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iddelz Posts: 16
I've been learning about steam systems via "we got steam" but wanted a professional look it over as well. we started at the boiler and in flushing the system discovered a clog in the glass gauge - we basically emptied the boiler but the glass was still full - and after clearing it with a piece of metal got it working again, though the water bounces around a lot when the heat is on. the plumber recommended I start by replacing the gauge assembly, pressuretrol and pigtails and also clean the probe. i wonder if this is something a mechanically inclined person can / should do themselves or if the cost ($800) is a small price to pay to get a 20-yr old boiler into working order. tx / Iddelz
Hi - You need to decide what items you are capable of doing and what items you should leave to a professional. Things like cleaning/checking the probe, other safety devices and the burner are best left to a professional. A lot of the other maintenance items can be done by the homeowner but this of course depends on their mechanical experience and what they are "comfortable" doing.
One of the first things I would do is look in the "Find a Professional" link at the top of this page and see if there is a steam pro local to you. Scroll down the page and check under the "State" listing as the zip code method has had its software recently updated and there are apparently some "bugs" in it. There are some really good steam guys listed.
As for the Pressuretrol - Is it working? On the pigtail and fittings it's probably best to just replace them. If you don't have a source locally let us know and we can give you one.
If you waterline in the sight glass is bouncing more than 3 /4 of an inch,it is probably a sign that the boiler needs to be "skimmed". There is a good article on skimming in the June 2009 issue of Oil
Heating on Page 20 called "Cleaning a Steam Boiler and Keeping it
Clean" Here's a link: http://www.oilheating.com/index.mv?screen=previousissues
Skimming is a good example of what the homeowner can do.It a simple operation though requires a lot to time just standing around. Having a pro do this would be obviously costly and a waste of their abilities.
Glad to hear you have "We Got..." as this will be a great help to you. Do you have your boiler's operating manual? If not let us know the make and model and we can probably find one for you on the internet. - Rod0
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