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Should large F&T traps in the boiler room be replaced?

Hello all,

I was informed a few weeks ago that most of the large F&T traps in the boiler room have failed in the open position and should be replaced. Replacement is expensive and I'm not sure what the real benefits are aside from stopping steam getting into the boiler room and escaping through the condensate tank vent. It seems it'd make more sense to replace upstream steam traps that are allowing steam into the return lines to begin with. It seems a bit expensive for not much gain. Would love to hear your thoughts. There's a lot of banging in the building pipes during the heating cycle.

Thanks!

Comments

  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 14,574
    If those large traps are installed just before the condensate receiver, and there are traps upstream from them, they should not be there at all. Having traps in series does nothing except slow the returning condensate and possibly cause banging.

    Fix the upstream traps and remove the ones in the boiler room. You can get parts for almost any trap from Tunstall or Barnes & Jones.
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
  • Pumpguy
    Pumpguy Member Posts: 456
    Not a trap expert by any means, but if those large F & T traps in the boiler room are end-of-main drip traps, they probably should be there.

    Now, if you have one large "MASTER TRAP' just ahead of the condensate pump receiver, there is no doubt that should NOT be there.

    As Steamhead says, it would be best to fix the thermostatic radiator traps first, and then work your way downstream.

    What are the symptoms that led to recommending replacing these large F&T traps? Just the banging, or something else/more? What is the returning condensate temperature?

    You may be operating at too high a steam pressure, or have piping issues that prevent gravity drain of your condensate.
    Dennis Pataki. Former Service Manager and Heating Pump Product Manager for Nash Engineering Company. Phone: 1-888 853 9963
    Website: www.nashjenningspumps.com

    The first step in solving any problem is TO IDENTIFY THE PROBLEM.
  • Thank you. I will look into it. Some of these traps are located right below the steam header so I presume they have the function of removing condensate from the steam header..
  • KC_Jones
    KC_Jones Member Posts: 4,655
    If you post some pictures of your boiler piping and the traps in question that may help get you better advice. Try and get pictures showing all the piping so the experts can see what is going where.
    2014 Weil Mclain EG-40
    EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Boiler Control
    Boiler pictures updated 2/21/15
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 14,574

    Thank you. I will look into it. Some of these traps are located right below the steam header so I presume they have the function of removing condensate from the steam header..

    That is correct.
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
  • Sailah
    Sailah Member Posts: 826
    I won't comment on whether or not it should be there but def fix vs replace. I can replace a F&T faceplate in minutes with a ratchet and a large blade gasket scraper. And I sit behind a desk haha.

    I also don't know your particulars but NYC has lots of incentives through the utility companies like con ed that can help ease the pain. If your F&T traps are blowing you really should be looking at the thermostatic traps as they fail more frequently and are much cheaper to get an roi on.
    Peter Owens
    SteamIQ
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