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Cheapest DIY solution to zone single loop HW baseboard heating system

I am looking for the most cost effective and DIY way to improvement zoning into my single loop HW hydronic baseboard heating system. And also to get the best settings for my furnace. The home is 2 story 1100sq feet. The boiler seems to take in new water everytime the furnace kicks on and it seems like it needs to fire alot to keep the temperature up. Im just looking for some sound advise on both. I am quite handy so making changes to the settings isnt something I am afraid to do.

Thanks in advance,



  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 22,880
    Step 1 here -- if your boiler is taking on any water at all, never mind every time the burner kicks on, you have a leak. Hot water systems are not intended to need new water -- some go years without any refill.

    So your very first step is going to be to find out whether that taking of water is real, and if it is, where the water is going -- and fix it.

    The boiler won't last long if you keep adding new water to it (if, in fact, the leak isn't in the boiler -- which is quite possible -- and in which case it's already toast)...

    Once you have fixed that problem, then the poor performance may go away. If not it may at least be possible to figure out what might be done with the controls to improve things.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
  • Gordy
    Gordy Member Posts: 9,546
    Agree with @Jamie Hall on the taking on water. Need to figure that out.

    Zoning an 1100 square foot house is doable but will lead to more short cycling.

    If this is a single loop baseboard set up repiping it to split into two zones is necessary. One for first floor, and one for second floor.

    I don’t think that’s your issue as far as the boiler. What you are describing is short cycling. The boiler kicks on and off because it’s to big for the heat loss, and there is not enough baseboard to shed the btus.