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My second floor is not heating up after installation :(

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  • Boileraches
    Boileraches Member Posts: 28
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    I did not attempt to take the elbow off. I will give it a go an see if it is clogged. When taking the Gorton off there was not alot of steam. I can feel the air in the opening but the steam took really long to get there
  • Abracadabra
    Abracadabra Member Posts: 1,948
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    I recently installed maid o mist on all radiators. The left main supports 4 medium sized radiators and the left supports 3, one which is the living room and it is pretty big like 2 put together. This one was not heating up all the way so I installed a varivalve and it seems to be doing better but as stated earlier the right main is slow to steam up so the other two rooms get minimal steam.

    What # MOM vents did you install? What do you have the varivalve set at?

    You say: "The left main supports 4 medium sized radiators and the left supports 3". I think you have a typo. What does the rightside main supply?

    Your boiler supplies 304 sq. ft. What is your total EDR?
  • Boileraches
    Boileraches Member Posts: 28
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    Maid o most #4 ....varivalve is currently set on fully open but it was partially closed earlier. I was tweaking it to see if it was the big radiator being a hog. Right side supports 3 sorry. My EDR is 292.2x240=70,128 total BTU. Took the Elbow out and there was no blockage. I can feel air but no steam is pushing through unless it runs longer
  • Fred
    Fred Member Posts: 8,542
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    Do you hear any gurggling anywhere along that Main? I suspect you do have some water sitting in that main that is condensing the steam before it reaches the end of the main and starts to feed the radiators. Check the pitch of that main. Level won't work, it has to be pitched so that water can run back to the boiler. Your Boiler size relative to your EDR is good so you should not have an issue with the boiler being able to feed all those radiators.
  • BobC
    BobC Member Posts: 5,479
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    Stretch a string beside the main, it will make any dips more obvious. Old buildings shift over time so what once had good pitch may no longer have good pitch. What is the pitch of the main - how many inches per 10 ft length?

    Bob
    Smith G8-3 with EZ Gas @ 90,000 BTU, Single pipe steam
    Vaporstat with a 12oz cut-out and 4oz cut-in
    3PSI gauge
  • Abracadabra
    Abracadabra Member Posts: 1,948
    edited November 2014
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    . I can feel air but no steam is pushing through unless it runs longer

    How long are you waiting after the header gets steam?

    Try flipping all the vents on all radiators upside down temporarily, or shutoff the valves to all the radiators except the radiator you are having problems with. Start a cycle. If there's a dip and condensate is blocking the supply of steam you should hear/see it. Don't forget to flip the vents back and or open all the valves when you are done. What pressure are you acheiveing on your gauge? I assume you have a 0-3PSI gauge installed and not the useless 0-30PSI gauge.

  • Boileraches
    Boileraches Member Posts: 28
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    Bob- not sure how to measure the dips. What I did do is get a piece of wood and mark the space from the wood to the ceiling. I think I have a slope issue with the right main. See the attached pictures. The picture that does not have the arrow there barely any slope at all.

    Abra- at first I thought it was just one radiator since that was the last on on that main. But after further investigation it seems this is an issue with the main since the steam is not traveling very fast on the one I have the issue with.

    Thank you guys very much. Is there any thing I can temporarily do in order to help that main slope or can this only be done by repiping that main.
  • BobC
    BobC Member Posts: 5,479
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    I think that main may have been raised a bit when the boiler was installed and what may have been marginal is now a problem. To my eye it looks like that main is sloping down and if that was originally a counterflow main that is a problem. After the boiler was installed did those radiators seem to work ok and then stopped getting hot? If they did it tells me that main was filling with water that could now be collapsing your steam before it gets to the radiators. Have you tried talking to the guy who installed the boiler to see if he is willing to fix it?

    It looks like that short nipple between the boiler header and the main could be replaced with a shorter pipe reasonably easy, also the drip connection would have to be shortened. how many radiators come off this main and are they all on the same floor?

    There might be a way to test this theory. First of all I would get a line level and stretch it from the end of the main to where the main connects to the header and verify the slope is the problem. If the main is only off slope a bit it might be possible to lift each radiator by sliding 1/4" pieces of plywood under both sets of legs, work your way along the main and do each radiator in turn; then go back and raise each one an additional 1/4" and see if the resulting 1/2" makes a difference. have some help and use a lever to GENTLY lift each radiator and don't try to go more than 1/4" at a time.

    If that main slopes all the way down to the end you might be able to install a drip at the end and run it back to the boiler but that is probably more work than shortening the pipes.

    Bob
    Smith G8-3 with EZ Gas @ 90,000 BTU, Single pipe steam
    Vaporstat with a 12oz cut-out and 4oz cut-in
    3PSI gauge
  • Boileraches
    Boileraches Member Posts: 28
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    Bob- I believe your analysis might be correct. I appreciate your help. I will attempt to call the plumber, if I still can find his phone number. This will be 2 years since the install.

    The radiators did work at first and now they get warm but very slowly. There's a total of 3 rooms that are feed of that main. Two of them are upstairs. I had my first child during the install and just now am getting around to trying to balance everything.
  • Boileraches
    Boileraches Member Posts: 28
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    Whenever I can find help I can attempt to put the plywood underneath. I tried doing it today since I was off work and that is almost impossible to do alone.
  • BobC
    BobC Member Posts: 5,479
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    They really are too heavy to manhandle on your own. Just go slow and don't force anything, this is not the time of uear to snap a pipe.

    Bob
    Smith G8-3 with EZ Gas @ 90,000 BTU, Single pipe steam
    Vaporstat with a 12oz cut-out and 4oz cut-in
    3PSI gauge
  • Boileraches
    Boileraches Member Posts: 28
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    Well just an update, I got a hold of the plumber and he took a look at the system. He said that the long stretch of the main slopes downward (just like the arrow on the picture) but also agreed the main where the risers are installed barely have a slope. He went on to say it is was not a counterflow main since it is slope downward. I asked him why they would put a drip next to the riser then. Plumber said he did not know. He also suggested that it was not much of a dip to cause a problem and said that he would recommend extending the risers and the drip more in order to raise it. Of course this was none of his doing. He also said her really thinks there may be some rust or debry blocking that pipe and it is not a water issue. Asked him how much it would be to raise it if I would have him do it. He said maybe close to $1,000...the nerve of this guy.Calling him over just made my more annoyed with this issue.
  • KC_Jones
    KC_Jones Member Posts: 5,741
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    We don't discuss pricing on this site. Is there a condensate return at the end of that main? If there isn't then it's counterflow if there is then it's parallel flow. It's possible you have both?! Mine was sort of like that before I replaced the boiler. The first short run sloped to the boiler then hit an elbow and sloped away. I had no drips on mine though. Perhaps a pro could comment on that? Not sure if that is correct or not, just throwing it out there.
    2014 Weil Mclain EG-40
    EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Boiler Control
    Boiler pictures updated 2/21/15
  • Boileraches
    Boileraches Member Posts: 28
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    Not really discussing pricing, just stating a point about how the person who installed the boiler will not fix it to work correctly unless I fork over more money even though it never worked correctly the first place. Didn't know you could have both but I do have a condensate at the end of that main and some sort of drip above the header when the main begins. What is recommended? To raise the headers or lower them?
  • RobG
    RobG Member Posts: 1,850
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    Can you post some more pictures?
  • Boileraches
    Boileraches Member Posts: 28
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    Sure, what would you need to see? I will post what I have on my phone. Let me know what you would like to see a picture of. Thank You
  • Boileraches
    Boileraches Member Posts: 28
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    Another picture:
  • Mark N
    Mark N Member Posts: 1,115
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    I don't see any pipe hangers in the pictures of this main. What is holding it up just the pipes attached to it? Boileraches are there pipe hangers supporting this main that I'm not seeing.
  • Boileraches
    Boileraches Member Posts: 28
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    No there are not any, the only thing holding the pipe is the connection to the radiators and the piping on the main. I do see at one point there were about 2 pipe strap nailed to the wood but these are broken now.
  • KC_Jones
    KC_Jones Member Posts: 5,741
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    That is a big red flag for me. Even if you had to fix some pitch there is no way to do it. That main needs some pipe hangers. I can't remember the recommendation off the top of my head, but I think Dan mentions this in his book. A hanger every X number of feet. I have 2 roughly 30' mains and there are 4 hangers on each so about every 10' or so. Here is a rough guide from one company.
    http://www.guenthersupply.com/pdf/hanger-spacing-weight-chart.pdf
    2014 Weil Mclain EG-40
    EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Boiler Control
    Boiler pictures updated 2/21/15
  • Mark N
    Mark N Member Posts: 1,115
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    Is the other main supported by pipe hangers? My mains are supported by chains. This needs to be fixed.
    KC_Jones
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 23,430
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    There is a very good reason for pipe hangers: it's almost impossible to get the sags out of a pipe -- even a relatively big one -- without them. In at least one of those pictures I can see what I'll bet would be a sag if I checked it in the field, and that can cause no heat problems even if it doesn't hammer. Nothing like a puddle of water to stop the steam dead.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
  • Boileraches
    Boileraches Member Posts: 28
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    Just an update, on a desperate attempt to get this working, I made a connection to fit into the radiator to flush out the main. I plugged it in the first radiator and let the water run...had to drain the boiler and leave the return drain open for this. Radiators are getting hot again. Not sure if the pressure helped move the water along but I suspect it will happen again but so far it worked. I would love to add hangers to the pipes but don't know if it is possible without disturbing the asbestos. I wish I was more educated about asbestos and steam before I got myself into this home. This forum has provided the most help I have ever received in a forum, you guys are great