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Toe Kick heater questions

CoalBoilerGuy
CoalBoilerGuy Member Posts: 35
edited January 2021 in THE MAIN WALL
We have a zone system with multiple series piped hot water baseboards on each zone. We are planning to remodel the kitchen, and the kitchen baseboard on that zone needs to go and be replaced with a kickspace heater so cabinets can go along the wall that currently has the baseboard.

Questions:
1) Should I install B&G Monoflo tees on both the supply and return for the kickspace heater, or only on the return?
2) Is it better to pipe in the kickspace heater with 1/2" sweat copper pipe and fittings (from the monoflo(s) to the heater), or to use the hose (black rubber or braided types) that is often bundled with these heaters whereby to make the runs from the monoflo(s) to the heater?

Comments

  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 22,920
    You have somewhat contradicted yourself: in the first sentence, you state that your system is series piped. Later down you start talking about monoflo systems. Which is it? They aren't the same at all. The performance and output of a heater connected to a monoflo system is absurdly sensitive to the flow resistance of the heating element.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
  • EdTheHeaterMan
    EdTheHeaterMan Member Posts: 7,567
    edited January 2021
    One diverter tee on the return (or the supply) should be sufficient if that is the only option. Or you could bypass the kicker completely, the use oxygen barrier PEX to make a home run back to the boiler room and tee the PEX into the near boiler piping with it’s own purge valve. 
    Edward F Young. Retired HVAC ContractorSpecialized in Residential Oil Burner and Hydronics
    CoalBoilerGuy
  • CoalBoilerGuy
    CoalBoilerGuy Member Posts: 35
    edited January 2021

    You have somewhat contradicted yourself: in the first sentence, you state that your system is series piped. Later down you start talking about monoflo systems. Which is it? They aren't the same at all. The performance and output of a heater connected to a monoflo system is absurdly sensitive to the flow resistance of the heating element.

    No contradiction. I would be replacing the above floor baseboard with a below floor straight run of pipe, and it is into this straight run that I would be teeing up to the toe kick heater. Whereby either one or both tees to the toe kick would be monoflo based upon feedback. I have about 2.7 GPM flow through this zone at present, and I'm hoping to divert 0.75 gpm to 1 gpm through the toe kick. This zone is 3/4" type M copper.
  • EdTheHeaterMan
    EdTheHeaterMan Member Posts: 7,567
    @Jamie Hall. The system is a series loop of baseboard. I believe he wants to remove a section in the kitchen and install a kick space under the counter.   Since the kicker is only 1/2”, putting that in series would substantially reduce the capacity of that loop.  By using a 3/4x3/4x1/2 diverter to allow the 3/4 to bypass the kicker, the kicker will not restrict flow.   The Diverter tee will cause sufficient pressure drop to supply the kicker with enough heated water to provide the necessary heat for the kitchen.  

    Does that make sense?   I believe that I have used this once in the past with some measurement of success.  But more recently I elected for home run to the boiler room for more design options 

    Yours truly,
    Mr. Ed
    Edward F Young. Retired HVAC ContractorSpecialized in Residential Oil Burner and Hydronics
    CoalBoilerGuy
  • CoalBoilerGuy
    CoalBoilerGuy Member Posts: 35

    @Jamie Hall. The system is a series loop of baseboard. I believe he wants to remove a section in the kitchen and install a kick space under the counter.   Since the kicker is only 1/2”, putting that in series would substantially reduce the capacity of that loop.  By using a 3/4x3/4x1/2 diverter to allow the 3/4 to bypass the kicker, the kicker will not restrict flow.   The Diverter tee will cause sufficient pressure drop to supply the kicker with enough heated water to provide the necessary heat for the kitchen.  


    Does that make sense?   I believe that I have used this once in the past with some measurement of success.  But more recently I elected for home run to the boiler room for more design options 

    Yours truly,
    Mr. Ed
    Yes, this sums it up perfectly.
  • HomerJSmith
    HomerJSmith Member Posts: 2,393
    edited January 2021
    Well, this is the way I do it.

    The hot water supply is coming from under floor. Is the piping underfloor accessible? If not, then the baseboard pipe must run on top of the floor against the wall. You would have to notch the rear of the cabinets that are against the supply pipe.

    The floor of the cabinet that you choose to put the heater should be cut out to the size of the heater for access. I do that and glue and screw a ledger against the hole all the way around so that I can put the piece that I cut out back in place and it doesn't fall thru.

    You can use one B&G monoflow tee on the heater although I have used two. You need to put a coin vent for air elimination on the return of the heater if it doesn't have one. I use a 1/2" copper tee and a 1/8" FPT flush bushing that I can screw a coin vent into. If the coin vent has a square stem instead of a screw driver stem, I leave a key loosely tied to the pipe. You can finish it off with a plastic sheet cut to the size of the cabinet floor to cover the access panel. You can get that at Home Depot.

    Note: The toe kick should be at least even with the finished floor because the grill has to rest on the floor and the switch need to be even with the slot on the grill, so you may have to put spacers under the heater to elevate it.

    Hard pipe it in as repairs are impossible once installed.

    I prefer Turbonics Kickster Pro Series heaters.
    CoalBoilerGuy
  • CoalBoilerGuy
    CoalBoilerGuy Member Posts: 35
    edited January 2021

    Well, this is the way I do it.

    The hot water supply is coming from under floor. Is the piping underfloor accessible? If not, then the baseboard pipe must run on top of the floor against the wall. You would have to notch the rear of the cabinets that are against the supply pipe.

    The floor of the cabinet that you choose to put the heater should be cut out to the size of the heater for access. I do that and glue and screw a ledger against the hole all the way around so that I can put the piece that I cut out back in place and it doesn't fall thru.

    You can use one B&G monoflow tee on the heater although I have used two. You need to put a coin vent for air elimination on the return of the heater if it doesn't have one. I use a 1/2" copper tee and a 1/8" FPT flush bushing that I can screw a coin vent into. If the coin vent has a square stem instead of a screw driver stem, I leave a key loosely tied to the pipe. You can finish it off with a plastic sheet cut to the size of the cabinet floor to cover the access panel. You can get that at Home Depot.

    Note: The toe kick should be at least even with the finished floor because the grill has to rest on the floor and the switch need to be even with the slot on the grill, so you may have to put spacers under the heater to elevate it.

    Hard pipe it in as repairs are impossible once installed.

    I prefer Turbonics Kickster Pro Series heaters.

    Thank you kindly. The pipe is below floor level. The Toe Kick I purchased is a Smith's Quiet One KS2006. It has its own air bleeder vent. I think I will go with two monoflo tees.
  • HomerJSmith
    HomerJSmith Member Posts: 2,393
    Generally, B&G's recommendation is that if the hot water supply is from below, then one tee is enough. If the supply is from above, two tees are recommended. It has to do with creating a pressure differential.

    Remember, a Monoflo tee creates resistance in the loop. I would go for one and use real Monoflo tees and not the cheaper diverter tees.
    CoalBoilerGuy
  • EBEBRATT-Ed
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 15,327
    Yeah but don't put the monoflow tees next to each other or you may not get enough flow. Space them apart. They should be 18" away from the elbows.


    I think a better way to do this is install a balancing valve in your pipe below the floor. Put a tee on either side of the balancing valve and pipe those tees to the new heater.

    Putting in two mono flows may add more restriction than you want.

    close the balancing valve until you get your 1 gpm through the heater
    HomerJSmithmattmia2
  • HomerJSmith
    HomerJSmith Member Posts: 2,393
    edited January 2021
    Not elbows--Tee's 18" between them.
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 9,431

    Yeah but don't put the monoflow tees next to each other or you may not get enough flow. Space them apart. They should be 18" away from the elbows.


    I think a better way to do this is install a balancing valve in your pipe below the floor. Put a tee on either side of the balancing valve and pipe those tees to the new heater.

    Putting in two mono flows may add more restriction than you want.

    close the balancing valve until you get your 1 gpm through the heater

    Ed said it before I got around to typing it. The bypass and balancing valve gives you a more predictable and adjustable result.(did we figure out if there is sufficient SWT for the kickspace heater at this point in the loop?)
    CoalBoilerGuy
  • CoalBoilerGuy
    CoalBoilerGuy Member Posts: 35
    I'd like to thank everyone who assisted here!!!! Thank You!!!!
  • CoalBoilerGuy
    CoalBoilerGuy Member Posts: 35
    edited January 2021
    As to venturi type tees, I'm seeing 'Legend' brand brass "Scoop" tees and B&G copper "Monoflo" tees. Is there any reason to favor one over the other? Taco used to also make venturi tees, but it seems that they discontinued them.
  • MikeL_2
    MikeL_2 Member Posts: 484
    If the connected load on that zone is at or near 20 k btus, why not pipe the toe space heater in a series loop?
  • CoalBoilerGuy
    CoalBoilerGuy Member Posts: 35
    The Toe Kick heating coil is 1/2" and my series baseboards loop is 3/4" copper over its entire run (from manifold to manifold). I'm afraid of too much friction induced head increase, thus hindering my GPM flow. I've got it pegged at ~2.7 GPM at present. And even with a venturi tee it will fall from there as friction head goes up.
  • MikeL_2
    MikeL_2 Member Posts: 484
    edited January 2021
    Coalboilerguy,
                    How many feet of baseboard are you replacing in the kitchen,  how many feet of baseboard are on that zone, and what is the supply water temp?
  • CoalBoilerGuy
    CoalBoilerGuy Member Posts: 35
    MikeL_2 said:

    Coalboilerguy,
                    How many feet of baseboard are you replacing in the kitchen,  how many feet of baseboard are on that zone, and what is the supply water temp?

    There are 36 feet of baseboard, and the toe kick is replacing 7 feet. The supply water temp varies via an outdoor reset.
  • MikeL_2
    MikeL_2 Member Posts: 484
    In  many cases, that amount of baseboard can work with 1/2" piping in a series loop.....
  • CoalBoilerGuy
    CoalBoilerGuy Member Posts: 35
    MikeL_2 said:

    In  many cases, that amount of baseboard can work with 1/2" piping in a series loop.....

    I have a single circulator and 4 zones, and they are all of quite similar length and footage of HWB's. My concern is that the balance would potentially be disrupted. If each zone had its own circulator I would fully agree with you.
  • MikeL_2
    MikeL_2 Member Posts: 484
        I'm only trying to help you keep it simple. If you have easy access below the kitchen and isolation valves for that zone, why not try the series loop - the results may surprise you.....