Click here to Find a Contractor in your area.
Welcome! Here are the website rules, as well as some tips for using this forum.

If you've found help here, check back in to let us know how everything worked out.
It's a great way to thank those who helped you.
Need to contact us? Visit https://heatinghelp.com/contact-us/.

How to Test Main Vents

Homeowner here - I've got 2 mains running the length of my 2000sqft house with Gorton D on the end. My plumber casually mentioned he didn't think they were working as he left the house recently and suggested I replace them. I'm happy to do so, but I was trying to figure out how I might know if they are working or not. Is there an easy test? Is it just a listen for some kind of hissing? How loud should it be?

Comments

  • coreyndstuffcoreyndstuff Posts: 15Member
    I might be answering my own question - can I take it off and blow through it to see if it's clogged? I guess my same question applies - how do I know that it's working optimally?
  • KC_JonesKC_Jones Posts: 4,093Member
    Blowing into it will check for a clog. Letting the boiler run and making sure it closes once steam hits it will test for operation.

    Also, I'm assuming the plumber didn't mention this, a Gorton D is a radiator vent not a main vent. Unless your main is less than 10' it most likely isn't enough main venting.
    2014 Weil Mclain EG-40
    EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Boiler Control
    Boiler pictures updated 2/21/15
    https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10202744301871904.1073741828.1330391881&type=1&l=c34ad6ee78
  • coreyndstuffcoreyndstuff Posts: 15Member
    I was wondering about that. The main run is ~30ft give or take. There are actually 2 main runs, one on the front and one on the back of the house, both similar in length, both with Gorton D on them.

    https://i.imgur.com/WcKYYLr.png

    I think this is a 1/8" vent. I'm not exactly sure how to measure for that size, but I can't find a Gorton D in any other size. If I was to change I think I'd have to change the opening on the return to accommodate a bigger vent?

    I did just try blowing through and it is certainly blocked.
  • neilcneilc Posts: 659Member
    post a picture of the vent and the pipe it's on,
    that looks like a reducing bushing, i think,
    which could get removed, and a larger main vent and vent tree added.
    If it's bushed you better start soaking it with penetrating oil.
    and it still may not come out easy.
    post that picture.
  • JUGHNEJUGHNE Posts: 5,578Member
    I don't know about the G-D vent, but the big G-2 has a float that closes if you hold it upside down. Hold it upright you can blow thru it. Down you can not as the float drops to seal the outlet.
    G-2 should rattle when you shake them.

    I would think your D would whistle if not plugged. Way too small.

    Show more pictures where your vents are installed...back up.
  • coreyndstuffcoreyndstuff Posts: 15Member
    @neilc here is the section w/ the vent:
    https://i.imgur.com/kfyS2e0.jpg

    and a close up of the vent itself: https://i.imgur.com/WcKYYLr.png

    I do think it has a reducer on it.
  • KC_JonesKC_Jones Posts: 4,093Member
    I'm pretty sure you have a bushing in there.



    2014 Weil Mclain EG-40
    EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Boiler Control
    Boiler pictures updated 2/21/15
    https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10202744301871904.1073741828.1330391881&type=1&l=c34ad6ee78
  • neilcneilc Posts: 659Member
    Corey,
    yep,
    yes it does.
    the reducer is screwed into the top shoulder of that Tee,
    the vent is screwed into the reducer,
    penetrating oil is your friend, that and a couple large pipe wrenches,
    your lucky in that it looks like you have decent access to do this,
    You still need to be luckier still that a couple days soaking the reducer bushing will spin out.
    you can google "vent tree" here to see what you want there eventually.
  • coreyndstuffcoreyndstuff Posts: 15Member
    @neilc at what point do I fix this? I'm getting good heat to all of my radiators. Last year I didn't notice any heat issues. I noticed this year it is slow to heat, but that's probably due to a stuck valve. I can replace that and see how it works.
  • KC_JonesKC_Jones Posts: 4,093Member
    The under size vents slow the steam down and basically you are firing the boiler excessively to not heat the house.

    The faster the steam gets down the main the better you are for efficiency and comfort. If you can get steam down the main 1 minute faster on every cycle that is 1 minute of gas you are saving, on every single cycle.

    Getting the mains filled faster also allows for better system balance and control.

    If the vent is stuck at a minimum you need to replace it, but for me I would want to replace it with one that is properly sized since I'm spending the money.

    Also I would strongly suggest you get some insulation on those mains.
    2014 Weil Mclain EG-40
    EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Boiler Control
    Boiler pictures updated 2/21/15
    https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10202744301871904.1073741828.1330391881&type=1&l=c34ad6ee78
  • neilcneilc Posts: 659Member

    @neilc at what point do I fix this? I'm getting good heat to all of my radiators. Last year I didn't notice any heat issues. I noticed this year it is slow to heat, but that's probably due to a stuck valve. I can replace that and see how it works.

    good point there, like KC suggests, just replace the 2 vents now as they are, doing the bigger main vents would get a little involved as we are getting into colder times right now.
    It will make a great summer project though.

  • coreyndstuffcoreyndstuff Posts: 15Member
    Thanks @neilc @KC_Jones. Good point on insulation - it's on my list to take care of here in the next few weeks. Before I got the house they had asbestos and took it all off - I didn't even realize it was missing until I went down there and it was quite hot :). I will replace the vents and put it on a list to deal with after the heating season.
Sign In or Register to comment.

Welcome

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!