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How One Missing Pipe Can Make All the Difference

HeatingHelpHeatingHelp Posts: 301
edited October 2018 in THE MAIN WALL

How One Missing Pipe Can Make All the Difference

I was looking at the piping for the hot-water zone. I’m a steam guy, too, but I’m also a born-and-raised New Yorker, so I know what a Brooklyn Special is, and that’s what I was looking at.

Read the full story here



  • GeneBAGeneBA Member Posts: 1
    I love the story, troubleshooting steps and the actual solution. There is some good physics in it. I personally have nothing to do with heating but got a condo in Brooklyn with radiant floors and boy did I learn my lesson. I hope everyone meets someone like John Rogers in his trade/profession to learn from.
  • DanHolohanDanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 15,003
    Retired and loving it.
  • rick in Alaskarick in Alaska Member Posts: 1,086
    I try and look at the whole picture as much as I can, just for this type of issue. Some issues seem obvious when first looked at, but have a hidden second problem that will throw your whole initial theory off. Sometimes just by standing back and following the system, you can see what the problem is
    I also do this with people. It can be fascinating at times. What is the back story???
    Larry WeingartenCanuckerZman
  • DanHolohanDanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 15,003
    Amen, Rick.
    Retired and loving it.
  • OldSchoolHVACOldSchoolHVAC Member Posts: 6
    Great article!
    Many years ago when I first read "Pumping Away" I learned a valuable skill. On page 118 you wrote about making a kid see the BTU in their mind's eye. I have used this many times over to diagnose issues and failures in not only heating systems, but refrigeration systems as well. Say for example, looking at a refrigeration circuit I often ask myself "If I were refrigerant, what would I do? Would I be a Liquid or a Vapor at this point? Which direction would I travel and would I absorb heat or would I release heat? Dan Foley also taught me to draw the system out on paper. This helps identify how the system functions from a big picture standpoint. I've often found that it is a short jump from the paper to the "minds eye".
    Thank you Dan Holohan and everyone at You have helped an old, below average intelligence salesman figure out a lot of "stuff". Solider on and never stop learning!
  • JackmartinJackmartin Member Posts: 161
    Smart. Strange, how your ears turn off the moment you open your mouth. Silence is golden and very good for your knowledge base. I remember the tough silent men I apprenticed to, if they said a dozen words a day they were being verbose. However, the moment you proved to them you were willing to shutup and listen, they slowly started to tell you what was going on. I still miss the rough affection they showed a know nothing kid. I am sure they are fixing steam systems in heaven and looking down at me and saying Yup he is still a dumb kid. All the best Jack
  • GregaGrega Member Posts: 18
    This story reminds me of Friedmont Lobenstall from Ann Arbor, Mi (spelling of name?). I was lucky enough to have him as an instructor and later be able to ask him many questions as a service tech. I had a situation like this and was losing my mind. He walked in after i asked him to take a look. He worked for my competitor but still agreed to help. He looked around and started asking me questions to make me think in a different way to solve my problem. I liked he didn't just say do "do this", he was a constant teacher. Anyway he showed me this many years ago and it stuck...thanks for the story and trip down memory lane.
  • DanHolohanDanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 15,003
    @Grega, here's a story I wrote about Freemont. Thanks for remembering him. He was quite a guy.
    Retired and loving it.
    Erin Holohan Haskell
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