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Operating with only a manual reset pressuretrol

whitwo Member Posts: 50
I've been getti my 1 pipe steam system re-piped and it's almost done. Minor detail is that the pressuretrol needs to be hooked back up but the pro had to leave and wont be back tomorrow. My system has 2 pressuretrols, the primary and then a manual reset that is usually set to 5psi.

My question is can I run the system with just the manual reset pressuretrol until the other one gets put back on? It might be a couple days. I assume that would mean I would have to run down and reset whenever it trips, but that's better than no heat at all....


  • What did the pro say when you asked him about this. Five psi is quite high, so maybe it should be set to three psi.
    Post some pictures of the boiler, so we can make any other suggestions before he comes back.—NBC
  • whitwo
    whitwo Member Posts: 50
    edited November 2018
    Pro said it should be fine and set the manaual pressuretrol to 1.5 psi, except I may have to manually reset which would be annoying.
  • mikeg2015
    mikeg2015 Member Posts: 1,194
    If the boiler was sized correctly and the radiators and main vents are adequate, system should never get over 0.5psi until everything is fully heated which should take several hours on run time on most systems. Pressure is only built when not all steam is consumed, and/or the piping/header is sized smaller.

    My boiler and many others rarely if never cycle on pressure.

    To avoid nuisance trips, don't use any setbacks. Most homes are adequately over radiated that radiators should never get completely hot maintain temperature. However, this requires that the venting is balanced and you have enough main vents that all radiator vents stay open at the same time. It's a race. Ideally all radiators start heating at the same time and all vents close at the same time, or the boiler is smaller enough they almost never close.
  • GBart
    GBart Member Posts: 746
  • 1.5 is even better, but if your main venting is not adequate, or the boiler oversized, that pressure can be reached pretty quickly.—NBC
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,060
    The pictures of the repairs would be a good thing.
    There have been some blatant mispiping/mistakes for steam systems here. Many have wished they posted pictures for comments before paying in full for the not so good work done.
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 15,513
    @JUGHNE, aint it the truth!
  • whitwo
    whitwo Member Posts: 50
    Here's a link to the thread that has a lot more details about the job and includes the latest pictures. It's been a long process...

    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,060
    I have made this statement several times before about Dunkirk boilers. They may have severely reduced push nipples across the top of the sections.
    That means as you skim thru the 2 1/2" tee you may be only getting water from the first section, as the water level has not risen above the lower weir of the smaller nipples.
    I noticed this on a job and added a 2 1/2" X 1 1/2" reducing coupling. This way the water has to rise above all the sections and then flow out the reduced opening. IMO.
  • ethicalpaul
    ethicalpaul Member Posts: 5,701
    I recall you gave me that warning and I think you’re right but it seemed to me that it required even more height to get the water to flow over to that left (on my setup) section. I used the capped steam port.
    NJ Steam Homeowner. See my sight glass boiler videos: https://bit.ly/3sZW1el
  • One old departed veteran of this forum made up a nipple with a weir welded inside for just this reason.—NBC
  • whitwo
    whitwo Member Posts: 50
    Thanks for all the feedback - @JUGHNE you were exactly right about skimming. After looking inside the skim port I saw what you meant and added a reducing coupling like you said.

    I'm finishing up my 3rd skimming now and this time I'm also blowing down the boiler like the manual says. I'm hoping that will help clear it out some more. I've been able to get the water clear when skimming but it ends up mucking up again.

    I've never done a boiler blow down before. I plan on waiting until everything is cool to the touch before adding water back (and adding it SLOWLY). Any other tips?

    Thanks again!
  • whitwo
    whitwo Member Posts: 50
    And by the way - I did get a pressuretrol with a cut in and cut out installed finally!