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1-pipe steam supply valve air vent combo?

jfleming
jfleming Member Posts: 7
We just had main and radiator vents installed on our system and the steam moves much faster. Wondering if there are supply valves with air venting functionality -- would like to vent even faster on the risers. 

Comments

  • 109A_5
    109A_5 Member Posts: 160
    Venting the risers too fast can cause system balancing issues, thus uneven heating. Maybe vent the main faster if possible.
    National - U.S. Gas Boiler 45+ Years Old
    Steam 300 SQ. FT. - EDR 347
    One Pipe System
  • bburd
    bburd Member Posts: 339
    How high are your risers? Riser venting is usually needed only on risers at least three stories high, and often not even then.

    Bburd
  • jfleming
    jfleming Member Posts: 7
    bburd said:

    How high are your risers? Riser venting is usually needed only on risers at least three stories high, and often not even then.

    Two stories. But it's a duplex and we're on the second floor, so there are no first floor radiators for our steam system. The radiator vents have to deal with air both the rad and the risers.
  • AdmiralYoda
    AdmiralYoda Member Posts: 457
    I have two 1-1/4" risers going to my second floor that are at the END of my main, about a foot before the end where the main vent is. Since I have plans to change the old steam radiator valves anyways I have thought of going to an inline valve rather than a 90 degree angle valve.

    I was thinking of installing a 90 degree elbow and then install a Gorton #2 right before the radiator valve. I already have a Barnes and Jones Big Mouth at the end of my two mains. My thinking was to vent the risers so that the steam hits the downstairs and upstairs radiators at relatively the same time.

    Since my risers are at the END of my main, I think this may be mildly beneficial. Probably more fun than anything. If my risers were not at the end of the main and say, half way down the main I would re-think this approach.

    If the riser vent is the closest vent to the boiler the steam may rush there first and heat that radiator up first before the steam moves on to the main vent and the rest of the heating system, causing balance issues.

    I'm not a pro though, so I'll wait for the real professionals to weigh in.
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 19,150
    Your idea is a good one, and it is commonly used on taller risers. Do you need it on a riser (probably about 10 feet of inch and a quarter or inch and a half?) maybe. It certainly won't hurt anything. I've been know to say that it is almost impossible to over vent a supply line, whether it is horizontal or vertical doesn't matter -- but after a certain point you aren't gaining anything for your money, as the steam front velocity becomes limited by how fast it can heat the pipe, not how fast it can push air out.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 13,076

    Your idea is a good one, and it is commonly used on taller risers. Do you need it on a riser (probably about 10 feet of inch and a quarter or inch and a half?) maybe. It certainly won't hurt anything. I've been know to say that it is almost impossible to over vent a supply line, whether it is horizontal or vertical doesn't matter -- but after a certain point you aren't gaining anything for your money, as the steam front velocity becomes limited by how fast it can heat the pipe, not how fast it can push air out.

    Depends.
    I have a 13' main and a 32' main and I needed to get them balanced. If I vent them the same, it's a bad time.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • JohnNY
    JohnNY Member Posts: 2,959
    Just remove the packing from the supply valve of the top floor radiators so that air can move freely out of the riser and through the valve stem. When you hear steam entering the valve, run out of the room quickly.

    (A little plumber's humor. Do not do this.)
    Contact John "JohnNY" Cataneo, Master Plumber for Consulting Work
    Or for plumbing in NYC or in NJ.

    Or take his class.
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 13,076
    JohnNY said:

    Just remove the packing from the supply valve of the top floor radiators so that air can move freely out of the riser and through the valve stem. When you hear steam entering the valve, run out of the room quickly.

    (A little plumber's humor. Do not do this.)

    Did they ever use manual steam vents before automatic ones were created?
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • JohnNY
    JohnNY Member Posts: 2,959
    ChrisJ said:

    JohnNY said:

    Just remove the packing from the supply valve of the top floor radiators so that air can move freely out of the riser and through the valve stem. When you hear steam entering the valve, run out of the room quickly.

    (A little plumber's humor. Do not do this.)

    Did they ever use manual steam vents before automatic ones were created?
    Yes. On the first coal fired steam systems.

    Contact John "JohnNY" Cataneo, Master Plumber for Consulting Work
    Or for plumbing in NYC or in NJ.

    Or take his class.
    ChrisJ
  • jhewings
    jhewings Member Posts: 86
    I put riser vents on my 3rd floor and I think they did improve my system. However, I wonder if they will do much on a 2nd floor with no 1st floor radiators. There might be other fun stuff to do to improve your system. How is the insulation of the mains and near boiler piping? Do you have a 0-3 or 0-5psi gauge? Can you flush your wet return? Do you have adequate combustion air? LOL just foolin'
  • jfleming
    jfleming Member Posts: 7
    Boiler header is properly sized and piped, mains are vented, and everything else is insulated. No wet return -- we're one pipe counterflow.

    Looking at other posts, tapping the supply valve for a vent seems like an option, just was wondering if there exists a pre-built solution.
  • DanHolohan
    DanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 16,072
    What the late-great Frank Gerety often did was to remove the angle supply valve at the top of the riser and replace it with a tee. The riser vent goes in the top of that tee. You'll have to shift the radiator a bit away from the riser now because you're going to use a straight supply valve off a nipple that connects to the new tee. Lining things up may not be simple, so weigh the costs (in time, money, and aggravation) against the quicker heat-up time.
    Retired and loving it.
  • JohnNY
    JohnNY Member Posts: 2,959
    jfleming said:

    we're one pipe counterflow.

    Are you sure you've got no returns? In decades of maintaining steam heating systems I've come across exactly one counterflow system.
    Contact John "JohnNY" Cataneo, Master Plumber for Consulting Work
    Or for plumbing in NYC or in NJ.

    Or take his class.
  • ethicalpaul
    ethicalpaul Member Posts: 3,751
    2nd floor I wouldn't bother. I put on one my new riser I ran to the second floor just for fun and I have never noticed any difference in comfort/heating
    1 pipe Peerless 63-03L in Cedar Grove, NJ, coal > oil > NG
  • AdmiralYoda
    AdmiralYoda Member Posts: 457
    JohnNY said:

    jfleming said:

    we're one pipe counterflow.

    Are you sure you've got no returns? In decades of maintaining steam heating systems I've come across exactly one counterflow system.
    Wow... I live in MA and also have a single pipe counterflow system. Are they relatively rare or is it maybe just different trends in different geographic areas?
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 15,429
    We see them once in a while in the Baltimore area too.

    @jfleming , in your situation you could just use slightly larger radiator vents.
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Towson, MD, USA
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
  • jfleming
    jfleming Member Posts: 7
    JohnNY said:

    jfleming said:

    we're one pipe counterflow.

    Are you sure you've got no returns? In decades of maintaining steam heating systems I've come across exactly one counterflow system.
    100% positive, New England SteamWorks came out and said so.
    Steamhead said:

    We see them once in a while in the Baltimore area too.

    @jfleming , in your situation you could just use slightly larger radiator vents.

    We switched to the largest oriifce on the Maid O-Mist vent, which helps a lot, but it still takes a while.