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.

13 manifold valve actuators & 2 zone circulators

schultzey11 Member Posts: 31
edited December 2020 in Thermostats and Controls
I'm getting closer to working on the control side of this project but would like some additional input. Currently I've purchased a 4 zone switching relay and while I can make this work, I wonder if this is the best solution. The concern I have is 2 branch manifolds (6 run and 7 run = 13 loops) which are for different rooms for house. The chart below helps explain this. 4 t-stats will control 2 of the circulators as well as all of the 13 valve actuators I plan to use on the 2 branch manifolds. Again see chart. This is where the wiring mess comes in. See wiring mess chart below. It will work if I set it up this way. There are some details I have to work through as far as the transformer being able to support the load of the relays and motor heaters but I'll ask that question if I need more help.

Alternatively I could use a PLC control and have dedicated inputs from my t-stats and motor end switches. Thinking I can ditch the switching relay control all together but there are details I would have to work through.

What other options are there for someone not in the business but that knows something about control circuits and wiring?

I'm not asking anything about C3,4 & 5 because there are not manifold actuators and when the circultors for those branches turn on the whole manifold will be used at the same time. Easy.

Wiring Mess.

Let me know what I can clarify.




  • Ironman
    Ironman Member Posts: 7,350
    I think you're making it way more complicated than it needs to be.

    If the entire manifold is being controlled by one thermostat, and pumped by one circulator, why do you need actuators? Just let the thermostat turn on the circulator through a relay and pump the entire manifold without any actuators.

    Or, if for some reason you need the actuators, why not simply use a delta P circulator that responds to pressure changes and doesn't need a signal from the actuators. I see you have Taco ECM's but I can't tell what model.

    Also, if you're fixed on using the actuator end switches, they need to wired in parallel, not series.
    Bob Boan
    You can choose to do what you want, but you cannot choose the consequences.
  • schultzey11
    schultzey11 Member Posts: 31
    Thanks for the reply. It could be but I don't think I described this well enough. Let me try and clarify.

    My dinette, kitchen hall and great room are all open concept. No walls dividing them. They also have different floor coverings so I plan to have different water temp for the carpet than the laminate. There are 6 loops of ~250 pex each that cover these areas. Red highlighted. Since I want this to act like one one (ie - one thermostat to call heat for all 6 loops) I will have one t-stat to control. Since I have some circuits on C1 and C2 manifold I must put valve actuators on every circuit, otherwise a call from the living area t-stat would send heat to areas whose t-stats weren't calling. My basement manifold and garage are as simple as you described above. See pics below.

    Basement and garage manifolds not shown before.

  • TAG
    TAG Member Posts: 755
    Too bad it's done .... you could have used one Alpha circulator and used cross manifolds for those loops needing control and a simple zone valve for each of the other manifolds that are one zone. I have 4 manifolds and 30+ loops running off one Alpha .... the 3 cross have 6 Tstats and the other manifold is all one room w. zone valve & Tstat.

    Is the system running? ... does it have ODR? Sometimes its best to get the system running ... often you can play with the flows and get good performance w/o adding complexity
  • schultzey11
    schultzey11 Member Posts: 31
    It's been up and running about two weeks now. I took @Ironman advice letting a t-stat call for my upstairs turn on C1 and C2 circs and manifolds without zone actuators. It's less costly in the short term to do it this way vs zone actuators, but I give up control of dedicated rooms on the 1st floor. The upside is I don't have to worry as much about short cycling because the 1st floor heat load should ensure the heat cycle isn't short.

    It's been working well and it awesome having all this cost, planning and hardwork paying off. Haven't used the the regular furnace since turning on. The true test will be getting closer to design temps which we really haven't yet. Been a warm January.

    Are you using any mixing valves to reduce water temp? This is why I have multiple circs to pull throug the mixing valves - my tile and wood floors don't need the higher temps required like the carpeted surfaces.