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SMEV burner throwing yellow flame and soot


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My SMEV cooktop gave me fits for a bit. The front bigger burner started throwing a yellow flame, sooting the bottom of thectea kettle, and made a funny smell and hissing noise. 

I turned it off. Tried the small back burner. Which gave the customary clean blue flame, but takes forever to boil water.

So, likely not bad gas, since the other burner worked fine. Probably not the regulator either,, since that would affect both burners.

Probably was not the proper air to gas mix, so emitting soot and yellow inefficient flame, and Carbon monoxide, as well.

Searched all over the net for a few days, looking for a service manual or a youtube from someone with a similar problem.  Came up mostly empty-handed.  Searched forums, and finally found a few suggestions. 

Remove the cap and clean the jet and orifices. (Cap screws are stripped, and immovable )

Or, adjust the air slide, to improve gas to air ratio. (Smev doesn't have one.)

I was about to give up, and spend $90 on a new burner, which, surprisingly, is still available, for my old unit. 

Tired of waiting forever for the tea kettle to boil on the small burner, I got out an old toothbrush and ran it around. Got a bit of carbon, but still a yellow flame. Turned off the propane,, and burned it off.

Got out a can of compressed air with the straw, and went around the whole ring. Took a long time to clean up the carbon mess, but got my lovely blue flame back. 

 

 

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2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12
 

 

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11 hours ago, SeaDawg said:

Got out a can of compressed air with the straw, and went around the whole ring. Took a long time to clean up the carbon mess, but got my lovely blue flame back. 

Glad ya got your flame back!

I always carry a small can of compressed air with me in my tool kit.  A few years ago a small piece of "stuff" (most likely rust) just happened to settle on the igniter sensor of my fridge.  This "shorted out" that sensor therefore not allowing the burner to ignite - so - no cooling in the fridge.  Being careful to NOT blow back into the gas burner jet I used the compressed air to blow out that entire area and it has worked fine since.  Now, every year after Twist sits in storage for more than a month I do this "blow out" as a part of routine maintenance and all has been good.

Bill

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2017 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5EB FX4 Max Towing 2016 Oliver Elite II - Hull #117 "Twist"

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A smaller can, or a true compressor, would have been easier to work with. But, as we're camping, I worked with what we had...

From what I've read on the uk forums (SMEV primarily used in Europe and Australia,  it seems), the cap corrodes and rusts underneath, causing an uneven surface, and rust and soot build up on the little alloy spreaders. All the air used in combustion seems to come from the spreaders, so they have to stay clean and open to burn, properly.

 

When we get home this fall, and empty the trailer, we may have to drill out the screws, clean everything properly, and replace with stainless screws. 

I really like the cooktop, and want to keep it working properly. It was an expensive,  marine quality unit, and should last another 15 or 20 years, I'd guess.

The new Dometic/smev cooktops don't have thermocouples, and the caps, though stainless, just rest on the burner, from what I can see, so easier to clean.  And, the one piece iron grates on the newer cooktop are really nice, too, compared to my skinny wire spiders. 

 

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2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12
 

 

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Appreciate the details as my unit needs a good cleaning before our 9 month trip.  I may order spares before I go as they may be hard to find on the fly.

2019 Elite II (Hull 505 - Galway Girl - August 7, 2019 Delivery) 
Tow Vehicle: 2021 F350 King Ranch, FX4, MaxTow Package, 10 Speed, 3.55 Rear Axle
BLOG:  https://4-ever-hitched.com

 

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I wouldn't get too carried away on spares, honestly.  Other than a hold down coming off, and lid grommets, I've had to do nothing but normal daily use cleaning for 14 seasons.

From the uk websites, don't use foaming spray cleaners. I usually wipe out wit water, and use stainless steel cream polish a few times a year.

If I  were to carry a "spare", it would be a single induction burner, or a coleman type camp burner, in propane or butane. Or, both. I love cooking outside.

Have fun on your trip!

2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12
 

 

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