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2-pipe steam

antman
antman Member Posts: 182
Anybody at all familiar with a 2-pipe steam system that DOES NOT have steam traps on the radiators? is this a vapor system? or should there be traps on all the radiators.It's a very big old Burnham boiler in a very big tudor home.

Comments

  • antman
    antman Member Posts: 182
    2-pipe steam

    Anybody at all familiar with a 2-pipe steam system that DOES NOT have steam traps on the radiators? is this a vapor system? or should there be traps on all the radiators.It's a very big old Burnham boiler in a very big tudor home.
  • Andy N.
    Andy N. Member Posts: 53
    sounds like...

    a vapor system. yes there are several experts on the subject that frequent this site. what are your questions?
  • don_9
    don_9 Member Posts: 395
    vapor system

    It could be ,look for a vapor stat at the boiler or check
    at the boiler for boiler return trap, I only have one vapor system under my belt so i will go no further, Check books and more for lost art of steam heating , worth more money
    then dan is asking for ,sure has got me thru some rough times,and kept me from running outof the boiler room.
  • I'll help, too

    What brand name can you find on any of the original equipment? I believe you have a vapor system, as well.....Noel
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 16,714
    That's definitely Vapor

    and there were several different ways to do what a steam trap does now- allow air and condensate to pass from the radiator into the dry return, but not let steam get thru.

    1- Water seals- just like a sink trap, these things contained some water so steam could not get thru. Sometimes these were contained in the radiator return-end bushing, other times in the return elbow. A small hole was drilled above the water level so air could vent through to the dry return, but it wouldn't let enough steam thru to cause trouble.

    2- Weighted check valves- these were almost always mounted in the return elbow.

    3- Orificed inlets- These depended on very low pressure, usually 8 ounces or so (always use a Vaporstat on these systems). The orifice, located either as part of the shutoff valve or as a separate disk or plate, allowed in only enough steam to enter the rad as that rad could condense.

    We love this old stuff. Take some pics of it and post them- including any scary-looking hardware you may find in the boiler room- and let us know if you found any brand names. We'll do our best to help you identify that system.

    Vapor systems were top-of-the-line in their day, and are still some of the quickest, quietest and most-efficient systems out there. Fixing them is easy once you know how they work. If you haven't done so already, get Dan's books "The Lost Art of Steam Heating" and "The Lost Art of Steam Heating Companion". Both cover Vapor systems quite well. Order them on the Books and More page of this site.

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  • Dale
    Dale Member Posts: 1,317
    It may not be a vapor

    system, In Dan's LAOSH book pg 125 he shows such a system,everything goes to a wet return. I marked the page since I once made the statement that 2 pipe steam needed traps and one of our techs said there wasn't any on the one he was working on, makes one humble.
  • antman
    antman Member Posts: 182


    The reason why I am asking, is because I need to install some recessed radiators. When I removed the old radiators no steam traps or return ells with those balls in it(anybody no proper term) just a regular return ell. No vapor stat on boiler just a pressuretrol I saw one angle steam trap in-line in the basement for a radiator ( not one that i am replacing) but thats about it, Unfortubnately I dont have that book of Dan's but I am interested in what page 125 may show.

    Thanks to all

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  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 16,714
    Check

    inside the return-end bushing, where the tailpiece for the return ell screws into it. If you can see thru to the inside of the radiator, then you probably have an orifice system. If not, the bushing probably contains a water seal.

    If it's a water-seal system, you can use ordinary radiator traps on the new radiators. If it's an orifice system, you'll have to provide an orifice at the inlet.

    Here's a cutaway of a radiator with a water-seal bushing in it. Ignore the fact that most of the rad is filled with water- that's irrelevant here. Look at the return connection at the lower left- you'll see how the bushing traps some water to keep steam from getting thru to the dry return. You'll also see the air hole.

    Where is this system located?

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  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 16,714
    Dale and Big Ed, that's the 2-pipe, air-vent system

    with a vent on each radiator, and a return line from each radiator that carries only condensate (no air) into a wet return. This system almost always has a radiator shutoff valve on the return as well as the supply. These systems were rather difficult to control, which led to the development of Vapor systems.

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    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
  • Big Ed
    Big Ed Member Posts: 1,117


    On page 125 there is a two pipe steam system in which each radiator's return drops down to the cellar's wet return. The water in the return would act like a water seal and prevent steam from entering the return side of the radiator, from another rad . On this two pipe system each rad needs it's own air vent .......
  • antman
    antman Member Posts: 182
    Thanks

    > with a vent on each radiator, and a return line

    > from each radiator that carries only condensate

    > (no air) into a wet return. This system almost

    > always has a radiator shutoff valve on the return

    > as well as the supply. These systems were rather

    > difficult to control, which led to the

    > development of Vapor systems.

    >

    > _A

    > HREF="http://www.heatinghelp.com/getListed.cfm?id=

    > 157&Step=30"_To Learn More About This Contractor,

    > Click Here to Visit Their Ad in "Find A

    > Contractor"_/A_



    Thanks again guys, as soon as I look into this I'll let ya know what system it was.

    Ant

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  • antman
    antman Member Posts: 182
This discussion has been closed.