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glass guage help

HenryT
HenryT Member Posts: 128
<span>

Hi all.

What is the boiler trying to tell me when I see debree or some type of condensation/steam coming from the top opening of the site glass?

I wouldn’t say its wet condensation, but something is definitely comeing down the tube on the top side.

Thanks in advance.</span>

Comments

  • Brian_74
    Brian_74 Member Posts: 237
    Maybe a photograph would help

    I'm not sure I understand what's coming coming down your sight glass. If it's not wet, it's not condensate (water). If it's debris, then it's probably rust particles and not steam. I think we could help you better with a photograph of the sight glass.



    Whatever it is, I suspect that a likely candidate is dirty boiler water. If you do not do regular blow downs, you might want to start there. Some folks will tell you to "skim" the boiler, but I do not know how to do that well enough to tell you. You can search this site for "blow down" and "skim" to get more information about those procedures.



    Be sure to check out the books available under the "shop" menu as well as the snippets from the books you can read under "systems."
    1929 Ideal Heating vapor system.
  • HenryT
    HenryT Member Posts: 128
    it is rust

    it is rust particles... the part above the water line is lined with brown and rust.  it definitely does not appear wet.

    does this mean i need to drain and refill?



    Thanks
  • Brian_74
    Brian_74 Member Posts: 237
    I wouldn't

    I'd feel better if a pro chimed in here, but here are my homeowner's thoughts.



    The rust is not actually a problem. It might be a symptom of something. It might just be normal. Until you figure out whether your system actually has a problem I would not drain and refill it. I just don't think it's worth messing with in the middle of February. Moreover, adding water to an empty but hot boiler can be deadly. Again, not worth it.



    If it were me, I'd do blow downs twice a week and both from the LWCO and the drain for a couple of weeks and see if it gets any better. This is assuming that you're already doing them once a week. You'll need to clean the sight glass, too, if you want to see whether you're making progress.
    1929 Ideal Heating vapor system.
  • jpf321
    jpf321 Member Posts: 1,567
    picture please

    a picture would be helpful ..

    and cleaning the sight glass is pretty easy .. this way you can get a baseline of the amount of crud that's appearing ..



    turn off upper and lower glass gauge valves ...

    slip out the metal verticle rods on each side of glass ..

    loosen the nuts on top and bottom of glass tube...

    gently remove glass tube once the nuts are free.

    gently clean inside with papertowel or something that will get in there and wipe it clean ..

    reverse steps above .. make sure you reopen both top and bottom valves once you reinstall .
    1-pipe Homeowner - Queens, NYC

    NEW: SlantFin Intrepid TR-30 + Tankless + Riello 40-F5 @ 0.85gph | OLD: Fitzgibbons 402 boiler + Beckett "SR" Oil Gun @ 1.75gph

    installed: 0-20oz/si gauge | vaporstat | hour-meter | gortons on all rads | 1pc G#2 + 1pc G#1 on each of 2 mains

    Connected EDR load: 371 sf venting load: 2.95cfm vent capacity: 4.62cfm
    my NEW system pics | my OLD system pics
  • Brian_74
    Brian_74 Member Posts: 237
    But take into account where you are

    JPF is right that it's easy to take out the sight glass and clean it, but I would keep in mind where you are in terms of steam supplies. I'm not a risk taker and have no local source for parts, so before I did this I made sure I had an extra glass and some gaskets on hand. I still have 'em. I don't think it's the end of the world if you break the glass and don't have an extra on hand since you can just keep it shut. Just don't forget to replace it asap.



    Maybe you're like JPF and live near a great source or two, in which can you can ignore this.
    1929 Ideal Heating vapor system.
  • jpf321
    jpf321 Member Posts: 1,567
    yes indeed...

    be prepared for good ol' Mr. Murphy and his pesky little law .. both my local Home Depot and Lowes sells glass tubes (and tube cutters) .. not sure about the rubber gaskets .. 
    1-pipe Homeowner - Queens, NYC

    NEW: SlantFin Intrepid TR-30 + Tankless + Riello 40-F5 @ 0.85gph | OLD: Fitzgibbons 402 boiler + Beckett "SR" Oil Gun @ 1.75gph

    installed: 0-20oz/si gauge | vaporstat | hour-meter | gortons on all rads | 1pc G#2 + 1pc G#1 on each of 2 mains

    Connected EDR load: 371 sf venting load: 2.95cfm vent capacity: 4.62cfm
    my NEW system pics | my OLD system pics
  • Brian_74
    Brian_74 Member Posts: 237
    Wow. Must be a NYC thing

    Here (SW Ohio), I feel lucky if I leave Lowe's with all the black pipe fittings I came in to get. Maybe I'm looking in the wrong place. I go over in the plumbing section. Is there a secret steam heating aisle you have to know the password to get to?
    1929 Ideal Heating vapor system.
  • jpf321
    jpf321 Member Posts: 1,567
    actually there sort of is ...

    my "heating" section where they sell the crappy vents, the glass tube and the other useless bits .. is not at all near the black pipe in lowes .. in fact .. it's waay waay away new the lawnmowers and chainsaws .. i kid you not ..



    in HD the section is at least a bit closer to the plumbing .. it's at the other end of the aisle from the crappy pipe insulation (and the pipe insulation) is back to back with the black pipe fittings ...



    btw, black pipe fittings are the last thing I ever try to get at HD .. what a mess .. someone has to invent a better way! .. at least they are finally managing the screws and bolts section .. but that was another 2hr effort sometimes.
    1-pipe Homeowner - Queens, NYC

    NEW: SlantFin Intrepid TR-30 + Tankless + Riello 40-F5 @ 0.85gph | OLD: Fitzgibbons 402 boiler + Beckett "SR" Oil Gun @ 1.75gph

    installed: 0-20oz/si gauge | vaporstat | hour-meter | gortons on all rads | 1pc G#2 + 1pc G#1 on each of 2 mains

    Connected EDR load: 371 sf venting load: 2.95cfm vent capacity: 4.62cfm
    my NEW system pics | my OLD system pics
  • Brian_74
    Brian_74 Member Posts: 237
    I'll have to look

    I think I know the area you're talking about. I'll have to look next time I'm there. I think that I see the air filters on the end and so I keep walking.



    I know what you mean about the mess. I probably find stuff in the wrong bin just as often as the right one.
    1929 Ideal Heating vapor system.
  • malp
    malp Member Posts: 27
    edited February 2010
    HDs are tailored to the surrounding neighborhoods

    Home Depots do sell different things depending on where they're located. For example, the HD in the suburbs where I work rents tools, doesn't sell glass block windows, and has a pretty limited selection for flat roofs and steam heat. The HD 30 minutes away in Philadelphia does the opposite. 
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