Author Topic: Banjo burner carbon monoxide safety question  (Read 1171 times)

Offline trapae

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Banjo burner carbon monoxide safety question
« on: September 07, 2018, 04:37:20 AM »
 I’ve been brewing with a single burner but now I just upgraded to a brew stand with two banjo burners.    I use natural gas, not propane. Never really worried about carbon monoxide, but been doing some reading about it and now with the additional burner, just wondering if it would be a problem. I brew in my garage which is a large three car garage with high ceilings. I usually have all three doors halfway open when I brew. (  but close them after flame out so as to reduce contamination. )
 Do I have any reason to worry?
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Banjo burner carbon monoxide safety question
« Reply #1 on: September 07, 2018, 08:53:27 AM »
It would be prudent to have a CO detector in the garage.
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Offline hmbrewing

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Re: Banjo burner carbon monoxide safety question
« Reply #2 on: September 07, 2018, 08:58:35 AM »
It would be prudent to have a CO detector in the garage.

+1 to that. But you are most likely going to be fine. With all three doors open, even halfway, you should be getting plenty of fresh air coming in. The CO2 detector will act as your warning if the air exchange isn't enough.
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Offline mabrungard

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Re: Banjo burner carbon monoxide safety question
« Reply #3 on: September 07, 2018, 11:44:43 AM »
CO is a product of incomplete combustion. The problem is that its difficult to visually assess if combustion is complete. Having a CO monitor is your best assurance that you aren't creating a hazardous space. 
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Offline ynotbrusum

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Re: Banjo burner carbon monoxide safety question
« Reply #4 on: September 07, 2018, 03:19:40 PM »
Also, be aware that some burners have painted shields that give off potentially toxic fumes, so ventilation is critical.  Opening doors and windows should provide enough ventilation in a garage setting.  Lastly - keep a fire extinguisher handy, just in case!
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Offline KellerBrauer

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Re: Banjo burner carbon monoxide safety question
« Reply #5 on: September 08, 2018, 12:24:42 PM »
Watch your flame.  The flame must be perfectly blue with no yellow at all.  Adjust the combustion air intake on the burner with the needle valve open and watch the flame.  If the flame starts lifting off the burner, begin closing the needle valve.  Note: the combustion air intake may only need to be open 10-15 percent (depending on the gas input pressure) to achieve a perfect flame.  You will achieve maximum BTU output when the flame is gently resting on the burner and is perfectly blue - like the stove in your kitchen.  And yes, a Co monitor is never a bad idea along with good ventilation.

Hope this information helps! Good luck!

Edit:  if you don’t feel comfortable with this process, by all means, don’t do it.  Ask a professional HVAC mechanic for assistance.
« Last Edit: September 08, 2018, 01:11:47 PM by KellerBrauer »
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Offline trapae

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Re: Banjo burner carbon monoxide safety question
« Reply #6 on: September 08, 2018, 02:27:50 PM »
 So you get the max BTUs and heat with a smaller blue flame than cranking it on high?  I’m having trouble figuring out how to get the perfectly blue flame. Seems like you’re right, it’s at only 10 to 15% open, but then I thought the heat wouldn’t be enough to get a boil?
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Offline coolman26

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Re: Banjo burner carbon monoxide safety question
« Reply #7 on: September 09, 2018, 02:04:31 AM »
Being NG I can’t imagine you would have an issue. Get a Monitor, and be practical. NG burns super clean.


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Offline KellerBrauer

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Re: Banjo burner carbon monoxide safety question
« Reply #8 on: September 09, 2018, 11:48:25 AM »
Being NG I can’t imagine you would have an issue. Get a Monitor, and be practical. NG burns super clean.


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I’m sorry, my friend, but that is as far from a fact as one can get.  People die from carbon monoxide poisoning every year due to a malfunctioning furnace or boiler or hot water heater.
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Offline KellerBrauer

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Re: Banjo burner carbon monoxide safety question
« Reply #9 on: September 09, 2018, 12:26:44 PM »
So you get the max BTUs and heat with a smaller blue flame than cranking it on high?  I’m having trouble figuring out how to get the perfectly blue flame. Seems like you’re right, it’s at only 10 to 15% open, but then I thought the heat wouldn’t be enough to get a boil?

Balancing your burner is kind of like doing a balancing act using Gas Pressure, Gas Flow and Air.  I have an Edelmetall propane burner and the actual flame itself is only about 3/4” high at full flow and it’s 72,000 btu’s.  While propane burns a bit hotter than natural gas, the balancing principles are the same.

Your Gas Pressure is determined by the regulator and I’ll assume it’s set for the typical 3-5” water column.  Now you’re  relying on the needle valve to regulate the quantity (flow) of gas entering the burner at the orifice AND the quantity of gas entering the burner through the burner orifice creates a venturi at the air intake.  The burner orifice is the brass component the air intake rotates around.  Adjusting the opening to the venturi finalizes the perfect balance.  So, the more you open the needle valve, the more air enters through the venturi and too much of the gas & air mixture is what causes the flame to lift off the burner face.

My 72,000 btu Edelmetall takes about 30-40 minutes to bring 9 (+/-) gallons of 120* (+/-) wort to a full rolling boil in my 15 gallon boil kettle with the lid on.  I’m not familiar with the Banjo Burner, or it’s BTU capacity.  So I really can’t comment on the time it would take to boil wort.

I hope this answers your question.  Good luck!
« Last Edit: September 09, 2018, 01:00:28 PM by KellerBrauer »
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Offline coolman26

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Banjo burner carbon monoxide safety question
« Reply #10 on: September 09, 2018, 12:57:29 PM »
Being NG I can’t imagine you would have an issue. Get a Monitor, and be practical. NG burns super clean.


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I’m sorry, my friend, but that is as far from a fact as one can get.  People die from carbon monoxide poisoning every year due to a malfunctioning furnace or boiler or hot water heater.
I think that it is obvious that carbon monoxide is dangerous. Being careful with a meter, and proper ventilation, I doubt the OP will have any issues. “Super Clean” May have been a poor choice of words though.


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« Last Edit: September 09, 2018, 01:00:31 PM by coolman26 »
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Offline trapae

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Re: Banjo burner carbon monoxide safety question
« Reply #11 on: September 09, 2018, 03:09:36 PM »
 Thanks everyone for their comments. I had an HVAC guy take a look at my connections, check out my set up, and do a bubble test. He helped me out with my flame height/color/output as well.  ( he was over working on my air-conditioning anyway. ).   I bought a cover monoxide monitor as well. Weird— I’ve been brewing for about 10 years and hadn’t really realized the nuances in managing your flame for efficiency and heat, or the whole carbon monoxide problem. So I think  it is a worthwhile topic. Thanks all.
I am a great believer in luck, and I find the harder I work, the more I have of it.