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Steam boiler flooding

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We just had a boiler at our building replaced along with several sections of piping that had been leaking. The installation happened about a month ago but know I noticed that the boiler is flooded. It took about 4 buckets of emptying to bring the level down to the normal water line.

When the boiler started up, it ran for about 1 min before the water line started bouncing. At 1 min 30 sec it went up about 2” and then proceeded to drop until it reached the bottom of the sight glass at 2 min 30 sec. shortly after the burner turned off. Then a little after that, the auto feed kicked on for a few secs. The water in the sight glass rose back up a couple inches and the burner kicked back on. Then it continued to follow this cycle.

My assumption is that the water should be skimmed again and it is possible the installer didn’t skim after the new piping. I will check with them during the week. But I also want to make sure the near boiler piping looks good.

I’m attaching some photos of the piping and would appreciate someone glancing and letting me know if it is proper. Especially how the water feed line is tied in. Thanks.

Comments

  • NJSteamhouse
    NJSteamhouse Member Posts: 34
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  • NJSteamhouse
    NJSteamhouse Member Posts: 34
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    The boiler is a Peerless Boiler 64-07
  • Fred
    Fred Member Posts: 8,542
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    The boiler needs a good skimming to stabilize the water. Aside from that, it looks like the installer used a reducing elbow, on the right end of the header which is going to hold water and it also looks like the header is pitched away from the equalizer which will also put more water in the header and at the reduced elbow.
    Hap_Hazzard
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 23,432
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    I don't mind the reducing elbow on the equalizer, but put a level on that header and please don't tell me it's sloped the wrong way. Sure looks like it.

    And skim some more.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
    newagedawnHap_Hazzard
  • NJSteamhouse
    NJSteamhouse Member Posts: 34
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    So, the header should slope toward the equalizer? I assume so that it isn’t dropping water into the path of the steam? I’ll check the slope of it tomorrow.

    Also! I looked at the installation diagram and it called for a reducing elbow at the end of the header.

    Is the feeder line attached in a proper location. I believe there was some water hammer in that area after the burner kicked off.
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 23,432
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    Feeder line -- at that elbow at the bottom of the Hartford Loop -- is OK.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
  • clammy
    clammy Member Posts: 3,113
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    That feed line should be on the Hartford loopside of the return and that tee should be a full port tee so one can wand out that boiler aside from skimming it . I ve found it less time consuming to wand it out the bottom well it shorten the skimming time . Shut off that auto feeder and has your exiting wet returns been flushed to make sure there not clogged . Are your existing steam mains insulated ? I would think you would be better off installing a electronic low water cut off and on a boiler of that size and cost I usually always include a manual reset low water cut off and used a hydrolevel electronic low water cut off and VXT autofeeded w digital to water meter and dip switches to set feed rate and delay ,you may be feeding water to maintain the water level according to your mech water feeder while your boiler is steaming and condensate hasnt returned leaving you flooded when sat cycles off and condensate returns . I be installed a few 07 and they need to skimmed and wanded well dirty oily water does not go well w steam boiler and will surge and possible engage your auto feeder . Peace and good luck clammy
    R.A. Calmbacher L.L.C. HVAC
    NJ Master HVAC Lic.
    Mahwah, NJ
    Specializing in steam and hydronic heating
  • clammy
    clammy Member Posts: 3,113
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    One more note I hope those are full size riser out of the boiler which should be piped w 2 3 inch risers into a min 4 inch header otherwise youR exiting velocity will be very high and will cause carryover condensate and the boiler will produce wet steam leading to all sorts of issues . Peace and good luck clammy
    R.A. Calmbacher L.L.C. HVAC
    NJ Master HVAC Lic.
    Mahwah, NJ
    Specializing in steam and hydronic heating
  • dopey27177
    dopey27177 Member Posts: 887
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    Your header is pitched the wrong way.

    Check to see if mud and crud have migrated from the old wet return to the new piping. All that junk could collect near the Hartford loop and restrict the flow of the return water to the boiler.

    I noticed a piece of pipe maybe 3/4" tied into the bottom of the boiler. I hope that is not a return not connected to Hartford loop.

    Jake

  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,075
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    Not only the header draining back into the left side boiler riser, the horizontal steam main above the header is counter flow and it also should drain back into the header and then into the right hand side equializer drop, not the left riser.

    That upper new horizontal steam main must also slope to drain into the header, other wise water will stand in it and give you hammer and wet steam.

    Is the pressure on the control set as low as possible?

    Jake, are you referring to the 3/4" at the lower front left side?
    Perhaps the gas line?
  • NJSteamhouse
    NJSteamhouse Member Posts: 34
    edited January 2020
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    I just checked the header. It is not sloped away from the equalizer. The angle of the photo is distorting it. The header is either level or slightly sloped toward the equalizer. It is hard to measure it with the Union in the middle.

    Also, the pipe near the floor in front of the boiler is the gas line.

    Is it possible that the wet return is a bit clogged and slowing down returning condensate? How can I determine that and flush that line?
  • NJSteamhouse
    NJSteamhouse Member Posts: 34
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    I plan on having the installer come back and flush and skim the system again since this was just installed last month. Should cleaning out the wet leg been included as part of their install?
  • dopey27177
    dopey27177 Member Posts: 887
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    Yes. Crud can be in the wet return slowing down the water entry into the boiler'

    Jake