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Steve Garson

Steve Garson

Joined on January 8, 2005

Last Post on December 9, 2005

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@ December 9, 2005 1:26 PM in All my steam vents hiss

Tonight I'm installing a L408A Vaporstat to limit the pressure to a lower level, which should help. But there is something else going on that I need to address.

When is the steam boiler clean?

@ November 9, 2005 1:47 PM in When is the steam boiler clean?

I've skimmed and reskimmed my boiler. My radiators still hiss when the boiler reaches close to cut-off pressure after a cold start. They then breath in after cooling. Is the ultimate test simply boiling some skimmed water on the stove and seeing if it foams? I hate to keep re-skimming if it won't make any difference. Are a few droplets at the top of the watch glass normal, or should it be 100% dry and water free if the boiler is clean?

Photos

@ November 1, 2005 12:50 PM in Water hammer

Here are photos of the pipe in question. The water hammer is very minor.

Water hammer

@ November 1, 2005 8:52 AM in Water hammer

Now that I have improved the pitch and venting on one of my steam returns, I have minor water hammer. I have located the problem precisely: where the steam main ends in a 90* elbow, there is a 12" pipe that then has a 90* elbow to the 1-inch return. I put a level on that short pipe and it turns out to be pitched the wrong way - toward the main. The total pitch is around 3/8" for the length. My challenge is how to fix this...or whether it is worth the trouble. The steam comes up fast. The pipes are enclosed in the ceiling: all that is exposed are the two elbows and the 12" pipe. The elbow on the main has 3/4" of thread showing, so I could cut off the pipe connected to that elbow. How would you pros handle this?

@ October 29, 2005 4:02 PM in Boiler auto-fill starts too early

Ed: You hit the nail on the head! The problem was my wet return. I just spent four hours cutting and replacing some pipe and it was clearly the problem. Now, the water level drops a mere 1/2-inch or so, instead of 2 inches. Now how do I get Rectoseal off my hands?! I tried everything. Steve

@ October 29, 2005 11:13 AM in Boiler auto-fill starts too early

Also, when things cool, the water level is right back where it should be. Since the low water cut-over is tripping the relay when the water level is 2 inches above the bottom of the watch glass, does that mean it is defective? Or is that how it is designed to operate?

@ October 29, 2005 11:13 AM in Boiler auto-fill starts too early

Also, when things cool, the water level is right back where it should be. Since the low water cut-over is tripping the relay when the water level is 2 inches above the bottom of the watch glass, does that mean it is defective? Or is that how it is designed to operate?

@ October 29, 2005 11:12 AM in Boiler auto-fill starts too early

I've cleaned the boiler with TSP, flushed several times and skimmed several times. The water fluctuates around 3/4-inch max at a full boil. Steam seems dry since droplets are no longer dripping down top of watch glass. When the water fill starts, the boiler has stopped.

Boiler auto-fill starts too early

@ October 29, 2005 10:29 AM in Boiler auto-fill starts too early

The auto-fill on my new steam boiler starts filling when the water level is two inches above the lower pipe of the watch glass. Naturally, this overfills the boiler, so I have shut off the valve to the device. The dwell is set on the longest (100 sec) time delay, which is the default. It's a Model WF2-U-24 connected to a McDonnell 67. Is there any way to adjust this? Or does this mean the lower water cut off is defective, since it's contacts contract the fill valve? My system is insulated to the max, except for one six foot length of pipe that is inaccesible.

@ October 29, 2005 9:06 AM in optimum setback temps & anticipation

I beg to differ. The amount of energy used to heat your home is related to the difference in temperature between the inside and outside. The larger the delta, the greater the heat loss. If you can lower the temp when the home is not in use or while sleeping, you reduce the heat loss. My home has a 10* setback at night and during weekdays. The temp almost never drops the full 10*. But the house warms up with a single steam cycle of my boiler. I've seen the fuel savings, accounting for degree days.

@ October 28, 2005 6:50 PM in Formulas for measuring pipe fittings

Thanks for posting that chart!

Formulas for measuring pipe fittings

@ October 27, 2005 8:54 PM in Formulas for measuring pipe fittings

I need to change the pitch of a dry return and figure that I will need to create a swivel joint of sorts with two 45* fittings. Can anyone direct me to some charts or formulas to help calculate pipe lengths with fittings?

Boiling after skimming boiler

@ October 27, 2005 8:07 PM in Boiling after skimming boiler

I just skimmed my boiler and then drained it to the water line. The books say I need to boil the water for 15 minutes to de-oxygenate the water. I hate to overheat my house tonight. Any reason not to just wait until the AM when the boiler fires up normally?

@ October 26, 2005 9:30 PM in Day of Decision on New Boiler...

How is your insulation and weatherstripping. You'll get your best ROI by tightening up your house, if you have not already.

@ October 26, 2005 9:30 PM in Day of Decision on New Boiler...

How is your insulation and weatherstripping. You'll get your best ROI by tightening up your house, if you have not already.

@ October 26, 2005 8:43 PM in radiant under \"real\" hardwood flooring ?

I have radiant under 3/4-inch oak nailed to 3/4-inch plywood. I need to run a higher water temp than I would like: 140* and as high as 150* on zero degree days. The temperature delta at the boiler is less than 20*. If I could have done it all over again, I would have doubled up the radiant tubing and used reflectors. Be sure to insulate the plates at the outer walls very well, since air and cold infiltration from the sides could suck away all your warmth.

@ October 26, 2005 8:43 PM in radiant under \"real\" hardwood flooring ?

I have radiant under 3/4-inch oak nailed to 3/4-inch plywood. I need to run a higher water temp than I would like: 140* and as high as 150* on zero degree days. The temperature delta at the boiler is less than 20*. If I could have done it all over again, I would have doubled up the radiant tubing and used reflectors. Be sure to insulate the plates at the outer walls very well, since air and cold infiltration from the sides could suck away all your warmth.

@ October 26, 2005 8:36 PM in My vents are whistling

I just spend a couple of hours cleaning my boiler: TSP at 180* for two hours and then continuous flushing from the drain while refilling at the same rate. Then I completely drained it and refilled to the water line. First steam cycle had no water dripping down the top of the watch glass. My vents did not whistle on the steam cycle. BUT, two vents hissed after the pressure dropped. These are new sounds since getting the new boiler. The vents are new. What shall I do now?

@ October 25, 2005 7:59 PM in My vents are whistling

The boiler is sized properly and is using the burner and nozzle that shipped with the WM SGO-4. My heating system has 450 sq ft.

@ October 25, 2005 7:48 PM in Cleaning the Boiler?

Another idea that I've done is to remove the handle of the valve in addition to a cap. Just to be safe.

@ October 25, 2005 7:44 PM in My vents are whistling

Should I just skim for an hour or so, or do I need to add TSP?

My vents are whistling

@ October 25, 2005 6:47 PM in My vents are whistling

My new SGO-4 boiler is now running daily. The vents on my radiators are whistling, which they never did before. But they get hot much faster than the old boiler. I notice that the whistling starts when the steam pressure hits 0.3 psi and gets louder until the cut-off at 1.5 psi. I also notice that the watch glass has occasional drops of water dripping down from the top when the water boils. The piping seems correct, with a 27-inch distance from the water line to the bottom of the header. All is done per the WM specs. The mains are well vented with per Steamhead's recommendations. Can anyone advise me what is going on and how to resolve this?
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