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Old 03-01-2011, 05:01 PM   #1
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I am not a happy man

Friday evening, a pipe broke just after the pressure tank, making my house dry. Fortunately, we always keep several gallons of water stored just for such an emergency. It cost me about $50 in supplies and tools to repair my plumbing last Saturday. But my water is great again.

Got home from work yesterday to falling temperatures in my house. My wife went to Wal mart and purchased a ceramic heat because the furnace quit working. It's an Olson Ultra Max high efficeincy gas furnace that has given me very little trouble over the last 20 years. There are two blowers on the furnace, one to take outside air and feed it into the combustion chamber, and then exhaust it outside. The other blower moves air through a heat exchanger and through the house. The first blower is the one that went bad. Price - should have been around $300 or so. But, the manufacturer that made the blower went our of business 10 years ago, and there are no compatible replacement blowers offered by Olson. The Furnace guy said my only option is to replace the furnace for $2400!

I'm going to get the part number of that blower and see if I can find one on Ebay, or anywhere else. I'll post it here, when I get it, just in case anyone has a spare, or a discarded furnace that might have that blower.

Wish me luck. $2400 is a very hard pill to swallow on my budget.

Seeeeeeya; Goodweed of the North

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Old 03-01-2011, 05:28 PM   #2
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$2400 used to buy you air-conditioning installed by a contractor and then some, but the new SEER rating put into effect a few years ago really raised the price of appliances and such. It's hard to believe there's not a universal blower motor available though.
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Old 03-02-2011, 03:48 AM   #3
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Good luck mate, try this it may help1987 duomatic olsen hi-efficiency ultramax furnace [Archive] - DoItYourself.com Community Forums if the link does not work just goolee the name of your unit and include forum I find cheap ways to fix most things that way
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Old 03-02-2011, 08:00 AM   #4
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Sorry - no help here, but much sympathy. Good luck with your search.
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Old 03-02-2011, 08:41 AM   #5
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If it's a fan on the intake side then you can put something together quite easy. If it's a fan in the exhaust ducting you have to be a bit more careful due to heat ratings and possible leaks.

Draft fans for the intake are also fairly inexpensive.
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Old 03-02-2011, 08:54 AM   #6
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Does the motor of the blower have a NEMA code and can you just replace the motor?
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Old 03-02-2011, 01:06 PM   #7
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Does the motor of the blower have a NEMA code and can you just replace the motor?
Thanks everyone, and to Bolas for the site address. My next move is to try and replace the inducer motor. But the unit is going to be difficult to disassemble as there are no screws or bolts holding anything together. but I'm a pretty creative guy, with an engineering background. Wish me luck.

Seeeeya; Goodweed of the North
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Old 03-02-2011, 01:15 PM   #8
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Good luck, GW. That is all I can give you 'cause this isn't my area of expertise. I am glad there are others who can help.
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Old 03-02-2011, 02:22 PM   #9
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Much luck to you, GW!
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Old 03-02-2011, 02:29 PM   #10
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GW, hope you are getting things straightened out. A Michigan winter is no place to be without a furnace, especially in the Soo. My heartfelt sympathies.
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Old 03-06-2011, 10:41 PM   #11
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Oh, dear, Goodweed, I feel your pain. Literally. Last weekend at 17 degrees, our heat gave out. It wouldn't be so bad, except that we'd had our heat specialist out several times to make sure we were good to go for the winter. I boiled water on all burners of the stove, and ran hot water through the house to keep our pipes from freezing. I'm a person who is a bit of an insomniac, so guess who spent all night making sure pipes didn't freeze and that our heating guys showed up first thing in the morning?

I will be so happy to see spring.
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Old 03-06-2011, 10:47 PM   #12
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Good Luck, Goodweed!
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Old 03-10-2011, 12:59 PM   #13
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I have replaced every major part in my furnace this year myself.
Try Graingers first and try the generic parts.
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Old 03-10-2011, 06:41 PM   #14
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Good luck goodweed, try Craigslist, you never know.
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Old 03-10-2011, 10:40 PM   #15
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I'm biting the bullet and going to get a loan to replace the furnace. It's past its prime by several years. Average life span for a furnace is about 20 years. I've got 27 on mine. Besides, tax breaks for next year will help offset the cost.

Seeeeeya: Goodweed of the North
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Old 03-10-2011, 10:52 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Goodweed of the North View Post
I'm biting the bullet and going to get a loan to replace the furnace. It's past its prime by several years. Average life span for a furnace is about 20 years. I've got 27 on mine. Besides, tax breaks for next year will help offset the cost.

Seeeeeya: Goodweed of the North
There ya go, GW. Sometimes it's best to "bite the bullet". If it's lasted that long, repair is a waste of money. Go ahead and spend the money on a new unit and just make sure you get some warranties for length of service.

I sympathise with you and this problem.

XOXOX with much affection. Z
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Old 03-11-2011, 12:40 PM   #17
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I hope my post isn't too late to help you.

I lost my furnace due to water damage 2 years ago, coincidentally, same brand as yours and about 25 years old.

I made a list of the top brands of furnaces I would consider, Rheem, --two others, I can't remember the names anymore.
I called 3 furnace installers of those brands.
I had more than 3 options, even with top brands, quotes of $1900-$8500 depending on the contractor.

I had a Rheem installed for about $1900 in one day. I haven't had any trouble with it. The installer/contractor wanted to work everyday, hence his price, and was very down to earth. I'm glad I took the time to research my options at the time.

Best of luck in your situation, stay warm!
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Old 03-11-2011, 01:21 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Goodweed of the North View Post
I'm biting the bullet and going to get a loan to replace the furnace. It's past its prime by several years. Average life span for a furnace is about 20 years. I've got 27 on mine. Besides, tax breaks for next year will help offset the cost.

Seeeeeya: Goodweed of the North
Mine is about the same age. I have never worked on a furnace before but watched some youtube vids before I started. I replaced both fan motors and the ignitor and cleaned it really well for about 250 bucks. replacing would have been 4-5k. It is like new now.It was pretty easy.
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Old 03-11-2011, 01:31 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by 4meandthem View Post
Mine is about the same age. I have never worked on a furnace before but watched some youtube vids before I started. I replaced both fan motors and the ignitor and cleaned it really well for about 250 bucks. replacing would have been 4-5k. It is like new now.It was pretty easy.
Everything on my existing furnace could be cleaned up and is already working, except for the part that failed. And that part just isn't available, anywhere. I've had three contractors search, as well as a very computer savvy SOL, and have put in many hours looking for the part myself. I've contacted the furnace manufacturer, and the manufacturer of the draft inducer that failed. I've also spoken with several knowledgeable friends.

That's why I'm replacing the furnace, and with a higher efficiency model.

Seeeeeya; Goodweed of thh North
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Old 03-12-2011, 02:38 AM   #20
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i find it very hard to believe that there's not enough hot air being blown around your house on a daily basis, gw!!!



lol, j/k, as you well know. i feel your pain with stuff breaking down. would you like to buy an old house with a million things busted in it in new jersey?

good luck with the new heating plant. may it give you 20 more years of trouble free heat, and more.
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