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STEAM BOILER HELP!!!!

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Comments

  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 8,943
    Google the model number of that tstat and look for the installer manual. It may have internal settings in set up that lets you choose your type of system. Steam/hot water is the one you want. If it has an actual CPH number go for 1.
    If it has no such selections, then it is for forced air that may cycle 3+ times per hour.....not what you want.
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 17,059
    KBE said:



    got this thermostat right now in the house. cant send pictures until i get home. I'm going to reset them to fix the dates the temps are set for. I want it to hold one temp setting rather then fluctuating.

    So far sounds like if I have one of those remote sensors, it'll not turn the system off until the colder rooms heat up.





    No, it won't. The colder rooms will heat up... by which time, unless your system is balanced, the warmer rooms will be... warmer yet.

    Don't even think about thermostat placement until you get your system properly balanced.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
    Grallert
  • KBE
    KBE Member Posts: 15
    All pics are included. I have a total of 4radiators in living room where the thermostat is. I turned 2 of them off as that might slow down the heating and try to balance. You think that might work?
  • KC_Jones
    KC_Jones Member Posts: 4,823
    Need more pictures. Follow the pipes with red lines you are looking for something (possibly chrome) that is a main vent. Examine the entire length, if they are there, they are usually towards the end before it turns back towards the boiler. Sometimes they are at the end right before the pipes drop below the boiler water line, which could be around the boiler, but can't tell from the pics you posted.

    To reiterate the main vents are the absolute starting point for balancing the system. Shutting off the radiators is not a good idea as that can cause other issues.

    2014 Weil Mclain EG-40
    EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Boiler Control
    Boiler pictures updated 2/21/15
    ethicalpaul
  • KBE
    KBE Member Posts: 15
    @KC_Jones my basement is finished. I can’t follow the pipes. All the sheet rocks are up and painted.
  • KC_Jones
    KC_Jones Member Posts: 4,823
    > @KBE said:
    > @KC_Jones my basement is finished. I can’t follow the pipes. All the sheet rocks are up and painted.

    Then you have a problem. If you have main vents and they fail open you will have a problem, if no main vents then you have no access to add them.

    Take a picture of the boiler from further back, if the drop to the wet return is in the boiler room you will be able to add them there.

    If it was my house I’d still be concerned about a hidden vent failed open at some point, monitoring water usage would be important.
    2014 Weil Mclain EG-40
    EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Boiler Control
    Boiler pictures updated 2/21/15
    ethicalpaul
  • KBE
    KBE Member Posts: 15
    Wet to the boiler? What you mean by that?
  • Grallert
    Grallert Member Posts: 524
    Moving the thermostat would be near the last thing I'd do. The likelihood is that location has worked for longer than I've been around. So it would seem likely that it worked there at one point and something else has been done to the system that has caused an imbalance.
    STEAM DOCTORethicalpaul
  • SteamingatMohawk
    SteamingatMohawk Member Posts: 482
    I understand all your comments and appreciate them. It is abundantly clear there are two major parts to balancing, venting the mains to get the steam most efficiently to the radiator supply piping and managing the complexity of interactions between radiators in the building along with getting each room to the right temperature. While in the case where the overall situation is pretty close to balanced, it probably doesn't make any difference which room the thermostat is in. It still seems to me the concept of ensuring the coldest room on the coldest day is satisfied makes sense as a starting point from an initial design point of view.

    Regarding multiple indoor sensors, I have thought about that many times, while considering converting the building to something other than steam ( e.g., hot water, mini-splits, electric baseboard) and concluded the cost is not worth it. I haven't looked into the effects of having multiple indoor sensors controlling the heat along while using typical vents on each radiator and no "zoning" to prevent heat from getting to rooms that don't demand it. Does it really keep all rooms satisfied without overheating any? I'm not yet experienced or knowledgeable enough to figure this out in this journey of learning.

    Regarding venting the mains, last evening I dug out my data on the actual piping runs and radiators, read the Gill/Pajek report and did my main venting calculations. For my relatively small 4 unit (about 2500 sq ft) I "discovered" the Gorton #1s as my mains are the right size. I had to double check my numbers to make sure I was correct. I should have done that a year ago when I first jumped into learning about steam heat.

    As an interesting aside, 20 years ago I had to replace my boiler. At the time there were three of the Honeywell tstats hooked up in parallel (4 unit house with one apartment with no thermostat, previous owner didn't put in a fourth). When the boiler was replaced my contractor said I "can't/shouldn't" have more than one tstat, so they connected only one. Today's availability of multiple indoor sensors seems to be very similar to what I had.

    If anyone has experience with using multiple indoor sensors in a single pipe system, please post your comments. I am sure many of us are interested.
  • KC_Jones
    KC_Jones Member Posts: 4,823
    KBE said:

    Wet to the boiler? What you mean by that?

    Take pictures of the boiler a little further back so we can see all the piping especially around the ceiling.

    The wet return is the pipe below the boiler waterline that returns all the condensed steam (water) back to the boiler.
    2014 Weil Mclain EG-40
    EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Boiler Control
    Boiler pictures updated 2/21/15
    ethicalpaul
  • Gary Smith
    Gary Smith Member Posts: 367
    More important perhaps than the calculated need for main vents is the atual performance of the vents you have. If you have a low pressure gage on your boiler watch that gage and report back how much pressure is made on initial heating of the radiators and what the peak pressure is on a heating call. Someone here can evaluate if the #1's are good enough or if more venting would be helpful. You can almost never go wrong by having more main venting, othere than perhaps spending a bit more money than the minimum needed.
  • SteamingatMohawk
    SteamingatMohawk Member Posts: 482
    As I said somewhere, it seems to be OK. The pressuretrol will trip off the boiler (2.0psig cut-out, which I am going to reduce to 1.5psig) when the system hasn't run for several hours on a "warm" day. Otherwise, pressure is pretty low, less than 0.5psig, partially because the house has less radiators installed than originally and the boiler has overcapacity. 90 year old house and I don't know the original boiler output.
  • neilc
    neilc Member Posts: 1,461
    me thinks the first thing you should do is fix the dryer vent.
    why is that such a dusty environment ?
    can't be good for the boiler or hot water heater,
    humid much down there ?
  • KBE
    KBE Member Posts: 15
    All, do you think it’s worth it to change windows to the lower E rated windows ? I have been told heat will stay indoor because it’ll help trap the heat. I’m not sure if it’s worth it ?
  • KBE
    KBE Member Posts: 15
    The custom windows vs Home Depot windows ? Should I get Home Depot Windows over lower E # windows? Double pane
  • Fred
    Fred Member Posts: 8,518
    Windows are not your problem. I have single pane windows with no storms, in a 5000 sq. ft house. If you have that kind of money, spend a fraction of that to get a steam Pro in to get the system tuned and balanced.
    Click on the "Find a Contractor" tab at the top of the page and see who covers your area, or tell us where you are and let's see if we know someone.
  • KBE
    KBE Member Posts: 15
    edited January 2020
    okay I’ll do that. I’m just worried as to why m I having this issues and if the heating in this house is messed up. I just got my second floor insulated but still it’s cold that’s how I figured the problem would be the heating. Let’s see what the boiler guy says
  • STEAM DOCTOR
    STEAM DOCTOR Member Posts: 1,368
    edited January 2020
    > @KBE said:
    > okay I’ll do that. I’m just worried as to why m I having this issues and if the heating in this house is *** up. I just got my second floor insulated but still it’s cold that’s how I figured the problem would be the heating. Let’s see what the boiler guy says

    Kindly edit your post
    JUGHNEErin Holohan Haskell
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 8,943
    Not having any "Expert" input that is considered.....I may bow out of this conversation.
  • clammy
    clammy Member Posts: 2,667
    As for temperature averaging thermostat in the past I have used white Rodger tat and have had excellent results . I ve use one in a large single apartment building which pushed the limits of one pipe main which where long and convoluted through the basements . They had a heat timer brand new installed only a year or two early and it would short cycle the boiler starting about 3 minutes after the heat established light can on ,used a 3 sensor temperature averaging t stat and it shut the burner off about 2 minutes before the heat circulation light came on ,apartment at far end of the building was 70 ,in the first month alone his gas bill was less then half saving over close to 1700 bucks . I ve also used them in ac installs on splits to combine and unify the operation of multi splits operating in a common large area much better the vicious short cycling of units fighting them selfes . Used the stat to set the set points of the second stage and that was it ,in that case after I completed it it was the first time they could seat customers on the second floor dining area in the summer ,also lowered the electric bill and increased the comfort . Business owner was amazed after many years of nobody being able to come up with how to make it operate properly and all it was was a temperature averaging t stat and 75 va transformer and a bunch of isolation relays making it all come together and it’s been 10 years since I did that job and still works like a charm . There’s always a way to get stuff working right just got to put your skull cap on and some times think outside the box while standing on it Peace and good luck clammy
    R.A. Calmbacher L.L.C. HVAC
    NJ Master HVAC Lic.
    Mahwah, NJ
    Specializing in steam and hydronic heating
  • SteamingatMohawk
    SteamingatMohawk Member Posts: 482
    @neilc The house is 90+ years old, the basement uglier than the one in "Home Alone" with high water table and cracks in the concrete floor. At times there has been water in the basement from extreme storms and I am working on getting rid of weepage in the walls. Bottom line, the dust is not a big issue, because it only happens if someone walks near the boiler when it is firing.

    I run a dehumidifier all summer. Dryer vent is not a problem, I inspect periodically. Water heater is only the third one in 30 years and I don't know how old the initial one was when I bought the house. Good suggestions anyhow. Thanks.