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Main Vent Problem

Mike CascioMike Cascio Posts: 132Member
Hi,

I have been reading the posts on the wall for some time and have found them very interesting and helpful. I have been working on my grandmothers 81 year old steam system, gradually getting it working better than it ever did. There is major pipe pitch problems on the long main of the house. Due to this it takes longer for the steam to get through the pipes. Since i am a rookie at this my family won't let me get too deep into touching anything. I know that the system really needs repiping but they won't let me touch it and money doesn't want to be spent because the heat "Works good". Anyways the end of the long main goes into a 90 degree elbow into a T. At the top of the T there is a riser connected to a long pipe that goes to the kitchen - the last radiator to heat (Which has a new Gorton C). On the other side of the T is the connection to the dry return. The dry return turns and has up on a T an extended pipe for two vents. The pipe with the main vents is realitively close to the main. I currently have one gorton #1 installed and a plug in the other hole. My question is what vents should I have there? and due to the placing of the vents would this cause the steam to favor the return instead of the kitchen radiator ? There is also a water log problem in this area due to the bad pitch, I can hear it swishing in the pipes. The boiler loses water due to this problem at a very slow rate, when the system runs longer due to cold weather or a long thermostat call the, water comes back to the boiler with some water hammer. Any help would be appreciated.

Thank you,
Michael J. Cascio

Comments

  • Mike CascioMike Cascio Posts: 132Member
    Main Vent Problem

    Hi,
    Forgot to mention it is one pipe steam fed by a weil mclain EG boiler. Cut in 0.5 ps1 Cut Out 2 psi Under most circumstances shuts off before building up pressure (thermostat is satisfied) unless it is real cold or thermostat is cranked up suddenly. I will try to post some pictures this weekend.

    Any Help would be appreciated,
    Michael J. Cascio
  • jesse the greatjesse the great Posts: 72Member


    well mike theres nothing wrong with rapidly venting the main,you could put another #1 on the other plug or put in a #2, either way when that main vent heats up from the steam it stops venting. then from there it will travel to the rads
    hope i could help
  • jesse the greatjesse the great Posts: 72Member


    also if that last rad in the kitchen takes a long time to heat up you could also drill and tap the inlet side of the rad and put in a gorton D that could help with venting the riser leading to it
  • Mike CascioMike Cascio Posts: 132Member
    Main Vent Problem

    Hi,
    I used to have a Gorton D in this rad but it didnt help. All the radiator does until the steam reaches is pant, I put a Gorton C on it now and it seems a little better. Very bad panting on this rad.
    Thank you,
    Michael J. Cascio
  • SteamheadSteamhead Posts: 13,215Member
    Mike, if you measure

    the length and diameter of your steam mains, we can tell you what vents you need.

    If the mains have old insulation, don't disturb it. Measure its outside diameter and subtract 2-1/4 inches- most old insulation was 1" thick, and pipe walls are usually 1/8" thick, so this method will give you your pipe size without disturbing the insulation.

    To Learn More About This Professional, Click Here to Visit Their Ad in "Find A Professional"
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    "Reducing our country's energy consumption, one system at a time"
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Baltimore, MD (USA) and consulting anywhere.
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/all-steamed-up-inc
  • Mike CascioMike Cascio Posts: 132Member
    Main Vent

    Hi,
    I will take some pictures tomorrow of the end of main situation. I will also measure the mains. One question, I can tell which insulation is abestos it looks like a white clay, but there is a cardboard insulation that is on alot of the pipes. It appears to be original to the house (81yrs old) does this stuff contain abestos? There is one portion that is falling apart, I would like to take that portion offf. I will take pictures of this as well.

    Thank you,
    Michael J. Cascio
  • Mike CascioMike Cascio Posts: 132Member
    Main Vent

    Hi,
    I will take some pictures tomorrow of the end of main situation. I will also measure the mains. One question, I can tell which insulation is abestos it looks like a white clay, but there is a cardboard insulation that is on alot of the pipes. It appears to be original to the house (81yrs old) does this stuff contain abestos? There is one portion that is falling apart, I would like to take that portion offf. I will take pictures of this as well.

    Thank you,
    Michael J. Cascio
  • Mike CascioMike Cascio Posts: 132Member
    Main Vent

    Date: January 21, 2005 11:01 PM
    Author: Mike Cascio
    Subject: Main Vent




    Hi, I will take some pictures tomorrow of the end of main situation. I will also measure the mains. One question, I can tell which insulation is abestos it looks like a white clay, but there is a cardboard insulation that is on alot of the pipes. It appears to be original to the house (81yrs old) does this stuff contain abestos? There is one portion that is falling apart, I would like to take that portion offf. I will take pictures of this as well.

    Thank you, Michael J. Cascio
  • SteamheadSteamhead Posts: 13,215Member
    It's almost certainly asbestos

    have it removed by a licensed contractor. Then re-insulate using fiberglass.

    To Learn More About This Professional, Click Here to Visit Their Ad in "Find A Professional"
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    "Reducing our country's energy consumption, one system at a time"
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Baltimore, MD (USA) and consulting anywhere.
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/all-steamed-up-inc
  • Mike CascioMike Cascio Posts: 132Member
    Here are the figures Steamhead

    Hi,
    Here are the figures for the system.

    The Long Main (Which heats slow due to the water that accumulates within it) 30 feet long and the piping is 2 1/2 inches wide, then turns into 1 1/2 at the vents and return - currently vented by a Gorton #1. The return for this main is 36 feet long and is 1 1/2 inches wide. Before this return drops into the boiler there is a Gorton #1. This main feeds 7 radiators. The last radiator currently has problems heating up I believe due to water building up in the pipe. It heats up when the thermostat is at a higher setting or if it is cold outside. I just put a new Gorton C on this rad. The yellow insulated pipe connected to the T in #39 goes to this last radiator and I believe this run off is about 20 feet long much of it is covered by walls.
    Pics 39,40 for this main

    The short Main (Which heats quickly due to proper pitch and piping) is 20 feet long and 2 1/2 inches thick - there is no main vent on the end of this main and no piping for it either. The return is 23 feet long and 2 inches thick, there are two gorton #1's before the return drops down to the boiler. This main feeds 1 radiator and it is the first radiator to heat. There was originally 2 radiators on this main but one was disconnected long ago. This main was added on to the house in the 1940's when an extra bedroom was put on.
    Pic 44 for this main
    Check out 42, and 43 as well
    42 shows the insulation that I was talking about.

    Check out the pics.

    Everyone, thank you very much for all your help
    Michael J. Cascio
  • Mike CascioMike Cascio Posts: 132Member
    Here are the figures Steamhead

    Hi,
    Here are the figures for the system.

    The Long Main (Which heats slow due to the water that accumulates within it) 30 feet long and the piping is 2 1/2 inches wide, then turns into 1 1/2 at the vents and return - currently vented by a Gorton #1. The return for this main is 36 feet long and is 1 1/2 inches wide. Before this return drops into the boiler there is a Gorton #1. This main feeds 7 radiators. The last radiator currently has problems heating up I believe due to water building up in the pipe. It heats up when the thermostat is at a higher setting or if it is cold outside. I just put a new Gorton C on this rad. The yellow insulated pipe connected to the T in picture #339 goes to this last radiator and I believe this run off is about 20 feet long much of it is covered by walls.
    Pics 339,340 for pictures of the end of this main

    The short Main (Which heats quickly due to proper pitch and piping) is 20 feet long and 2 1/2 inches thick - there is no main vent on the end of this main and no piping for it either. The return is 23 feet long and 2 inches thick, there are two gorton #1's before the return drops down to the boiler. This main feeds 1 radiator and it is the first radiator to heat. There was originally 2 radiators on this main but one was disconnected long ago. This main was added on to the house in the 1940's when an extra bedroom was put on.
    Pic 344 for the near end of the return before it drops down to the boiler
    Check out 342, and 343 as well
    342 shows the insulation that I was talking about.
    343 Shows the boiler we have

    Check out the pics.

    Everyone, thank you very much for all your help
    Michael J. Cascio

    PS: Just purchased a copy of The Lost Art of Steam Heating looking forward to it coming in.
  • Mike CascioMike Cascio Posts: 132Member
  • SteamheadSteamhead Posts: 13,215Member
    Move one Gorton #1

    from the short main to the long one. That should do it!

    To Learn More About This Professional, Click Here to Visit Their Ad in "Find A Professional"
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    "Reducing our country's energy consumption, one system at a time"
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Baltimore, MD (USA) and consulting anywhere.
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/all-steamed-up-inc
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