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Energy Management & Control

Ed_68 Member Posts: 3
Thanks for the input. I like the temperature averaging control scheme. Need to figure out how it will apply to my building riser layout.


  • Ed_68
    Ed_68 Member Posts: 3
    Energy Management & Control

    I am starting a project on a Multi-family building and was looking for some independant perspective on devices, system and controls that have been successful for others. I am looking to manage Steam Energy for now. Building has new boilers and Heat-Timer controls.

    Steam heating through multiple risers. Undrground garage and other common areas.
  • nicholas bonham-carter
    nicholas bonham-carter Member Posts: 8,576

    is this 1-pipe or 2? do a search on this site for tekmar 269 or 279 [button on orange banner above]. seems to be the favorite of the pros here with outdoor, indoor, and condensate temp sensor. next i would get a copy of "the lost art of steam heating", and it will have the answers to many of your questions; the rest will be from here.--nbc
  • clammy
    clammy Member Posts: 3,094
    a few ideas

    Ed first thing i would suggest is to make sure all your mains are properly vented to ensure that all the risers get steam with in the same time span with out to much of a lag between them .In apartments that are known to over heat or are located close to the boiler room should either be vented very slow or better yet install a thermostatic raditor valve (trv)and i would do the same for common areas .Besides the heat timer control(whih i myself am not ot found of)it would be nice to have some indoor temperture input from the apartments .A simple temperture averaging thermostat has worked well for myself on smaller apartment buildings (12 units)using up to three sensors and placing them in units that where farest from the boiler and let the stat average it out to cyle the boiler in conjution to the heat timer .i have found that the boiler ran much less time then the heat timer was demanding and that there was much less over heating and very good reports on lower fuel comsumpition.But as i see it with steam no matter how good the energy mangerment system is if the systems steam mains and raditors are not vented or trapped corretly the control system will not make it work right ,cyle the heating system and see how quikly the mains and rads heat and then proeed from that hope this helped peace and good luck clammy
    R.A. Calmbacher L.L.C. HVAC
    NJ Master HVAC Lic.
    Mahwah, NJ
    Specializing in steam and hydronic heating
  • nicholas bonham-carter
    nicholas bonham-carter Member Posts: 8,576
    temp/steam control

    if all the requirements of low pressure [under 12 ounces], ample main steam line venting, and good control; there should not be any "hot-spots" or "cold-spots". if there is a problem area, then a TRV will compensate.

    if this bldg is new to you, then check out the boiler mfg's website, and look at the installation manual. compare the piping you have with what is required by the manual. or post some pix so they can be seen here for the expert's opinion. it's always easier to fix that in the summer!!--nbc
  • oil-2-4-6-gas
    oil-2-4-6-gas Member Posts: 641

    what do you actually have ? what size building/buildings are we talking -100 family 200 family 20 family --1 pipe,2 pipe system ? what kind of boilers cast sectional/scotch marine, water tube ? exposed piping,buried piping , condensate,pumped return,vacuum system ? etc... way too vague for any real answers/suggestion that could possibly be of any use -----and is this co-op or rental? (makes a BIG difference)
  • seabee570
    seabee570 Member Posts: 89

    I have 2 agree with clammy,there are way better controls than heattimer,and I have had 2 bad experiences with them.as for averaging,lots of ddc controls have it.You have to use multiple sensors in series according to mfg suggestions.Take a good look at the operating pressure,many times it can be lowered.If you can look at other controls.good luck
  • nugs
    nugs Member Posts: 77

    gotta back up clammy too. The problem with steam is that no matter what control set up is used the boiler still has to come up to 212 before anything happens. The trick here is to make sure that when the boiler does make steam, it gets delivered as fast as possible to the radiators. Vents, return piping, insulation are all factors that need to be addressed first. Thermostatic radiator valves can play a huge role in comfort and energy savings also. In the end though, the best thing would be to bite the bullet and convert the system over to FHW. If the boilers are fairly new the major expense will be in piping and radiation.
  • Steamhead (in transit)
    Steamhead (in transit) Member Posts: 6,688
    I wouldn't convert it

    using the existing pipes and radiation, unless you like to deal with nasty lawyers. There are just too many things that can go wrong.

    A complete tear-out and replacement is not only disruptive to the building and tenants, but the return on investment is rather small. Most owners want to get their money back from fuel savings in five years or less.

    The safest, most cost-effective way to reduce a steam-heated building's fuel consumption is to fix the existing system. This often results in fuel savings over 30%, as some of our customers will attest.

    And a steam system won't freeze up like a hot-water system can. If there are risers in outside walls, you're asking for trouble if you fill them with water.

    To Learn More About This Professional, Click Here to Visit Their Ad in "Find A Professional"
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