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The White-Rodgers Control 50A55 486 on a gas furnace faile to light-up the burners most of the time while the thermostat is turn on. The flame lighter come red and after a few seconds, it click off. This problem is intermittent. All the safty features seems to operate properly.

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If you have a slight draft in the area, the gas will get blown away before it gets lit (i.e. you never have the right fuel/air mixture to light wth a simple glow heater).

Make sure there are no drafts.

Hard to answer without more detail. this is a tough one for the Fixya.com format.

Sorry not to be more help,

-Mark

Posted on May 22, 2011

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My White-Rodgers Model #1F78 5/2 Day Prgm thermostat turns on and ighnites for a few seconds then turns off even after reprogramming or resetting. What should I do next to get the heater to start working?...


If the furnace or boiler burners actually light for just a few seconds and then go out, the problem is probably NOT the thermostat. Most likely the thermostat is calling for heat so the burners light, but there is a safety device called a flame sensor that will shut off the burners if it does not sense the flame properly. It is very common for the flame sensor to get soot, dirt, or oxidation on it and then it can not sense the flame and the furnace does exactly what yours is doing. Most of the time the flame sensor can be cleaned and it will work again. Sometimes a new one will take longer to go bad again. Typically they are a straight or "L" shaped piece of wire about the size of coat hanger wire that just sticks into the flame. The coat hanger type wire usually goes into a white ceramic base which in turn has a wire connected to the back end. Steel wool works good to clean the flame sensor, but if you use coarse wool or coarse sand paper the surface of the flame sensor gets rough and gets dirty faster. It is made of some kind of "polished" stainless steel.

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Hi i hope you can help. I have a high effeciency furnace and the burners keep turning off.


On a call for heat, the 24 volt thermostat sends a signal to the control module. The control module will indicate a call for heat with a light on the control either blinking or remain solid depending upon model. The inducer (exhaust) blower will purge all gasses from the furnace and pressurize a pressure switch. Once the pressure switch tells the module to continue, the electronic ignition will energize and send 120 volts to the igniter. The igniter will glow and you will be able to see it if viewed thru the small inspection port. Once the igniter gets hot enough, it sends a signal to the module opening up the gas valve (24 volts). Either a pilot will come on or the burner tube will ignite then spread the flame to all burners. Lastly a safety sensor will be looking for a certain temperature within a few seconds and the furnace will continue to operate and the room air blower will turn on in a minute or two.

What could go wrong? The unit will not run if there is no signal from the thermostat (bad thermostat or broken wire), the control module does not sense a signal from the thermostat (bad control), the inducer does not energize (bad motor), the pressure switch does not close (blocked vent piping, bad switch, plugged condensate hose), the igniter does not energize (bad control, bad igniter), the gas valve does not open or there is no gas (bad gas valve, broken wire, no gas), the pilot does not light (dirty pilot), the burner does not light (bad burner, plugged orifice, not enough combustion air), the flame does not spread to each burner (bad flame spreader, dirty flame spreader, more bad burners), the flame safety sensor does not detect flame (dirty or bad flame spreader, bad flame sensor, broken wire, bad control), or the room air blower does not energize (bad fan motor, bad control).

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1 Answer

Thermostat calls and from time to time won't ignite


I would first look at any wire connections both at the furnace and the thermostat. Then I would replace the thermostat. Check the units control board when it does not start for an error code. There should be a small viewing port to look into the furnace cabinet to see the control board.

On a call for heat, the 24 volt thermostat sends a signal to the control module. The control module will indicate a call for heat with a light on the control either blinking or remain solid depending upon model. The inducer (exhaust) blower will purge all gasses from the furnace and pressurize a pressure switch. Once the pressure switch tells the module to continue, the electronic ignition will energize and send 120 volts to the igniter. The igniter will glow and you will be able to see it if viewed thru the small inspection port. Once the igniter gets hot enough, it sends a signal to the module opening up the gas valve (24 volts). Either a pilot will come on or the burner tube will ignite then spread the flame to all burners. Lastly a safety sensor will be looking for a certain temperature within a few seconds and the furnace will continue to operate and the room air blower will turn on in a minute or two.

What could go wrong? The unit will not run if there is no signal from the thermostat (bad thermostat or broken wire), the control module does not sense a signal from the thermostat (bad control), the inducer does not energize (bad motor), the pressure switch does not close (blocked vent piping, bad switch, plugged condensate hose), the igniter does not energize (bad control, bad igniter), the gas valve does not open or there is no gas (bad gas valve, broken wire, no gas), the pilot does not light (dirty pilot), the burner does not light (bad burner, plugged orifice, not enough combustion air), the flame does not spread to each burner (bad flame spreader, dirty flame spreader, more bad burners), the flame safety sensor does not detect flame (dirty or bad flame spreader, bad flame sensor, broken wire, bad control), or the room air blower does not energize (bad fan motor, bad control).

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1 Answer

I have an intertherm gas furnace and it will turn on but it takse almost an hour from the time i turn the heat up until it kicks on. I can hear the click and it sounds like the motor is humming. I have...


On a call for heat, the 24 volt thermostat sends a signal to the control module. The control module will indicate a call for heat with a light on the control either blinking or remain solid depending upon model. The inducer (exhaust) blower will purge all gasses from the furnace and pressurize a pressure switch. Once the pressure switch tells the module to continue, the electronic ignition will energize and send 120 volts to the igniter. The igniter will glow and you will be able to see it if viewed thru the small inspection port. Once the igniter gets hot enough, it sends a signal to the module opening up the gas valve (24 volts). Either a pilot will come on or the burner tube will ignite then spread the flame to all burners. Lastly a safety sensor will be looking for a certain temperature within a few seconds and the furnace will continue to operate and the room air blower will turn on in a minute or two.

What could go wrong? The unit will not run if there is no signal from the thermostat (bad thermostat or broken wire), the control module does not sense a signal from the thermostat (bad control), the inducer does not energize (bad motor), the pressure switch does not close (blocked vent piping, bad switch, plugged condensate hose), the igniter does not energize (bad control, bad igniter), the gas valve does not open or there is no gas (bad gas valve, broken wire, no gas), the pilot does not light (dirty pilot), the burner does not light (bad burner, plugged orifice, not enough combustion air), the flame does not spread to each burner (bad flame spreader, dirty flame spreader, more bad burners), the flame safety sensor does not detect flame (dirty or bad flame spreader, bad flame sensor, broken wire, bad control), or the room air blower does not energize (bad fan motor, bad control).

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1 Answer

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On a call for heat, the 24 volt thermostat sends a signal to the control module. The control module will indicate a call for heat with a light on the control either blinking or remain solid depending upon model. The inducer (exhaust) blower will purge all gasses from the furnace and pressurize a pressure switch. Once the pressure switch tells the module to continue, the electronic ignition will energize and send 120 volts to the igniter. The igniter will glow and you will be able to see it if viewed thru the small inspection port. Once the igniter gets hot enough, it sends a signal to the module opening up the gas valve (24 volts). Either a pilot will come on or the burner tube will ignite then spread the flame to all burners. Lastly a safety sensor will be looking for a certain temperature within a few seconds and the furnace will continue to operate and the room air blower will turn on in a minute or two.

What could go wrong? The unit will not run if there is no signal from the thermostat (bad thermostat or broken wire), the control module does not sense a signal from the thermostat (bad control), the inducer does not energize (bad motor), the pressure switch does not close (blocked vent piping, bad switch, plugged condensate hose), the igniter does not energize (bad control, bad igniter), the gas valve does not open or there is no gas (bad gas valve, broken wire, no gas), the pilot does not light (dirty pilot), the burner does not light (bad burner, plugged orifice, not enough combustion air), the flame does not spread to each burner (bad flame spreader, dirty flame spreader, more bad burners), the flame safety sensor does not detect flame (dirty or bad flame spreader, bad flame sensor, broken wire, bad control), or the room air blower does not energize (bad fan motor, bad control).

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On a call for heat, the 24 volt thermostat sends a signal to the control module. The control module will indicate a call for heat with a light on the control either blinking or remain solid depending upon model. The inducer (exhaust) blower will purge all gasses from the furnace and pressurize a pressure switch. Once the pressure switch tells the module to continue, the electronic ignition will energize and send 120 volts to the igniter. The igniter will glow and you will be able to see it if viewed thru the small inspection port. Once the igniter gets hot enough, it sends a signal to the module opening up the gas valve (24 volts). Either a pilot will come on or the burner tube will ignite then spread the flame to all burners. Lastly a safety sensor will be looking for a certain temperature within a few seconds and the furnace will continue to operate and the room air blower will turn on in a minute or two.

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1 Answer

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On a call for heat, the 24 volt thermostat sends a signal to the control module. The control module will indicate a call for heat with a light on the control either blinking or remain solid depending upon model. The inducer (exhaust) blower will purge all gasses from the furnace and pressurize a pressure switch. Once the pressure switch tells the module to continue, the electronic ignition will energize and send 120 volts to the igniter. The igniter will glow and you will be able to see it if viewed thru the small inspection port. Once the igniter gets hot enough, it sends a signal to the module opening up the gas valve (24 volts). Either a pilot will come on or the burner tube will ignite then spread the flame to all burners. Lastly a safety sensor will be looking for a certain temperature within a few seconds and the furnace will continue to operate and the room air blower will turn on in a minute or two.

What could go wrong? The unit will not run if there is no signal from the thermostat (bad thermostat or broken wire), the control module does not sense a signal from the thermostat (bad control), the inducer does not energize (bad motor), the pressure switch does not close (blocked vent piping, bad switch, plugged condensate hose), the igniter does not energize (bad control, bad igniter), the gas valve does not open or there is no gas (bad gas valve, broken wire, no gas), the pilot does not light (dirty pilot), the burner does not light (bad burner, plugged orifice, not enough combustion air), the flame does not spread to each burner (bad flame spreader, dirty flame spreader, more bad burners), the flame safety sensor does not detect flame (dirty or bad flame spreader, bad flame sensor, broken wire, bad control), or the room air blower does not energize (bad fan motor, bad control).

Your furnace has a diagnostic chart on the reverse of the lower panel incorporated in the wiring diagram. One blink tells you that it is a failure but wont tell you where to start looking.

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2 Answers

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On a call for heat, the 24 volt thermostat sends a signal to the control module. The control module will indicate a call for heat with a light on the control either blinking or remain solid depending upon model. The inducer (exhaust) blower will purge all gasses from the furnace and pressurize a pressure switch. Once the pressure switch tells the module to continue, the electronic ignition will energize and send 120 volts to the igniter. The igniter will glow and you will be able to see it if viewed thru the small inspection port. Once the igniter gets hot enough, it sends a signal to the module opening up the gas valve (24 volts). Either a pilot will come on or the burner tube will ignite then spread the flame to all burners. Lastly a safety sensor will be looking for a certain temperature within a few seconds and the furnace will continue to operate and the room air blower will turn on in a minute or two.

What could go wrong? The unit will not run if there is no signal from the thermostat (bad thermostat or broken wire), the control module does not sense a signal from the thermostat (bad control), the inducer does not energize (bad motor), the pressure switch does not close (blocked vent piping, bad switch, plugged condensate hose), the igniter does not energize (bad control, bad igniter), the gas valve does not open or there is no gas (bad gas valve, broken wire, no gas), the pilot does not light (dirty pilot), the burner does not light (bad burner, plugged orifice, not enough combustion air), the flame does not spread to each burner (bad flame spreader, dirty flame spreader, more bad burners), the flame safety sensor does not detect flame (dirty or bad flame spreader, bad flame sensor, broken wire, bad control), or the room air blower does not energize (bad fan motor, bad control).

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2 Answers

FURNACE COMES ON AND SHUTS DOWN WITHIN 15 SECONDS


On a call for heat, the 24 volt thermostat sends a signal to the control module. The control module will indicate a call for heat with a light on the control either blinking or remain solid depending upon model. The inducer (exhaust) blower will purge all gasses from the furnace and pressurize a pressure switch. Once the pressure switch tells the module to continue, the electronic ignition will energize and send 120 volts to the igniter. The igniter will glow and you will be able to see it if viewed thru the small inspection port. Once the igniter gets hot enough, it sends a signal to the module opening up the gas valve (24 volts). Either a pilot will come on or the burner tube will ignite then spread the flame to all burners. Lastly a safety sensor will be looking for a certain temperature within a few seconds and the furnace will continue to operate and the room air blower will turn on in a minute or two.

What could go wrong? The unit will not run if there is no signal from the thermostat (bad thermostat or broken wire), the control module does not sense a signal from the thermostat (bad control), the inducer does not energize (bad motor), the pressure switch does not close (blocked vent piping, bad switch, plugged condensate hose), the igniter does not energize (bad control, bad igniter), the gas valve does not open or there is no gas (bad gas valve, broken wire, no gas), the pilot does not light (dirty pilot), the burner does not light (bad burner, plugged orifice, not enough combustion air), the flame does not spread to each burner (bad flame spreader, dirty flame spreader, more bad burners), the flame safety sensor does not detect flame (dirty or bad flame spreader, bad flame sensor, broken wire, bad control), or the room air blower does not energize (bad fan motor, bad control). When all else fails, check the ground connection for corrosion.

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2 Answers

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Furnace attempted to start but failed after so manay tries. This may help you.

Sequence of operation, Gas Furnace.

On a call for heat, the 24 volt thermostat sends a signal to the control module. The control module will indicate a call for heat with a light on the control either blinking or remain solid depending upon model. The inducer (exhaust) blower will purge all gasses from the furnace and pressurize a pressure switch. Once the pressure switch tells the module to continue, the electronic ignition will energize and send 120 volts to the ignitor. The ignitor will glow and you will be able to see it if viewed thru the small inspection port. Once the ignitor gets hot enough, it sends a signal to the module opening up the gas valve (24 volts). Either a pilot will come on or the burner tube will ignite then spread the flame to all burners. Lastly a safety sensor will be looking for a certain temperature within a few seconds and the furnace will continue to operate and the room air blower will turn on in a minute or two.

What could go wrong? The unit will not run if there is no signal from the thermostat (bad thermostat or broken wire), the control module does not sense a signal from the thermostat (bad control), the inducer does not energize (bad motor), the pressure switch does not close (blocked vent piping, bad switch, plugged condensate hose), the ignitor does not energize (bad control, bad ignitor), the gas valve does not open or there is no gas (bad gas valve, broken wire, no gas), the pilot does not lite (dirty pilot), the burner does not lite (bad burner, plugged orifice, not enough combustion air), the flame does not spread to each burner (bad flame spreader, dirty flame spreader, more bad burners), the flame safety sensor does not detect flame (dirty or bad flame spreader, bad flame sensor, broken wire, bad control), or the room air blower does not energize (bad fan motor, bad control).

Most newer furnaces will have a diagnostic center or control built into the control module. You may be able to view it as it is running thru a small viewing port. Some models will require the removal of an access panel prior to finding it. On the reverse of the access panel, there will be a diagnostic chart that will aide you in understanding any error code recorded (usually a blinking light).

This is why we technicians earn the big bucks!

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