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Would changing radiator remedy lack of heat?

SandiT
SandiT Member Posts: 87
So my building management wants to measure the radiator in one room to change it as a remedy to hammering noises it was making. Would anyone know if that might remedy the heat deficit? Not enough heat is coming out of the radiators, it's cold. And while the temperature reads 73 on the thermometer it feels like 63 degrees so it's very difficult because it's a legal loophole for them in that they don't have to do anything as long at the temperature reading is over 68 degrees. They do keep the heat at 85+ for all of the other shareholders and mine was steadily at 83 until this problem developed. They tell me I am the only one with this problem in the 300 family complex. I put plastic film to insulate, hasn't helped much. Any thoughts would help a great deal. Thanks.

https://forum.heatinghelp.com/discussion/181766/hammering-noises-water-shooting-from-vents-lowered-temperature-mngmt-changes-vents-repeatedly/p1?new=1
PC7060
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Comments

  • ethicalpaul
    ethicalpaul Member Posts: 5,608
    From your previous thread, it is clear that the management of your place has no idea what they are doing, and are unwilling to learn.

    They want to find a simple bandaid to fix a systemic problem. That's why they kept replacing your vents hoping to wear you out. You are in a tough spot and I feel bad to say that I think no one here can help.

    You're not the first who has come here with the exact same problem--building management. I wish you the best. I think only a lawyer or realtor can help you.
    NJ Steam Homeowner. See my sight glass boiler videos: https://bit.ly/3sZW1el
    SandiTSTEAM DOCTORmattmia2
  • Ironman
    Ironman Member Posts: 7,350
    Putting in a larger rad won't stop water hammering of fix the problem of insufficient heat.

    Part of diagnosing issues is using a little common sense: if the present radiator heated that area fine for decades, why does management now think that it needs a larger one?

    The building has issues that require a steam professional.

    Try the contractor locator above.
    Bob Boan
    You can choose to do what you want, but you cannot choose the consequences.
    SandiT
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 4,695
    Where is this building located?
    Get another thermometer that accurate.

    Find a Really Good steam tech and have him there listening to everything the building people tell you.
    SandiT
  • SandiT
    SandiT Member Posts: 87
    edited December 2020
    Thanks for reading through the thread @ethicalpaul I know you're right. All they ever do is change the vents over and over and over. The building manager said "whatever adjustments they need from the valve is not helping the issue so we believe it's the radiator". I've spoken to several lawyers, it would easily run me 10k with no certain outcome. What do you mean by a realtor being able to help?
  • SandiT
    SandiT Member Posts: 87
    edited December 2020
    The building is in Mt Kisco NY @pecmsg I've tried 3 different thermometers. Last year the temperature went down to 68 degrees, they managed to repair it so it reads just above 70 degrees, but always feels like 65. Interesting idea you have. So I should have a steam tech here without telling them? It's hard enough for me to get them on the phone or to answer my emails at this point. I worry I will hire another person who doesn't know what's going on either.
  • SandiT
    SandiT Member Posts: 87
    Thanks @Ironman they plan to replace the radiator only to fix the hammering noises. They don't feel any further responsibility to fix the heat and the building's department can't do anything unless the thermometer reads under 68. I guess I have to shell out the cash to pay for a steam professional? My thought was, if all of these people at this complex and their plumber can't fix it how will a stranger find it. I know these guys are so expensive and I fear hiring someone who won't find the problem and then I don't have any argument whatsoever.
  • ethicalpaul
    ethicalpaul Member Posts: 5,608
    SandiT said:

    What do you mean by a realtor being able to help?

    I mean:


    NJ Steam Homeowner. See my sight glass boiler videos: https://bit.ly/3sZW1el
    SandiTSuperTech
  • Ironman
    Ironman Member Posts: 7,350
    The radiator is a solid piece of metal with no moving parts. The only way it can fail is if it leaks. Replacing it won't solve anything.

    Hiring a STEAM PRO from this site is the only way to get someone who knows what they're doing, but if management won't let them in the boiler room, or see the other parts of the system, then that person won't be able to help you very much.
    Bob Boan
    You can choose to do what you want, but you cannot choose the consequences.
    ethicalpaulCanucker
  • Ironman
    Ironman Member Posts: 7,350
    Here's one of the best. IDK if he covers your locale.

    https://forum.heatinghelp.com/profile/JohnNY
    Bob Boan
    You can choose to do what you want, but you cannot choose the consequences.
    SandiT
  • SandiT
    SandiT Member Posts: 87
    haha yes @ethicalpaul I hear you loud and clear. i was actually going to put the place up for sale last March then COVID happened. i guess this is the unfortunate reality :neutral:
    ethicalpaul
  • SandiT
    SandiT Member Posts: 87
    edited December 2020
    Yes @Ironman I took your advice and spoke with 4 different steam experts listed on this site, thank you. Most of them don't deal with apartments apparently which is why management went the route of sending the plumber I was told. They seem to think it's isolated because it's only happening in my apartment, saying they may have to tear up the floors and walls to check the pipes if changing the radiator doesn't work. They don't have much hope that it will solve the problem either. Told me to tell them to change the valve also. I was hoping for a Christmas Miracle. :| I don't know what my next move is if this radiator change doesn't work. Oh, and the radiator is baseboard with fins if that makes any difference I don't know.
  • SandiT
    SandiT Member Posts: 87
    Thanks so much @Ironman I will message him and see what he says! Really appreciate it.
  • Ironman
    Ironman Member Posts: 7,350
    A lot of pros won't get involved with apartment management for this very reason that you're expiring.
    Bob Boan
    You can choose to do what you want, but you cannot choose the consequences.
    Canucker
  • Gsmith
    Gsmith Member Posts: 431
    If they change the radiator, when it is off, ask the plumber to look at the radiator valve, if the disk is not open all the way ask him to fix it.
  • SandiT
    SandiT Member Posts: 87
    edited December 2020
    Yes Bob @Ironman I learned this way too late. I keep cursing myself for choosing this apartment when there was a different one available. And when I do eventually sell it puts the burden on me. Amazing how co-op associations get away with murder.
  • SandiT
    SandiT Member Posts: 87
    Thank you so much @GarySmith I will absolutely ask him about it. Actually, come to think of it I did check the valve is turned fully open, all the way left. :neutral:
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 22,918
    Changing the radiator won't do a thing for the hammering. Not One Thing.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
    SandiT
  • KC_Jones
    KC_Jones Member Posts: 5,699
    Changing the radiator won't do a thing for the hammering. Not One Thing.
    ^^^^This.

    They are doing anything they can to make you go away, well except for actually fixing the system.  I’d speculate everyone else gave up years  ago due to lack or response, so no complaints anymore.  They are hoping to do the same with you.

    As far as more heat, I doubt it.  Let’s say you have a 10 section radiator that only ever heats 6 sections, put in a 20 section rad with the same vent, you will still only heat 6 sections and have identical output.

    Now if you are filling the current radiator all the way, and it’s staying like that, you may get more heat with a larger radiator as long as the boiler runs long enough to fill it more.

    On your temperature complaint, who is supplying the thermometer that’s taking the temperature reading?
    2014 Weil Mclain EG-40
    EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Boiler Control
    Boiler pictures updated 2/21/15
    SandiTethicalpaul
  • Gsmith
    Gsmith Member Posts: 431
    Sometimes even when the valve is turned all the way open, the little disk inside becomes dislodged and blocks the pipe. Only way to see is to take the radiator off or take the top part of the valve off.
  • SandiT
    SandiT Member Posts: 87
    It wouldn't surprise me if you're completely right and changing the radiator does nothing at all @Jamie Hall @KC_Jones I just don't know what else to do, it's 25 degrees outside right now. I'm very uncomfortable in my apartment even while running the portable heaters and heating pads. I live in a co-op apt so it's not that easy for me to get out of here plus everyone has moved here from the city due to COVID so it is not a buyer's market at all for me to find something. I doubt I would have a problem selling the place, but finding another one will be difficult. I can't believe the bind they put me in.
  • SandiT
    SandiT Member Posts: 87
    Ah OK thanks for clarifying @GarySmith I will definitely mention it to the plumber. There are times when the radiator and valve is completely cold then some heat comes up.
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,021
    So this is not a cast iron old school radiator...you said baseboard with fins. Did you ever post a picture of this?
  • SandiT
    SandiT Member Posts: 87


    this is a picture of the radiator in the living room @JUGHNE
  • SandiT
    SandiT Member Posts: 87
    and @JUGHNE here is a closer up picture of the vents they used a couple of weeks ago to stop water from shooting out of the vents, it did stop it. For now. they changed them about 10 times and then used these vents the last time. heat is still too low.
  • SandiT
    SandiT Member Posts: 87
    edited December 2020
    I don't think they are putting in a larger radiator @Ironman I think they are just replacing it. Doesn't make much sense because it gets warm, but not warm enough and it doesn't stay warm. It should be hot in 23 degree weather, but they kept telling me it feels fine in my apartment when they know every other shareholder has way more heat than I do now. The only thing that gave me a leg up is the problem got worse with water constantly shooting out of the vents and the hammering noises, otherwise bldng mngmnt and the board completely dismissed me. The building's department says he can't force them to do anything if the temperature reads above 68 degrees. Which I don't understand because they know the windows are faulty, shouldn't that cancel out any 68 degree law? They're replacing them in 2024 which does me no good, but they know that they're a problem. But it's mostly that the heat doesn't come out as powerfully as it originally did when all of these problems started. :|
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,021
    That AC in there is a first that I ever seen, but I don't get to town much.

    To prevent the hammering that convector has to be sloped to drain back towards the valve. If it is not set to drain back you might prop it up on the vent end. There may be other causes but that is the first thing to check.

    So with the AC in there will the cover go back on the heater?
    Convectors heat with air flow up thru the fins and out the top.
    The AC would impede the air flow. The taller the cabinet the more heated air will flow. With no cabinet little heat will get into the room.
    SandiTdennis53
  • Ironman
    Ironman Member Posts: 7,350
    WHAT IN THE NAME OF COMMON SENSE?

    Someone has installed a PTAC (motel) unit in the cabinet of the convector. I've been doing this for 48 years and have never see anything like that!
    Bob Boan
    You can choose to do what you want, but you cannot choose the consequences.
    SandiTSuperTechCanucker
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,021
    That is a first for me also!
    SandiTSuperTechCanucker
  • KC_Jones
    KC_Jones Member Posts: 5,699
    A convector relies heavily on airflow vertically through that cabinet, no wonder you have a lack of heat.

    A “professional” has looked at this and thinks it’s ok?
    2014 Weil Mclain EG-40
    EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Boiler Control
    Boiler pictures updated 2/21/15
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,021
    Can you see any slope of the convector so the water will drain back towards the inlet valve away from the chrome vent?

    So can you put the cover on this thing?
    Was the AC always there?
    How about the other heaters, AC also in the cabinet ?

    At least you got a couple of laughs (LOL's) out of the evening.
  • SandiT
    SandiT Member Posts: 87
    Knowing nothing I figured it was some kind of ingenuity @JUGHNE clearly I was WRONG, kind of a cobb job? Yes, the cover goes back on. I took the cover off to take the picture. So this radiator's acts up less re noise and water spewing, it's main crime is that it doesn't heat up enough. Do you think sloping it towards the valve would help with heat or just noise? Do you think this is something I could try on my own? They told me everything is level every time the plumber came or building maintenance and managers. Interestingly the a/c didn't pose a problem for the first winter I lived here. The noise problems, then water streaming everywhere started, then the heat dropped sharply and never returned back to normal. What do you think?
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,021
    Constantly changing the vents and now the convector itself is approaching the definition of insanity. :|
    SandiT
  • SandiT
    SandiT Member Posts: 87
    Wow @Ironman I guess that responsibility could be placed on the person who owned the apartment before me. I thought it was clever placement hahaha obviously I have a LOT to learn.
  • SandiT
    SandiT Member Posts: 87
    Yes @KC_Jones they've told me everything is level so the problem has to be in the pipes in the wall or under the floor. So the super went and bought this odd vent and the water stopped shooting out. The hammering noise started again, but has stopped briefly, but the worst problems is the heat is weak. And the power goes out in this complex so often I'm dreading it because of how dependent I am on the electric heaters and heating pads.
  • SandiT
    SandiT Member Posts: 87
    edited December 2020
    The building manager, the super and a their plumber looked at the radiator and all seem to think it looks fine @KC_Jones @Ironman

    Do you mind if I ask what the 'convector' is? I tried googling, but I'm not certain I'm correct.
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,021
    edited December 2020
    They said things were "level"??.....the convector has to drain back towards the valve. If they do not know that then refer to my last post just before this one.

    The sloping may help with the noise.
    The strap on the vent end looks to be adjustable...or you could just put a block of wood under it for a trial.
    The AC has to limit the heat output into your room.
    "Cobb Job" is too kind, IMO.

    It seems that if the steam heat worked well it would cook the plastic of the AC after some time.
  • SandiT
    SandiT Member Posts: 87
    Wow can't say I'm surprised to hear you say that @JUGHNE this has been a nightmare really. I spoke with a steam guy recommended on this site and he said let them change it and when it doesn't work tell them "OK that didn't work, what's next?" and if it continues tell them I'm hiring someone and taking it out of my maintenance. I just fear not being able to get someone in here, they seem to avoid these situations.
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,021
    Convector is the part with the fins and tubes. The tubes get hot and also the fins. Then air is convected by gravity thru the fins picking up heat and the hot air rising out the top of the enclosure. It draws cool/cold in thru the bottom of the enclosure for this to work.
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,021
    Can you get a picture of the supply valve and it's connection to the radiator? If the connection has a down slope on the horizonal that can be a problem.
  • SandiT
    SandiT Member Posts: 87
    Hahaha your last message being: "Constantly changing the vents and now the convector itself is approaching the definition of insanity. I hear you @JUGHNE I only wish I spoke with you last year. They've been giving me the runaround for so long. OK I will definitely try lifting it a bit if/when the noise starts again. Do you think it would do anything to help with the output of heat, no?