Question about Heating & Cooling
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Posted on Jan 02, 2017
All thremocouples have a number on them which tells what 'millivolt' output it has. Try to match that up or call a HVAC company and ask them for one with that number.
Posted on Oct 05, 2009
Since the thermocouple body is made of metal, and often these have a copper or brass sleeve, that *should* provide good grounding for the thermocouple.
Obviously some engineer at the heater company did not agree with this, so he added an extra ground wire.
Most gas valves are not all that sensitive to exactly how many microvolts the thermocouple feeds to it.
My guess would be that if there is a cheap metal bracket that holds the thermocouple, such as unplated steel or tin, the extra ground wire counteracts the effects of corrosion over time.
So if the heater were stored in a damp garage, the thermocouple connection would get corroded, and the heater would not stay lit. The fix is the extra ground wire.
There are two types of failures with thermocouples: the safe-failure is when the gas is shut-off, even when flame is present, and the unsafe failure would be when gas is not shut off, even when no flame is present.
If the thermocouple somehow was not adequately grounded, then the most likely failure would be a 'safe failure' , such that the burner would not stay lit.
You could rig up some sort of extra grounding wire, but unless the part is subject to extreme vibration or is in an extreme (wet/salty) environment, it's probably not needed.
Of course, to be safe, do a flame blow-out test after you install the new part. While it's highly unlikely that an unsafe failure could occur, better safe than sorry.
Posted on Oct 21, 2009
A thermocouple is a junction between two different metals that
produces a voltage related to a temperature difference. Thermocouples are a widely used type of temperature sensor for measurement and control and can also be used to convert heat into electric power.
The following steps can be used to replace them
- Shut off the gas supply valve to the heater. The supply line connects to the thermostat at the bottom front of the tank. Turn the gas supply valve clockwise to shut it off.
- Remove the screws from the outer door at the bottom of the tank and remove it. The outer door covers the pilot tube, supply tube and the thermocouple connection.
- Remove the screws from the inner door located behind the outer door. If your heater allows, remove the inner door. If the inner door is an integral part of the burner assembly, leave the door on but leave the screws removed.
- Disconnect the pilot tube, supply tube and thermocouple from the thermostat. Use an adjustable wrench and turn all three nuts counterclockwise that hold the two tubes and the thermocouple onto the thermostat.
- Pull the burner assembly from the combustion chamber located behind the inner door. They could connect to the inner door as stated in Step 3.
- Remove the old thermocouple and replace it with the new thermocouple. The thermocouple attaches to the burner assembly in a bracket next to the pilot light. Pull and twist the old thermocouple from the bracket.
- Push and twist the new thermocouple into the bracket. Position the tip of the thermocouple where the pilot light flame heats the tip of the thermocouple.
- Replace the burner assembly into the combustion chamber and reattach the pilot tube, gas tube and new thermocouple to the thermostat.
- Reattach the inner and outer doors on the bottom of the tank and turn the gas supply valve back on. Do not forget to light the pilot light.
Hope this solution has been helpful?
Posted on Dec 03, 2010
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