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water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help

 
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 882117
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02/10/2010 05:31 PM
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water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
Someone please help, I don't know what this means...

I have a relative asking me and I don't know what to tell them


Their water heater is making a low rumbling groaning noise when they turn the thermostat to make the heat kick in.. it starts up and makes this noise but it stops as soon as they turn the thermostat back.

Any ideas?
Anonymous Coward
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02/10/2010 05:32 PM
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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
Boiling water.
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 884586
Australia
02/10/2010 05:32 PM
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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
Ghosts? It's gonna blow!!!
snark

User ID: 817630
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02/10/2010 05:33 PM

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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
RUN!!!!!!!
T For Texas, T For Tennessee!


The virtue of courage is a prerequisite for the practice of all other virtues, because otherwise one is virtuous only when virtue has no cost. There are times when something needs to be done, and yet we know that if we step up and do this needful thing, we will pay a heavy personal price. -C.S. Lewis
Anonymous Coward
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02/10/2010 05:34 PM
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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
Tell them to pull the pop-off (pressure safety valve) lever to make sure it's functioning.

If it sticks and the thermostat has a runaway firing condition.....Boom.

Youtube has lot's of water heater/boiler explosions.
apprentice

User ID: 887706
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02/10/2010 05:34 PM

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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
Is it an electric water heater tank OP?

Or a domestic boiler/furnace?

Need more info...
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 582017
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02/10/2010 05:36 PM
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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
Gas jets are corroded or they should prepare to spend $$ to replace or deal with cold showers for awhile.
Anonymous Coward
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02/10/2010 05:36 PM
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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
Assuming its a fuel oil heated. Have the burner cleaned, replace the nozzle and fuel oil filter.
Anonymous
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02/10/2010 05:36 PM
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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
Tell them to call the gas company for advice. Or call & ask a plumber what's going on. (If it is a leak, the damn gas co will pull the meter right then; just call a plumber yourself at the git-go and save some time)
Anonymous
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02/10/2010 05:40 PM
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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
Tell them to call the gas company for advice. Or call & ask a plumber what's going on. (If it is a leak, the damn gas co will pull the meter right then; just call a plumber yourself at the git-go and save some time)
 Quoting: Anonymous 750018


Correction: They should call whatever fuel supplier they use and see if they can get any input. Then call around to some HVAC companies--- Hopefully they are aware of the potential seriousness of this. Maybe they'll luck out & it's something minor.
Anonymous Coward
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02/10/2010 05:43 PM
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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
Someone please help, I don't know what this means...

I have a relative asking me and I don't know what to tell them


Their water heater is making a low rumbling groaning noise when they turn the thermostat to make the heat kick in.. it starts up and makes this noise but it stops as soon as they turn the thermostat back.

Any ideas?
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 882117

Slap on your goggles, helmet, and seat belt.
Then shout "THAR SHE BLOWS!!!!"
Anonymous Coward (OP)
User ID: 882117
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02/10/2010 05:43 PM
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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
I don't understand what you guys are saying!!!!

I am young and don't know anything about this, seriously. I'm sorry. I am really worried.....


Should we just keep the heat off?


We are in the blizzard, travel bans, no one can come to look at this or fix it.
anomalous
User ID: 887386
United Kingdom
02/10/2010 05:43 PM
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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
Sounds like cavitation to me, need to repressurise the system. Probable a leak somewhwere.
apprentice

User ID: 887706
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02/10/2010 05:46 PM

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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
I don't understand what you guys are saying!!!!

I am young and don't know anything about this, seriously. I'm sorry. I am really worried.....


Should we just keep the heat off?


We are in the blizzard, travel bans, no one can come to look at this or fix it.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 882117



It sounds like an oil fired burner but that's just a guess.

Have them go outside and look at the top of the chimney to see what the smoke looks like comming out, while the burner is running. (turn up t-stat)

If it's black and billowy, chances are the burner just needs a tune-up, which includes a new oil nozzle, new set of electrodes, oil filter, and a cleaning of all soot inside the combustion chamber/heat exchanger.

Last Edited by Browne on 02/10/2010 05:48 PM
Anonymous Coward
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02/10/2010 05:47 PM
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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
OP
What type of fuel does it use? Gas - Oil - Electricity?
Knowing that will help to answer.
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 842974
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02/10/2010 05:50 PM
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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
dont listen to these people...its scale buildup within
the tank....its probably old and has not been flushed.
it may or may not be able to be flushed now but you should
probably call a plumber.
Anonymous Coward (OP)
User ID: 882117
United States
02/10/2010 05:50 PM
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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
Okay answers:
it is OIL HEATER


They aren't turning the heat on because they are afraid
So I can't look at the smoke from the chimney.

They might have the neighbor clear the snow from the chimney to see if this helps. Is that even what the problem is here???




I don't understand what you guys are saying!!!!

I am young and don't know anything about this, seriously. I'm sorry. I am really worried.....


Should we just keep the heat off?


We are in the blizzard, travel bans, no one can come to look at this or fix it.



It sounds like an oil fired burner but that's just a guess.

Have them go outside and look at the top of the chimney to see what the smoke looks like comming out.

If it's black and billowy, chances are the burner just needs a tune-up, which includes a new oil nozzle, new set of electrodes, oil filter, and a cleaning of all soot inside the combustion chamber/heat exchanger.
 Quoting: apprentice
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 875706
United States
02/10/2010 05:56 PM
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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
Then you most likely need the burner cleaned and serviced. A routine service that usually should be done yearly. Not horribly expensive. Several oil delivery companies also do this kind of work, you might check with them. If you're not handy you should have it done by a pro. I do my own, only takes about 20 minutes.
apprentice

User ID: 887706
United States
02/10/2010 05:58 PM

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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
Okay answers:
it is OIL HEATER


They aren't turning the heat on because they are afraid
So I can't look at the smoke from the chimney.

They might have the neighbor clear the snow from the chimney to see if this helps. Is that even what the problem is here???






I don't understand what you guys are saying!!!!

I am young and don't know anything about this, seriously. I'm sorry. I am really worried.....


Should we just keep the heat off?


We are in the blizzard, travel bans, no one can come to look at this or fix it.



It sounds like an oil fired burner but that's just a guess.

Have them go outside and look at the top of the chimney to see what the smoke looks like comming out.

If it's black and billowy, chances are the burner just needs a tune-up, which includes a new oil nozzle, new set of electrodes, oil filter, and a cleaning of all soot inside the combustion chamber/heat exchanger.

 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 882117



Yes, make sure the chimney is clear of obstruction.

Have they had to reset the burner at all?

There's usually a red button safety switch on the ignition control module, which is usually located right on the burner. That's what they would have reset.

Last Edited by Browne on 02/10/2010 05:58 PM
Anonymous Coward (OP)
User ID: 882117
United States
02/10/2010 05:58 PM
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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
Okay thank you both for this info, I will relay it to them


I will update you guys


This better not explode or some shit...
apprentice

User ID: 887706
United States
02/10/2010 06:01 PM

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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
Okay thank you both for this info, I will relay it to them


I will update you guys


This better not explode or some shit...
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 882117



Oil can't explode like natty gas can. :)

I think they should be okay to run as long as combustion fumes are not back drafting into the house.

Hopefully they have a carbon monoxide monitor close by.

Tell them to get it tuned up ASAP.
Anonymous Coward (OP)
User ID: 882117
United States
02/10/2010 06:01 PM
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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
Okay thank you both for this info, I will relay it to them


I will update you guys


This better not explode or some shit...



Oil can't explode like natty gas can. :)

I think they should be okay to run as long as combustion fumes are not back drafting into the house.

Hopefully they have a carbon monoxide monitor close by.

Tell them to get it tuned up ASAP.
 Quoting: apprentice

They don't have a carbon monoxide monitor....
:( I'm so worried

What can I do to make sure there is not backdraft fumes?
apprentice

User ID: 887706
United States
02/10/2010 06:04 PM

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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
Okay thank you both for this info, I will relay it to them


I will update you guys


This better not explode or some shit...



Oil can't explode like natty gas can. :)

I think they should be okay to run as long as combustion fumes are not back drafting into the house.

Hopefully they have a carbon monoxide monitor close by.

Tell them to get it tuned up ASAP.

They don't have a carbon monoxide monitor....
:( I'm so worried

What can I do to make sure there is not backdraft fumes?
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 882117



If they can, have them go down to the store and buy one.

Usually oil is obvious when it backs into the house, very smoky.

But just to be safe I'd get one right away before running it.
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 545912
United States
02/10/2010 06:08 PM
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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
I don't understand what you guys are saying!!!!

I am young and don't know anything about this, seriously. I'm sorry. I am really worried.....


Should we just keep the heat off?


We are in the blizzard, travel bans, no one can come to look at this or fix it.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 882117



How bout some info instead of frantically waving your hands--- is it a water heater or furnace? You said the thermostat so its not a water heater right??

Gas or oil for fuel?


Heres a hint---your chimney is plugged up---go outside and check---dont run the thing till its cleared...you will kill yourself. It will back up into the basement instead of going up the chimney. Trust me, I'm an oil burner tech..a rumble is almost always caused by inadequate draft...or a partially plugged oil burner nozzle. The rumble is a pressure fluctuation in the combustion chamber area.


If you dont know what your doing, call the gas/oil supplier for help.

Give me more info and I will try to help.
Anonymous Coward (OP)
User ID: 882117
United States
02/10/2010 06:08 PM
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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
Okay thank you both for this info, I will relay it to them


I will update you guys


This better not explode or some shit...



Oil can't explode like natty gas can. :)

I think they should be okay to run as long as combustion fumes are not back drafting into the house.

Hopefully they have a carbon monoxide monitor close by.

Tell them to get it tuned up ASAP.

They don't have a carbon monoxide monitor....
:( I'm so worried

What can I do to make sure there is not backdraft fumes?



If they can, have them go down to the store and buy one.

Usually oil is obvious when it backs into the house, very smoky.

But just to be safe I'd get one right away before running it.
 Quoting: apprentice

Thanks for your help, I appreciate this so much
We can't get to a store as the nearest one is over a mile, it is dark now, I could walk but I am young and I don't know how safe it is for me to go but I don't feel very safe here, either.
Anonymous Coward (OP)
User ID: 882117
United States
02/10/2010 06:09 PM
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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
I don't understand what you guys are saying!!!!

I am young and don't know anything about this, seriously. I'm sorry. I am really worried.....


Should we just keep the heat off?


We are in the blizzard, travel bans, no one can come to look at this or fix it.



How bout some info instead of frantically waving your hands--- is it a water heater or furnace? You said the thermostat so its not a water heater right??

Gas or oil for fuel?


Heres a hint---your chimney is plugged up---go outside and check---dont run the thing till its cleared...you will kill yourself. It will back up into the basement instead of going up the chimney. Trust me, I'm an oil burner tech..a rumble is almost always caused by inadequate draft...or a partially plugged oil burner nozzle. The rumble is a pressure fluctuation in the combustion chamber area.


If you dont know what your doing, call the gas/oil supplier for help.

Give me more info and I will try to help.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 545912

Thank you very much
as I did answer eariler it is OIL and we have a neighbor coming up to clear the chimeny. he will be here soon, he was to walk a distance

They ran it for 10 minutes or so while it was rumbling.. does this mean there are fumes in the house.. Should we air it out
The Monk
User ID: 515245
United States
02/10/2010 06:13 PM
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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
Someone please help, I don't know what this means...

I have a relative asking me and I don't know what to tell them


Their water heater is making a low rumbling groaning noise when they turn the thermostat to make the heat kick in.. it starts up and makes this noise but it stops as soon as they turn the thermostat back.

Any ideas?
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 882117


Lol. Call the plumber and ask them.
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 545912
United States
02/10/2010 06:20 PM
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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
I don't understand what you guys are saying!!!!

I am young and don't know anything about this, seriously. I'm sorry. I am really worried.....


Should we just keep the heat off?


We are in the blizzard, travel bans, no one can come to look at this or fix it.



How bout some info instead of frantically waving your hands--- is it a water heater or furnace? You said the thermostat so its not a water heater right??

Gas or oil for fuel?


Heres a hint---your chimney is plugged up---go outside and check---dont run the thing till its cleared...you will kill yourself. It will back up into the basement instead of going up the chimney. Trust me, I'm an oil burner tech..a rumble is almost always caused by inadequate draft...or a partially plugged oil burner nozzle. The rumble is a pressure fluctuation in the combustion chamber area.


If you dont know what your doing, call the gas/oil supplier for help.

Give me more info and I will try to help.

Thank you very much
as I did answer eariler it is OIL and we have a neighbor coming up to clear the chimeny. he will be here soon, he was to walk a distance

They ran it for 10 minutes or so while it was rumbling.. does this mean there are fumes in the house.. Should we air it out
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 882117


if its oil and you dont smell it, dont worry..no need to air out. let us know what your neighbor does and if the chimney is plugged.

note..if the chimney is plugged then so is the furnace and it will probably need to be cleaned out too.
Anonymous Coward
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United States
02/10/2010 06:21 PM
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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
I would NOT recommend running it like it is. You don't know what's wrong with it and I can't tell from here.
The last guy is right it can be dangerous, I tend to think the nozzle's clogged causing a weak spray of oil entering the chamber then igniting all at once creating the rumble sound. This creates a sooty mess and will likely get soot on the cad cell causing the burner to shut off. A service call fixes it.
Anonymous Coward
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United States
02/10/2010 06:22 PM
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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
dont listen to these people...its scale buildup within
the tank....its probably old and has not been flushed.
it may or may not be able to be flushed now but you should
probably call a plumber.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 842974



this assumption is so off base it doesnt deserve a comment
SilverPatriot

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02/10/2010 06:28 PM

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Re: water heater furnace rumbling/vibrating noise.. what is wrong.. please help
Call a qualified repairman to look into the problem because it can be more than you can properly deal with.

Had one once that made rumbling noises because the water was boiling due to a malfunctioning thermostat but it was simply to diagnosis because the water came out of the tap boiling. The repairman ignored my assessment probably because I am a woman but even worse, in spite of my warnings he found out I was not wrong about the heat of the water. His replacement paid a whole lot more attention to what I was telling him and without scalding his hand first replaced the thermostat.

Years later and another water heater had failed to work because it had an electrical short and before I could visibly see the problem, I made physical contact and then was immediately thrown into the wall and slumped to the floor. After that Miss Fixit promptly called, the repairman told him the problem and left him alone.

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