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

Does It Pay To Fix Those Steam Traps?

HeatingHelpHeatingHelp Posts: 301
edited July 2019 in THE MAIN WALL

Does It Pay To Fix Those Steam Traps?

Short answer: It sure does, but not in the way you may think.

Read the full story here

Steve Minnich


  • tp tunstalltp tunstall Member Posts: 63
    Fantastic Dan....another easy to read, easy to understand, simple explanation . Bulls-eye
    All the best, T.P. Tunstall
    Erin Holohan Haskell
  • Steve MinnichSteve Minnich Member Posts: 2,540
    Yes! At Elevate Energy, we facilitate the testing and replacement of traps in large apartment buildings. And we quantify the savings.
    PHC News Columnist
    Minnich Hydronic Consulting & Design, LLC
  • DanHolohanDanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 14,987
    Thanks, T.P.
    Retired and loving it.
  • HenryHenry Member Posts: 965
    Let 2 or 3 thermostatic radiateur traps vent steam and get a lot of banging. This banging will destroy other traps. We use outside trap distributors to do a trap survey. In one case, we replaced 233 radiateur traps.
  • jkatzjkatz Member Posts: 3
    Very good insight into trap "savings"! I have never been totally comfortable with methodology of those savings estimates that we always do, although the 'orifice leak method' its generally accepted among engineers and the many incentive program managers alike.
    However, one could argue that due to the lost steam via the failed open trap, that may still cause a boiler burner to run longer in some systems, as it tries to satisfy the pressuretrol setting, while pressure is being lost to the return side. Possibly heat-timer controlled boilers may not suffer as much from this. That all said, I totally agree that the 'real' energy savings mechanisms are more complex than the simplified "orifice leakage = energy saved" concept.
    - Jon Katz
  • MrmarkyMrmarky Member Posts: 10
    Hello working through the hammering on a newly acquired 17 unit apartment building. I have a 2 pipe steam system. We have replaced all the thermostatic traps and properly pitched radiators in the units. I have noticed while tracing steam mains and condensate lines in the basement that all the F&T traps have been removed at the end of steam lines and are running directly into the condensate return line. I've come to the conclusion these need to be added back. My question is how to pipe these into the system. the mains are running horizontal to the basement wall where it opens to 2 vertical runs to the radiators above and a single vertical run to the condensate line I need a y strainer and valve or can it just be the trap?
  • DanHolohanDanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 14,987
    Is there a boiler-feed pump?
    Retired and loving it.
  • MrmarkyMrmarky Member Posts: 10
    @DanHolohan yes is does have a pump. Here’s a picture of one of the vertical drip lines direct into condensate return .. most of my research suggests adding traps on these to prevent steam from entering the return. Local supply house suggested a thermostatic trap would work here as well, less expensive too...appreciate your thoughts on this
  • DanHolohanDanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 14,987
    Yes, you need the F&T traps. Thermostatic radiator traps would be too slow in handling the condensate load. The water hammer would continue.
    Retired and loving it.
  • tlowc34tlowc34 Member Posts: 67
    I'm convinced to repair my traps, but I have a follow up question: Repair the Trane B-2 2 Pipe steam traps with Tunstall innards or swap them out for entirely new units that will require swapping spuds and might not have the same dimensions? Which is the better option for functionality and ease of installation?
  • DanHolohanDanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 14,987
    Absolutely Tunstall.
    Retired and loving it.
  • KoanKoan Member Posts: 435
    I have use Barnes and Jones trap guts very successfully
Sign In or Register to comment.


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