Re: furnace help? end of my rope
I've been in the HVAC/R field since 1983. I work for a major wholesale distributor in Baltimore. On the heating and air conditioning side, I handle equipment and parts sales, system design and troubleshooting. When the contractor can't fix it, he calls me or the manufacturer.
Shredmaster, there are 2 major causes of a rollout switch fault code.
1) The most common is an intermitent or permanent failure of the switch. Either the switch is weak and temporarily opens, or it will not reset at all, causing the fault code to blink on your system board.
2) The most dangerous (and possibly deadly) cause is a cracked or rusted out heat exchanger tube. When a tube or heat exchanger section is cracked or rusted out, the air from the circulating fan is forced through the hole and causes the flame in the faulty burner tube to blow back and "rollout" of the burner. The presence of the misguided flame causes the temperature to rise in the burner chamber and the rollout switch opens. There is usually a red reset button located in the center of the switch. Press the button and the contacts will close, provided the bimetal switch has cooled enough to allow a reset. There is a dangerous side effect of the cracked heat exchanger. Flue gases, including carbon monoxide (CO), will escape from the heat exchanger and mix with the air passing through the furnace and it is then circulated through your ducts and throughout your home.
If you have any type of fossil fueled (wood or pellet stove, fireplace, natural gas, liquid propane or fuel oil) heating system in your home, please please, please have at least 2 carbon monoxide detectors in your home. For forced air systems, locate one in the furnace equipment area. The other one should be located near the supply air outlet of the first branch duct off of the main trunk. This will be the branch duct closest to the furnace.
I know your furnace is only 10 years old, but in a poorly ventilated home, without adequate fresh air intake, I've seen heat exchangers rust out in 3 to 4 years. This usually occurs in newer homes that are well insulated and lack a source of fresh combustion air in the furnace area. This was never a problem in older homes because fresh cold air poured in through cracks around windows, doors and electrical outlets located on exterior walls. In the case of a tightly insulated home, the furnace burns oxygen at a faster rate than it can infiltrate through the tiny cracks under your exterior doors. This causes a low oxygen flame and an incomplete burning of the fuel. One byproduct of gas and oil combustion is sulfuric acid. The higher the oxygen mixture, the hotter the flame, more sulfur is burned and less sulfuric acid remains in the heat exchanger and flue pipes. If you don't have a fresh air intake in your furnace room or basement, you can make one inexpensively by installing a dryer vent through the wall and covering the interior opening with a piece of window screen. The flapper should be removed and the screen will prevent birds and insects from entering the vent.
If the new rollout switch continues to cause the board to shut the furnace down, call a service tech immediately. If you can't find one that is reputable on your own, ask one of the older residents on your street to refer one for you. Better yet, call the York equipment distributor in your area and have them refer one. A licensed and qualified company will have hand held CO detectors supplied to their technicians. They will check the supply air vents for the presence of CO in the air stream.
If you decide to purchase a service and maintenance agreement, make sure that part of the annual maintenance checkup includes a test with a hand held CO detector.
Let me know how this turns out. I'll be subscribing to this thread, so either post it here, PM or email me.
I hope it all turns out well without too much expense on your part. If I was in your area, I'd come out and check it over for free. (Well not free - you'd owe me a sandwich and a couple beers!)