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Leaking spirovent...radiant floor heating help

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I recently purchased a house with a bad hot water heater that had to be replace. The hot water was very yellow despite multiple attempts at flushing. I had a new HWT (same make/model) but since then the infloor radiant heating is not working.

Whenever I open the valve to the expansion tank the spirovent squirts like a jet.

I also noted brown sludge from the pressure release valve from the infloor radiant heating side.

I've taken it apart and cleaned it and it looks fine. Though I dont understand how the thing works as the rubber parts inside the spirovent would have a hard time creating a seal at the top.

Comments

  • kcopp
    kcopp Member Posts: 4,448
    edited February 2016
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    It is probably air locked. That looks like an Open system. Yuck.
    It needs to be purged out loop by loop.
    The spirovent may need a new top. When exposed to fresh water a lot those things break down.
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 22,479
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    Yes it does look like a system where the heating and domestic water are one and the same. That is not a favorite of the licensed plumbers and pros here.

    At the very least it should have stainless, bronze, or composite pumps. The cast iron pumps it looks like you have, along with any other ferrous metals in the system will continue to corrode and sludge all the internals.

    Officially, and by code, any component that touches potable water needs to be low lead or another material approved to that listing.

    The heating system could be separated from the potable water with a heat exchanger, that would be the safest and best way to upgrade the system from a performance and health point of view.
    Open systems have the potential to grow and harbor bacteria, like legionella, under the right conditions.
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
    SWEIIronmanJean-David BeyerTinman
  • SWEI
    SWEI Member Posts: 7,356
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    Is that Kitec tubing I see below the John Guest couplers?
  • Rich_49
    Rich_49 Member Posts: 2,766
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    Sure looks that way Kurt
    You didn't get what you didn't pay for and it will never be what you thought it would .
    Langans Plumbing & Heating LLC
    732-751-1560
    Serving most of New Jersey, Eastern Pa .
    Consultation, Design & Installation anywhere
    Rich McGrath 732-581-3833
  • SWEI
    SWEI Member Posts: 7,356
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    If that is Kitec, separating and closing the heating system becomes a somewhat urgent matter as regards the long-term health of the in-floor tubing. Don't wait.
    happydave
  • tyronesheat
    tyronesheat Member Posts: 33
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    I had a bad spirovent and it was doing to same thing. My plumber twisted the top off and cleaned it out really good. It seemed to work then however I am having some radiant heat gpm issue and it sounds like there is air in my system. I am wondering if the spirovent is still not functioning well or something else but my reccomendation is buy a new head. I am buying to today from supplyhouse. $50. I'll let you know what happens. Either way they can be taking apart and cleaned.
  • Bucky
    Bucky Member Posts: 47
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    FWIW, I always thought my spirovent was bad from day 1. Whenever I turned the supply on it squirted. Was miffed because I had to bleed my rads 2-3x every winter. Then I realized that the vent had a pressure relief type setting on it. So I opened the valve little by little and then backed off after it started squirting. That was the end of last heating season. This year I'm holding pressure fine and no air in the system that I can hear! I used to hear a lot of glug-glug-glug; then I knew it was time to bleed. (Also contributing to that likely was a rust leaky rad pipe- it was leaking into the basement near a spot where rainwater gets in, so I never really noticed until it started a good flow).
  • Mark Eatherton
    Mark Eatherton Member Posts: 5,853
    edited February 2016
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    Bucky said:

    FWIW, I always thought my spirovent was bad from day 1. Whenever I turned the supply on it squirted. Was miffed because I had to bleed my rads 2-3x every winter. Then I realized that the vent had a pressure relief type setting on it. So I opened the valve little by little and then backed off after it started squirting. That was the end of last heating season. This year I'm holding pressure fine and no air in the system that I can hear! I used to hear a lot of glug-glug-glug; then I knew it was time to bleed. (Also contributing to that likely was a rust leaky rad pipe- it was leaking into the basement near a spot where rainwater gets in, so I never really noticed until it started a good flow).

    Sorry, but what you said makes absolutely no sense. There isn't a pressure relief capacity to Spirovents. Unless someone installed a pressure relief valve on the Spirovent, which is always possible. With Home Depot, ANYTHING is possible...

    But to my knowledge, they haven't gotten into the safety business.

    What you are describing is a completely different problem associated with water loss and make up water. Fresh water induction, bringing with it gobs of oxygen, and other goodies that your heating system doesn't really like or need.

    No leak is a good leak...

    ME

    There was an error rendering this rich post.

  • Bucky
    Bucky Member Posts: 47
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    Hmmm...thanks Mark. I did have the rusted rad pipe replaced. So it's not right at any point in time for a stream to shoot from the spirovent? Wish I could retrace my steps on how I thought that "too much valve" was the issue. I only remember it involved copious quantities of internets. :) So as to not hijcak this thread any more, I'll revisit this setup in the fall when I replace my manifolds...sounds like there's a spirovent head replacement to add on to that issue...

    I really appreciate you chiming in here and pointing out the error of my ways!!
  • Mark Eatherton
    Mark Eatherton Member Posts: 5,853
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    We're here to help.

    Thanks for being a good participant.

    ME

    There was an error rendering this rich post.

  • happydave
    happydave Member Posts: 79
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    Bucky, do you have a Spirovent or a Taco unit? Tacos you can turn vent off and on.
  • 4Johnpipe
    4Johnpipe Member Posts: 484
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    That looks like a Bradford White model with copper coil inside heater not open. You need to treat the water after you get it cleaned out. If in fact it is the Bradford white model with a coil in tank.
    LANGAN'S PLUMBING & HEATING LLC
    Considerate People, Considerate Service, Consider It Done!
    732-751-1560
    email: langansph@yahoo.com
    www.langansplumbing.com
  • Bucky
    Bucky Member Posts: 47
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    happydave said:

    Bucky, do you have a Spirovent or a Taco unit? Tacos you can turn vent off and on.

    It's a Spirovent Jr. From the cutaway diagram, it appears as though when the water level rises, the float should rise and seal of the exit so no water should get through. (At least I think that's a float...)