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Steam Traps - all created equal?

Watched PotWatched Pot Posts: 4Member
I just bought a large house that was built sometime between 1820 and 1860 (or rather, in fits and spurts throughout that period.) It has a new steam boiler and 10 large radiators. it's a 2-pipe system.

Most of the manual radiator valves do not work, and I'll be replacing those.

I suspect that many of the steam traps (most are Dunham 1E units) are not functioning correctly since they appear to have been neglected for decades.

1) Does it make sense simply to replace all the traps when I do the control valves?

2) Do I need to get the new MEPCO 1ESS units from here:

or can I go with these much cheaper Watts units:



  • Steamhead (in transit)Steamhead (in transit) Posts: 6,688Member
    Just replace the insides of the traps

    no need to replace the housings. Dunham/MEPCO still makes repair kits, as do Tunstall and Barnes & Jones.

    The stuck valves could probably be freed if you took them apart. Tunstall can convert them to thermostatic radiator valves if you wish.

    That's probably a Dunham Vapor system. Vapor was the Cadillac of heating in the day and is still one of the best out there.


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  • Brad White_166Brad White_166 Posts: 2,391Member
    Do what Steamhead says....

    you will not regret it. Congratulations on your acquisition! Get her running like she should and do not cut corners. I am partial to Tunstall myself and it is a great age to have resources that can make an older system sing. If you are in Baltimore area, you should have Frank (Steamhead) take a look.

    "If you do not know the answer, say, "I do not know the answer", and you will be right!"

    -Ernie White, my Dad
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