Obstructed air intake.

If you'd like further information, here is a link to your Owners Manual, which will help you to Troubleshoot the heater. http://www.empirecomfort.com/EMPIRECOMFORT/pdf2009/manuals/12433-10-0109DV.pdf

Hope this helped you to answer your questions.

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Air in gas line? Bleed the gas line and try again. Make sure tanks are on.

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look inside the control panel of the heater. look for a 120 volt to 24 volt transformer.  There may be a fuse on the transformer secondary.  The thermostat switches a hot 24 volt wire so you won't find a common at the thermostat.

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