Oil wood fired heating boiler (C) Daniel Friedman Wood Fired Heating Furnace & Boiler Defects List & Home Inspection Education
     

  • DEFECTS LIST - HEAT, WOOD APPLIANCE - CONTENTS: Wood-Fired Heating Devices & Appliances
    • Lists of important defects for residential buildings
    • What does a home inspector need to know? Home inspection training and education curriculum recommendations
  • POST a QUESTION or READ FAQs about home & building inspection courses, standards, & defect checklists for wood fired heating systems
  • REFERENCES

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This article lists significant wood fired heating system defects, definitions, and home inspection education topics. This article series, beginning at BUILDING DEFECTS LISTS, provides lists of common building defects and basic defect knowledge that also outline recommended curriculum content for home inspector education. The building defects and inspection points listed in these articles also guide homeowners and home buyers to building areas that merit careful attention and often point areas of safety concern or important maintenance and repair tasks.

Readers should see Wood Burning Heaters Fireplaces Stoves and also Woodstove Safety for our complete list of articles on this topic. Also see HOME & BUILDING INSPECTORS & INSPECTION METHODS. Use the Search Box at the top or bottom of these pages to find in-depth information about building, energy savings, and indoor environment inspection, diagnosis and repair at this website.

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Home Inspection Education Curriculum - Wood-Fired Heating Devices & Appliances

WOOD FURNACES & BOILERS, STOVES, FIREPLACES – TYPICAL DEFECTS

These curriculae and building defect lists are based on smilar curriculum documents first prepared by Joe Scaduto, an ASHI member who prepared course material for Northeastern University's Building Inspection Certificate program in 1988, subsequently by DF, InspectApedia's editor, for New York University ca 1988 and later, with others, recommended to ASHI, the American Society of Home Inspectors. ASHI did not adopt this material though currently that association as well as others offer extensive HOME INSPECTOR EDUCATION material. The curriculum and lists of defects are informed by additional analysis of the process of home inspection that was developed beginning Calgary, AB for Canadian and U.S. home inspector education and certification examinations in 1997 and later. Other early contributors to home inspection education in the U.S. and Canada include Dr. Jess Aronstein, Alan Carson, Mike Casey, Mark Cramer, John Cox, Dwight Barnett, Douglas Hansen, Rick Heyl, Larry Hoytt, Bill Merrill, Kevin O'Malley, Dennis Robitalille, Keith Peddie, Pat Porzio, Roger Robinson.

WOOD FURNACE Defect Checklists

WOOD FURNACE CABINET Defects  

      • Combustible clearances

      • Mechanical damage

      • Missing components

      • Not listed or certified

      • Obstructed air intakes

      • Rust

      • Scorching

Wood Furnace COMBUSTION AIR DEFECTS

      • Inadequate combustion air

Wood Furnace Flue, Flue Venting System Defects

  • Creosote deposits

  • Extends too far into chimney

  • Improper material (galvanized)

  • Inadequate combustible clearance

  • Poor support

  • Poor slope

  • Poor connection to chimney

  • Poor manifolding

  • Poor connections

  • Rust

  • Too long

  • Too big or too small

Wood Furnace COMBUSTION AIR DAMPER Defects

      • Inoperative valve or motor

      • Poor adjustment

      • Running continuously

      • Warped or stuck

Wood Furnace FORCED DRAFT COMBUSTION FAN Defects

      • Inoperative

      • Noisy or vibrating

Wood Furnace COMBUSTION CHAMBER Defects

      • Deteriorated brick

      • Dirty combustion chamber

      • Poor door seal

      • Warped door

      • Warped or cracked metal firebox

      • Warped grate

Wood Furnace THERMOSTAT Defects

  • Not level

  • Damaged

  • Anticipator problems

  • Loose

  • Dirty

  • Poor adjustment, calibration

  • Poor location

Wood Furnace AIR HANDLERS: "HOUSE AIR FANS" (BLOWER UNITS)

   • Dirty

   • Fan belt loose, worn or damaged

   • Inoperative

   • Noisy

   • Overheating

   • Poorly secured

   • Rust

   • Too small

   • Unbalanced or vibration


Wood Furnace HEAT EXCHANGER Defects

      • Cracks or holes

      • Rust

      • Soot or creosote deposits

      • Dirty

Wood Furnace FAN CONTROL Defects

     • Improperly wired

     • Mechanical damage

     • Rusting

     • Missing cover

     • Scorching

     • Set wrong or defective                  

Wood Furnace BAROMETRIC DAMPER Defects                

      • Inadequate draft air

      • Inoperative  

      • Missing

      • Poorly adjusted

      • Rusting

      • Spillage

      • Missing

      • Scorching

      • Set wrong


Wood Furnace HIGH TEMPERATURE LIMIT SWITCHE Defects

     • Set wrong or defective

Wood Furnace DUCT SYSTEM Defects        

      • Add-on furnace not downstream from other

      • Combustible clearances

      • Combustible return ducts

      • Dirty ducts

      • Disconnected ducts

      • Ducts obstructed or collapsed

      • Leaks

      • No air or weak airflow

      • Poor register location

      • Registers obstructed, painted shut or damaged

      • Registers or grills in garages

      • Rust

      • Too few return grills

      • Uninsulated ducts

      • Wire or pipe in duct

Wood Fired Heating Boiler Defects

Wood Fired Heating Boiler CABINETS

      • Combustible clearances

      • Mechanical damage

      • Missing components

      • Not listed or certified

      • Obstructed air intakes

      • Rust

      • Scorching

Wood Fired Heating Boiler BAROMETRIC DAMPERS

     • Inadequate draft air

     • Inoperative

Wood Fired Heating Boiler HEAT EXCHANGERS

   • Cracks or holes

   • Rust

   • Soot or creosote deposits

 

Wood Fired Heating Boiler COMBUSTION AIR            

   • Missing   

   • Poorly adjusted

   • Inadequate combustion air

   • Rusting

   • Spillage

 

Wood Fired Heating Boiler VENTING SYSTEMS

    • Creosote deposits

    • Extends too far into chimney

    • Inadequate combustible clearance

    • Improper material (galvanized)

    • Poor support

    • Poor connection to chimney

    • Poor slope

    • Poor manifolding

    • Poor connections

    • Rust

    • Too long

    • Too big or too small 

Wood Fired Heating Boiler COMBUSTION AIR DAMPERS            

      • Inoperative valve or motor

      • Poor adjustment

      • Warped or stuck  

Wood Fired Heating Boiler FORCED DRAFT COMBUSTION FANS                

      • Inoperative

      • Noisy or vibrating

Wood Fired Heating Boiler COMBUSTION CHAMBERS                       

      • Deteriorated brick

      • Dirty combustion chamber  

      • Poor door seal

      • Warped door

      • Warped or cracked metal firebox

      • Warped grate

Wood Fired Heating Boiler PUMP CONTROLS

       • Inoperative

       • Set incorrectly

Wood Fired Heating Boiler THERMOSTATS

     • Anticipator problems

     • Damaged

     • Dirty

     • Loose

     • Not level

     • Poor adjustment or calibration

     • Poor location

Wood Fired Heating Boiler ZONE CONTROLS        

      • Inoperative

      • Leaking 

Wood Fired Heating Boiler OUTDOOR AIR THERMOSTATS             

      • Inoperative

Wood Fired Heating Boiler FLOW CONTROL VALVES                 

      • Inoperative

      • Leaks

Wood Fired Heating Boiler ISOLATING VALVES           

      • Inoperative

      • Leaks

      • Rust

Wood Fired Heating Boiler AIR VENTS

      • Missing

      • Leaking

      • Inoperative

Wood Fired Heating Boiler PRIMARY CONTROLS

 

      • Inoperative

      • Set incorrectly

 

Wood Fired Heating Boiler BACKFLOW PREVENTERS

        • Installed backwards

        • Missing

        • Leaking

Wood Fired Heating Boiler PRESSURE REDUCING VALVES

      • Inoperative

      • Installed backwards

      • Set too low

      • Leaking

      • Missing

Wood Fired Heating Boiler EXPANSION TANKS  

      • Leaks

      • Poor discharge location for open tank

      • Poor location for tank   

      • Rust 

      • Too small

      • Waterlogged

                      

Wood Fired Heating Boiler CIRCULATORS

      • Hot

      • Inoperative

      • Leaks

      • Noisy

Wood Fired Heating Boiler Heat Distribution Piping

       • Leaks

       • No insulation

       • Poor support

       • Rust

       • Too small

Wood Fired Heating Boiler PRESSURE RELIEF VALVES                        

      • No piped extension

      • Pipe too small 

      • Pipe threaded, capped or corroded at bottom

      • Pipe dripping or leaking

      • Poor location

      • Set wrong 

      • Wrong size   

Wood Fired Heating Boiler RADIATORS, CONVECTORS AND BASEBOARDS

      • Balancing valve problems

      • Damaged baseboard fins

      • Leaks

      • Missing

      • Obstructed airflow

      • Poor location

      • Rust

      • Too small

 

 

WOOD STOVE Defect List

Wood Stove CABINET Defects

      • Door gasket – loose, missing,     

      brittle or incomplete

      • Door loose, warped or poorly fit  

      • Leakage 

      • Unsteady or not well secured    

      • Warped, cracked or gaps    

              • Multiple appliances connected to chimney

Wood Stove COMBUSTION CHAMBERS       

      • Pieces poorly connected

      • Catalytic combuster clogged  

      • Combustible clearances   

             – Floor  

             – Side and rear walls  

             – Front walls 

             – Ceiling

      • Creosote deposits

      • Firebrick cracked, crumbling or incomplete

      • Owner’s manual missing

      • Warped, cracked or creosote deposit

      • Improper clearance Reduction system installation

Wood Stove Venting Systems

     • Inadequate combustible clearance

     • Creosote deposits

     • Excess length

     • Goes through walls or closets

     • Heat reclaimer installed

     • No expansion provision

     • Poor slope

     • Poor connection to chimney

     • Seams on bottom

     • Too many elbows

     • Wrong material    

WOOD BURNING FIREPLACE Defect List

Fireplace FOOTING Defects & FOUNDATION Defects  

      • Cracked

      • Deteriorating concrete, masonry or mortar  

      • Heaved

      • Leakage

      • Settled

Fireplace Damper Defect List

    • Frame loose

    • Damper or frame rusted

    • Inoperative

    • Missing

    • Undersized

    • Obstructed

    • Too low

Fireplace THROAT, SMOKE SHELf & SMOKE CHAMBER Defect List

     • Too small

     • Debris

     • Excess slope

     • Missing

     • Rust (metal firebox)

     • Uneven slope

     • Walls not smooth

Fireplace HEARTH Defect List  

      • Evidence of overheating

      • Gaps or cracks 

      • Inappropriate material

      • Settled

      • Too thin

      • Too small

      • Wood forms not removed

      • Settled (gap at wall)

Fireplace Face or Breast Defects

      • Combustible clearances

      • Cracked

      • Evidence of overheating

      • Loose

      • Settled (gap at wall)   

Fireplace FIREBOX Defects      

      • Cracked masonry or refractory     

      • Designed for coal

      • Deteriorated, missing or loose masonry or mortar

      • Draft suspect

      • Inappropriate materials

      • Lintels rusted, sagging or loose   

      • Rust out, burn out, buckled or cracked metal firebox

      • Too shallow

      • Too thick

Fireplace Glass Door Defect List

      • Cracked or broken glass

      • Frame warped

      • Inappropriate installation

      • Frame rust

      • Inoperative

Fireplace ASHPIT Defects

      • Ash dump missing

      • Cleanout door too close to combustibles

      • Cleanout door missing

      • Floor below cleanout door

      • Wood forms not removed

Fireplace Heat Circulators - Heatilators

      • Obstructed intakes or outlets

      • Rusted out steel ducts/boxes - air leaks, loss of control, fire hazards, smoke contamination

Fireplace OUTDOOR COMBUSTION AIR SYSTEM Defect List

      • Fan inoperative

      • Damper stuck

      • Damper missing

      • Disconnected

      • Hood and screen at firebox missing, damaged or loose

      • Inadequate combustible clearance

      • Inappropriate material

      • Intake not weathertight

      • Intake not screened

      • Intake poor location

      • Rust

      • Uninsulated

      • Inadequate seal at firebox wall or floor

      • Inadequate combustible clearance

      • Pipe obstructed

Fireplace Gas Igniter System Defects

      • Gas leak

      • Missing or improperly located gas shutoff valve

      • Inadequate combustible clearance

Readers should see Wood Burning Heaters Fireplaces Stoves and also Woodstove Safety for our complete list of articles on this topic. Also see HOME & BUILDING INSPECTORS & INSPECTION METHODS. Use the Search Box at the top or bottom of these pages to find in-depth information about building, energy savings, and indoor environment inspection, diagnosis and repair at this website. Watch out: these inspection lists do not list all possible defects for the systems discussed, and not all home or building inspectors will examine all of the items listed here. CONTACT us to suggest corrections or additions to articles at this website.

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