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Joined on October 25, 2004

Last Post on April 11, 2014

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Boiler bypass?

@ August 2, 2013 5:12 PM in Boiler cleaning? Blaa! Who needs it?!

A boiler bypass will allow much of the return water to bypass the boiler and go back to the supply therefor bypassing the boiler. Reducing the flow in the boiler mill allow cooler water to enter the boiler and reduce condensation.
Many try to do this with a system bypass that takes hot supply to cold return which is the opposite of what should be done on residential boilers. When boilers had larger water volume a system bypass was a good thing.
Today with much less water volume in the cast iron boilers we need to reduce the flow into the boiler to get the water temperature up quicker. To quote the late great Gil Carlson " thermal stress and condensation is a result of extremely cold water entering the boiler or coo water at a high flow rate." While we cannot control the temperature with a system bypass we certainly can control he flow rate with a boiler bypass. Adjust the flow to a 20f - 40f delta-t in the boiler and things will work fairly well. Hydronic s Institute states that a boiler bypass sytm will usually give ou 3 times the low in the system than through the boiler. Been using the boiler bypass for years with no boiler issues.

Pipe size

@ July 26, 2013 10:10 AM in circulators/pumps

Now I am confused. Pipe size has to affect gpm. If I use smaller pipe the velocity changes which in itself will not affect flow, agreed.
If velocity increases so does resistance to flow ( head), does that not affect gpm flow?


@ July 11, 2013 9:08 PM in Best Location ModCon Low Water-

In PA it must be above the heat exchanger and not more than 18" above the het exchanger.


@ June 15, 2013 10:57 PM in I want one of these!

I'd run chilled wter for summer and warm water for winter.

Steam to water

@ June 6, 2013 8:21 PM in Radiator - can I use for FHW?

Western Pa has done many many steam to water conversions with virtually zero problems. I am not saying it was financially a good decision but they were one successfully. The rep estimates over one hundred.

Selling in China

@ June 6, 2013 8:08 PM in Buy American

They were one of the few boiler manufacturers to sell there product in China. Not sure they still are or not. I remember seeing the chinese literature. actually remember Russian literature but i know that stopped due o Russian economy. Maybe it was part of the deal. Scratch my back I'll scratch yours kinda deal.
You never know what goes with the deals.

Indirect s

@ May 18, 2013 10:07 AM in Longest lasting indirects

I have super-stor & Vaughn stone lined tanks in excess of 20 years. I have many Burnham Alliance tanks (Vaughn) with not one issue but only about 6 years to present. I switched to them due to local water quality in a certain area with lots of farms. I was losing stainless steel tanks in a few to 5 years.


@ May 16, 2013 2:19 PM in Hey all, looking for old cast iron feet supports

Also sold by Burnham

Burnham Alpine

@ May 10, 2013 4:45 PM in Burnham has a sense of humor!

I saw a newer piece where that was straightened out. Probably a marketing error. They are saying radiant heat and large wter volume systems are a good application. Guess someone caught it.

Us boiler

@ May 10, 2013 4:18 PM in Polypropylene vents becoming the way to go

If you remember Burnham was trying to stick to their guns stating the same thing 5 or 6 years ago but caved in. Now we are starting to see it happening. I heard a rumor of about three states considering a look at stopping PVC venting. Not sure they will or not.

Close spaced tees

@ May 10, 2013 4:12 PM in Primary Secondary Problem

I thought the spacing before and after the tees is important. I read somewhere the distance before should be a minimum of 8 pipe diameters and 4 pipe diameters after the tees.


@ April 22, 2013 9:31 AM in Burnham Megasteam sizing

You can add an Indirect water heater tot he Megasteam. There are control and pipe tapings(tapings K & L) for doing just that on the boiler.
Avoid the domestic hot water coiler. very expensive way to make hot water as the boiler maintains temperature all the time.
The boiler is cold start and only runs in the summer for a call for hot water.

ES2and Burnham Alliance

@ April 18, 2013 9:25 PM in Pros / Cons of Indirect Water Heater

I have used these together with much success. I have also used the Burnham Series 3 with the Alliance with no problems. Just size them correctly.

DHW coil?

@ April 18, 2013 9:05 PM in Burnham Megasteam sizing

Forget that idea. It is the most expensive way o make hot water. Use n IWH as it can pipe into the boiler.


@ April 1, 2013 3:24 PM in Steam experts/contractors in lower Westchester NY for gas burner install on oil steam boiler

The v8 is not suggested to be converted to gas if you look at the installation manual.


@ April 1, 2013 8:37 AM in Lead lag set-up for two steam boilers??

Just remember when piping the boilers to drop into the top of the common header which will keep water from dropping down the boiler riser of the off boiler.
A duplex condensate pump for return is a good idea but have seen many gravity systems work well.


@ March 26, 2013 9:07 PM in Weil Mclain Ultra boiler noise

I have found this to be the O2 setting off and causing a harmonics. When the fan speed changes an few seconds after start-up it goes away. Check combustion settings on high.

Primary/secondary piping

@ February 3, 2013 7:54 PM in Primary/secondary piping

Am I wrong? I was always told that he primary pipe is the pipe the close spaced tees were mounted on and the secondary came off the bulls or branch to the tees.
Others say the primary is always the boiler piping.
Which is correct.

Either or

@ February 3, 2013 7:37 PM in Boiler upgrade

Either ones will give you a good operation at minimal fuel cost
Either one you decide on use ODR and sidewall vent. There are some lower return temp cast iron boilers on the market that will get the operational cost closer between the two products. Most fuel savings are set up by proper sizing and system efficiency.

Piping kit

@ December 3, 2012 9:57 PM in need a pipefitter in central NJ to build a new near-boiler setup

Burnham offers a near boiler piping kit to install the boiler.

Water level

@ December 3, 2012 9:45 PM in Referral for Steam Inspector

When the boiler is steaming is the water level bouncing a lot and maybe even disappearing from the glass.

Reverse flow

@ November 30, 2012 9:43 AM in Unwanted reverse flow between tees

This is elementary. When you have primary secondary with hydraulic separation the flow in the tees will either flow left to right, right to left or stop flowing between the tees. This is in relationship to the flow in both zones. The boiler flow is set by the heat exchanger and manufacturer.
For example:
If you have 10 gpm in the primary (boiler loop) and 15 gpm in the secondary (system) you will have 5 gpm backward flow. turn that around, if you have 15 gpm in the primary and 10 in the secondary you will have 5 gpm in the proper flow. The last example is 10 gpm in primary and 10 gpm in the secondary no flow between the tees.
The problem with zoning with pumps is the system usually ends up with too much flow through the tees as more zones pumps start.
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