The icy gales of winter have become the bane of many families located around the globe.
With the continuous drop in temperatures during cold months growing with each passing year, more and more people have become reliant on using some form of heating device to keep themselves warm and comfy in their own humble abodes.
Although the decades have seen to a progression in the development and design of various types of heaters across multiple countries, the Reddy heater is perhaps one of the very few true heating units that have claimed the coveted top spot in producing warmth for both indoor and outdoor purposes.
With a top of the line design often boasting a ‘torpedo’-as shape meant for efficient heating and compact portability, Reddy heaters are extremely good in generating copious amounts of heat for all spaces, both little and large, such as ice fishing shelters, garages, offices and even barns.
The Reddy heater itself comes in a miscellany of types such as garage heaters, propane-forced air heaters, kerosene-forced air heaters, convection heaters, blue flame outdoorsman heaters, and even simple tank top heaters.
However, when temperatures plummet on a particularly wintry day, daily concerns often shift from: ‘Is my heater working?’ to ‘How can I make my heater burn hotter?’
The same question has plagued Reddy heater owners for years without end.
Winters can be harsh in certain parts of the world, especially the northern hemisphere, and your little ones will be the first to freeze up if your heater is not putting out enough heat to keep you and your loved ones comfortable. So, what causes a heater to go ‘cold’, and how can you tackle this?
What Is the Main Cause of a ‘Cold’ Reddy Heater?
It is simple, really. In standard practice, a Reddy heater is designed for one sole purpose: to produce heat and ample amounts of it.
Nobody intends to keep a ‘cold’ Reddy heater lying around in their garage – if you ever do come across a heater that it is not putting off enough heat, and remains chilled to the grill, then you are most likely up against a broken or faulty Reddy Heater.
The first thing you need to acknowledge about uncompliant, ‘cold’ heaters is that there is most likely an issue with the air pump pressure. Even the slightest loss of pump pressure can diminish the heating capacity of a Reddy heater tremendously.
It has been currently noted that a reduction in half a psi of air pump pressure can reduce the heating capacity of a Reddy heater by at least 30%.
Thus, the more reduced the amount of air pressure there is within the heater, the less heat that will be produced by the unit as a whole.
However, other malfunctioning sub-units or components within the heater itself can also reduce the amount of heat being generated by the heater, and decrease overall efficiency as well.
How Do You Troubleshoot a ‘Cold’ Reddy Heater?
It is actually very easy to make sure your Reddy heater burns hot enough keep you and your extremities cozy and warm at all times. Here are several quick and simple to steps to troubleshoot a ‘cold’ Reddy heater:
1. Disassemble Your Heater
All Reddy heaters come equipped with a strong exterior housing that usually consists of thickened plastic or metal. In most cases, the housing is made of metal rather than plastic, however, and will need to be removed before you can access the internal components.
- Using a screwdriver with an appropriately shaped head, start unscrewing the metal casing and pry it loose gently from the internal sub-units.
- Remember to keep track of all the screws you have removed – it is recommended you use a small plastic box or container to temporarily house the screws while you focus on disassembling your heater further, so that you may not lose the screws by accident.
- In the event that you have indeed misplaced or lost a screw, simply go to the hardware store to purchase a similarly sized screw to serve as a replacement.
- Once you have safely stored away from your screws and removed the casing, take a peek at the plastic hoses and start assessing them for any signs of leaks, cracks or even pinhole-sized tears.
- Using a small spray bottle full of warm soapy water, begin lightly spritzing the plastic hoses to see if there are any bubbles gathering at the surface of the plastic tubing. If there are any leaks, take note of the size and area of the leak immediately.
- In the case of small leaks, you may use a sealant or even waterproof tape to temporarily patch up the leak, although this is not recommended.
- It would be best to replace the damaged section of the plastic hose with an entirely new piece of plastic housing from the store. Large leaks will most definitely have to be replaced in its entirety without question.
- As for the metal casing, use a scrap of dry cloth to wipe it free of any dust, dirt or grime. Do not use soapy water since this will cause the metal to rust if the soap is not removed thoroughly afterward.
If there is a particularly stubborn stain on the exterior casing that cannot be removed without force, you may use a damp cloth and a small piece of steel wool to scrub it off, but make sure to wipe the casing down with a dry cloth afterwards to remove all traces of moisture or grit left behind.
2. Check Your Internal Components For Damage
Now that you have removed the exterior housing of your Reddy heater, your next step would be to check all the internal components of your heater for any signs of wear and tear.
- The most common issue afflicting internal components include air leaks, clogged lint filters, broken nozzles or even damaged fuel lines.
- In the case of air leaks, you will need to detect the exact location of the leak. Run your fingers gently along the airline tubes, fuel lines, and even nozzle.
- If there is a depression, crack or even tear along the surface of any of those components, there is a high chance that those areas might have been leaking without your notice.
- Replace any leaky parts with brand new parts acquired from the appropriate store. Make sure the size and model of the parts that will serve as replacements are exactly the same as the original faulty parts.
- As for clogged lint filters, you will need to clear out any obstruction in the filter using a piece of damp cloth. Focus on removing as much dirt and lint as possible from the filters, especially the photocell.
- Dirty photocells can actually cause your heater to malfunction and even shut down automatically after five seconds in some cases. Make sure the filters are then free of any water or lingering moisture afterward.
- The nozzle will need to be checked thoroughly for any signs of damage or leaks as well.
- It is recommended that all nozzles in all Reddy heaters are to be replaced on an annual basis, even if the nozzle appears perfectly fine to the eye or touch. You will also need to monitor your thermostat.
- Since the thermostat is one of the key internal components that regulate the core temperature of your Reddy heater while it is in use, a faulty or broken thermostat can cause your Reddy heater to produce far less heat than it is capable off.
- Check out your thermostat for any signs of melting, charring or discoloration. If your thermostat shows any of the signs listed above, you would need to replace it with a new one.
Acquire a new thermostat with the exact same specifications as the previously damaged or malfunctioning thermostat. If you are unsure of how to purchase the new thermostat, simply bring the old one to the store and request the guidance of the shop assistant to fetch the correct thermostat for you.
3. Drain Out The Fuel
Once you have checked through all of your Reddy heater’s components, the next thing on your agenda would be to drain your fuel tank and refill it with new fuel.
- Before you refill your tank though, be sure to check the insides of the fuel tank for any debris or trash that might have accumulated at the bottom of the tank.
- If you are having immense difficulty peering through the bottom of a dark tank, use the aid of a small handheld torchlight to help you see better.
- Take a quick peek at the internal sides of your fuel tank as well for any traces of moisture, especially water.
- Once you have cleared any obstruction or dirt found inside the tank, slowly refill the tank with steady hands to avoid any spillage or wastage. Always wear a pair of thick gloves to prevent the fuel from accidentally splashing onto your skin.
- Use a small mask to cover mouth and nose as well – most fuels give off an overpowering odor that can make you dizzy or nauseous if inhaled for a prolonged period of time.
- The type of fuel you use to fill up the fuel tank of your Reddy heater is crucial to its optimal functionality. For example, in kerosene-forced air Reddy heaters, the main fuel source being used is exclusively kerosene.
- This means you must not mix your fuel with gasoline or dilute it with water or thinner in an effort to preserve the stack of green notes crammed into your fist.
- Mixing or diluting fuel will not only prevent your Reddy heater from radiating enough heat, but it can also turn the heating unit into both a health risk and fire hazard.
- Since gasoline is equally combustible, this does not make it a good substitute for kerosene, even if it is cheaper by the gallon. Use grade 1-K kerosene at all times to fill up your kerosene air-forced Reddy Heater.
- Purchase your kerosene from a reputable store or dealership, and avoid buying ‘leftover’ kerosene from middlemen or shady outlets.
- Always store your kerosene in a separate container with appropriate labels, and place it on a different shelf or cabinet from where you intend to store your gasoline, to avoid the chances of mixing up the two fuel sources together.
- Do not use a can or container that has been previously used to house gasoline to store your freshly acquired kerosene.
- Unlike most liquids, gasoline has a propensity to adhere to the internal surfaces of a can even after the storage container has been cleaned out thoroughly several times.
- These lingering gasoline particles will then mix with your new kerosene and taint its purity. Likewise, diluting kerosene with thinner or water is not recommended.
A kerosene-mix is less likely to combust fully, and will, therefore, produce less heat in your Reddy Heater. In some cases, the mixture might spray out of the nozzle uncontrollably because the liquid is too dilute and this can cause your heater to catch on fire.
How Do You Adjust the Pump Pressure of Your Reddy Heater?
If all the steps listed above fail to make your Reddy heater burn hotter, then you might want to consider adjusting the air pump pressure of your device. You may do so by following these quick steps listed below:
- Slip on a thick pair of protective gloves and equip yourself with a screwdriver – preferably one with a flat-head. Unscrew the plastic casing that protects the middle section of the air intake which is located inside your Reddy Heater. Keep track of all the screws by placing them in a small storage container. Using a bit of force, pry open the casing and remove the cover. Set it aside and glance back at the exposed internal components of your Reddy Heater. You should be able to see a relieve valve alongside a pressure gauge plug.
- Gently remove the plug located on the pressure gauge plug. If you are having difficulty doing this, use a small adjustable plier to help you in the removal process. Once you have successfully removed the plug, there will be a small hole exposed in the unit. Quickly cover the hole with a pressure gauge.
- Next, open up your owner’s manual that came with your Reddy heater unit and find the ideal air pressure required for your heater to operate smoothly. Read your pressure gauge to see if the numbers match the ones located in your manual. Usually, the British Thermal Unit (BTU) is used to rate your Reddy heater and the corresponding pump pressure for the heater. For example, a Reddy heater of medium-size will usually require 3.4 psi of air pressure to generate approximately 55,000 BTUs of heat.
- Be attentive of all the instructions listed in the manual that came with the purchase of your Reddy Heater. You need to ensure that your Reddy heater runs at its recommended pump pressure settings to maximize heat output from the device. In the event that you have lost or misplaced the manual, you may either contact the manufacturer of your Reddy heater or request the advice of a professional heater serviceman to help you determine the correct air pump pressure for your device.
- If the pump pressure in your Reddy heater drops for unexplainable reasons, gently turn the relief valve in a clockwise direction using a small screwdriver. Keep doing this until the pump pressure is an identical match for the recommended pump pressure settings outlined in your manual.
Thus, your Reddy heater can be indeed tweaked to burn hotter using the various steps outlined above. By simply tweaking your pump pressure settings, filling up your heater with the correct type of fuel and ensuring there are no leaks or damages incurred by the internal components of your Reddy heater, you are all set to get the maximum amount of heat from your device anytime, anywhere.