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Equalizer installed in between two risers

erickehoeerickehoe Member Posts: 19
edited November 7 in Strictly Steam
Getting a 90-year-old boiler replaced with a 150,000 BTU Utica. The installers are putting the equalizer in between the two risers, rather than at the end of them. Their reasoning was that because the old risers are so far apart it would put the Hartford loop a good foot and a half away from the boiler and would also make it hard to find room for the flue pipe. The manual says to install it at the end instead of in between them, though. Thoughts?


Comments

  • ethicalpaulethicalpaul Member Posts: 1,036
    edited November 7
    It's bad in my opinion. To my eye the biggest problem will be the riser in the background. Water may "jump" across the equalizer with the steam that is flowing there. once it gets past the equalizer, it will "stack up" in that elbow and maybe even get forced up farther into your mains. If they were doing mine, I would insist they follow the manual.

    And a question for you: how did they arrive at the size of the boiler?
    1 pipe Utica 112 in Cedar Grove, NJ, 1913 coal > oil > NG
  • KC_JonesKC_Jones Member Posts: 4,264
    edited November 7
    It's wrong, there really isn't any reasoning to do it the way they did it other than making it work incorrectly.

    The pipes need to be connected in the proper order for function.

    Make them change it, I can not emphasize this enough. Otherwise you are paying a "professional" to do it wrong.

    That isn't the only piping that is incorrect in my opinion. The tee that brings the 2 risers together is incorrect. Those should tie into the header, then make a 90° if necessary.
    2014 Weil Mclain EG-40
    EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Boiler Control
    Boiler pictures updated 2/21/15
    https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10202744301871904.1073741828.1330391881&type=1&l=c34ad6ee78
  • Jamie HallJamie Hall Member Posts: 11,415
    It would be so easy to do it right... make the fix it.
    Br. Jamie, osb

    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England.

    Hoffman Equipped System (all original except boiler), Weil-Mclain 580, 2.75 gph Carlin, Vapourstat 0.5 -- 6.0 ounces per square inch
  • ChrisJChrisJ Member Posts: 10,235
    edited November 7
    It won't work.
    The entire thing is piped wrong and it will not work.

    Make them tear it down and start over.

    Get ready for the "I've been doing this for X years and have had a problem" response........
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • STEAM DOCTORSTEAM DOCTOR Member Posts: 930
    That piping is offensive. Hurts the eyes.
  • DanHolohanDanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 14,815
    Not good at all. You’ll get stuck living with it. Directions are there for a reason.
    Retired and loving it.
  • clammyclammy Member Posts: 2,350
    I hope you didn’t pay them yet , looks like a Total amateur attempt at best .put in your zip code and see who s in ur area and have a pro do it correctly so it functions properly .peace and good luck clammy
    R.A. Calmbacher L.L.C. HVAC
    NJ Master HVAC Lic.
    Mahwah, NJ
    Specializing in steam and hydronic heating
  • JUGHNEJUGHNE Member Posts: 6,155
    Look at the install book.
    Are there reducing bushings in the sides of the boiler?
    It may require the full size of outlet, and a larger header.

    There are at least 100 stories here of new boiler installs that were wrong and no recourse from contractor without lawyers.

    We assume you still have your checkbook closed for final payment.....that may be your only leverage.
  • EBEBRATT-EdEBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 6,101
    Just give them the boiler install manual and insist they follow the mfg. instructions.

    Anything less is asking for trouble. Will it work the way it is? Maybe but why pay for a maybe
  • erickehoeerickehoe Member Posts: 19
    @DanHolohan can you explain *why* this piping will be bad for the system? I’d like to share with the contractor.
  • nicholas bonham-carternicholas bonham-carter Member Posts: 7,965
    Show your contractor the Bible of steam heating, “The lost art of steam heating”, available from the bookstore here, or Amazon.
    Show him this:

    https://www.peerlessboilers.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/OnePipeSteam.pdf

    Show him the installation manual for your boiler.
    If he remains ignorant, show him the door.—NBC
  • ChrisJChrisJ Member Posts: 10,235
    edited November 8
    > @erickehoe said:
    > @DanHolohan can you explain *why* this piping will be bad for the system? I’d like to share with the contractor.

    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • DanHolohanDanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 14,815
    Yes, it’s all in my book. Velocity issues. He needs to follow the manufacturer’s instructions. It’s absolutely critical. When he fights the laws of physics, you lose.
    Retired and loving it.
  • DanHolohanDanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 14,815
    Thanks, Chris.
    Retired and loving it.
  • ChrisJChrisJ Member Posts: 10,235
    There's also this





    That's what you're dealing with inside of that piping.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • KC_JonesKC_Jones Member Posts: 4,264
    The order on a header with 2 risers is supposed to be riser, riser, system takeoff(s), then equalizer.

    The headers function is to separate the steam from the water so dry steam goes to the system and any water goes back to the boiler through the equalizer. Keep in mind due to steam velocity it actually has the power to suck water along with it, so the only “tool” that works in the header is gravity. That header needs to be a calm place for the water to settle to the bottom. Any place the steam can go it will and try to take the water with it. So you want height and organization.

    Some water will tend to get sucked up into the main takeoff, so that water needs a clear and direct path into the header and to the equalizer. Your second takeoff being after the equalizer will require that water to go back against the steam flow to get there. This could and most likely will cause hammering and poor performance. As much as possible you want everything in a steam system to travel in the same direction and have as little water interactions with the steam as possible. Steam and water are dumb, they do what they do regardless of what a human wants them to do, so work with the medium don’t try and fight it. There are exceptions to this, such as counterflow mains, but they are to be upsized and honestly don’t really relate to a header which is one of the more turbulent parts of the system.

    I would be very clear with the installer, do it correctly or don’t get paid. I seriously doubt they are going to give much weight to what you read on the Internet, even though they have a lot to learn and this is the #1 place to learn it. Pros that know send people here for the real story. I wish you the best of luck, we see this kind of stuff regularly around here I have yet to hear of it ending well if it’s left that way.

    Hopefully others will be along to add in case I missed a point in my above description.
    2014 Weil Mclain EG-40
    EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Boiler Control
    Boiler pictures updated 2/21/15
    https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10202744301871904.1073741828.1330391881&type=1&l=c34ad6ee78
  • pecmsgpecmsg Member Posts: 954
    3" Mains yet 2" Header?

    Teflon tape yet no Pipe Dope?

    Has that existing insulation been tested for Asbestos? If it is you've got bigger issues!
  • erickehoeerickehoe Member Posts: 19
    Thanks all. It makes sense why this would produce wet steam.

    Is it possible to keep the T and 90 in place but swap the equalizer and far riser?

    Flip the T up and attach the riser, flip the 90 down and attach the equalizer. The only issue I can think of is the riser would be on a 45 toward the header instead of straight at it.

    I can see it's challenging for the contractor to move the equalizer back very far because a return comes down right there, too.

    Any pictures of something like this?
  • clammyclammy Member Posts: 2,350
    All he has to do is look at the diagram that comes w the boiler in the installation and operation manual .it is really not that hard . When I see stuff like that I wonder to myself if they look at the manual and if they did how could it be they piped it the way they did is it Possibly dyslexia ,can’t say . But there no excuse for in correct near boiler piping it is what gives steam heating a bad image . If he can not figure it out get rid of him from the looks of it I would think that’s a 1 day rip out and install for the most part and done correctly with a follow up to skim and clean .Its not brain surgery or rocket science please Peace and good luck clammy
    R.A. Calmbacher L.L.C. HVAC
    NJ Master HVAC Lic.
    Mahwah, NJ
    Specializing in steam and hydronic heating
  • pecmsgpecmsg Member Posts: 954
    > @erickehoe said:
    > Thanks all. It makes sense why this would produce wet steam.
    >
    > Is it possible to keep the T and 90 in place but swap the equalizer and far riser?
    >
    > Flip the T up and attach the riser, flip the 90 down and attach the equalizer. The only issue I can think of is the riser would be on a 45 toward the header instead of straight at it.
    >
    > I can see it's challenging for the contractor to move the equalizer back very far because a return comes down right there, too.
    >
    > Any pictures of something like this?

    What challenging? Your paying for him to do it as the manufacture wants. He’s not!
    He can do it properly or get someone else!
  • Gary SmithGary Smith Member Posts: 292
    "Is it possible to keep the T and 90 in place but swap the equalizer and far riser?

    Flip the T up and attach the riser, flip the 90 down and attach the equalizer. The only issue I can think of is the riser would be on a 45 toward the header instead of straight at it."

    Yes, it looks like this should be possible. Turn the present equalizer T upright and connect to the steam main; turn the elbow at the end down and connect that to the equalizer down pipe. You can use 2 45 deg bends on the vertical of the equalizer to bring it back in close to the boiler where it is now connected.
  • JUGHNEJUGHNE Member Posts: 6,155
    Steam or water has not touched any of the new fittings yet.
    They would all unscrew pretty easy now.
    Two years from now when you want to pay someone else to fix this mess, the threads will be start to being "steam welded" and the sawall may be needed.
  • AMservicesAMservices Member Posts: 463
  • Hap_HazzardHap_Hazzard Member Posts: 1,586
    That's the way to do it!
    Just another DIYer | King of Prussia, PA

    1983(?) Peerless G-561-W-S | 3" drop header, CG400-1090, VXT-24
  • mikeg2015mikeg2015 Member Posts: 1,041
    It wouldn’t even be that hard to make it a 3” drop header. Which is how it should be. Drop header would go just below where the header is now, the two take offs connect vertically down to it and the two risers go off vertically, then it elbows down to the equalizer.

    Once you’ve seen a few dozen pictures on here, you come to expect it and you start visually repiping it in your head.

    But at minimum it need to connect in the right order and the header MUST be at the minimum height above the boiler (other reason for a drop header).
  • mikeg2015mikeg2015 Member Posts: 1,041
    I just noticed the risers at the ceiling are actually 3”.

    This was previously a vapor system I suspect. The header and risers should be 3”. No excuse not to, other than saving a little time and money on larger fittings.

    On the positive, they didn’t use copper.
  • ChrisJChrisJ Member Posts: 10,235
    > @mikeg2015 said:
    > I just noticed the risers at the ceiling are actually 3”.
    >
    > This was previously a vapor system I suspect. The header and risers should be 3”. No excuse not to, other than saving a little time and money on larger fittings.
    >
    > On the positive, they didn’t use copper.

    I'd rather properly piped in copper over what I see in those pictures. At least it would work.

    That said, before I get attacked I feel copper will perform fine as long as only one riser can be used. This keeps stress off of the boiler from expansion as well as off of the joints.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • Tom_133Tom_133 Member Posts: 638
    erickehoe

    Take a look on the right hand side of this forum at the categories.
    The biggest reason there is 11k posts in the strictly steam section is due to poor piping. You are at the perfect stage to get it done right, dont settle, it will suck when the guy gets offended, but you will be so much happier when its right.
    Tom
    Montpelier Vt
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