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Another Erie Zone Valve Question

Randy_7
Randy_7 Member Posts: 23
Gentlemen: My parents have an Erie valve on the leg between their new oil boiler and Amtrol indirect water heater. The valve has failed twice in 3 years and the failure completely shuts down the boiler. Last failure was past winter when they were out of town - luckily they returned after 2 days to just a very cold home - nothing frozen. My questions:

1. Is there a method of wiring these valves so that they will "fail safe" and not shut the boiler down completely?

2. Are there more dependable valves for this particular location?

Thank you,

Randy

Comments

  • Art Pittaway
    Art Pittaway Member Posts: 230
    Need a little more info,

    Randy, There are many control configurations that may apply to your question. First, if you could e-mail the assembly number of your zone valve it would be a start. The number should look like "VT3313G13A02A". We would be very interested to see what happened to the valve or actuator. Next, sometimes an electronic control is used to tie the Amtrol heater, house thermostat, the zone valve or valves, pump or pumps, and your boiler together electrically, so they work in a smooth manner. Is there a control in this system?
    To answer your question, nothing is fail-safe, but installed properly your heat shouldn't shut down the way you have described it. To understand what is going on we need to know how it is piped and wired. Do you have a way to describe your installation?
    Art
    Erie Controls



  • Randy_7
    Randy_7 Member Posts: 23
    Erie Valve.

    Art: Certainly appreciate your quick response and hopefully you can provide the necessary help. I'm located 3 hours from my parents so I obtained some of the information you requested over the phone. Oil HW boiler (Weil-McClane Gold series) and Amtrol unit are 3 years old. For the initial several months directly following installation the boiler was "spittin' and sputtering" and flame would ocassionally go on/off during the cycle, and of course there was a build-up of soot in vent pipe and odor of #2 through the home.

    The installer finally found the problem and replaced the original Erie Valve, and all operated fine until this past winter when valve "failed" again and stopped the boiler cold. The valve now in place between Amtrol and boiler is #0767C0036GA01, dated 10/22/98, made in Milwaukee WI, 10 psi, 24v, 2-way, 6.5 watt, system psi 300.

    I cannot provide any additional information as to how it is wired or piped, due to my location. I know of no control that ties everything together. I'm not interested in playing "gotcha" with the boiler technician but hopefully there is something I can pass along to him. He's just taking over for his dad and doesn't operate too confidently or professionally (but that's another thread).

    Thank you very much,

    Randy
  • heatboy
    heatboy Member Posts: 1,468
    Well, I can tell you........

    that your soot and odor problem had nothing to do with the supposed zone valve failure. That's a burner problem that was never corrected from the original installation. Another "technician" that doesn't know what a CO2 test is. If the house goes cold when the valve failed (?), there must be some sort of priority cicuit for the tank. Priority should be eliminated. If they run out of hot water, it's probably due to incorrect piping and/or inadequate pump size (probably the issue). Amtrol Indirect have very large flow rates required and also have high pressure drops across the heat exchangers, which generally lends them to have a dedicated circulating pump. Zone valves don't just quit working every year. There is something causing this issue. You need to find someone in your parents's area who knows hydronic heating.

    hb

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    heatboy



    The Radiant Whisperer





    "The laws of physics will outweigh the laws of ecomomics every time."
  • Art Pittaway
    Art Pittaway Member Posts: 230
    hb is right.....

    From what you just said, this installation needs to have an experienced oil fired boiler technician look at it. We will be more than happy to help with warranty issues on the zone valve and possibly design suggestions for the system. Mr. Holohan has a contractor locator as part of this website, or post your parents state and town and see if a wethead is close. Note my e-mail address above.
    Art
  • Randy_7
    Randy_7 Member Posts: 23


    First thing I did was check Contractor Locator but no one listed for Sault Ste. Marie, MI or vicinity.

    The boiler has never been completely "right" since installation. The installing firm kept the old original (45 years old when replaced) boiler operating "by eye" only, however I don't think that will suffice with high tech units.

    I'm going to call friends in the Sault area and see who they use for service. I'd sure welcome any other comments or suggestions.

    Thanks much.

    Randy
  • Paul Mitchell
    Paul Mitchell Member Posts: 266
    whole system?

    I find something very wrong if the zone valve for your amtrol fails and the whole system goes down. you should just come home to no hot water. something else is also wrong.
  • Randy_7
    Randy_7 Member Posts: 23


    My parents' new boiler was originally sized same as the old, without benefit of heat-loss calculations, so the expertise of the "technician" has been suspect since day #1 as far as I am concerned.

    Yesterday I contacted the fuel oil dealer in the town where my parents live. He named two boiler men who he highly recommends (one he uses on his own equipment). Suprising to me, he also said he has heard many negatives about the firm that sized, installed and services my parents' boiler. He said the father did well on older systems but doubts the sons have had any training on modern systems.

    Now all I need to do is convince my dad that, for his own good, it would be wise if he has one of the recommended firms look over the system.

    I am very thankful this site exists and that there is so much talent willing to take the time for input.

    Sincerely,

    Randy
This discussion has been closed.