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New Install Nearing Completion- What do you guys think?

Hi everyone,

Thanks to your help a few months back, I've gone with a 150,000 btu Williamson Boiler instead of a Weil Mclain, and the plumbers are getting it in the basement now.

With a weekend pause in work, I thought it would be wise to send images of progress your way and see what you guys think, and if there are any red flags I should have amended while this thing is still a construction project. and the Hartford loop etc isn't in yet.

Thoughts? Thanks in advance!

Not shown- return line is entirely new, just a mirror of the original routing (with addition of a big mouth vent), and the basement is wide open space. In the future I plan to closet the boiler and put a fresh air inlet from outside/metal doors.

Carryover from the previous boiler, ceiling is double layer fire sheet rock and the now rusty cinder blocks! The 33 year old Weil Mclain was pretty gross at the end...

Thanks!








Comments

  • EzzyT
    EzzyT Member Posts: 1,217
    The header is to small is should be full size 3”. There missing a swing joint on the header too. 
    The hartford loop nipple needs to be a close nipple or a street 90. 
    EdTheHeaterMan
  • 109A_5
    109A_5 Member Posts: 276
    edited September 11
    Not sure I'm looking at the correct manual (you did not supply a model number) and I'm not a boiler engineer, so not sure how critical some things are.

    It does not look like you have 6" between the draft hood and the wall. Looks like the wall is poured concrete so may not be a heat problem, proper draft / spill switch operation may be an issue.

    Is the equalizer pipe 1-1/2" the whole way to the bottom of the boiler ?

    Can't tell from the pictures don't forget the skim tapping.

    National - U.S. Gas Boiler 45+ Years Old
    Steam 300 SQ. FT. - EDR 347
    One Pipe System
  • 5horizonsrr
    5horizonsrr Member Posts: 58
    edited September 11
    Thanks all! Model is a GSA-150

    The 3" header comment got me looking (not that I know what I'm talking about), I just found and opened the manual which says 2 1/2" is spec for this boiler size, so thats a fix needed.

    A question before I backseat drive the plumber: the original pipe entering the drywall into the main was 2" per the elbow with old tape in the first two images, I suspect that is why he maybe just did 2 instead of reading the damn manual. Does the 2.5" pipe need to go all the way up from the supply "T", or just the header?

    Equalizer pipe is the same (incorrect) 2" on the horizontal rearwards, then tapers down via the elbow for the vertical drop.

    Draft hood is only 4" from the wall (and yes- wall is poured concrete) If they are pulling the header then I bet that can move forward a bit
  • ethicalpaul
    ethicalpaul Member Posts: 3,759
    It won't hurt that the equalizer is larger than specified. You will want the 2-1/2 riser and header. The 2" supply coming up from the header will be fine...it has to go to 2" at some point after all, after the header.

    Did you ever get the EDR of your radiators? Not the alleged BTU of the system, but the actual EDR of the radiators themselves? I looked back on your old discussions and never saw it.
    1 pipe Peerless 63-03L in Cedar Grove, NJ, coal > oil > NG
  • 109A_5
    109A_5 Member Posts: 276
    Just the Header and the Riser 2-1/2" minimum, it provides more room for water and steam to coexist and slows down the velocity for better steam / water separation, bigger is better. However since the manual states the supply tapping is 3" I would go with that although the Plumber will charge you more.

    Draft hood distance to nearest object stated 6" in multiple places for multiple reasons.







    National - U.S. Gas Boiler 45+ Years Old
    Steam 300 SQ. FT. - EDR 347
    One Pipe System
    PC7060
  • 5horizonsrr
    5horizonsrr Member Posts: 58
    thanks guys! Spoke to the plumber (in fairness to him his colleague did the header Friday and he hasn't seen it) and he is sorting the header situation when they come back- GREAT save guys.

    Also moving the boiler forward (the 4" I mentioned was the upwards vent ducting, not the actual unit so thanks for the clarification)

    More to follow once more pipe goes in and the header gets corrected, hopefully that is the last of the mistakes/surprises...

    Thanks again!
    MikeAmann
  • The Steam Whisperer
    The Steam Whisperer Member Posts: 1,000
    To balance costs and get maximum performance, just running a 3x 12 to 3 x18 inch nipple out of the boiler and then reduce to 2 1/2 for the header should work great. The 3 inch riser will slow down the steam so much, that carryover water will drop back into the boiler, leaving the header with alot less work.
    To learn more about this professional, click here to visit their ad in Find A Contractor.
  • 109A_5
    109A_5 Member Posts: 276
    Also, if they put a discharge pipe on the Pressure relief valve (and they should) make sure when it drops down it does not block service access to the Low Water Cut Off unit. I think I would spin that Pressure relief valve about 45°

    Don't forget Hartford loop nipple
    EzzyT said:

    The header is to small is should be full size 3”. There missing a swing joint on the header too. 

    The hartford loop nipple needs to be a close nipple or a street 90. 
    National - U.S. Gas Boiler 45+ Years Old
    Steam 300 SQ. FT. - EDR 347
    One Pipe System
  • clammy
    clammy Member Posts: 2,766
    edited September 12
    Aside from not using both tappings ,I would have put a 3 x 1 1/4 tee and dropped a drip off off the 3 inch before it enters the ceiling . A union or companion flanges would have been nice for the riser . A close nipple or street elbow would be better for your Hartford loop also make sure the height is correct . A full sized tee on the boiler return into the boiler would also be wise makes it easy to wand the boiler out. Reducing the return tapping isn’t the best choice ,it helps build mud and rust in the bottom of your section and also makes it harder to flush out . I always come out of steam boiler w full nipples even on the unused side I just put a cap ,it makes easier to flush and wand in the future . I always say it easier and cheaper to do it once and have it all set up for success and ease of service simple as that . Usually to make life simple we do a 2 inch equilizer up to about 500 mbtu then 2 1/2 till 750 and so on . There’s nothing good about a slightly undersized equilizer it a all good till you have a cold spot mid way and it only heats after the first cycle then you know it was undersized .i always feel over sized on headers and equilizer and full sized return nipples is the cheapest of insurance for a properly installed steam boiler . The price difference between manafactures specs and one size larger is not a job killer but the performance and dryer steam is what you aim for is exactly what you will get . Mis piped boilers w undersized headers never perform well and produce lazy wet steam and please remember piping ,makes and breaks a steam boiler ability to produce dry steam .it may work but it will never be what it should as steam is extremely forgiving until a straw breaks the camels back and it usually always is traced back to the boiler near boiler piping and the fact the boiler is not producing dry steam . I hate to say this but one good steam guy could usually pipe that boiler up blind in less then 1/2 a day , even me approaching my 60 would chew that up easily in a day alone . Not to shoot down your installer but that piping is not the way a steam guy would install it .. . Peace and good luck clammy
    R.A. Calmbacher L.L.C. HVAC
    NJ Master HVAC Lic.
    Mahwah, NJ
    Specializing in steam and hydronic heating
    PC7060
  • 5horizonsrr
    5horizonsrr Member Posts: 58
    You guys all rock- thanks!

    They came back yesterday (I was at work) and did more work plus addressed my header complaint. It is close now, but could use advice based on these updated images?

    The 6" rear venting area is a problem due to the framework of the boiler room- specifically a closet door etc that needs to go in front as we finish the rest of the basement. (that is the next project) I got into a bit of back and forth with the plumber on it. He said it is by no means ideal, but if I can't move it forward a full 6" due to framing that I should be ok. I told him to leave things for now since the old boiler was the same, which I might regret. Basically fear of my wife's basement dreams outweighed my mechanical preference (!) How badly did I just screw myself?

    Thanks again!







  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 3,065
    edited September 17
    I hope the last check hasn't  been cut!

    doing it wrong for 10, 20, 30 , 40 years is not an excuse!  
    Tell him to read the manual or leave!!!
  • 109A_5
    109A_5 Member Posts: 276
    Hello @5horizonsrr,

    Personally I'd put safety and maintenance before the wife's dreams for a basement. Since you have a pored concrete wall, probably not a fire hazard on the coldest day of the year. The manual did also state that 6" clearance for "Service" I'd hate to see you to have to disconnect the whole boiler for some maintenance issue. The old boiler may not have needed the clearance for service.

    The Hartford loop looks very unique.

    Also If you close off that room for "the wife's dreams" Make sure it is well ventilated.

    National - U.S. Gas Boiler 45+ Years Old
    Steam 300 SQ. FT. - EDR 347
    One Pipe System
    MikeAmann5horizonsrrEdTheHeaterMan
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 3,065
    edited September 17
    109A_5 said:
    Hello @5horizonsrr, Personally I'd put safety and maintenance before the wife's dreams for a basement.
    Also If you close off that room for "the wife's dreams" Make sure it is well ventilated.
    Ventilation is a whole other issue!

    they haven’t read the piping section yet so that’s next!
    EdTheHeaterManGGross
  • 5horizonsrr
    5horizonsrr Member Posts: 58
    edited September 18
    Thank you all for your inputs, you are really saving me here, and know I appreciate that.

    Ed and those who mentioned the close nipple previously- now I "get it" thanks to the images, I couldn't wrap my brain around that before. Your kind detail really helps me prepare my feedback. I'll share that with him, and for my own understanding the apex of that issue is needing a close nipple going into that "T" instead of the current horizontal elbow into long nipple setup? (at least based on the drawing that was what I concluded)


    On ventilation distance in the rear- that is clear. Need to take a day and process the bigger picture ahead of moves.

    No last checks have been cut, and I went with the plumber I knew I could trust to make things right. (who has done a lot of general plumbing work for me over the years) My comment about the header prompted an apology and an immediate fix, as opposed to blowback. But I of course wish all this was done right to begin with though!!!!!

    More to follow- I'd buy you all a beer if I could!
    MikeAmann
  • pedmec
    pedmec Member Posts: 290
    I honestly don't think your plumber is qualified to install steam. he obviously doesn't either own any threading equipment or doesn't know how to use it. he is trying to install all the piping using precut nipples, which explains the unleveled equalizer and the connection from header to equalizer using a cast iron 45. It can be done but you need experience which i think your plumber lacks
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 9,908
    A comment on the close nipple of the Hartford loop;
    Not only the long nipple between 90 and equalizer tee, but also the close nipple between the 90 and the tee with water fill copper attached.

    IMO, I believe the 90 should point straight down with the close nipple into the equalizer tee.

    Your man may want to simply shorten up the 3-4" long nipple....you need to get the horizontal distance shorter.
    The water fill tee/close nipple/ and 90 contribute to the horizontal length being too long.....perhaps 8".
    EdTheHeaterMan
  • 5horizonsrr
    5horizonsrr Member Posts: 58
    Hi everyone, happy Sunday. The plumber is happy to make it right, a question for you so I police this properly:

    The desired close nipple setup is clear per the manual. However do we need the elbow between return/EQ to bend upwards into the Equalizer pipe, or is a horizontal elbow ok as long as it is attaching via close nipple instead of a several inch nipple like it currently is?
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 9,908
    Do it just like the manual.

    The returning condensate (water) from the wet return piping, down near the floor, must fill the piping up to that 90 at the tee........that 90 must be pointing straight down so the water will go thru the close nipple and down the equalizer pipe into the boiler.

    The top of the 90/close nipple/eq tee must be below the water line as shown in the manual.


    Also, IIWM, I would bring the cold water feed into the wet return, lower than where it is now.
    It is better to mix the cold water with the return water down there rather than that close to the Hartford Loop connections.
    He will have to redo things there anyway.


    IMO, also to save future grief, the by pass water line valve (with the round green handle...in the copper line should be changed to a good quality ball valve.

    That existing valve design may not shut off completely and can over fill the boiler.
    It may work OK now but in 5 years perhaps not.
  • STEAM DOCTOR
    STEAM DOCTOR Member Posts: 1,522
    Not sure if this was mentioned. Is he reusing old flue pipe?
  • EdTheHeaterMan
    EdTheHeaterMan Member Posts: 3,641
    edited September 18


    A picture is better at explaining the Hartford loop. On your system, the Elbow connected to the close nipple must be pointed strait down. I hope the illustration is understandable. You will beed a union in there somewhere.
    Edward Young
    Retired HVAC Contractor from So. Jersey.
    Services first oil burner at age 16
    P/T trainer for EH-CC.org

    GGross
  • EdTheHeaterMan
    EdTheHeaterMan Member Posts: 3,641
    edited September 18
    This might be better

    Take the Tee fitting off the return and add a 1-1/2 x 1-1/2 x 3/4 tee in its place then add a nipple to reinstall the
    1-1/2" tee closer to the Hartford Loop return riser
    Edward Young
    Retired HVAC Contractor from So. Jersey.
    Services first oil burner at age 16
    P/T trainer for EH-CC.org

    5horizonsrr
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 9,908
    Good plan Ed, however the valve you included should replace the green handle globe valve for manual bypass manual feed of water, IMO.
    EdTheHeaterMan