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Proper skimming technique...the details.

vaporvac Member Posts: 1,520
This recently referenced thread has many useful links.

<a href="http://www.heatinghelp.com/forum-thread/143164/Noise-again">http://www.heatinghelp.com/forum-thread/143164/Noise-again</a>

I read the skimming pdf: <a href="http://www.heatinghelp.com/files/posts/13907/Skim%20Article%20OH%20June%202009.pdf">http://www.heatinghelp.com/files/posts/13907/Skim%20Article%20OH%20June%202009.pdf</a>

and noticed he recommends skimming immediately upon filling the boiler. I've read elsewhere to do it after one week. I've also read some hot vs. cold skimming. suggestions. ..which is best or should they both be used at different times and should this be done first, BEFORE firing it up? Lastly, how does one go about draing the condensate sludge while using the boiler, or does one fire it and turn off as the condensate comes back and is drained, then refill and do it all over agin. This is referenced in this article and is also mentioned in the steam piping video.

I also found interesting the issues that cleaning tablets can cause. Have any of you guys had such problems? Thank you. I think many could benefit from this info.
Two-pipe Trane vaporvacuum system; 1466 edr
Twinned, staged Slantfin TR50s piped into 4" header with Riello G400 burners; 240K lead, 200K lag Btus. Controlled by Taco Relay and Honeywell RTH6580WF


  • Mad Dog_2
    Mad Dog_2 Member Posts: 6,701
    Depends how "dirty" the system is......

    Right After some installs...next day!.....you have issues. Depending on whether you swabbed down your threaded pipe "barrels".....age of wet returns, et al......too many varia

    Bles,man. Just make sure cleanings are SEPERATE from your install....or...you will take a bath....mad dog
  • Another advantage of the drop header

    Is the separation of the boiler water from the returns.

    All the oils are being splashed up into the risers, and draining into the larger header, with a little slope on the horizontals, and then draining down the equalizer, where they...................

    Stay, floating on the column of water in the equalizer. A convenient valve a little below the waterline height could be opened to drain that oil out. Bit by bit, if 1% of the oils are thus trapped in the equalizer every hour of running then after a few weeks, all the oil will be floating in the equalizer, separated from the boiler water.

    Peerless cleaning instructions recommend simmering a solution of Arm&Hammer washing soda in the boiler to loosen things up, then starting a slow skim (burner off) as the incoming water cools everything down.

    It would be interesting to try a no-skim installation, just relying on the cleansing powers of the header.--NBC
  • MDNLansing
    MDNLansing Member Posts: 297
    All of the above

    New install, skim as much and often as you can. Personally, on the initial fill I'd let it sit for a few hours and skim it cold. Then, run it for a bit of testing and skim some more. Then, run it for heat and tweaking and skim some more. You want all the oils out, at whatever point in time they are in there.

    I think the most important thing is to clean it with the wand before the initial firing. The inside ot that thing is going to be full of cutting oils. Cast iron is actually like a spounge. You can put a fitting in a quart of oil and it will soak a ton of it up. Clean it right off the bat, then clean it again after its had a few days of heat, then again after a few weeks of heat. Like NBC sated though, make sure you're cleaning the water in the equalizer as well. Because you have a nice big header any oil the leaves the boiler won;t carry over to the mains. Just make sure you get it all out of the near boiler piping as well. Bottom line, you have to clean and skim until nothing but clean water is coming out. That's when you know you're done.
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