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Richardson System radiator not heating all the time

Fizz
Fizz Member Posts: 537
Strange phenomenon! Recently put system in vacuum for about 10 days, then swithed-back to non-vacuum mode which resulted(co-incidence) in one of the radiators to heat intermittently, but always heat to valve. Now I tried reducing steam to other rad on line but didn' t makea difference. What I thought was maybe elbow ball check or air hole is stuck/blocked. Didn't want to check it yet, so I hit elbow with heel of shoe which caused heat to move normally, however, next couple of cycles intermittent heat. Last cycle, steam stalled at valve, then struck elbow and steam flowed into radiator. Now, is it co-incidence or is something amiss in tube or ball check?

Comments

  • Fred
    Fred Member Posts: 8,518
    Clearly something on the outlet side is sticking closed and not allowing air to vent out of the radiator.
  • AlCorelliNY
    AlCorelliNY Member Posts: 63
    Quite clear.
    Al Corelli

  • Fizz
    Fizz Member Posts: 537
    Not much can go wrong with outlet side, so maybe the ball needs to be cleaned?
    Charlie from wmass
  • Fred
    Fred Member Posts: 8,518
    edited March 2015
    Try to clean the internal surfaces of the check valve as well.
  • Fizz
    Fizz Member Posts: 537
    You're right Fred! Thanks.
  • Fizz
    Fizz Member Posts: 537
    That's great graphics, where'd you get therm? And you're right about cleaning air hole/tube but home is 100 yr old. Thanks for input.
  • Fizz
    Fizz Member Posts: 537
    Not really, just having Richardson, like to get as much as possible. I did download from Dan's archive and a few other articles on it. Thanks again.
  • Fizz
    Fizz Member Posts: 537
    Update on rad: Now working better than ever!
  • Fred
    Fred Member Posts: 8,518
    Great news!
  • Fizz
    Fizz Member Posts: 537
    Didn't clean, but after rapping it on 7-8 cycles at el with heel of shoe it's working fine(hiccup?). As for why non-vacuum, 2 radiators that were add-ons back in mid-20's are off a separate feed and dry-return and they don't work or very little heat during vacuum mode.
  • Fred
    Fred Member Posts: 8,518
    Oh, one of those temporary fixes. :(
  • Fizz
    Fizz Member Posts: 537
    That remains to be seen. Hopefully it was some sediment that impacted the ball, and has been flushed-out.
  • Abracadabra
    Abracadabra Member Posts: 1,948
    Fizz said:

    rapping it on 7-8 cycles at el with heel of shoe it's working fine

    Fred said:

    Oh, one of those temporary fixes. :(

    Nah.. that's called a Fonzie fix :p




  • Fizz
    Fizz Member Posts: 537
    Jim, a great resource! Wish I had it 12 yr ago. Ok, the Richardsons were original to house built 1918, date on radiator 1917. Add-ons late 1920's. When fuel converted to oil in 60's, loop replaced check valve, and original air expeller replaced with Trane vacuum vent on dry return at some time between 20's and 60's. With add-on to kitchen housing 2 radiators, a dedicated dry return was added with it's own vent(vacuum), but after swithing to oil, heat in these were supposedly not good. When I moved in, in 2001, I replaced inners of traps, and switched-out vacuum vent to maid o mist line vent. Also have tried Gorton line vent, but found m-o-m better. Alse, tried Gorton #2 on main return, but heat better with old Trane without vacuum(disc removed).
  • Fizz
    Fizz Member Posts: 537
    Actually there are 2 circuits off a bull T, but that's been in place since original set-up, from what I gather. The 2 circuits dry returns are both vented by same vent. The run to kitche has own dry return because set-up won't allow it to be piped to original set-up with-out major make-over. When system was swithed to oil with Hartford loop added, the vacuum vents remained in place. No one thought to replace them with with standard vents. That's when kithen radiators failed to heat, so they added radiator vents, which I removed.