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Fresh Water Makeup

Nelson_6 Member Posts: 24
I recently purchased a home with an oil-fired one-pipe steam system. My automatic feeder is replacing about 2 gallons of water per week. All of the piping is accessible for inspection and the only leak I found was related to the packing on a radiator supply valve. I tightened the packing, but I am still losing water somehow.

What is the normal amount of fresh water makeup for a residential steam system?


  • Brad White_203
    Brad White_203 Member Posts: 506
    Ideally very little

    Absent a bona-fide visible leak, you may have buried mains which of course would be undetectable under normal circumstances. An IR scan might help.

    Otherwise, a leak above the waterline might be the source, steam up the chimney. Flooding the boiler to just above the steam chest might show reveal water in the combustion chamber. Not a good sign of course.
  • Nelson_6
    Nelson_6 Member Posts: 24
    Found the leak

    Thanks for your reply Brad. I ultimtely found the leak. There was a large radiator in the garage that I valved out because I did not see any reason to heat the garage with high fuel prices. Anyway, I got to thinking that maybe the valve was leaking by. Sure enough...I shut down the boiler and once everything had condensed, I opened the valve to the radiator and all the missing condensate drained back to the boiler. I am going to have the radiator blanked off since I do not plan to use it. -Thanks
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