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  1. #1
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    Sep 2008
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    Default The agent blew the front off this box today

    I flicked the switch on this appliance and it didn't turn on the fireplace. About two minutes later the agent was trying to turn it on and the entire front blew off. Sounded like a bomb.

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
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    St Paul, MN
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    Default Re: The agent blew the front off this box today

    LOL that's hilarious. Maybe that will teach them not to go behind you trying to get things to work. I hate it when they do that.

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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Spring City/Surrounding Philadelphia area
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    Default Re: The agent blew the front off this box today

    Wow! Thankfully nobody was hurt.

    Yes, some people don't know when to leave well enough alone and insist on trying to make something work. I have had multiple inspections where the hot water boiler had no standing pressure (gauge either defective or no water in boiler). Without knowing which of the two options is the issue, I tell the buyers I can't turn the heat on to test the boiler because if it is empty and the boiler cracks, I will need to buy them a new boiler. Buyers always get it but some agents insist the heat works or they pish posh what I am saying. I have had agents ignore what I just said and go upstairs and turn the thermostat up to test the boiler. As soon as it happens, I shut the system off at the emergency shut-off switch. I really can't stand it when the agent says "I'll call the seller and get permission from them to turn it on". I don't care what the seller says. The pressure gauge reads 0 psi and we are not turning the system on.

    "It takes a big man to cry. It takes an even bigger man to laugh at that man". - Jack Handey

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Knoxville, TN
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    2,445

    Default Re: The agent blew the front off this box today

    Glad no one was hurt! It IS odd how after you tell someone that something is not working, they will go try it themselves.

    In this case, did you tell the Realtor he/she shouldn't try it themselves (because of potential danger)? Is so, bad on them. If not, maybe they thought it would only take another try.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Holladay, UT
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    565

    Default Re: The agent blew the front off this box today

    I think the bigger question is why did this blow. Failed under testing!!

    Tom Rees / A Closer Look Home Inspection / Salt Lake City, Utah

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Bennett (Denver metro), Colorado
    Posts
    1,394

    Default Re: The agent blew the front off this box today

    Had something similar happen to me several years ago. The springs on the glass front allowed the explosion to vent sideways and no obvious damage was done to the fireplace. It was....shall we say.........interesting.

    Since then, I've been hyper sensitive to how long I let a fireplace try to ignite. Ten seconds max. If it doesn't cold start in ten seconds, I write it up. Gas fireplaces should light in three seconds, but it's been my experience that a dormant fireplace can take longer for the first cold start. If it lights in ten seconds, I let it operate for ten minutes, check for CO leakage and turn it off. In a few minutes, I come back and if it doesn't light in three seconds this time, I write it up.

    If you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Massacusetts
    Posts
    149

    Default Re: The agent blew the front off this box today

    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Rees View Post
    I think the bigger question is why did this blow. Failed under testing!!

    Actually I think the bigger thing is what is your responsibility - do you leave a sign ? , do you shut off the gas to that applience ? and tag it ?

    Oh the liability that can come with this stuff -

    What would have happened if the broker just left the switch on (might have been the case) and the thing had a bigger explosion with shrapnal ? - then again - it might not matter since you might have a piece of fireplace sticking out of your forehead - (some people just scare the sheep out of me)


  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    BC Canada
    Posts
    368

    Default Re: The agent blew the front off this box today

    Once a time after I turned the FP on, there was suddenly a blowout not really loud but enough to cause attention. I noticed the inside vent was plugged with a rag. I think probably the same scenario as OP.


  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    AZ
    Posts
    14

    Default Re: The agent blew the front off this box today

    Quote Originally Posted by Marc M View Post
    I flicked the switch on this appliance and it didn't turn on the fireplace. About two minutes later the agent was trying to turn it on and the entire front blew off. Sounded like a bomb.

    The agent did it? or the manufacturer did? Fireplace Recall: Explosion Risk Causes Kozy Heat and American Flame to Recall Fireplaces and Inserts

    "On 2014-04-04, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) published a recall regarding Kozy Heat, Ambiance and Stellar Hearth Gas Fireplaces and Fireplace Inserts due to a potential explosion hazard. This product sold new beginning in October 2009 for about $1450 to $3325"

    even if that's not a "Kozy Heat" brand, several fireplaces and FP items have been recalled. Check and see if that particular one's on the list. See link Fireplaces Recall List by WeMakeItSafer

    - - - Updated - - -

    EDIT (posted twice, site error "Database Error" blah blah blah


  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ormond Beach, Florida
    Posts
    26,243

    Default Re: The agent blew the front off this box today

    Quote Originally Posted by Dwight Doane View Post
    ... have a piece of fireplace sticking out of your forehead - (some people just scare the sheep out of me)
    Yeah, if someone walked up to me with a piece of fireplace sticking out of their head ... that person would just scare the sheep out of me too.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Near Philly, Pa.
    Posts
    1,643

    Default Re: The agent blew the front off this box today

    You're pretty lucky someone wasn't hurt bad. As a Q/A manager for a major fireplace mfr, I investigated many such cases of delayed ignition. One was a 20yr. veteran at the gas company who lost an eye lighting a pilot. ANSI stds. allow a max. of 4 seconds from the time you turn on the flame until the burner is fully lit. NEVER flip a switch on and walk away without confirming proper ignition. These units are tested to withstand such explosions. Believe me, everyone in the lab knows when you conduct these tests. All direct vent fireplaces must have some means of pressure relief. This may be spring catches on the glass or it may be a relief port (burp plate). This is serious and must be investigated by the factory rep. There are a lot of potential causes that range from issues intrinsic to the unit such as improper fuel conversion, loose pilot tubing, disrupted pilot flame, blocked vent to extrinsic issues such as low inlet gas pressure.

    - - - Updated - - -

    You're pretty lucky someone wasn't hurt bad. As a Q/A manager for a major fireplace mfr, I investigated many such cases of delayed ignition. One was a 20yr. veteran at the gas company who lost an eye lighting a pilot. ANSI stds. allow a max. of 4 seconds from the time you turn on the flame until the burner is fully lit. NEVER flip a switch on and walk away without confirming proper ignition. These units are tested to withstand such explosions. Believe me, everyone in the lab knows when you conduct these tests. All direct vent fireplaces must have some means of pressure relief. This may be spring catches on the glass or it may be a relief port (burp plate). This is serious and must be investigated by the factory rep. There are a lot of potential causes that range from issues intrinsic to the unit such as improper fuel conversion, loose pilot tubing, disrupted pilot flame, blocked vent to extrinsic issues such as low inlet gas pressure.

    Keep the fire in the fireplace.

  12. #12

    Default Re: The agent blew the front off this box today

    I know at my in-laws cabin it usually takes several minutes of holding the button down for gas to get from the tank to the fireplace.

    Worst I have seen was an ELECTRIC baseboard heater that exploded when I turned the thermostate up. Luckily the agent was standing next to me and knew I didn't do anything. I'm sure you all have heard, "Well what did you do to it? It worked fine until you got here." It looked like a Star Trek consol when the Klingon's attack.

    - - - Updated - - -

    I know at my in-laws cabin it usually takes several minutes of holding the button down for gas to get from the tank to the fireplace.

    Worst I have seen was an ELECTRIC baseboard heater that exploded when I turned the thermostate up. Luckily the agent was standing next to me and knew I didn't do anything. I'm sure you all have heard, "Well what did you do to it? It worked fine until you got here." It looked like a Star Trek consol when the Klingon's attack.

    - - - Updated - - -

    I know at my in-laws cabin it usually takes several minutes of holding the button down for gas to get from the tank to the fireplace.

    Worst I have seen was an ELECTRIC baseboard heater that exploded when I turned the thermostate up. Luckily the agent was standing next to me and knew I didn't do anything. I'm sure you all have heard, "Well what did you do to it? It worked fine until you got here." It looked like a Star Trek consol when the Klingon's attack.


  13. #13
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
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    so so, California
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    1,769

    Default Re: The agent blew the front off this box today

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Harper View Post
    You're pretty lucky someone wasn't hurt bad. As a Q/A manager for a major fireplace mfr, I investigated many such cases of delayed ignition. One was a 20yr. veteran at the gas company who lost an eye lighting a pilot. ANSI stds. allow a max. of 4 seconds from the time you turn on the flame until the burner is fully lit. NEVER flip a switch on and walk away without confirming proper ignition. These units are tested to withstand such explosions. Believe me, everyone in the lab knows when you conduct these tests. All direct vent fireplaces must have some means of pressure relief. This may be spring catches on the glass or it may be a relief port (burp plate). This is serious and must be investigated by the factory rep. There are a lot of potential causes that range from issues intrinsic to the unit such as improper fuel conversion, loose pilot tubing, disrupted pilot flame, blocked vent to extrinsic issues such as low inlet gas pressure.

    - - - Updated - - -

    You're pretty lucky someone wasn't hurt bad. As a Q/A manager for a major fireplace mfr, I investigated many such cases of delayed ignition. One was a 20yr. veteran at the gas company who lost an eye lighting a pilot. ANSI stds. allow a max. of 4 seconds from the time you turn on the flame until the burner is fully lit. NEVER flip a switch on and walk away without confirming proper ignition. These units are tested to withstand such explosions. Believe me, everyone in the lab knows when you conduct these tests. All direct vent fireplaces must have some means of pressure relief. This may be spring catches on the glass or it may be a relief port (burp plate). This is serious and must be investigated by the factory rep. There are a lot of potential causes that range from issues intrinsic to the unit such as improper fuel conversion, loose pilot tubing, disrupted pilot flame, blocked vent to extrinsic issues such as low inlet gas pressure.
    Some good info in there, thanks Bob

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