Author Topic: Propane Gas Burner - Major Soot Problem  (Read 9820 times)

Offline majorvices

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Propane Gas Burner - Major Soot Problem
« on: August 26, 2010, 08:39:07 AM »
Can someone help me solve this problem? I have a 55 gallon kettle which takes some firepower to heat. But for some reason I am not getting the right mixture on the flame and it is coating my kettles with soot and carbon. After a 90 minute boil the stuff is literally caked on sometimes a couple inches thick.

On my smaller system I have a way to adjust the amount or air the burner takes in, but the burner I have on the big system does not allow me to do this. I'm going to attach a few pics so you guys can get an idea what I am working with.

Also, I'm pretty sure this burner is for high pressure propane, not LP nat. gas or what not. At least, that's what the company I bought them from said on their website.




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Offline VinS

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Re: Propane Gas Burner - Major Soot Problem
« Reply #1 on: August 26, 2010, 09:01:51 AM »
One thing to try. If you have an air compressor blow air through the gas inlet (2nd pic). One little bug or rust can make soot problem. I hope this will work. I also read some place you could close off some of the ports on the burner and it might help.
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Offline majorvices

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Re: Propane Gas Burner - Major Soot Problem
« Reply #2 on: August 26, 2010, 09:07:52 AM »
Thanks, I have 3 of them (bought a smaller burner hoping it would solve the problem) and they have always done this, all three of them. So I'm not sure the compressed air will work. I was wondering is there was some way to get more air into the mixture and if that would solve the problem.
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Offline riverrat

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Re: Propane Gas Burner - Major Soot Problem
« Reply #3 on: August 26, 2010, 09:22:55 AM »
Adjustable pressure regulator?  I know bayou classic has some.  I think they are adjustable from around zero to 30 psi-ish?
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Offline VinS

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Re: Propane Gas Burner - Major Soot Problem
« Reply #4 on: August 26, 2010, 09:41:19 AM »
How big is your propane tank. 20Lbs will not work.You just may need a larger tank.
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Offline bluesman

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Re: Propane Gas Burner - Major Soot Problem
« Reply #5 on: August 26, 2010, 09:53:43 AM »
"Complete Combustion" is the ultimate goal.  Acheiving that with a propane burner is impossible but you can get fairly close and eliminate your problem.

Carbon Monoxide is produced during the incomplete combustion of propane. Incomplete combustion is defined as within the limits of flammability but higher or lower than the ideal ratio of 4 parts propane 96 parts air. Incomplete propane combustion can occur in one of two ways:

Lean Burn - The ratio of propane to air is less than 4 parts propane. 2.5 parts propane to 97.5 parts air would produce a lean burn. A lean burn can be recognized when flames appear to lift away from the burner and can potentially go out.

Rich Burn - A ratio of propane to air is more than 4 parts propane. 8.5 parts propane to 91.5 parts air would produce a rich burn. Recognizing a rich burn is very simple as the flames are much larger than they are supposed to be and are largely yellow in color.

You need to introduce air at a rate of 4 parts propane 96 parts air.  Try adjusting the regulator and damper if possible.  If that doesn't work you'll need to replace the regulator.
« Last Edit: August 26, 2010, 09:55:35 AM by bluesman »
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Offline dak0415

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Re: Propane Gas Burner - Major Soot Problem
« Reply #6 on: August 26, 2010, 10:02:30 AM »
Keith, those wok burners depend on the flow of gas to suck in air through the holes at the base of the jets.  Do you have a pic of the burner operating?  What is the psi rating of your regulator?  You might indeed just need a higher psi regulator, or if it has a jet where the gas comes in, remove the jet or drill it out to provide a greater gas flow.

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Offline kramerog

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Re: Propane Gas Burner - Major Soot Problem
« Reply #7 on: August 26, 2010, 10:04:47 AM »
Soot from these type of burners is unavoidable, but what you are experiencing is extreme.  Are you brewing indoors?  If so you need to improve the ventilation to pull out the soot and carbon monoxide and pull in more oxygen.

A picture showing how the kettle sits above the burner would be helpful for diagnosing the problem.
« Last Edit: August 26, 2010, 10:08:32 AM by kramerog »
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Offline dhacker

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Re: Propane Gas Burner - Major Soot Problem
« Reply #8 on: August 26, 2010, 10:05:01 AM »
How big is your propane tank. 20Lbs will not work.You just may need a larger tank.

Not sure I understand what difference the size of the tank makes in terms of  soot issue . . perhaps a freeze up problem, but not a rich burn problem.
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Offline majorvices

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Re: Propane Gas Burner - Major Soot Problem
« Reply #9 on: August 26, 2010, 10:07:38 AM »
Re: Tank size. I'm using a 2olb tank. I'm really confused on how a larger tank would help. Isn't the pressure going through the regulator going to be the same?

Re: regulator. I will try upgrading my regulator.

The set-up I have now does not have a damper. My understanding was that the burner jets were designed so that they take in air at the source (see pick above). I'm not sure how to fabricate a damper on the system I have now(?).

Edit: dak0415 posted as I was replying - I don't have a pic of it running while operating. The thing kicks out a hell of a lot of heat though. I am using the regulator that came with the system. What pressure regulator would you suggest? Higher than 30psi?
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Offline majorvices

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Re: Propane Gas Burner - Major Soot Problem
« Reply #10 on: August 26, 2010, 10:09:27 AM »
Soot from these type of burners is unavoidable, but what you are experiencing is extreme.  Are you brewing indoors?  If so you need to improve the ventilation to pull out the soot and carbon monoxide and pull in more oxygen.

A picture showing how the kettle sits above the burner would be helpful for diagnosing the problem.


Brewing outdoors. The burner height is adjustable. I have tried adjusting it. You can see in the top pick the ketttle height over the burner (its pushed back but at the same height)
« Last Edit: August 26, 2010, 10:13:00 AM by majorvices »
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Offline dak0415

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Re: Propane Gas Burner - Major Soot Problem
« Reply #11 on: August 26, 2010, 10:13:44 AM »
How many BTU's is that monster supposed to be? Last question, what color is the flame coming out of the jets?  That is the key!

Check this out

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mVW3wJh6aWI&feature=related
« Last Edit: August 26, 2010, 10:35:06 AM by dak0415 »
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Offline majorvices

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Re: Propane Gas Burner - Major Soot Problem
« Reply #12 on: August 26, 2010, 11:09:55 AM »
It's 240,000 BTUs. I have a smaller one that is maybe 180,000 BTUs and it does the same thing. The flame is definitely on the yellow side. I'm on dial-up at home so I will have to check the YouTube link later when I can get to a faster connection.
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Offline VinS

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Re: Propane Gas Burner - Major Soot Problem
« Reply #13 on: August 26, 2010, 11:30:47 AM »
I'm not sure why a 20 Lbs tank wont work. But on a site where they are sold says the burner wont work properly with a 20 lb tank. It says theses burners use a low pressure regulator . But double check where you order from it might use a high pressure regulator.
« Last Edit: August 26, 2010, 11:53:15 AM by vinsthb »
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Offline dak0415

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Re: Propane Gas Burner - Major Soot Problem
« Reply #14 on: August 26, 2010, 12:57:13 PM »
Your regulator should say what the psi rating is.  If the plastic nut that tightens the ACME fitting is black, then it is probably a 1 psi regulator (like for a grill).  If it's green, then it is a high pressure (10-30 psi) regulator, and it should have the rating embossed on it.

Is the flame yellow without the kettle on the burner or yellow after you get the kettle on top?

« Last Edit: August 26, 2010, 12:59:17 PM by dak0415 »
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