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.

dry/wet return

replacing an oil fired peerless JO steam boiler with either a burnham megasteam 396 if the customer stays oil or possibly a burnham independence ( 5 section) if they decide to convert to gas. i'm fine with either choice as i didn't have a strong argument to ditch the oil and i'm an oil guy at heart anyway. (I picked the independence due to the 2" steam supply tappings. can anyone recommend something else?) anyway, the reason for this post is the return configuration. currently ( and i didn't measure because this stuff only comes to you as you drive away) currently the 2 mains ( one 2" and the other 1-1/2") tie together near the boiler water line. I know it should be below and maybe it is by an inch or so. there is nothing i can do to get to this piping and make it right and im worried that the new boilers' water line will be lower making what was possibly just barely a wet return into a dry return and possibly creating balance issues by exposing the mains to each other. not even sure if raising the boiler on several blocks will get it high enough. SO.... is the middle of the glass enough below the water line to tie those mains together? that is likely the best i can do. there is no way to get them all the way to the floor. the diameter of the entire return is 1" and it does go to the floor, but all the way at the boiler. about 30 feet of it hovers near the water line. how big of an issue is this? i think i'm rambling....


  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 23,297
    edited September 2019
    You're not rambling. And you do have a problem -- the middle of the glass isn't low enough to be safe for that wet return. Probably the easiest solution is going to be to create a false water line for that wet return to feed into. False water lines are described well in The Lost Art, and as it happens there's an article by @DanHolohan currently on the Wall somewhere. An. Here it is: https://forum.heatinghelp.com/discussion/171067/a-false-water-line-is-a-true-solution-to-water-line-issues#latest
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
  • SeanBeans
    SeanBeans Member Posts: 520
    You can raise the boiler up so it stays wet as long as you have your A dimension at the end of the day
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 16,840
    SeanBeans said:

    You can raise the boiler up so it stays wet as long as you have your A dimension at the end of the day

    Concrete blocks are good for this. And, they keep the boiler dry if some water gets in the basement.
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Towson, MD, USA
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service