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Zone Valve Replacement and Too Hot Floor

loopyliza Member Posts: 1
edited November 2019 in Radiant Heating
So I’m a homeowner desperately trying to educate myself on my heating system. A little background on the house - we moved in right at one year ago. Before that, a family was here for a year and a half but didn’t do anything to the boiler. Before that was the original owners. The house was built in 1953 as a small 1 story ranch with an oil fired boiler. Sometime we think in the 60’s a second story was added. And in the 70’s or 80’s a great room addition on the back was done. At some point the oil boiler was changed to the natural gas boiler that is there now (Burnham Holiday 2).

The same company has been servicing the system for at least 30 years. Since we moved in we have had the expansion tanks leak and have to be replaced and the thermocouple go out. We have the maintenance plan so the system is serviced and inspected at the beginning of the heating season. Since we moved in, 2 of the 7 zones in the system have not been comfortable. In one zone it was always too hot and I noticed the radiators would be warm when any other zone called for heat. From reading the forums here I figured out that it was the zone valve not working. When we called to have it looked at, the technician commented that the wires were no longer even connected. He also found another valve that was starting to leak.

The other zone having problems is the great room addition which has radiant floors in a slab. When the thermostat there calls for heat it overheats about 6 degrees. I don’t know when this was put in but what I can tell from living with it, is that the pipes are spaced about 2 feet apart throughout the floor and the water flowing through is the same 180° as the baseboards. Reading here I learned that modern radiant floor is run at a lower temperature and this can be achieved through a thermostatic mixing valve? When I mentioned this when the tech was out he looked at me like I had two heads.

At any rate, we are having the failed and failing valves replaced. So I am coming to you folks with all this information and some photos because the quote to replace the valves quite a bit more than I expected with me draining and refilling/bleeding the system. I don’t want to keep throwing good money after bad if there is something else I should have done. This is the 3rd time in a year and a half that the system will be completely drained. I worry about corrosion with all the copper pipe. So can anyone chime in if things seem to be maintained/designed/etc. well here and should I stick with the company who has been servicing things or start looking elsewhere. Thanks so much!!

This valve still functions

This one is going bad.

This valve is bad.


    HVACNUT Member Posts: 5,752
    1- Theres no pricing on this forum so please edit your post.
    2- Lipstick on a pig. If you plan on staying in the house, it's a good investment to replace the system. Most mod cons offer different temperature inputs for X number of zones. Along with turndown, ODR, and correct balancing, high temp and radiant together wont be a problem.
    BTW, Levittown ran 180° in the slab radiant way back when. Not that I approve, just sayin'.
  • Intplm.
    Intplm. Member Posts: 1,801
    Its ok to do the zone valve changes now. When the boiler goes, (and it probably will -sooner- than later), you will then be able to change the boiler with less of a hassle .
    If you haven't already, ask your heating company what it will take to change the boiler at the same time. Might be worth your while to do it all at once.

    As to changing service companies? That's your call. You need to do what is comfortable for you. Having the same company working on your system for years should be a very good relationship.
  • Zman
    Zman Member Posts: 7,549
    It should be considerably less expensive to change all the zone valves at once. The work needs to be done regardless of the new boiler so why not have them replaced on your terms rather than as they fail?
    I think installing a smart mixing valve like the taco i-series would be a good idea. It will save some energy now and could be easily integrated with a new boiler, even a mod/con. More importantly, it will make the space more comfortable.
    "If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough"
    Albert Einstein