Raypak PR-336A-EP-X (2013 yr) display sparks, lights pilot and say heating but burners never fire. Suggestions on where to troubleshoot appreciated!

watercooled

Member
Apr 24, 2018
5
Floyds Knobs
This is a 2013 model (LP gas) with electric ignition, when I first turn it on I hear a mechanical click, then it says spark and then after a few sparks the pilot flame lights with a blue flame (turns what I think is the thermocouple glows orange). The pool says "heating" the display and the burners never fire. I am at a loss as to what causes this; I keep reading different mentions that Raypak burners hardly ever clog and am wondering if a component is bad or the board could cause this?

I assume since there are no errors showing via the display that my flow/random safety sensors are working? Do electronics control if and when the burners fire or is this more like a physical clog?

Any help is greatly appreciated!

*EDIT: I also want to note that the LP regulator outside the pool room was replaced 3 years ago by my gas company right before I moved in and when the heater did work the burner flames would often make a flaring noise every now and then. I assume I would see an error code IF the regulator wasn't providing enough gas pressure?
 
Last edited:

RDspaguy

In The Industry
Mar 21, 2020
712
Cabool, Mo
I am confused. An electronic heater that sparks to light does not have a pilot light. If you are seeing fire, it is burning. Could there be low pressure in the tank? The heater will not show an error for that.
 

watercooled

Member
Apr 24, 2018
5
Floyds Knobs
I am confused. An electronic heater that sparks to light does not have a pilot light. If you are seeing fire, it is burning. Could there be low pressure in the tank? The heater will not show an error for that.
Maybe it's not the pilot light i'm thinking of then. It says "spark" and "heating" and then I see a small blue flame heating a small coil that turns bright orange. It's whatever is trying to light the burners that never fire up is what i'm seeing...not sure what that's called. Almost looks like one of those mini propane flame throwers you buy at home depot. Just a small blue flame under the burners as part of the ignition assembly.
 

watercooled

Member
Apr 24, 2018
5
Floyds Knobs
I just called Raypak, the customer technical server person said that their electric ignition does have a pilot and the difference is that the pilot only lights when there is a call for heat (which is what i'm seeing). He directed me to their website for this:

Digital Electronic Ignition
This design only generates a pilot when there is a call for heat. Keeping the sensors active requires electrical power, so power must be wired to the unit. The internal transformer will accept either 120V or 240V power, and transforms it to 24V for use within the heater.

The advantages of using electronic ignition are that:

  1. you only use fuel when there is a call for heat, and
  2. if the pilot is extinguished during startup it will automatically relight.
  3. 24V power travels very well down the wires, permitting this design to be used in conjunction with an external control system or certain types of remote control. In addition, 24V power permits the use of digital circuitry, providing far more sophisticated controls.
  4. Temperature control is extremely easy and accurate, and
  5. All connections on the circuit board are plug connectors and are not conducive to the formation of corrosion.
The disadvantage of using electronic ignition is that there is always a call for small amounts of power (about 1 amp).

In addition, millivolt ignition is no longer allowed with natural gas in certain areas (such as California) because of concerns about fuel usage when the unit is not firing. Please consult your local authorities to see if they have specific requirements about pool heater ignition systems.

--------------------

I would think either my burners are clogged or I have a bad LP regulator not providing enough pressure to light the burners.
 

watercooled

Member
Apr 24, 2018
5
Floyds Knobs
Look to see if your heater ahas a box marked Fenwal. If so see if it's LED is flashing when it aborts the start. If it lights and does not stay lit it is often a flame sensing problem. Read Heater Flame Sensing - Further Reading
I think I might have figured out my issue. This heater is in a pool equipment room so it has a raypack power vent kit installed. When I start the heater and I hear that "click" the fan barely budges and doesn't move...it's difficult to spin the blower fan blades manually almost as if it's locked up. The blower motor gets warm really fast and doesn't spin. I think the blower fan is not telling the main gas line to open allowing the burners to fire up. This is why my pilot lights but not my burners and I don't believe there is an error code for this. Before I drop $350 I wish there was a quick way to bypass this blower "check" to see if it's the issue but that may be beyond my skill level.
 

watercooled

Member
Apr 24, 2018
5
Floyds Knobs
This is the manual for the PR-336A and I don't see that it is forced draft with a blower


I don't know the effect of the vent kit.

@ps0303 @Pool Clown @swamprat69 ideas?
The vent kit has a separate blower fan that has a pressure switch. It detects pressure from the blower fan, if no pressure is there to break the "switch" then it doesn't open the main gas valve (it's wired to the raypak heater controller board). I would assume if I disconnect it and start the heater it will work (I will try this soon).