Joined on November 24, 2007
Last Post on July 31, 2014
@ June 24, 2014 4:09 PM in New Geo System vs. Old Steam System Systemfrom the radiator pictures in the other thread, it appears you may have a vapor/vacuum system [what name is on the traps-Dunham?]. these were very high quality systems for their day, and still run well, sometimes at 2 ounce down to subatmospheric pressures.
as far as age of pipes verses leaking, my pipes are from 1885 [not the oldest here], and I have had very few leaks.
I suspect that Jamie is right about failed traps, and high pressure, causing your high fuel use, which are easily put right. I suspect the boiler may have a 2 stage gas valve which would also reduce the cost of running if functioning.
post some pictures of the boiler, controls, and piping, and lets see what other suggestions we may have, to reduce your consumption by 50%..--NBC
@ June 24, 2014 7:18 AM in Need help rating these radiators.Good point to make SWEI, that heating with electricity is less Green (and more expensive) than heating with gas, in terms of carbon footprint.
Let's have some pictures of the fan-coil unite, and of the boiler, and maybe we can get your heating bills reduced with a few relatively simple alterations.
The desire for fuel economy is nothing new, and when your church was first built, steam was chosen for its economy, and comfort. Over the years, various repairs, and modifications, made by well-meaning, but unqualified people have made the system perform poorly, struggling to do its job, and burning extra fuel as a result.
What handles the air conditioning now?--NBC
@ June 23, 2014 7:52 PM in Need help rating these radiators.You will be in good hands with Dave who is a regular contributor here. If you do a search for him, and read his postings, you will have the measure of the man himself.
Download the heat-loss program from SlantFin , and figure out your heat-loss.
As SWEI has said,, Steam has the advantage of having a quick recovery of temperature before the congregants arrive, and uses very little electricity unlike hot water.--NBC
@ June 17, 2014 1:16 PM in Venting the mainsWhat should be done, in the selection of main vents is to add vents until you approach zero resistance, as measured by the gauge while the boiler is starting to make steam, and push the air out.
Calculations of pipe volume can aid in this, but the best way is to make sure with the back pressure on the gauge. Essentially you are balancing the pressures, and not the pipe volumes.
On my 55 rad system of 1,050,000 BTU system, the main is 5 inch running 50 feet which splits into 6 dry returns of 2 inch pipe. On each dry return there are the original Hoffman 75's, plus 3 Gorton 2's which I added to even the distribution out.
As I said, the travel time is costing your client the same as the extra vents you will eventually need..--NBC
@ June 17, 2014 6:19 AM in Venting the mainsIf the main vents are restricted, then you will have radiators at the beginning of the line which fill with steam first, and cause an imbalance of heating. On multiple lines , the imbalance can become more pronounced (I have 6 dry returns). The best balance is achieved when the main lines fill with steam first, then the steam rises into the radiators simultaneously, heating them all at the same time.
An accurate gauge will enable you to see when the total of main vents is equal to an open pipe, which is perfect.
Since your distance from the job is great, I would rather put in too many main vents instead of too few. Probably the value of your driving time is equaling the cost of the extra vents.
Additionally, the greater venting capacity gives a lower air velocity which is less inclined to blow debris into the orifice.--NBC
@ June 16, 2014 10:23 AM in Venting the mainsA low pressure 0-3 psi gauge would show you the resistance of the main vents as they allow the air to escape (back pressure). 2 ounces is ideal.
My 1,050,000 btu system for a 7 family house has 18 Gorton 2's, so your single vents may not be enough. You want to come close to the low resistance of an open pipe releasing the air.--NBC
@ June 14, 2014 6:11 PM in Steam-Heated Hotel!In Florida, near Ft. Myers, Fla--the Gasparilla Inn.
As it was not chilly enough to need heat, I did not check the pressure!--NBC
@ June 14, 2014 1:06 PM in Midco Radiant burner....results of first heating seasonhttp://news.discovery.com/tech/videos/visualizing-dubstep-with-a-rubens-tube-video-140613.htm
@ June 14, 2014 11:02 AM in Midco Radiant burner....results of first heating seasonI would still like to know how to control these burners.--NBC
@ June 13, 2014 3:12 PM in heated towel rail substitutehttp://electroluxdesignlab.com/2014/submission/pure-towel/
@ June 11, 2014 8:06 PM in Steam-Heated Hotel!including this one: Hotel Belleclaire
when we stayed there, the noisy vents shouted high pressure, and I told the front desk they could save some money, by cranking it down!--NBC
@ June 10, 2014 2:30 PM in Home OwnerProperly Installed, by the manual is the way to go. Choose a boiler whose stocking distributor is in your area. The radiators must be measured for their radiation capacity (EDR), to select the size of boiler. Do not simply rely on the old boiler for a size.
Try to determine the cause of the early failure, (post pictures here for an analysis). It could have failed because of:
Bad water-high chlorides, graphitic corrosion.
Lack of maintenance
Had the system behaved well before it's demise?
Most questions on this site are about problems caused by bad installation.--NBC
@ June 5, 2014 7:55 AM in pipingThe pipes will likely be fine, although you may need some trap repair.--NBC
@ June 5, 2014 7:53 AM in Midco Radiant burner....results of first heating seasonHow was that Midco controlled?
It does look like the way of the future.--NBC
@ June 1, 2014 12:01 AM in Skim Port Drain Plug Removal AdviceI'm surprised it has worked, as the risers look to be much smaller than the instructions call for as a minimum.
Still stranger configurations have been described as working well. Of course, many people have no experience with an absolutely quiet, perfect, and even steam system,and therefore view the noise they suffer as inevitable, and part of a normal steam experience.--NBC
@ May 31, 2014 1:35 PM in Heat load calc( to pay, or not to pay)He wasn't partial to lawyers, but he probably would have been sympathetic to engineers--NBC
@ May 31, 2014 1:22 PM in Skim Port Drain Plug Removal AdviceAre you having strange behavior from the boiler, which led you to believe that skimming would fix the symptoms? That piping looks to be capable of blowing lots of water up into the supplies, and maybe you should wait on skimming until the risers are corrected.
What diameter are the risers?--NBC
@ May 31, 2014 6:34 AM in Skim Port Drain Plug Removal AdviceThis is one of those situations where a drop header, piped with a drain valve at waterline height in the equalizer could be cleared of the oil by draining it out from the equalizer.
When the boiler first fires up, all the oil is thrown up into the header, and then into the equalizer where it is trapped., and can be drained off.--NBC
@ May 28, 2014 10:44 PM in Heat load calc( to pay, or not to pay)I would not assume that just any engineer could do these calculations, so how can you find the right one?
Do it yourself to start with and run it by here.--NBC
@ May 28, 2014 6:07 AM in Steam Radiator to Water QuestionSee this post about alarms in hydronics:--NBC
You could in theory tap each section for a screw air vent, but without the cross connection at the top, performance would be compromised. Why not look for another rad which is water capable?
@ May 28, 2014 5:58 AM in Oil boiler with summertime leakDoes this boiler also make hot water? Can you take off any panels to find the exact source of the leak? A rusted nipple leak is probably repairable, whereas a leak between the sections is more difficult to fix. If you can, fix it soon as the constant addition of fresh water will keep the oxygen level of the system water higher, and cause more corrosion.
Predicting the future is always difficult, but at least you can find out whether any installation mistakes have caused this leak to happen 15 years early.--NBC
@ May 23, 2014 11:35 PM in Ran across this today....What caused the owner to call you-was the system misbehaving?--NBC