Furnace goes BOOM!/I need an exterminator!
Posted 20 July 2009 - 04:53 PM
First is my co worker today. Now he' pretty sharp, and quite a valuable person to have around. Problem is today he's hooking up an electric water tank that got drenched by the air conditioner above it. The tank's still got water in it in the wrong places, but it's not visible. He hooked up the red and black lines but forgot about the bare copper one. He turns it on and touches it, and it gives him a mild zap. So he's like "what the...?" and touches it again...sure enough...zot! He calls me and asks me what's going on, and I'm cleaning the pool. As soon as I asked about the ground wire, he knew where he'd goofed. Evidently the tank dried out enough during that time that it didn't throw the breakers. We kinda laughed it off after that, knowing he'd goofed pretty bad but not getting upset over it.
Second, and earlier...oh my word, this guy about blew away half of a nursing home. I worked last year for a nursing home "chain". They sent me to one of the larger homes. They told me that they had a new HVAC person that could help out if I needed him. No problem, right?
I come in one day and the supply clerk tells me that the common area we shared as supply office, workshop, records, and one other nurses' office was cold. She suggested that I go and light the pilot light on the furnace.
Now I get my crash course in gas heat. There's no pilot light at all. It's all electronic, and to make a long story short, we had bad flame rollouts. I call the HVAC guy after getting one of the twinned furnaces to work. Now the fun begins...
The new HVAC tech comes out and decides that the burners need to be pulled in order to get to the rollouts. Now I ain't the brightest crayon in the box, but I can clearly see all eight rollouts and I have a tiny ratchet that can get to them all. Oh, no, he's gotta pull the burners and undo all the plumbing. We shut down the gas, being careful not to kill the gas to the nearby water tank. I forget totally that I'm carrying a cell phone, but really there's no reason to care, right? He finds that he doesn't have some part or something that he needs, so he goes to Locke to get it. I think he was missing the new rollouts. Anyway, this is after he gets one burner out, and we can't put it back in. While he's gone, I extract every single one of the bad rollouts.
The HVAC tech gets back with similar but not quite the same size rollouts. No problem, we stuck 'em in there and that was that. Then he starts to put the plumbing back together and manges to bust off the gas valve! Uh-oh. The small room fills with gas while he unscrews the valve, then I slam my hand over the pipe. He goes and digs for a cap while I'm there hoping the water tank doesn't light itself and my cell phone doesn't ring.
Oh, but that's not all...once we get the burners and the gas valve all put back, he gets into the twinning kit. For some odd reason, the fuses on the control boards keep popping, and he thinks it's in the twinning kit. That's all well and good, but it was very obvious that the new rollouts had slipped int he mounts and grounded themselves. A tie wrap around each one would hold it away from the metal, but I can't get this dude off the twinning kit. He finally leaves that alone and goes to work on one of the control boards after I got one of the furnaces to run independently. Not seeing what he wants, he goes into the other one and puts a 10 amp fuse in the board. pop. Another 10 amp fuse. pop. Now a 25 amp fuse. Hey, it's running! Ugh, what's that smell!? Once he gets away from that, I went and insulated the rollouts on that furnace, but I didn't have a control transformer to replace the one he'd burned up. He gets one and while I'm installing it, he rips part of the twinning kit out so that the first furnace that I got going no longer runs. He also manages to ground the control board and destroy some of the traces on it.
It finally got too late and too cold to work anymore, so he called it quits. I got the second furnace going and heated the workshop from that. I also got it to where it would start the condensing unit outside so that when summer came on, I knew that would work.
Later on, I did get both furnaces to run through the twinning kit. I suspected that I needed to do this before we needed the AC, and later I would learn that I was right. Once I get it going
, I get the dreaded call...no heat. Dang. I pulled both control boards and one of them was blackened front and back. The nearest I can figure is that it was damaged in the lightning storm the night before. I picked up the other cooked board, repaired the blown off traces, insulated the heck out of it, and installed it.
OK, last story but not least...
This lady comes into the apartment office where I work and she's hysterical. She says she has a maintenance emergency and that she needs an exterminator now. I ask what the deal is and she says there's a scorpion on her living room floor and that she's got it buried under a large Rubberneck container lid and a stack of suitcases. Now the biggest scorpion I had seen to that day was a baby emperor scorpion about two inches long. Cute fella, kinda. I've also seen the red scorpions common to Oklahoma grow to that size. I'm thinking she had a tiny brown scorpion on her rug and she killed it with the suitcases but didn't wanna pick it up.
On the way over, she tells me the scoprion is hissing at her. Now I'm really thinking she's flipped her lid, and the tale she's telling me is taller than her stack of suitcases. I moved the suitcases and cautiously lifted the Rubberneck lid with my trash picker. Oh. My. Word. Underneath the lid I see a full grown, twelve inch long emperor scorpion. No kidding. It was black with a white stripe down each side, and it was still alive. Evidently someone's pet had gotten loose and either crawled into her apartment or had babies and one of them grew up and crawled into her apartment.
I showed the large scoprion to several other awestruck residents, explaining to each that is was an exotic pet. I've not seen another one of these around the property, and I've lived here since then even though I took another job.
Posted 30 September 2009 - 03:08 PM
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