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Steám separator

Snowmelt
Snowmelt Member Posts: 1,284
edited March 2015 in Strictly Steam
Any reason why I don't see this item being used

Comments

  • Mark N
    Mark N Member Posts: 1,090
    i don't think i've ever seen anybody install a boiler from Union Steam who makes those.
  • JStar
    JStar Member Posts: 2,752
    I see very inadequate companies use them. Seems like one of those slippery "get steam quick" items.
  • Mark N
    Mark N Member Posts: 1,090
    The large internal volume of the separator slows the velocity of the steam allowing the entrained moisture to not even make it to the header. Therefore drying the steam. Performs the same task as the oversized drop header.
  • Charlie from wmass
    Charlie from wmass Member Posts: 4,190
    If you pipe it properly you do not need this device.
    Cost is what you spend , value is what you get.

    cell # 413-841-6726
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/charles-garrity-plumbing-and-heating
  • SWEI
    SWEI Member Posts: 7,356
    Mini drop header in a can?
  • Mark N
    Mark N Member Posts: 1,090
    It's another method of achieving dry steam. I agree they are not normally used in residential steam. Google steam separator, they aren't snake oil. They are used all the time to separate water droplets from steam.
  • Snowmelt
    Snowmelt Member Posts: 1,284
    Ok just wondering, I was like why do the extra piping of a drop header if you can just install one of these.
    Almost like saying why do closely spaced tees with hydronic system when you can use a hydronic seperator for the same thing.
    Was thinking it just make the job a little easier, maybe a little more compact. Maybe look neater & cleaner like in a hydronic system.
  • jumper
    jumper Member Posts: 1,642
    Some big buildings with high ceiling boiler rooms have steam drums.Some big buildings with large boiler rooms also have stuff to condition make up water.Good ideas but house builders declined a century ago. How many homes have proper main to riser connections?
  • Larry_52
    Larry_52 Member Posts: 181
    Agree, proper piping for residential is the better long term solution. Large boilers typically use separation plates from generating banks directing steam to cyclone separators and/(or just) to chevrons. Really just based on requirements of mass flow and available real estate.
  • DanHolohan
    DanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 15,296
    It's actually a very old idea. Everhot also makes one that became very popular in New England during the late-80s when steam boilers got a lot smaller and the velocity of the steam a hot faster. They work well.
    Retired and loving it.
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 11,697
    Just wondering, why install those when the boiler manufacturer could just cast a steam chest into the block? Just thinking outside the bun here....
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • Robert O'Connor_12
    Robert O'Connor_12 Member Posts: 728
    Those things are/were great! Can't get them around here anymore that I'm aware of. Had a wacky job years ago where I installed a drop header that believe it or not, didn't work so I installed 2 of them on the take offs. Dried that steam right up!
  • DanHolohan
    DanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 15,296
    ChrisJ said:

    Just wondering, why install those when the boiler manufacturer could just cast a steam chest into the block? Just thinking outside the bun here....

    To meet the standards for combustion efficiency, they have to make the boilers smaller and tighter, and that did away with the steam chest and increased the steam velocity.
    Retired and loving it.
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 11,697

    ChrisJ said:

    Just wondering, why install those when the boiler manufacturer could just cast a steam chest into the block? Just thinking outside the bun here....

    To meet the standards for combustion efficiency, they have to make the boilers smaller and tighter, and that did away with the steam chest and increased the steam velocity.
    Seems strange because now we need extra piping to compensate for the lack of a steam chest, so aren't we right back where we started? :)

    One thing I don't understand is when everyone is pushing for efficiency why does a new boiler have such thin insulation in the jacket? Shouldn't we be pushing for 1 to 2" thick fiberglass surrounding the block?
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • BobC
    BobC Member Posts: 5,199
    I think this happened when the manufacturers were trying to make boilers more efficient by reducing the size and thickness of the cast blocks. The old boilers had large steam chests that were forgiving of less than perfect near boiler piping, the new designs did not tolerate bad piping. The boiler makers were not about to modify the design and molds because of the expense involved.

    The steam separator was developed to fill a need that gradually lessened as installers realized how important near boiler piping is - unfortunately not all installers think near boiler piping is important.

    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
  • vaporvac
    vaporvac Member Posts: 1,520
    @ChrisJ,

    One thing I don't understand is when everyone is pushing for efficiency why does a new boiler have such thin insulation in the jacket? Shouldn't we be pushing for 1 to 2" thick fiberglass surrounding the block?

    I've brought this up in another post, but my SlantFin's ended up having very thick insulation, or at least enough that when I touch them while running, they're cool. On an old post someone did super insulate their boiler and it made quite a difference. The old WM pdf on increasing boiler effIciencies that I used to post here ad nauseum, suggested doing just that.

    Since most installs we see are barely meet minimum specs at best, maybe a more widespread use of these things could help some HOs until they get correct piping, or at least ensure their install provides them with some quality dry steam. Obviously a drop header is best, but even the manu minimums are often just that, minimal. I'd be curious to see one installed. Where exactly does it go?
    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
  • Abracadabra
    Abracadabra Member Posts: 1,948
    vaporvac said:

    ...The old WM pdf on increasing boiler effIciencies that I used to post here ad nauseum, suggested doing just that....

    Do you still have that PDF? Not sure I've seen it. thx
  • vaporvac
    vaporvac Member Posts: 1,520
    I'll dig it up. I think the old posts don't show pics or pdfs anymore.
    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
  • PMJ
    PMJ Member Posts: 1,092

    ChrisJ said:

    Just wondering, why install those when the boiler manufacturer could just cast a steam chest into the block? Just thinking outside the bun here....

    To meet the standards for combustion efficiency, they have to make the boilers smaller and tighter, and that did away with the steam chest and increased the steam velocity.
    The result of this is that the details of each installation are significantly more critical than before - all the margin for error has been eliminated. With the skill level required to successfully install raised significantly, the installation cost is obviously also increased. And at the same time the number of actually qualified installers is reduced so there are more bad installations. And even after you spend the money with a good installer the boiler itself won't last anywhere near as long as the old ones. I'm struggling to picture where the happy homeowners come from in this scenario. This formula only hastens the demise of residential steam.

    1926 1000EDR Mouat 2 pipe vapor system,1957 Bryant Boiler 463,000 BTU input, Natural vacuum operation with single solenoid vent, Custom PLC control
  • j a_2
    j a_2 Member Posts: 1,796

    It's actually a very old idea. Everhot also makes one that became very popular in New England during the late-80s when steam boilers got a lot smaller and the velocity of the steam a hot faster. They work well.

    Yes there are, I see them all the time…Here in the Boston area…I will post a few pictures when I get back from the Carolinas…Question, where they ever in the installation manuals of the manufactures, back then….I would have to say with the amount of them still out here they worked well...
  • DanHolohan
    DanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 15,296
    j a said:

    It's actually a very old idea. Everhot also makes one that became very popular in New England during the late-80s when steam boilers got a lot smaller and the velocity of the steam a hot faster. They work well.

    Yes there are, I see them all the time…Here in the Boston area…I will post a few pictures when I get back from the Carolinas…Question, where they ever in the installation manuals of the manufactures, back then….I would have to say with the amount of them still out here they worked well...
    They were common on larger boilers in the old days. They didn't look quite like this but they did the same thing.
    Retired and loving it.
  • Charlie from wmass
    Charlie from wmass Member Posts: 4,190
    if they are so good, why not just use two 6" x2" couplings and a 12" nipple then reduce the header piping back to 2"? My reason for not doing that is that as much as the steam slows down in the chamber it speeds up once it leaves it. The old H.B.Smith boilers used large steam chests to connect the sections. This slowed and dried the steam and gave the carry over water a place to settle.
    Cost is what you spend , value is what you get.

    cell # 413-841-6726
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/charles-garrity-plumbing-and-heating
  • DanHolohan
    DanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 15,296

    if they are so good, why not just use two 6" x2" couplings and a 12" nipple then reduce the header piping back to 2"? My reason for not doing that is that as much as the steam slows down in the chamber it speeds up once it leaves it. The old H.B.Smith boilers used large steam chests to connect the sections. This slowed and dried the steam and gave the carry over water a place to settle.

    It does speed up again, Charlie, but with much less liquid water in the steam.
    Retired and loving it.
  • Harvey Ramer
    Harvey Ramer Member Posts: 2,217
    So I have a question.
    The steam velocity in the riser is high enough to carry water up into the separator where it slows down, water drops out and the dry steam continues on out into the main.

    Where does the water go? The water that drops out in the separator. The velocity in the riser is still the same as it was when it brought the water up in the first place.

  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 11,697

    So I have a question.
    The steam velocity in the riser is high enough to carry water up into the separator where it slows down, water drops out and the dry steam continues on out into the main.

    Where does the water go? The water that drops out in the separator. The velocity in the riser is still the same as it was when it brought the water up in the first place.


    That's a good point.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • Charlie from wmass
    Charlie from wmass Member Posts: 4,190
    It goes back down the feed pipe
    Cost is what you spend , value is what you get.

    cell # 413-841-6726
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/charles-garrity-plumbing-and-heating
  • Charlie from wmass
    Charlie from wmass Member Posts: 4,190
    Water travels down vertical pipe clinging to the side of the pipe.
    Cost is what you spend , value is what you get.

    cell # 413-841-6726
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/charles-garrity-plumbing-and-heating
  • DanHolohan
    DanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 15,296
    Exactly.
    Retired and loving it.
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 11,697
    So perhaps these are perfect for situations where you cannot get your 24" above the water line.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • DanHolohan
    DanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 15,296
    They are. Old-school stuff.
    Retired and loving it.
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