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Apartment Building Steam Heating Problem
I have an apartment building with (1) low pressure atmospheric steam boiler. The steam pressure is set for 3 psig. The system is a two pipe system with a boiler feed unit. The boiler is rated for 780 MBH input and 624 MBH output. The building is three stories. There is only one thermostat that controls the boiler. All the radiators have manual steam supply valves and air vents. There is no visible traps on the radiators. There is also no vacuum breakers on the system.
The problem I am having is I cannot maintain steam pressure. The steam pressure starts to build and within less than 30 seconds the pressure drops like a rock and all the water is sucked out of the boiler. A few minutes later all the water comes back down the condensate lines and into the boiler feed. By this time, the boiler feed has already made up fresh water to the system and the boiler feed eventually begins to overflow.
Could this be a case where my boiler is undersized for the load and the steam is condensing too fast thereby creating a vacuum and sucking all the water out of my boiler?
Does anybody have a solution?
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