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Help with secondary loop

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DH123
DH123 Member Posts: 58
Hi all,
My existing hydronic hot water system was installed around the year Y2K.
Living in the Northern climates I’m concerned that if I was to have a catastrophic failure
it could be very expensive in the dead of winter. So I have been debating replacing my manifold
and circulators with a more up to date version and moving them to the wall. I have been watching “Hot Rod’s” Utube videos on hydraulic separators and closely spaced T’s. I wanted to replace everything except the furnace (peerless) and install everything so that if I was to have a boiler failure it would be much easier than dealing with all the equipment hanging off the old girl.
A couple questions.
#1- Am I nuts.
#2- I was planning on placing webstone closely spaced T. Boiler side= primary loop
Manifold side= secondary loop. However because I don’t have a primary/secondary today I was going to place the webstone T’s and run it as it is today one primary loop through the T. The purpose of me doing this is two fold catastrophic failure or the TAX on #2 oil pushes me to a boiler that will require primary/secondary loops. Thoughts?
#3 - I have everything pretty much figured out however I’ve seen some people talking about needing a minimum separation between the feed and return of the secondary loops. Is this a bunch of bologna or should I try to keep some separation. If I need the separation why?
Thanks for the help.
Jim

Comments

  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 22,396
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    Show some pics of what piping you have, first of all.
    One benefit of a hydraulic Sep is you could easily add a second heat source to what you have. Could be an electric boiler, LP, gas, heat pump. It sounds like you are looking for redundancy more than a piping upgrade?
    If you have enough power an electric boiler is an inexpensive back up to install.

    A separator is like a transmission in the system allowing you to have multiple loads and inputs all while adding air, dirt, mag separation. None of that comes with primary secondary piping alone.

    Possibility expensive to operate an electric boiler, but as a back up until the primary boiler is repaired

    The wild card is how high oil or LP prices go, a chance that electric gets close to even with fossil fuel this winter? Electric rates are typically more stable, they don’t go up in winter, down in summer🥳
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
  • DH123
    DH123 Member Posts: 58
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    Here are some pictures of what it looks like today.




    Jim
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 22,396
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    Really no need or benefit to primary secondary on a cast, one temperature boiler. My main concern would be if those zone circs are on the return? Really no good way to pump away from the PONPC in that piping.

    Id pipe with a hydraulic separator only if you plan on adding a second boiler or heater.

    An update to that piping would make me feel better, but at what $$?
    If it has been working well, maybe let it be, let it be, speaking words of wisdom, let it be

    If and when you look at a replacement, maybe a different fuel source, then grab the sawzall.
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
  • DH123
    DH123 Member Posts: 58
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    Thanks for the comments.
    I do have a couple other things that are pushing me toward wanting to redo the piping.
    I really want to put my mud room on it’s own circular and I’m running out of space. Although it’s not cheap I wanted to recognize that goal and try and make a change that would hopefully be beneficial today and allow me more options down the road.
    You mentioned pumping away and that was also on the list. What does PONPC stand for?
    Thank you for your input I’ve learned a lot reading the wall over the years.😀


  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 22,396
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    DH123 said:

    Thanks for the comments.
    I do have a couple other things that are pushing me toward wanting to redo the piping.
    I really want to put my mud room on it’s own circular and I’m running out of space. Although it’s not cheap I wanted to recognize that goal and try and make a change that would hopefully be beneficial today and allow me more options down the road.
    You mentioned pumping away and that was also on the list. What does PONPC stand for?
    Thank you for your input I’ve learned a lot reading the wall over the years.😀


    Point Of No Pressure Change, PONPC, where the expansion tank connects.

    It would be good to decide on what a future boiler or heat source might be before you repipe.
    A heat pump for example would require a buffer tank on a zoned system like yours.
    Many mod cons still want to see a hydraulic sep or P/S header. If you go back with a conventional boiler, a simple S&R header is adequate.

    Here are two options in a simplified drawing. A small 30 or 40 gallon 2 pipe buffer would cover the most options, and works nicely with both mod cons or HPs.
    A set of extra tees if you wanted a duel fuel system of some sorts, leave thew boiler you have, pipe the option for a second heat source with two tees and valves.

    A delta P circ on the distribution with zone valves for zoning. Simple, efficient, modulating.
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream