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Gortons noisy, getting stuck

theONEendONLY Member Posts: 51
edited April 2021 in Strictly Steam
I have brand new gorton vents all around. I just replaced the main vent with a gorton #2 and it's heating up fast.

Two issues- the gorton 6 in my bedroom and now the gorton 5 in the bathroom across the hall are staying stuck open and venting for very long periods of time and it's extremely annoying! I tried replacing the 6 and after two days the same thing started to happen. I believe they're getting plugged with water.

What can I do? The pitch is sloped back towards the inlet valve.

Issue 2 - after 3 weeks now I'm getting noise by the gorton 2 main vent (underneath my bedroom in the basement). It sounds more like clicking and expanding than loud banging sounds that I sometimes hear in other places randomly (water hammer) one thing I suspect is that it could be because I put a brass bushing on the existing cast iron pipe to get the g2 on and the two metals aren't jiving when they expand??

I've listened to a lot of advice from this site but I'm still really struggling with my system.

Additional notes - my main is sloped correctly, all radiators shimmed up, pressure running low ~.5 psi. The two rads in question are very close to the end of the main where the g2 is.


  • neilc
    neilc Member Posts: 2,700
    well, if you're sure of your pressure, the gage is mounted independent of the pigtail and Ptrol, and or you're sure your pigtail is clear , , ,
    wet steam,
    how is the water condition?
    dirty in the sightglass? bouncing water level? need to skim?
    and what's the NBP like? proper header configuration and height?
    pictures ?
    (and I'm not sure about the venting rates)
    are the 5s and 6s too fast overall and everything needs to slow down?
    the clicking main vent,
    if the mains are heating fast and well now, mains may be expanding more(faster) than before,
    any hangers, or spots where you're up tight against wood, (or thru floor)?
    shim with plastic milk jug,
    random water hammer,
    look for sags or low spots water may collect in your mains or takeoffs,
    known to beat dead horses
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 23,271
    A couple of thoughts -- in addition to @neilc 's nice list (or with emphasis on one).

    First, make sure that your pressure really is cutting out at no more than 1.5 psi.

    Second, you mention that a couple of the vents seem to be venting for a long time -- are they open venting air? Or are they actually stuck open and venting steam? If they are actually stuck open, take them off and give them a shake -- they should rattle. If not see if running some vinegar into them will help. It is rare for them to get really stuck, but it can happen (and it's more common for them to get stuck closed from over pressure, but that's not what you have).
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
  • theONEendONLY
    theONEendONLY Member Posts: 51
    Pigtail is clear 100% clear. Pressuretrol set to .5 cut in with 1 differential. I replaced the water in it last month and the water still looks pretty clear. The level does bounce a little in the sight glass while operating, maybe 1/4"-1/2"

    I have 6s on everything except a really small rad in the bathroom and one near the tstat.

    The problem vents are giving me a long drawn out groan with some whistling. It goes on for way too long, when I know the main is already hot. Definitely because of wet steam?

    They do rattle when I take them off. 

    Can take pics today, but I do not know what an nbp is! Sorry, still learning.

    Clicking main vent- I ran out of tape and used some paste when I installed. No big deal? It's not really up against wood, it could be a nearby branch thru the floor that is impossible to reach..

    @neilc @Jamie Hall

    Thank you for the replies.
  • neilc
    neilc Member Posts: 2,700
    Near Boiler Piping,
    your header and equalizer, with your boiler takeoffs and main take offs,
    and pictures of your controls
    known to beat dead horses
  • theONEendONLY
    theONEendONLY Member Posts: 51
    I know that I need to install a low pressure gauge (haven't got parts yet) but I'm confident in the pressuretrol and I cleared the pigtail last week. The g2 elbow is not touching any wood, just the foundation. @neilc
  • neilc
    neilc Member Posts: 2,700
    the expansion clicking at the G2 main vent,
    I see that steel hanger, looks fairly tight to the pipe,
    and I see you say that pipe is, or is real close to, touching the foundation,
    I would chip away some more of that foundation to allow clearance, get it a good 1/2 inch,
    the hanger, I would loosen the clamping screw, even replace it with longer if need be, and I would slip one or 2 plastic milk jug slip sheet pieces between the hanger and the pipe,

    is it only your sightglass dirty? or is the water dirty also ?
    dirty water could be (is) contributing to wet steam,
    it does not look like your skim port has been opened or utilized,

    they should not have reduced your riser out of the boiler,
    that's not helping the wet steam issue either.
    known to beat dead horses
  • theONEendONLY
    theONEendONLY Member Posts: 51
    And if it was actually water hammer near the g2 is there anything I could try there? I can't really tell what the sound is anymore, I just know that it drives me crazy in the middle of the night.

    I will try all of your suggestions regardless and I appreciate the advice

    Only the sight glass is dirty, I replaced the water until it was draining clear a few weeks ago.

    The last homeowners were horrible and neglected everything so I'm sure it's never been skimmed or anything.

    Now it seems all the gorton's make a gurgling sound, not just the 2.
  • neilc
    neilc Member Posts: 2,700
    a golden rule of venting here is,
    "Vent your mains quickly, and your rads Slowly"
    again, disclaimer, I am not sure of, nor an expert on, the venting rates of your 6s,
    but I am betting they're too fast, and that's what's holding water up in the rads and risers,

    Are all your rad supply valves wide open ?
    this is another rule,
    they should not be throttled at all, nor closed,
    they should all be open,
    known to beat dead horses
  • dopey27177
    dopey27177 Member Posts: 887
    For the radiator vents to work properly especially with Gorton valves you to operate your system with as low as steam pressure possible.
    Set the steam pressure to max 1.5 psi cut out and 1 psi cut in.

    Another problem you show is all steam piping in the basement is uncovered, this causes an excessive amount of condensate to form in the steam piping and carried over to the radiators.

    When you cover the piping with at least one inch thick fiberglass insulation you will the house quicker there by eliminating the need for that monster #2 vent valve. The #1 vent is all you need in ant one family house,

  • theONEendONLY
    theONEendONLY Member Posts: 51
    Hmmm. I had a lot of other people recommend the #2 valve in other threads. After I insulate, would it be a bad thing to keep the #2 on there?

    And for Neil, all supply valves are fully open. I'll keep messing with the gorton's then. It's kind of torturous at this point though and I wish I just bought all adjustable. Too late to return them all.
  • ethicalpaul
    ethicalpaul Member Posts: 5,701
    edited April 2021
    It's a fine vent, the #2. You can leave it right there. But I'm worried about why your radiator vents aren't closing. Are they getting "steam hot"?
    NJ Steam Homeowner. See my sight glass boiler videos: https://bit.ly/3sZW1el
  • theONEendONLY
    theONEendONLY Member Posts: 51
    Yes they get nice and hot
  • dopey27177
    dopey27177 Member Posts: 887
    Yes you can leave the #2 in place after you insulate.
    What you consider hot on a radiator may not be hot enough to move or cause the the element in the valve to expand and close the outlet port.

    A good test to see if you have the proper steam pressure in the radiator is to install a pressure gauge in the tapping of the radiator and make sure you have 1 psi steam. 1 psi steam is equal to 215 degrees.
    if the vent is working right it will close somewhere around 200 degrees.

  • gfrbrookline
    gfrbrookline Member Posts: 753
    A G6 is a fast vent unless you have large radiators or longer runouts. What size radiators are they located on and how far way from the boiler are they? If all of the radiators down stream are G6's these two radiators may not be seeing enough steam to close. When you sized your vents did you use the Gerry Gill Chart? Gordons should be sized to the radiator size and location.