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Radiator Valves: Full Port?

Hap_HazzardHap_Hazzard Posts: 1,241Member ✭✭
I needed a 1-1/4" radiator valve, so I picked one up at the Home Cheapo, and when I got it home and unscrewed the spud, I was shocked at how small the opening to the valve looked. To make sure I wasn't just imagining it I took out my calipers and measured it. It's 1.16", and there are further restrictions on both sides where the bore enters the valve body. (1-1/4 pipe has a 1.38 I.D.)



To me it looks like they took a 1" valve and put a bigger union on it. The restrictions on the side are caused by the inlet bore not being bored all the way into the body, but they couldn't have made the inlet any deeper without hitting the valve seat.



To me this is totally unacceptable. This is going on a 24-section, 6-tube Arco. That's 72 ft². A 1-1/4" runout is too small to begin with. Am I being to picky here?



Does anybody have any experience with the Matco-Norca valves they sell at PexSupply? The picture of the 1-1/4" looks almost identical to this one. The top of the union nut is about even with the top of the valve body. I'll be really ticked if I order one, pay shipping, and end up with the same valve.



Can anybody recommend a good source for good radiator valves, or do they all suck these days?
1983(?) Peerless G-561-W-S



3" drop header, CG400-1090, VXT-24
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Comments

  • RodRod Posts: 2,067
    edited September 2013
    Steam Radiator Valve

    Hi Hap-  As I'm a homeowner I have a rather limited experience with the 1 pipe variety of radiator valves though I don't think I have ever seen one that is completely "full port" like you would find in a "full port" ball valve. Attached is a Watts radiator valve pdf with cross sectional drawing which I would say is fairly typical of what I have seen and as you can see it has some less than "fullport" restrictions. 

    If it turned out that a  regular radiator valve was too restrictive, may be a full port ball valve with a separate union would perhaps work better.

    - Rod
    pdf
    pdf
    Watts Radiator Valves.pdf
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  • Jamie HallJamie Hall Posts: 4,002Member ✭✭✭
    The one place

    where a valve restriction doesn't make a whole lot of difference is in a radiator feed valve; the weird condensation from the expansion after a restriction is going to happen in the radiator, where you want it to!  Consider: a lot of vapour systems use either orifices or adjustable (e.g. Hoffman) port valves anyway.



    That said, it might be that the valve will act like a too small orifice; you'll find out quickly enough if the radiator doesn't heat across.



    I presume, of course, that all this is two pipe or vapour?
    Jamie



    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England.



    Hoffman Equipped System (all original except boiler), Weil-McClain 580, 2.75 gph Carlin, Vapourstat 0.5 -- 6.0 ounces per square inch
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  • Hap_HazzardHap_Hazzard Posts: 1,241Member ✭✭
    edited September 2013
    It's a one-pipe system

    Hi, Jamie. I guess I should have mentioned that it's a one-pipe system, so that does make the inlet size critical.
    1983(?) Peerless G-561-W-S



    3" drop header, CG400-1090, VXT-24
    · ·
  • Hap_HazzardHap_Hazzard Posts: 1,241Member ✭✭
    Watts

    Hi,Rod. The valve pictured in the PDF looks exactly like the one I have, right down to the square nut on the bonnet. The cross-section, on the other hand, is like nothing I've ever seen. It doesn't accurately reflect how these things are made, so you can't really see how restrictive the inlet is.



    The valve I took off is much less restrictive. If it's not full-port it's pretty darn close. I'll try to post a side-by-side picture of the two valves. The differences are quite dramatic.



    I hope this isn't another "don't make 'em like they used to" situation.
    1983(?) Peerless G-561-W-S



    3" drop header, CG400-1090, VXT-24
    · ·
  • Jamie HallJamie Hall Posts: 4,002Member ✭✭✭
    Oops. Sorry...

    The critical thing about a radiator valve on a one pipe system isn't so much the size of the opening -- although it surely must be big enough -- but is that condensate must be able to drain freely and completely out of the radiator.  Otherwise it will either burble happily at you, which you may not want... or even not heat well, because the steam is blocked by the condensate trying to get out.
    Jamie



    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England.



    Hoffman Equipped System (all original except boiler), Weil-McClain 580, 2.75 gph Carlin, Vapourstat 0.5 -- 6.0 ounces per square inch
    · ·
  • Hap_HazzardHap_Hazzard Posts: 1,241Member ✭✭
    It's kinda like...

    when people try to get on an elevator when people are trying to get off. :D
    1983(?) Peerless G-561-W-S



    3" drop header, CG400-1090, VXT-24
    · ·
  • Hap_HazzardHap_Hazzard Posts: 1,241Member ✭✭
    The pictures

    I assume you can tell which one is the new one. :)



    I didn't mention how restricted the bottom is. What a piece of junk. I'm seriously thinking about using a ball valve to a street elbow if I can make it fit. There may even be right-angle ball valves out there. I honestly can't understand why they ever used valves like this for one-pipe steam in the first place.
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    SAM_0011.jpg
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    SAM_0013.jpg
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    1983(?) Peerless G-561-W-S



    3" drop header, CG400-1090, VXT-24
    · ·
  • nicholas bonham-carternicholas bonham-carter Posts: 5,569Member ✭✭✭
    Valve change

    Is there a good reason to change this valve?

    Could the old one be "renovated"?--NBC
    · ·
  • Hap_HazzardHap_Hazzard Posts: 1,241Member ✭✭
    Several Reasons

    The spud broke, the disc is shot and I've never had much luck at replacing them. It was definitely a much better valve, but I'm afraid it's had it.



    If there are no more decent valves available I'll take a shot at removing the disc. If I can get it off and find a replacement then I might be able to machine the spud from the new valve.
    1983(?) Peerless G-561-W-S



    3" drop header, CG400-1090, VXT-24
    · ·
  • The Boiler Dr.The Boiler Dr. Posts: 163Member
    Replacement radiator valves

    I am currently dealing with a similar problem--- where the building is/was being renovated and all the one pipe rads were removed.

    ((Of course ALL the rads were tagged to be returned to their respective locations !?!?))

    NOW the suggestion is to put ball valves on the horizontal to each rad. I foresee many problems with this approach! 

    I just surprises me that in this "age of technolegythat someone hasn't come up with a good solution -- i.e. a retrofit 90 degree ball valve.

    So sad  ... no more Jenkins!
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  • RodRod Posts: 2,067
    Radiator Valves

    Hi Hap- I see what you mean. I guess it's the old "they don't make them like that anymore!"

    I don't have much experience with radiator valves as I have only replaced one and it was similar to the "new" valve you have. It was specified for steam radiators and I didn't have ay problems with it.

    As the height between the old and new valve was different as it seems to be in your situation.and as I didn't have any "slack" in the riser piping, I used an extender which I got from McMaster Carr (see attached drawing)

    Ball Valve- I looked into using a full port ball valve with street elbow, pipe union and nipples to connect it up, but the extra distance between the riser pipe and the radiator.can be a problem. As a side note I found you can get different handles (Tee & Oval) for ball valves beside the standard lever.

    - Rod
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    1.25 Pipe Extender Fitting.jpg
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  • EdTheHeaterManEdTheHeaterMan Posts: 22Member
    Steam radiator valve V water radiator valve

    when using a radiator valve on a one pipe steam system there must be a small opening to allow condensate to leave the radiator if the valve is closed while the radiator is heating. see the post from 2009 about 1/2 way down.

    http://www.heatinghelp.com/forum-thread/127954/help-hammer-in-radiator



    Hammond valve has the answer.

    look for a supplier that can get you a hammond valve for one pipe steam
    · ·
  • Hap_HazzardHap_Hazzard Posts: 1,241Member ✭✭
    From what I can tell

    They're no different than Watts or Webstone or anybody else. If they have anything better to offer they're not showing it on their spec sheet.



    Since the tapping on the radiator is 1-1/2" anyway, I think I'm going to go with a 1-1/2" valve and nipple and hope I can find a 1-1/2"-1-1/4" 45. I have to repipe the runout anyway.
    1983(?) Peerless G-561-W-S



    3" drop header, CG400-1090, VXT-24
    · ·
  • ToymotorheadToymotorhead Posts: 54Member
    Matco Norca

    I have replaced a few of my radiator valves with the Matco-Norca brand ones from pexsupply. They seem very well made. And weigh a few ounces more than the ones from orange depot. Just my $.02



    Richard.
    If you can't be good, at least be good at it.
    · ·
  • RJRJ Posts: 421Member ✭✭
    valves

    Hoffman or Hammond, used either or on 1 pipe steam for years,  dont get to hung up on this full port thing    get 1 of each brand and see how they match to your old rad.  return the 1 that you dont need.
    RJ
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  • Hap_HazzardHap_Hazzard Posts: 1,241Member ✭✭
    And pay shipping and restocking fees

    Just to learn that they're both junk. If I've learned anything lately it's that brands mean next to nothing these days. The latest thing is "leveraging" a good brand name by "branding" cheap Chinese junk so they can sell it at premium prices.
    1983(?) Peerless G-561-W-S



    3" drop header, CG400-1090, VXT-24
    · ·
  • Dave in QCADave in QCA Posts: 1,449Member ✭✭✭
    Mepco?

    mepco has some very high quality valves. http://www.mepcollc.com/steamspec/radv.htm
    Dave in Quad Cities, America
    Weil-McLain 680 with Riello 2-stage burner, December 2012. Firing rate=375MBH Low, 690MBH Hi.
    System = Early Dunham 2-pipe Vacuo-Vapor (inlet and outlet both at bottom of radiators) Traps are Dunham #2 rebuilt w. Barnes-Jones Cage Units, Dunham-Bush 1E, Mepco 1E, and Armstrong TS-2. All valves haveTunstall orifices sized at 8 oz.
    Current connected load EDR= 1,259 sq ft, Original system EDR = 2,100 sq ft Vaporstat, 13 oz cutout, 4 oz cutin - Temp. control Tekmar 279.
    http://grandviewdavenport.com
    · ·
  • RJRJ Posts: 421Member ✭✭
    valves

    All the supply houses I would deal with  (Cal Steam, Ferguson, Pace supply ) had no problem letting me take valves and fittings to a job as long as I returned them the next day     no restocking charge,  I am not in favor of import valves but sometimes the dimensions would fit a problem radiator job
    RJ
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  • Hap_HazzardHap_Hazzard Posts: 1,241Member ✭✭
    Those look good from the description

    but I haven't seen anything like a spec sheet, so I don't know if the dimensions are any better. They're about six times as expensive as some of the other valves, so I'd want to be sure.



    I think I'm going to just take the bushing out of the radiator and get a 1-1/2" valve and put the bushing on the bottom of the valve. Since the bushing is concentric, the radiator will drain better without it, but it won't be a problem under the valve.
    1983(?) Peerless G-561-W-S



    3" drop header, CG400-1090, VXT-24
    · ·
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