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Thermostat Adventures

HeatingHelp
HeatingHelp Posts: 465
edited September 2019 in THE MAIN WALL
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Thermostat Adventures

Thermostats often end up in odd places and here are some of the wackiest spots we've seen so far.

Read the full story here


Comments

  • mitch101
    mitch101 Member Posts: 22
    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH!!!!!
  • mikeg2015
    mikeg2015 Member Posts: 1,183
    sunshine and curtain walls or lots of windows are the real recipe for disaster. It’s like the ancient Aztecs and Celtics laughing at us modern Hvac contractors are only form March-April and Sept-Oct does the room overheat from about 9am to 11am.

    I have the problem on my own house with an interior wall that faces east. During the summer months of the blinds are open on one particular window it freezes the downstairs. Luckily the system is nicely undersized by conventional measures, along with a long upstage delay so it can run for 2 hours and only cool it 1f with all the mass of a 1907 brick home. Mass covers up a lot of sins.
  • JakeCK
    JakeCK Member Posts: 399
    People never cease to amaze me. Just remember half of the population has an IQ below 100.

    Just this past Monday morning I was listening to a coworker brag about how he had the AC in his house replaced and 'upgraded' to a 3.5 ton and now his AC only has to run 10 or 15 minutes on the hottest day of the year. I just smiled and said cool.
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 11,978
    edited September 2019
    JakeCK said:

    People never cease to amaze me. Just remember half of the population has an IQ below 100.



    Just this past Monday morning I was listening to a coworker brag about how he had the AC in his house replaced and 'upgraded' to a 3.5 ton and now his AC only has to run 10 or 15 minutes on the hottest day of the year. I just smiled and said cool.

    Just because someone does not understand how HVAC works, or how a thermostat works does not necessarily indicate they have a low IQ.

    There are plenty of very intelligent people that do not understand it but they're good at other things.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • Learner35
    Learner35 Member Posts: 5
    I came across a hot water heating job in Davenport, IA back in 2005 where the owner of the apartment building was constantly getting calls all time of the day because his tenants were freezing and then roasting. When I got to the job, I asked which apartment had control of the thermostat. He told me nobody had a thermostat anymore. He took them all out because they never worked right and just put one thermostat in to control the entire building where the tenants could not mess with it.

    This was an older Edwards Engineering hydronic system which the only remnant of the original system was the baseboard heating elements. All stats, zone valves, compression tank, and the old boiler were gone, either replaced or eliminated over the years. I never saw any zone valves behind the baseboard covers so they must have been mounted on the old manifolds of the original boiler just above the boiler so when they leaked (and they always did) it leaked over the top of the boiler rusting everything out. If those Edwards boilers were not built like tanks, they would never have lasted as long as they did.

    When I got to the boiler room, I found the thermostat. It was a Honeywell T87 1073 stat mounted right next to the pump relay control mounted on the boiler room wall, located about three feet away from the front of the two boilers that had replaced the old Edwards Steel boiler. I asked him why the thermostat was there? He replied that it was the only way to take it out of the control of the tenants hands who constantly were messing with it.

    A Tekmar two stage indoor/outdoor reset control with remote sensor solved the problem very nicely. The landlord was ecstatic with the results. I also did a lot of other repairs that were needed but this was the original service call to the job.

    You just can't make this stuff up. Every service tech has a Gus at least once in their career! Thought I would share this one. By the way, I did take a picture of this and posted on my supply house wall of shame. It was up there for a long time.
  • KME
    KME Member Posts: 3
    Here's a story about thermostats from my book, Tales from an Engineering Career (available on Amazon.com and through the Heating Help store.

    When my father first got out of college he worked as a facilities engineer for a guy named Bill Woertendyke at Pratt & Whitney. Bill, in turn, worked for a guy named **** Buck.

    One of his first projects for Bill was air conditioning a conference room. This was a big deal, because at that time Pratt & Whitney did not believe in air conditioning for comfort, so this was one of the few air conditioned conference rooms in all of P&W. It was a pretty simple system by today's standards, a vertical package unit with an air cooled condenser on the roof. What we used to call a "drug store unit." It sat in a corridor just outside the conference room with a return grille through the partition and a supply duct off the top and over the conference room to a couple of ceiling diffusers. You've seen that type of unit: Built in thermostat under a little metal door in the middle of the front of the unit.

    Whenever my father's department had a meeting with one of the other departments who were his "customers," they would meet in that conference room. And if the meeting was about a fairly big project, **** Buck would sit in. Invariably, 15 or 20 minutes into the meeting, **** would start running his finger around inside his shirt collar, then get up and go out the door. You could hear the clang as he closed the little door on the unit after he changed the thermostat setting. Then he'd return to his seat and - after a few more minutes - announce, "Ahh! That's much better now!" For some reason, this just drove Woertendyke nuts.

    So after the fourth or fifth episode, Bill called my father aside and told him to disconnect the wires to the thermostat inside the unit and install a ductstat out of sight in the return air duct to control the compressor.

    Sure enough, at the start of the next meeting **** Buck ran his finger around inside his shirt collar, left the room, the little door went clang, and Buck returned to announce shortly thereafter, "Ahh! That's much better now!" Woertendyke just grinned at my father across the table, immensely pleased with himself.

    I wonder if **** Buck ever found out that my father had taken the wires off that thermostat and his twisting the knob didn't change anything at all.

  • unclejohn
    unclejohn Member Posts: 1,751
    One of my first jobs at a Company still in businnes here today was a call for insufficant heat. And I went to the job with ole Ray Dillard who I thought had to be at least 89 years old. He was the old guy that went with us young guys to make sure we didnt make it worse. The customer points to the old Honeywell stat with the red dye thermometer on it and says I have it set at 72 and it reads 68* "something is wrong with the furnace". So Ray said it would be awhile and we headed to the basement where he had me take all the covers off the old Coloumbia Furnace and then put them back on. Then we back to the stat and he took the cover off and pushed the red dye bulb up to 72* and called the owner back in and he told him we had fixed the furnace. That was a invaluable lesson.
    ratio
  • JakeCK
    JakeCK Member Posts: 399
    > @ChrisJ said:
    > (Quote)
    > Just because someone does not understand how HVAC works, or how a thermostat works does not necessarily indicate they have a low IQ.
    >
    > There are plenty of very intelligent people that do not understand it but they're good at other things.

    We live in the age of information, with the sum of all human knowledge and experience in the palm of most of our hands. But most people choose to use this unprecedented power for selfies and social media. I simply have no sympathy for people anymore.
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 11,978
    > @JakeCK said:
    > > @ChrisJ said:
    > > (Quote)
    > > Just because someone does not understand how HVAC works, or how a thermostat works does not necessarily indicate they have a low IQ.
    > >
    > > There are plenty of very intelligent people that do not understand it but they're good at other things.
    >
    > We live in the age of information, with the sum of all human knowledge and experience in the palm of most of our hands. But most people choose to use this unprecedented power for selfies and social media. I simply have no sympathy for people anymore.

    I can't argue that....
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • Shank
    Shank Member Posts: 3
    I've got a couple of thermostat stories stories. Back during the 70's energy crisis people got creative. I was at a house on another matter and the guy couldn't wait to show off his idea. Turns out he didn't want to buy a programmable thermostat. He set a lamp with a timer under the thermostat. Got a AC call to an older woman's house.She was complaining of being too cold (on a hot day) When I got there her caretaker said I don't know what"s wrong I keep turning the the thermostat setting down and she is still cold.
    JakeCK
  • JakeCK
    JakeCK Member Posts: 399
    > @Shank said:
    > I've got a couple of thermostat stories stories. Back during the 70's energy crisis people got creative. I was at a house on another matter and the guy couldn't wait to show off his idea. Turns out he didn't want to buy a programmable thermostat. He set a lamp with a timer under the thermostat. Got a AC call to an older woman's house.She was complaining of being too cold (on a hot day) When I got there her caretaker said I don't know what"s wrong I keep turning the the thermostat setting down and she is still cold.

    The table lamp idea might actually work. :p As for the woman, there is no cure for that, and it scares me that she was somehow qualified as this elderlys caretaker.
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 8,962
    While doing some rewiring in a 1930's house I noticed in the basement a double pole double throw switch mounted up on the side of a floor joist. There were 2 T-stats connected to it.
    I'm thinking his and hers....but he deciding which one was the actual control. This was for 1 pipe steam.

    Same home owner had a crank thru the outside wall to control the rotation of the TV tower antenna. Crank came in next to his easy chair. Crank would operate a series of bicycle sprockets and chains. Center pole up the 40' tower to the VHF antenna.