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2 Insulation Questions

Rem77 Member Posts: 25
I have a 100 year old, 9 family 3 floor building with a 1 pipe steam system and about 150ft of wet returns. I had the near boiler piping redone and vented out the mains with Barnes and Jones Big Mouth vents. In certain rooms in the apartments there is a 2 inch riser pipe and a radiator right next to it. Will it help the radiator to heat better if I insulate the riser??
Does it make any sense to insulate the wet returns??



  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 23,270
    Insulating the wet returns is a waste of time. Don't bother. Insulating any steam carrying pipe is going to help a lot -- so do it!
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
  • Hap_Hazzard
    Hap_Hazzard Member Posts: 2,846
    Insulating wet returns is worse than a waste of time. The insulation traps mosture in the summer when the basement is cool and damp and makes the pipes rust from the outside in.
    Just another DIYer | King of Prussia, PA
    1983(?) Peerless G-561-W-S | 3" drop header, CG400-1090, VXT-24
  • Rem77
    Rem77 Member Posts: 25
    Thanks for the quick responses.

  • Clance
    Clance Member Posts: 53
    I'm just a home owner learning about stream so listen to the pros on here -

    but I think I read in The Lost Art of Steam that Dan says insulating the returns is important - I cant find where he wrote it but it had something to do with keeping the condensate hot as possible to minimize carbon dioxide absorption because carbon dioxide in water forms carbonic acid that rots the pipes.

    Perhaps someone on here knows the specifics...