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.

Boiler Water Surging

rhw1 Member Posts: 32
Had a great pro recommended from this site replace the near boiler pipes and of couple of other pipes on my old one pipe steam heat system. He came back several times to skim the boiler. He seemed understandably hesitant to instruct me on the process yet from what I have been reading here it can take many times and several hours to remove the surface oils. Of course being a pro and an all-around great guy he has included all work in his pricing. Now with the cold weather and lots of work to do and of course money to be made, I am reluctant to have him return now to skim once again. Is it easy enough if I am patient and willing to do on my own? I do not have a wand but wouldn’t a wrench to open the port and a bucket to collect the water be enough to process the work on my own or should I not worry about the surging and slight loss of water till perhaps a more opportune time? Thanks in advance for your professional wisdom.


  • Hap_Hazzard
    Hap_Hazzard Member Posts: 2,849
    If you've been working with a pro, I think you should ask him if he'd prefer to make another call or give you instructions to do it yourself. If I were to give you advice and things wen't south, it'd only make him mad at both of us.
    Just another DIYer | King of Prussia, PA
    1983(?) Peerless G-561-W-S | 3" drop header, CG400-1090, VXT-24
  • rhw1
    rhw1 Member Posts: 32
    Definitely do not want to put any professional on this board in a bad position. The basic question is should I as the homeowner be able to skim my own boiler since it is so time consuming, sometimes taking several weeks or even months? Kind of like balancing the radiators until I get my family to their comfort level. Or is skimming sort of like annual maintenance which should most definitely be left for a qualified individual or heating professional?
  • ethicalpaul
    ethicalpaul Member Posts: 5,617
    It doesn’t take THAT long. It’s not hard. This forum has told dozens of people how to skim so try some searches or even google, or even better Dan’s book: The Lost Art of Steam Heating Revisited https://www.amazon.com/dp/1546603131/
    NJ Steam Homeowner. See my sight glass boiler videos: https://bit.ly/3sZW1el