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85 Degrees in basement

coreyndstuff
coreyndstuff Member Posts: 21
My parents bought a new house with a somewhat old boiler, maybe 15-20 years. It is a forced hot water with radiators system with 4 zones/pumps. The basement is very hot. He's started putting insulation on all the pipes, but the temp has only dropped about 5 degrees. The flue is especially hot, I'm not sure if that is relevant.

There are some parts of the house that are still not heating well so we thought insulating all the copper would help.

There are some walls in the basement sectioned off but with all with open doors. The room w/ the boiler is the hottest, the next room is also very hot, about 80.

What's a normal temperature around the boiler?
Is there anything I can do, or anything to look for to determine if the system is operating correctly?

Comments

  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 7,190
    Is the circulator working properly? Are the supply pipes far from the boiler hot?
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 20,467
    Have you gotten someone out to clean and adjust the boiler? It's something which needs to be done at least every other year, if not more often -- clean out the fireside completely, and then -- using test instruments -- adjust the combustion so that it is correct. Your comment on the flue pipe being very hot makes me wonder if that has been done recently.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
    MaxMercy
  • coreyndstuff
    coreyndstuff Member Posts: 21
    mattmia2 said:

    Is the circulator working properly? Are the supply pipes far from the boiler hot?

    yes plenty of pipes around the basement are hot. we are insulating them as we speak to try to help retain some heat. when we get really far away they are less hot but that seems normal?
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 3,567
    flue being “hot” doesn’t help. 

    @Jamie Hall said get a contractor out to take measurements and advise b
    coreyndstuff
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 10,315
    What does the temp and pressure gauge on the boiler show?
  • EBEBRATT-Ed
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 13,142
    @coreyndstuff

    All the above have the boiler cleaned and serviced. The temp going up the flue should be 320-maybe 500 or so. The water pressure in the boiler should be between 12-not over 25 psi. Water temp in the boiler should be 190 maximum.


    Why not post some boiler pictures so we can see what you got. Stand back so we can see everything
  • kcopp
    kcopp Member Posts: 4,091
    By chance is there Radiant floor heat above that is not insulated or poorly insulated?
  • EdTheHeaterMan
    EdTheHeaterMan Member Posts: 4,970
    kcopp said:

    By chance is there Radiant floor heat above that is not insulated or poorly insulated?

    My first thought also. but there was no mention of Radiant Floor Heating.

    I had a customer that installed his own tubing and insulation. Never finished the basement insulation and always complained about the first-floor heat not as efficient as the second floor. 5 years went by and I told him every year to finish the basement ceiling insulation. And every year I did the oil burner tune-up, the basement was over 80°.

    As part of the Divorce Settlement, he needed to complete several unfinished projects, one being the basement ceiling insulation. He said, "Wow, I never realized that the insulation was so important, The heat works great now!" in year 6 after the boiler install.

    Yours Truly
    Mr.Ed

    Edward Young Retired HVAC Contractor & HYDRONICIAN Services first oil burner at age 16 P/T trainer for EH-CC.org
    kcopp
  • coreyndstuff
    coreyndstuff Member Posts: 21
    JUGHNE said:

    What does the temp and pressure gauge on the boiler show?

    Pressure: ~15psi
    Temp ~190-200

  • coreyndstuff
    coreyndstuff Member Posts: 21
    edited January 2021

    Never finished the basement insulation and always complained about the first-floor heat not as efficient as the second floor. 5 years went by and I told him every year to finish the basement ceiling insulation. And every year I did the oil burner tune-up, the basement was over 80°.

    Do you mean insulation under on the ceiling in the basement, like right beneath the 1st floor subfloor? If so, there is none on that side of the house. Just wood. Your idea is heat is going through the floor from the 1st floor into the basement?

    There is no radiant floor heating, as far as we can see or know. There are 4 pumps and we know where they all go (we think).

  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 7,190
    With radiant flooring the insulation is very important to make the heat go toward the living space. If you don't have radiant floor heating, this doesn't apply to your installation.

    Does the boiler also provide domestic hot water? If so, you may be able to reduce the temp it sits at for that if it is a tankless coil.
  • Canucker
    Canucker Member Posts: 717

    My parents bought a new house with a somewhat old boiler, maybe 15-20 years. It is a forced hot water with radiators system with 4 zones/pumps. The basement is very hot. He's started putting insulation on all the pipes, but the temp has only dropped about 5 degrees. The flue is especially hot, I'm not sure if that is relevant.

    There are some parts of the house that are still not heating well so we thought insulating all the copper would help.

    There are some walls in the basement sectioned off but with all with open doors. The room w/ the boiler is the hottest, the next room is also very hot, about 80.

    What's a normal temperature around the boiler?
    Is there anything I can do, or anything to look for to determine if the system is operating correctly?

    Are your basement walls insulated and airsealed? Are your zones independently controlled by thermostats? I have and old atmospheric boiler with multiple zones and my basement area with the boiler in it, is hotter than the rest of the house. The rest of my house has insulation that hasn't been upgraded yet, whereas my basement has been done. This causes my zones located in the other part of the house to call for heat when it gets colder out way more often than my basement does. The boiler acts like a radiator, so when the rest of the house is heating, so is the area of the basement with the boiler whether that zone is calling for heat or not, which leaves it a few degrees warmer than where the thermostat is, always. Insulating the pipes helped but there's only so much I'll be able to do about it until the boiler is replaced.
    You can have it good, fast or cheap. Pick two
  • coreyndstuff
    coreyndstuff Member Posts: 21
    Canucker said:


    Are your basement walls insulated and airsealed?

    They are not.
    Canucker said:


    Are your zones independently controlled by thermostats?

    Yes, 4 zones each with a pump.
    Canucker said:


    I have and old atmospheric boiler with multiple zones

    What is the alternative kind of boiler called?



  • coreyndstuff
    coreyndstuff Member Posts: 21
    mattmia2 said:

    Does the boiler also provide domestic hot water? If so, you may be able to reduce the temp it sits at for that if it is a tankless coil.

    There is a dedicated hot water heater.