No heat generated by Soleus HGW-308 Mid-Size Heater
My wife has been using a Soleus HGW-308 I purchased for her every day for ~1 month. As she ususally does, she had had it on in the morning, then turned it off to go have lunch. When she came back and turned it back on (after ~1 hr), it would not generate any heat. The power button indicates that power is still getting to the unit. When I turn the nob to adjust the heat, I can hear it clicking on or off, so the thermostat seems to be working, so might it be a short to or in the heating element(s) itself?
How can I troubleshoot this further? I have basic skills soldering, so may be able to do simply repairs if I can find the problem.
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Re: No heat generated by Soleus HGW-308 Mid-Size Heater
If you can hear a "click" when you turn the temperature knob, and the unit is plugged in, chances are the heating has failed.
If you have a multimeter, unplug the unit from the wall.
Put the meter on R x 1000 ohms, and put the meter probes on each of the plug blades. Rotate the temperature control through it's range. You should have just a few ohms when the control has clicked (you really don't care at this point), as you turn the temperature control to a hotter temperature. You should have no ohms when turning the other way (this all assumes you are in a typical room temperature environment.).
If no reading is obtained, either the element has failed, the temperature control has failed, the "tip-over" switch has failed, there is a burned terminal in the wiring, or sometimes a heat fuse fails.
If it's the element or temperature control, it's probably best just to buy a new heater. The other three are identify and replace.
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This is a very good possibility and depending upon the year they may call this part a flame generator. So ask for both when purchasing. Before you run out and purchase this take five minutes and try this, I use steel wool or light grit sand paper and clean up the bulb end of the thermocouple then place it top center of the flame as this is the hottest area of the flame, now with a small wrench check to see that it is tight in the gas valve. Now try lighting the pilot and then the furnace. Some times a simple cleaning and tightening can cure this problem. If not now you can go and purchase a new one.
A bit late for you probably Steve, but other browsers might be interested...
Micathermics are faster to warm up the room than other resistive heaters, but otherwise they're no more efficient - so it depends whether you feel that the fast warm up is worth the extra money that the micathermic would cost.
If your ceiling is well insulated (including over the wall plates at the top of the internal walls) then the large windows are very likely the reason that your underfloor heating can't get the heat high enough. Have you considered double glazing? 3M have a very cheap, disposable window insulation kit that you could put on for a cold season to see if it's worth putting in some more permanent double glazing (and in fact that kit will probably last 2 or 3 cold seasons if you just leave it up).
The heater power (kW) required to get that extra 2 degC depends on how well the room is insulated. Your best bet would be to find out how much kW your underfloor heating is putting out and how much degC it is warming up the room, then keep the same proportions to work out how much extra kW you need.
Are you setting the input to maximum and the boost to late? You do not say what size the heater is in either kilowatts or kilowatt hours eg 2kW or 18kWh. These heaters will tend run out of stored heat in the evening especially in colder weather.
I would check the pilot orfice to make sure you have enough of a flame to heat up the generator. You can buy a orfice drill bit and drill it out one size. The pilot should hit the generator toward the center. You should be able to buy a new orfice for the pilot assembly from the place you bought your heater.
Williams heaters have a manual reset for the spill safety switch. If the heater is not venting properly it will trip this switch and shut off main burner function. The switch is on the left side of the cover inside the small vent. You can use a screwdriver to push the button back in. If the heater then works you will need to get the vent inspected to make sure it is connected properly and there is no blockage.