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Anticipated snow level

mayna123mayna123 Posts: 9Member
Anyone that is installing gas vents are dealing with the manufacturers that are telling us to terminate the vent 12" above the anticipated snow level. What is everyone using as the anticipated snow level?

Comments

  • KC_JonesKC_Jones Posts: 4,172Member
    2014 Weil Mclain EG-40
    EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Boiler Control
    Boiler pictures updated 2/21/15
    https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10202744301871904.1073741828.1330391881&type=1&l=c34ad6ee78
  • mayna123mayna123 Posts: 9Member
    I realize that, but I am asking what everyone is using to determine what the anticipated snow level is...where they live.
  • Michael WelchMichael Welch Posts: 43Member
    The Massachusetts fuel gas code states that: In the absence of specific manufacturer instructions or ordinances, snow lines/levels shall be calculated from the average monthly maximum depth of snow accumulation as indicated by the National Weather Service's 10 year statistics for the installation location / geographical area.
  • mayna123mayna123 Posts: 9Member
    OK. So far, no one wants to share specifics. I already know it depends on where you live and the data available. I just want to know you are all using as a depth.
  • Tim McElwainTim McElwain Posts: 4,278Member
    You can't go wrong using a termination 30" above grade. This is especially true at rough in on new construction. Here is RI with the blizzard of 78 we had 34" of snow in some locations. This is what I base my termination on.
  • hatchethatchet Posts: 10Member
    I'm in Jersey. We use 6" as snow fall so that means invert (bottom inside of vent termination) elevation is 12" above snow, or 18"
  • icesailoricesailor Posts: 7,265Member
    edited December 2014

    The Massachusetts fuel gas code states that: In the absence of specific manufacturer instructions or ordinances, snow lines/levels shall be calculated from the average monthly maximum depth of snow accumulation as indicated by the National Weather Service's 10 year statistics for the installation location / geographical area.

    At my 2011 CEU class for my Massachusetts plumbing licenses, this was part of the course run by the Mass PHCC. In the class book, this was given:

    http://www.city-data.com/city/Massachusetts.html

    If you go to this site . with Massachusetts (or any other state) you pick the city. Find the area and they give any number you can want. It will give you a maximum depth of a snow storm in any month. January usually has the highest. If it says storms in January have a average fall of 17", you add 12" or .33 of a meter, which will be 27". Weather Underground may be OK, but this one is recognized by Massachusetts and is what you are expected to use. Its not that difficult.

    For example: Take the town of Seekonk, MA, close to the RI boarder.

    http://www.city-data.com/city/Seekonk-Massachusetts.html

    Scroll way down until you find the graph on snowfall. You will see that the highest snowfall over history is January and 10" So, 22" above grade. It does not cover drifting.

  • mayna123mayna123 Posts: 9Member
    Thanks for the inputs. I now have a place to go to get this in black and white and not just guessing. I did go to the NOAA website and using their data, came up with an average of 16" up in NH. I have been using 30", but could not easily show the installers some proof it needs to be at this height. Thank you all!
  • SteamheadSteamhead Posts: 13,268Member
    In Baltimore, we have had up to 36" of snow. We won't install any sidewall vent less than 48" above grade.

    Think about it. With that much snow, would we be able to get out there and fix a boiler if it shut down from a plugged vent?
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    "Reducing our country's energy consumption, one system at a time"
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
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    Baltimore, MD (USA) and consulting anywhere.
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  • Michael WelchMichael Welch Posts: 43Member
    Worcester has an average of 24 - 28 in January but I always go at least 36" above grade.
  • shawnnolanshawnnolan Posts: 7Member
    in halifax nova scotia we use 12" as expected snow level.
  • ChicagoCooperatorChicagoCooperator Posts: 233Member
    edited December 2014
    Would the experts, not me, suggest taking into account locations where blowing snow might drift a bit too? Like an inside corner in just the right direction where blowing snow might pile up against the wall and block vents?
  • shawnnolanshawnnolan Posts: 7Member

    Would the experts, not me, suggest taking into account locations where blowing snow might drift a bit too? Like an inside corner in just the right direction where blowing snow might pile up against the wall and block vents?

    for sure , good point!

  • icesailoricesailor Posts: 7,265Member

    Worcester has an average of 24 - 28 in January but I always go at least 36" above grade.

    You think that Worcester gets 24 to 28 in January. Are you counting a snowfall for the entire month if January? Or just a single storm like the graphs show? The graph shows a snow average falling an the end of January at 19". Add 12" to that and you have 31" to the bottom of the exhaust outlet. The real issue is what will be an acceptable height. If you install it at 31", and some AHJ comes along and says that he wants you to raise it up "Because I like to see it higher", he will be shot down by the Board. You can make it any height you want. As long as it is at least the height above grade shown on the tables plus the 12" above grade or snow.

    Anything is far better than some I've seen and approved that were in pits below grades.

  • icesailoricesailor Posts: 7,265Member
    Steamhead said:

    In Baltimore, we have had up to 36" of snow. We won't install any sidewall vent less than 48" above grade.

    Think about it. With that much snow, would we be able to get out there and fix a boiler if it shut down from a plugged vent?

    Anyone can set them as high as they want. The data tables at least give you a start and a place to go to resolve disputes.

    I didn't make the regs. I just followed them as best as I could.

  • icesailoricesailor Posts: 7,265Member
    On Cape Cod, Coastal Massachusetts and New England, when you get a Northeast storm, the wind cones out of the SE then East. If you are on the cold side of the front, the snow can drift 6' or higher during the snow part of the storm. The drifting will be on the NW, West and SW side of the building. When the front goes by, the wind switches to the Northwest and starts to blow. It blows all the drifts away on the West side, and anything in the way of the wind and snow will drift up as high as a roof on the Easterly side.

    There is no perfect place to vent an appliance.
  • BobCBobC Posts: 4,995Member
    I live in an area where the bulk of the homes are at least 80 years old. A lot of the old families are moving out and new owners are gutting the places down to the studs and replacing everything. The few homes that don't have the steams systems replaced by hydro air have new baseboard installed.

    Most of them are high efficiency units that are side vented and to many of the exhaust and intakes are about 24" off the ground. These houses are all close to the beach and 4-5 ft snow drifts are not uncommon in northeasters, A couple of years ago I had an 8 ft drift against the south side of my house - shoveling that out was a joy.

    These installations aren't only dangerous I'll bet they are not as efficient as a decent 80% steam system they replaced because of the way they were installed. The installers are in and out in a day or day and a half at best and the few I have had a good look at made me very glad they have never been in my house.

    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
  • Jean-David BeyerJean-David Beyer Posts: 2,641Member
    I used to live in Buffalo, NY, and we would often get three feet of snow on the ground. And five feet was not unusual. We often got snow long before the previous snow was melted.

    I now live in New Jersey, near the shore of the Atlantic ocean. The snow here is not much, compared with Buffalo, NY, but it drifts a lot. So when I get a foot or two on my front sidewalk, by my front door and my garage door (where I keep my car, and where my W-M Ultra 3 and W-M (Triangle Tube) indirect are located, it frequently drifts 5 feet deep. The air intake and vent for the boiler are probably about 10 feet above the ground, so they have not been obstructed by snow.

    However the vent from the pressure regulator on my outdoor gas meter is only about two feet from the ground, so it frequently gets buried. And the drain from my condensate pump empties onto the ground from at most two feet in height, so it is frequently buried. When I can, I shovel it out, but I cannot always get to it. One winter it took me over half an hour to get there because the snow was way deeper than my hips, and if I took a step, I was trapped as my foot would not reach the ground, but the snow was too deep to move my other leg. I had to clear some snow with my hands and arms, take a step, rinse and repeat. It took about 1/2 hour to go about 75 feet to get to the garage where the snow shovel was. And my cardiologist does not allow me to shovel snow, but I had to do it anyway.

    I then had to shovel to my front door and clear away the snow so I could open the front door to escape if the place caught fire. Scary, but it did not catch fire.
  • BobCBobC Posts: 4,995Member
    I keep a snow shovel in the cellar because of drifting snow. Once in a while i have to use a 2X4 to wedge open the front storm door so I can get out of the house to use the shovel. It's good thing the storm door is 60 years old, the new ones are made of tin foil.

    i was surprised that they kept my gas meter inside when they replaced my service pipe and meter last month. There is a yacht club down at the end of my street and they have a gas meter that runs out under the 80 foot raised wooden walkway. The gas meter is a few feet from the sea wall and I've often seen it it half submerged in sea water, don't imagine that does it much good.

    If you have to shovel do it slowly and take frequent rest breaks - it s not a race. We want to keep hearing your advice on this board for a long time.

    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
  • icesailoricesailor Posts: 7,265Member
    @BobC:

    In Buffalo, NY, the drifts build up on the West side of the houses, plus the lake effect snow that comes from no wind?

    @Jean-David Beyer:

    The snow in a Northeaster starts to drift on the SW side until the front goes by and the snow drifts on the East and SE side when the wind switches to Northwest. Its the nature of Coastal Storms.

    This started as a question of how high should I make it. The manufacturers installation and venting instructions all say 12" or ,33 of a Meter. or above any snow level. You can make them any height you want. They should be a minimum of 12" plus the listed snow level in the highest snow producing storm in a month in January.

    Why Massachusetts and other snow belt States are requiring hard wired CO detectors with battery back-up. Easily defeated when they are going off all the time, so people take the batteries out of them to stop them from going off. When they are 3 years out of expiration date and they are too cheap to replace them.

    Can lead to an unattended death call or a Wellness Check and find unattended deaths.
  • BobCBobC Posts: 4,995Member
    Ice - I'm just south of Boston on the coast so it's usually the northeasters that drift the snow like mad.

    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
  • unclejohnunclejohn Posts: 1,420Member
    So who's ready to move to Costa Rica?
  • BobCBobC Posts: 4,995Member
    This ain't so bad, I was on top of a mountain in Korea for a year in a Quonset hut. The snow wasn't as bad (I was in the center of s Korea) but the cold was bone numbing.

    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
  • icesailoricesailor Posts: 7,265Member
    BobC said:

    Ice - I'm just south of Boston on the coast so it's usually the northeasters that drift the snow like mad.

    Bob

    That's what I was saying. I described how a Northeaster comes.

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