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Is there really a "steam" pigtail?

HarryL Member Posts: 56
I am replacing the 90 pigtail for my pressuretrol with a straight pigtail and noticed 1/4" black pigtails for 1/4 the price of something labeled a "steam" pigtail. Is there really something special about a "steam" pigtail for this application?
Home owner, 1927 2-story, single family
1 pipe Burnham IN4I, Boston area


  • BobC
    BobC Member Posts: 5,182
    The black ones are probably steel, brass pigtails don't clog as easily and are easier to clean because they don't rust - it's worth the extra money.

    Smith G8-3 with EZ Gas @ 90,000 BTU, Single pipe steam
    Vaporstat with a 12oz cut-out and 4oz cut-in
    3PSI gauge
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 15,334
    You should always use brass -- it doesn't clog or corrode quite as fast
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England.
    Hoffman Equipped System (all original except boiler), Weil-Mclain 580, 2.75 gph Carlin, Vapourstat 0.5 -- 6.0 ounces per square inch
  • KC_Jones
    KC_Jones Member Posts: 4,621
    I will third on the brass, my old boiler had steel and it was a pain. The brass is much nicer in the long run.
    2014 Weil Mclain EG-40
    EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Boiler Control
    Boiler pictures updated 2/21/15
  • flyers03
    flyers03 Member Posts: 14
    Please excuse me if I explain this poorly. I'm fairly new to steam so please be patient. Okay so I have a similar situation to the original post. The settings on my pressuretrol are at the minimum and the system is working without any issues (thankfully). My "problem" is about the gauge. It always reads 10-12 psi which has to be wrong (it's the original gauge affixed to the front of my peerless boiler). Can i install a brass tee with a separate pigtail from the pressuretrol and install a new low pressure gauge atop of it?
  • Captain Who
    Captain Who Member Posts: 452
    @flyers03 - Better to install it on the same pigtail as the pressuretrol. If you remove the 0-30psi gauge you will be in violation of the codes. If you feel like making it right you can remove the 0-30 and clean out the tiny hole in the brass snubber with a needle. It should work after that (for a little while) until it gets plugged up again.
  • flyers03
    flyers03 Member Posts: 14

    @flyers03 - Better to install it on the same pigtail as the pressuretrol. If you remove the 0-30psi gauge you will be in violation of the codes.

    Captain Who - so instead, you are saying to install the brass tee above the pigtail and branch off the pressuretrol and new gauge. i'm not going to remove the old gauge so i continue to meet the code requirement.
  • Captain Who
    Captain Who Member Posts: 452
    Yes, exactly. That's the way I have mine and it is working very well.
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