two problems...

first problem...
got home from xmas road trip last night. furnace was not working and house was a chilly 48 degrees inside (thermostat was set to 57 while I was away.) Fortunately I'd drained all the plumbing just in case it got really cold and something bad happened, and also it never got seriously below freezing while I was away. I ASSumed that the ignitor had gone Tango Uniform again but I simply power cycled the furnace and it fired right up and has run through several cycles. I can only assume that it failed to ignite at some point while I was away and the thermocouple shut it down. I've had the water heater go out a couple times, but only a couple, over the past year. Never often enough to consider it a problem and call in a repairman. I'm starting to wonder if there's an issue with the gas service (water?) but I had the water heater shut off while I was away so I couldn't see if the pilot on the heater had blown out as well. Any ideas? I can deal with relighting the water heater every couple months but not so much with the furnace shutting off while I'm away.
Second problem is I'd like to strap up some pipes but have been completely unable to find copper roofing-type nails, which is what I assume I want. Only source of copper nails at all that I've been able to find is McMaster-Carr, but they only sell common nails and small tacks. Is that all that is currently available? I actually stopped at the hardware store that has the best selection of various fasteners that I've ever seen while I was on vacation and couldn't find any copper nails there.
nate
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Could have been, expecially if there was high demand for a time. You'll probably never know.

Brass screws
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I threw out (Actually recycled) a bunch of copper nails I got from my grandfather many years ago. I used brass wood screws for strapping some water pipes.
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wrote:

You mention that the water heater pilot light has also gone out a couple times. Have you checked to see whether you might have one of those serendipitous drafts that happen only on certain windy days? I had a house with this kind of strange episodic event, and finally I figured out it was from a drafty window, and once I blocked that off, all was well.
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KLS wrote:

I suppose that is possible; I have been trying to track down and spray foam all possible sources of draft, although I'm certain that I haven't found all of them yet.
nate
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Nate Nagel wrote:

Does the chimney connection have a barometric damper in proper adjustment?
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Pete C. wrote:

forgot to mention, it is a "90 plus" furnace with separate PVC pipes for intake and exhaust - chimney is only for the water heater at this time (and a separate flue for the fireplace above.) Dunno if there is any kind of damper on the PVC, doesn't appear to be.
nate
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Nate Nagel wrote:

I don't think those direct vent units are designed to have / need barometric dampers. At any rate, now that we know that the water heater and the furnace have entirely separate venting, it makes the gas supply more suspect if both appliances are experiencing these outages. Is it possible that there is undersized gas piping or other restriction causing a pressure drop when both units are trying to fire at the same time? Bad regulator or meter? If both appliances are experiencing the problem it doesn't seem unreasonable to ass the gas company to check things up through their meter at least.
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Nate Nagel wrote:

Did you go to a real supply house? The local plumbing supply has small bags (and probably large ones) of appropriate nails for Cu pipe straps available.
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George wrote:

The only "supply house" I have locally is not open outside business hours. would happily buy from an online source.
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George wrote:

Last time I purchased a box (100) of two hole copper straps at the real plumbing supply place, the box included a bag of nails to match. I used a lot of them for that project, and the remainder just started my plumbing kit. Not like they're expensive items. You could also use the Deck Mate coated screws which will be easier to install, and the coating will prevent any issues.
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You don't have a thermocouple, but you do have a flame sensor. If it has only happened once, there probably isn't cause for concern, but if it continues to happen, you could try "roughing it up" with some emory paper, or it might need to to be replaced. Hard to see it from here, though. :-)
You also might want to look carefully at your intake and exhaust. I have seen them partially blocked by leaves, snow, weeds, etc. I have also has a furnace "inhale" a leaf, causing an intermittent problem with ignition.
My local Menards has copper roofing nails. I am surprised to hear that Lowe's or Home Depot doesn't carry them. If you want to email me privately, I could pick up a box and ship them to you. If you only need a few, I think I have half a box lying around somewhere.
JK
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Big_Jake wrote:

Home Depot is a worthless bag of shite, at least around here. my "local" Lowe's is about 20 miles away, although I may have to make the drive, or take you up on your kind offer.
nate
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