Welcome! Here are the website rules, as well as some tips for using this forum.
Need to contact us? Visit https://heatinghelp.com/contact-us/.
Click here to Find a Contractor in your area.

looking for heating help(er) in DC

Options
I was on my annual pilgrimage to the federalist society convention where i hang out with my less government friends and one of them who has toiled in mining policy for 30 years and has often loaned me her couch to stay on when i'm in DC asked me to take a look at her boiler. She had no heat toward the end of the season last year and was told by a serviceman she called that the fill valve had failed and the boiler was cracked so she finished out the season on the gas log and electric heaters.

I remembered radiators, so from that description i was assuming it was a steam system that went low on water and fired dry, but it is actually a two pipe hydronic system with radiators and a small Utica atmospheric gas that had water in it when i got there, but was zeroed on pressure. So I think her no heat was circulation failure. The loss of pressure was caused by a small leak in the expansion tank which doesn't even show up at very low pressure so the tech would have seen water on the floor and a zero gauge and might have just assumed a no water dry fire. The pressure reducing valve is a genuine antique and wasn't passing any water. I used a hose to bring the system up to 20lbs and by the time I got to 10 it was obvious the water was spouting from the expansion tank.

I didn't have any tools or ability to plug the tee to the tank and keep the boiler pressured for an extended period to check for other leaks, but it was self evident that the tech she had previously engaged did not do so either in arriving at his conclusion that the boiler was leaking. Since there was no quickfill function on the PRV or any bypass I doubt he even tried to add water. I had to pull the washing machine and use one of the hoses to a garden hose to the bottom drain to actually get water into it. With pressure returned, I test fired the boiler and it fired right up and circulated.
I only had a half hour with limited tools and equipment to look this over but my best estimation is she needs a reliable service tech to install new expansion tank and PRV with backflow preventer (wasn't one on the old PRV) and she'll be off to the races.

Anyway, i am back in RI and looking to connect her with someone who knows what they are about. She keeps getting folks who want to replace the boiler rather than get paid to service the one that's there. Of course I could have missed something but I think it just needs TLC.

If there is anyone who is in or goes into the district can you post a contact or office phone or whatever and i'll have her contact you or contact me at devilsadvocateri@gmail.com or 401-439-7877 for info.

thanx and happy thanxgiving,

brian

Comments

  • KC_Jones
    KC_Jones Member Posts: 5,741
    Options
  • archibald tuttle
    archibald tuttle Member Posts: 1,085
    Options
    see, i knew there was a contractor contact function on here. i thought it was like a separate forum and then i looked at the main links and then i find it is in a different band near the top of forum posts. (note to site admin, you should have that choice show up in the set of links across the top). thanks for doing what I could have done myself if I had notice this feature. Looks like all the capability there and they have a resume of jobs in DC. Don't know if a single DC service call is practical but maybe my friend can find a couple days when service techs will already be going into DC.

    thanks

    brian

  • KC_Jones
    KC_Jones Member Posts: 5,741
    Options
    Just in case someone else comes across this thread. The contractor link is always around.

    2014 Weil Mclain EG-40
    EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Boiler Control
    Boiler pictures updated 2/21/15
    Erin Holohan Haskell
  • archibald tuttle
    archibald tuttle Member Posts: 1,085
    edited November 2018
    Options
    and it is mysteriously sometimes in the main links and sometimes not. I have several pages open at the moment and these are the two different headers. Maybe because i'm signed in as contractor it doesn't normally show me that option but once i went to find a contractor then, ironically, it appeared at the top:





    and I see Lorton is actually pretty convenient to the district. I had google maps set to mass transit and it said an hour and a half so I thought I might be stretching things but looks like Foley is well located and well experienced. Passed this on with my recommendation she get in touch. Happy thanksgiving

  • Erin Holohan Haskell
    Erin Holohan Haskell Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 2,322
    edited November 2018
    Options
    Thanks for asking about the website setup. Heating Help is divided into two parts - the main site (https://heatinghelp.com/) and the forum (https://forum.heatinghelp.com/). The forum side of the site uses software that is specifically built for community forums. Unfortunately we cannot have the whole navigation header that is on the main site appear at the top of the forum. I appreciate your feedback, though, and will continue to search for ways to improve your experience here.

    And I highly recommend Dan Foley. He worked on my heating system and is a true pro.

    President
    HeatingHelp.com