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Valve Repairs

Grallert
Grallert Member Posts: 523
I hope everyone is having a nice summer. While eleven of our radiators are off campus for a well deserved spa vacation I thought I would free up the valve and look into replacing the seats.I don't want to do any harm to these so I thought I'd ask the experts.Do any of you folks have experience servicing these. The system was installed in 1928 as a vacuum system and at some point a few years before I was born the vacuum pump was removed and the system was connected to two new boilers on a two pipe pressure return system upon completion of a large wing addition. I'm not sure it ever worked properly after that. Over the years the system pressure was bumped up to about 10psi causing issues that were covered up in the 90s with the very costly installation of a steam coil air handler. The eleven radiators on vacation are about a quarter of the radiators in this smallish auditorium. Anyway, can and should these valves be repaired?
Thanks for any advice, input etc. Sorry about the upside down pictures.
Peace







Matthew

Comments

  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 16,326
    edited August 2017
    Sarco and Hoffman --can't get much better than that. However, neither system was happy on pressures much over 1 psi. So the first thing to do is to make sure your system pressure is down where it belongs.

    Then the question is what is the symptom that suggests repairs are needed?

    Incidentally, I hope you kept track of which valve went with which radiator -- since the valve and the spud in the radiator are a matched pair, and can't be swapped around without a very good chance of leaks...
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
  • Grallert
    Grallert Member Posts: 523
    Yes I only removed two of the eleven so as I wouldn't forget where they live. The boilers are as low as I can get them with out lots of short cycling. about 2.5psi at that pressure these eleven radiators get very little heat through the one inch pipe. This is the reason ( I think) that the pressure was increased over the years between 1956 and two years ago when I started here. You see this section of building, built as a gymnasium was added on the our main building two years after the main was completed. That would be 1928. This gymnasium was heated with it's very own boiler and vacuum system. Long gone now but very clear on the original plans I have. 1956 saw a major addition and upgrade to the plant with the addition of the still operational Pacific Steel boilers and the removal of the plant running the system in the gym than library now auditorium. Oh I got a bit off track there but its good back ground. At the previous 10 to 12 psi operating pressure all these radiators got hot, over heated. The valve could not hold back that steam and I suspect it's because the seats are beat to heck. They sure look torn up. Also some of them simply no longer turn. I would like to, at a point in the future repair all the other issues Centennial Hall (that's what we call it now) has and return it back to a vacuum return system. That might be a pipe dream but, you know, it's worth thinking about.
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 14,702
    Where are you and this system located?
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
  • EBEBRATT-Ed
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 9,394
    dumping the vacuum system probably cause the operator to raise the system pressure because it wouldn't heat well with small piping that the vacuum system uses.

    sounds like the 1956 remodel screwed things up
    Grallert
  • gerry gill
    gerry gill Member Posts: 3,011
    can a vacuum pump be put back in?
    gwgillplumbingandheating.com
    Serving Cleveland's eastern suburbs from Cleveland Heights down to Cuyahoga Falls.

  • Grallert
    Grallert Member Posts: 523
    We're in the Berkshires of western Mass. One of those Iconic boarding schools that look so picturesque when you drive up. The sausage is great just don't watch how it's made :D

    can a vacuum pump be put back in?

    I think maybe I can put a vacuum and a condensate pump at the end of the system once the piping is repaired. Luckily we have a backup with the air handler.
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 16,326
    @Grallert -- there are a few of us who are in your area. Most notably @Charlie from wmass . Might be amusing to visit. We won't eat the sausage, thoiugh...
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
    Grallert
  • Grallert
    Grallert Member Posts: 523
    One of my favorite things about this job is showing folks around. I'd more than happy to show you guys around. It's a neat place with a lot of history and has survived a lot knuckle heading and some pretty ingenious work arounds.