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what is this blue goo and is it the reason i can't remove this airvent?

this airvent will not budge. is that blue goo at the threading called "thread lock"? i could push harder than i am, but where i'm at already feels like i'm gonna break the whole pipe off before this airvent will budge. and something tells me that blue stuff might require a little more than WD40. suggestions?


Zman

Comments

  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 8,685
    Will the coupling or the pipe unscrew?
    SlowYourRoll
  • SlowYourRoll
    SlowYourRoll Member Posts: 125
    JUGHNE said:
    Will the coupling or the pipe unscrew?
    it feels like that nipple is more willing to budge than the airvent, but it felt dicey trying to unscrew that via the hex part of the airvent, and i wasnt using a pipe wrench just a crescent wrench so i didnt have a way to get just the pipe. i was trying to get the vent off to clean it in vinegar. if i end up having to take off the nipple i'd wanna make sure that blue stuff wont be a problem if i soak the airvent in vinegar. seems like it should be fine cause vinegar's pretty weak, but if i somehow start dissolving that blue stuff and it coats the airvent that might be bad
  • EBEBRATT-Ed
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 9,699
    Hold the pipe with one wrench and unscrew the air vent take it apart at the air vent or the coupling which ever one comes apart,

    When you put it back together just use teflon tape and no dope it will come off easier the next time
    mattmia2SlowYourRoll
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 3,677
    Looks like remnants of blue monster brand teflon tape but it is hard to tell from that picture
    SlowYourRoll
  • Chris_L
    Chris_L Member Posts: 206
    mattmia2 said:

    Looks like remnants of blue monster brand teflon tape but it is hard to tell from that picture

    Yes, and also white teflon tape around the whole thread, which would, I think, negate any threadlock.

    To the OP, you need two pipe wrenches turning in opposite directions, not one crescent wrench--or at least one big crescent wrench for the vent with a pipe wrench to hold the pipe or coupling--and more muscle.
    SlowYourRoll
  • SlowYourRoll
    SlowYourRoll Member Posts: 125
    thanks, will try with two wrenches. that was the problem i was feeling, not enough counter-torque opposing the one wrench.
  • No matter how long that vent Is soaked in vinegar, I don’t think it’s capacity will be enough to justify the trouble.
    How long is the main it vents?—NBC
    SlowYourRoll
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 8,685
    I agree with NBC, that looks pretty small and possibly a left over from coal burning designs.
    After the grief of removing it, I would consider a Gorton #2.
    You do not have to overtighten it as it should not see much over 2 PSI of pressure, tighten later if a drip.
    SlowYourRoll
  • Hap_Hazzard
    Hap_Hazzard Member Posts: 2,357
    Threadlocker is a deeper blue, and it wouldn't stick to the PTFE tape anyway, because nothing sticks to PTFE.

    If the coupler has been loosened, you should take it off and re-seal the threads, so I'd just take the whole thing of and take it out to the garage and stick it in a vise and unscrew the vent. Then you can replace it with the right size vent or build up and antler or whatever you gotta do.
    Just another DIYer | King of Prussia, PA
    1983(?) Peerless G-561-W-S | 3" drop header, CG400-1090, VXT-24
    SlowYourRoll
  • SlowYourRoll
    SlowYourRoll Member Posts: 125
    JUGHNE said:

    I agree with NBC, that looks pretty small and possibly a left over from coal burning designs.
    After the grief of removing it, I would consider a Gorton #2.
    You do not have to overtighten it as it should not see much over 2 PSI of pressure, tighten later if a drip.

    yeah i've been seeing that a lot on here, Gorton #2s on the mains. is there ever a downside to having too large a vent on the mains for a one-pipe system? it's the only vent i've been able to find on the mains currently. looked down the length of the other supply main i could see and i didn't see an airvent on that one, but it's surrounded by drywall so i can't get a very good look for one. but that'd be the biggest concern i could think of, if one main vents faster than the other maybe the heat would reach different parts of the house more slowly. anyway, if that's not a concern and there's no downside i probably will slap a brand new Gorton #2 on there.
  • dopey27177
    dopey27177 Member Posts: 717
    Try heating the fitting with a torch really hot.
    The blue goo could be lock tite which is an epoxy.

    The stuff will begin to melt and at that time try unscrewing it. Use two wrenches or just remove the coupling and use a new one.

    Jake
    SlowYourRoll
  • SlowYourRoll
    SlowYourRoll Member Posts: 125

    Try heating the fitting with a torch really hot.
    The blue goo could be lock tite which is an epoxy.

    The stuff will begin to melt and at that time try unscrewing it. Use two wrenches or just remove the coupling and use a new one.

    Jake

    thanks. just spent 45 minutes on the sucker. don't have a torch but i was trying to use a hairdryer. tried some of the other tips like banging it to loosen any bonding between the threads. at this point i'm going to just get a plumber. i'm tempted to buy a $10 torch and have a go, but i have no idea what shape those threads will be in when i get it off, and if that whole nipple needs to be replaced i'm gonna need someone smaller than me (or someone with better tools) to get in there and get it.

    what a pain. wanted to be a DIYer but if i screw this up after buying a Gorton #2 and fitting, pipe wrench, giant crescent wrench, and plumber's dope, the closest my wife will let me get to the heating system will be adjusting the thermostat.
  • EBEBRATT-Ed
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 9,699
    @SlowYourRoll

    The first rule of heating is "don't tell your wife"
    Larry WeingartenunclejohnSlowYourRollethicalpaul
  • Larry Weingarten
    Larry Weingarten Member Posts: 2,246
    edited November 2020
    Hi @SlowYourRoll , @EBEBRATT-Ed is insightful! Also, there essentially is no such thing as having too many tools. When you have the RIGHT tools, the job gets a lot easier. I like to think of the tools I buy as being investments in myself. They can pay back big time.

    Yours, Larry
    CanuckerSlowYourRoll
  • Hap_Hazzard
    Hap_Hazzard Member Posts: 2,357
    edited November 2020
    Get a MAPP gas torch with pushbutton ignition. You'll wonder how you ever lived without one. After using mine for about a year to light my charcoal grill, because nothing else works as reliably, I found out my son has been doing the same. Great minds… :D

    I don't think the blue stuff is threadlocker, but heat should solve the problem anyway. The trick is to heat the coupler quickly so it expands before the heat transfers to the vent threads and expands them too.

    Why are you even worried about ruining the threads? It's a coupler. They can be replaced!
    Just another DIYer | King of Prussia, PA
    1983(?) Peerless G-561-W-S | 3" drop header, CG400-1090, VXT-24
    SlowYourRoll
  • motoguy128
    motoguy128 Member Posts: 355
    I didn’t see if you tried tightening it a little first?

    No, you can’t have too fast or to much main venting. On some longer 3” mains, you might need 4 or more Gorton #2s to very it well. I’m running a hodgepodge of a Gorton 2, two Gorton 1s, and a a big mouth which I calculate maxes out the 3/4” tapping. I have another big mouth on a 1/4” tapping I added upstream. An 4 other varivents on 1/8” tappings I added.

    Varivents I think actually make OK-ish main vents at a cheap price assuming you have dry steam without a lot of excess condensate in the main.
  • SlowYourRoll
    SlowYourRoll Member Posts: 125

    Get a MAPP gas torch with pushbutton ignition. You'll wonder how you ever lived without one. After using mine for about a year to light my charcoal grill, because nothing else works as reliably, I found out my son has been doing the same. Great minds… :D

    I don't think the blue stuff is threadlocker, but heat should solve the problem anyway. The trick is to heat the coupler quickly so it expands before the heat transfers to the vent threads and expands them too.

    Why are you even worried about ruining the threads? It's a coupler. They can be replaced!

    my worry about ruining the threads is that if i have to replace that nipple, i don't have that part on hand and run the risk of being without heat for a day or two. or i could just run out and get a replacement nipple, or come up with a very temporary cap for it (a couple sheets of aluminum foil and a clamp band maybe?).

    the other area of concern is that everything from the nipple down inaccessible. if i screw something up it will be a major pain.

    but what the heck, i might as well give it a go. any recommendations on what i can use if there is a bunch of krud left on the threads? i guess i can just try and melt and wipe away what i can, and then hit the rest with some steel wool, maybe try to pick off any pieces that are clearly stuck in there with a file or pointy thing. also, as someone said earlier, this thing won't see anything more that 2psi. should i just use teflon tape to put the new one on? i have plumber's dope, but if people take these off every few years to clean i might just save myself the trouble and use teflon tape for it.
  • SlowYourRoll
    SlowYourRoll Member Posts: 125

    I didn’t see if you tried tightening it a little first?

    No, you can’t have too fast or to much main venting. On some longer 3” mains, you might need 4 or more Gorton #2s to very it well. I’m running a hodgepodge of a Gorton 2, two Gorton 1s, and a a big mouth which I calculate maxes out the 3/4” tapping. I have another big mouth on a 1/4” tapping I added upstream. An 4 other varivents on 1/8” tappings I added.

    Varivents I think actually make OK-ish main vents at a cheap price assuming you have dry steam without a lot of excess condensate in the main.

    yeah, tried that. I had to order a second pipe wrench though so maybe that'll help. it was my first attempt at using a pipe wrench so it took me a little while to get the hang of it. originally i was planning on just taking out the Hoffman vent, and I only needed a pipe wrench and a crescent wrench for that, but now that i'm trying to take off the vent and the fitting i'll give it a go with two proper pipe wrenches. as far as adding other main vents, there's currently a leak in the boiler, so i'm going to have to get that whole thing replaced after this heating season (no good way to do it sooner). when that happens i'm gonna go through and make sure that everything is properly vented. right now i'm just trying to get something on the main to vent cause that current airvent is probably at least 20 years old and is probably completely clogged at this point, and i went through a few weeks ago and replaced all the airvents on the radiators so that project is sort of a waste if i don't get this one done.
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 3,677
    Position the 2 wrenches so they have a bite and the handles are close together and squeeze the handles together(either with 2 pip wrenches on the coupler and the nipple or a pipe wrench on the coupler and the crescent wrench on the vent. Make sure you orient the crescent wrench so the fixed jaw is at the back as you are pulling/pushing.
    SlowYourRoll
  • SlowYourRoll
    SlowYourRoll Member Posts: 125
    mattmia2 said:

    Position the 2 wrenches so they have a bite and the handles are close together and squeeze the handles together(either with 2 pip wrenches on the coupler and the nipple or a pipe wrench on the coupler and the crescent wrench on the vent. Make sure you orient the crescent wrench so the fixed jaw is at the back as you are pulling/pushing.

    thanks, i'll try that
  • SlowYourRoll
    SlowYourRoll Member Posts: 125
    thanks for your help everybody. with my new kitchen torch and my two new giant pipe wrenches (actually they're just normal pipe wrenches to y'all but for this homeowner they seem giant) i was able to pop that bad boy off without any trouble last night and install the Gorton #2. will post a pic later. sadly the boiler leak is keeping me from achieving the steam heat nirvana i'd hoped for this season, but once i get a new one in this year the rest should be gravy.