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Heating problems at Michigan State University

DanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 16,119
I don't think it's because it's old. I think it's because they haven't been taking proper care of it:

Retired and loving it.


  • ratio
    ratio Member Posts: 3,284
    Yes, the quality of what passes for journalism these days is an embarassment. Critical thought is critically missing!
  • DanHolohan
    DanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 16,119
    I wasn't talking about the journalist.
    Retired and loving it.
  • unclejohn
    unclejohn Member Posts: 1,778
    Pre haps they were trying to kill all the bed bugs.
  • DanHolohan
    DanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 16,119
    Retired and loving it.
  • Sailah
    Sailah Member Posts: 826
    Most large facilities like state universities I have been involved with, will send the job out for bid yearly as they are required to. The lowest bid wins. And the result is exactly what you'd expect.
    Peter Owens
  • AnthraciteEnergetics
    AnthraciteEnergetics Member Posts: 77
    "Oh it's just old..."

    It wasn't like that when it was installed, and there aren't a lot of moving parts on these things.

    The place I went to school used a bunch of large old homes (1850s - 1920s, I guess) previously owned by wealthy anthracite coal and related businessmen) as residence halls. All steam heated with residential gas fired boilers, mostly one-pipers. There was certainly some room overheating (double hung thermostat in use) and a poorly pitched radiator here or there but other than that I don't recall many complaints.
  • the_donut
    the_donut Member Posts: 374
    Of course they closed discussion on their website. Shame on them. I get upset when they play the its steam of course it doesn't______. If it was _____ it would work so much better.
  • adasilva
    adasilva Member Posts: 144
    Unfortunately, it's the instant gratification seeking mindset of the younger generations that shows along with the fund saving thoughts of the building owners. If they were to put more time into learning about the system and what it takes to keep it running correctly then they would have better things to write about!
    Double D
  • BobC
    BobC Member Posts: 5,341
    I'm afraid ignorance is in vogue now, people can't be bothered to investigate the options, they just jump at bright and shiney and swallow all tha "tremendous savings" ****.

    Caveat Emptor

    Smith G8-3 with EZ Gas @ 90,000 BTU, Single pipe steam
    Vaporstat with a 12oz cut-out and 4oz cut-in
    3PSI gauge
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 15,637
    BobC said:

    I'm afraid ignorance is in vogue now, people can't be bothered to investigate the options, they just jump at bright and shiney and swallow all tha "tremendous savings" ****.

    Caveat Emptor


    In other words, you can't fix stupid!
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Towson, MD, USA
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
  • mikeg2015
    mikeg2015 Member Posts: 1,187
    I went to college there. I never stayed in the older buildings but had some classes there. The newer 1950s and 60s dorms were hot water but overheated too. You just opened windows as needed. Stack effect was horrible. Upper levels were always hot.

    I suspect the temperature controls just need some maintenance or the control valves have failed so they control them manually.

    I think I remember talking to someone at the physical plant and they said it used ground temperature or air temp to control it.

    Cool thing was many sidewalks were intentionally built over steam tunnels so they were melted most of the time. Steam was low pressure waste steam from the coal fired power plant south of campus. Engineering building had absorbtion chillers.

    Saginaw valley State was also some similarly. Very cool steam and hot water setup. Controlled pretty well. Oakland university has a pretty cool setup too. Mix of steam, hot water, heat recovery turbines.
  • the_donut
    the_donut Member Posts: 374
    Same at Purdue. They also used the tunnels to route high voltage upgrades. Never fond of the idea of mixing steam/chilled water and high voltage in 3x3 tunnel.
  • John Mills_5
    John Mills_5 Member Posts: 935
    In my brief visit to higher learning, 2 afternoon classes were in an old building with offices and classrooms. The 2 split A/Cs ran all winter to cool the offices. 1st class after lunch was 3rd floor south side. With winter sun, often had to crack windows to keep it bearable. Next class was 3rd floor north side. Cold room, snow came through the cracks around the windows. Boiler must have been on that side cuz we could hear it come on 3 floors up.