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Joined on August 13, 2009

Last Post on March 1, 2011

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Hearth in middle

@ March 1, 2011 6:47 PM in venting oil and pellets

My customer has a hearth in the middle of the living room. He is taking out a wood stove for insurance reasons and wants to add a pellet stove.

venting oil and pellets

@ March 1, 2011 6:38 PM in venting oil and pellets

I don't have a copy of NFPA211- Can I vent an oil boiler and a pellet stove in the same chimney ?

Solar and Rinnai

@ June 24, 2010 9:28 PM in Solar and Rinnai

So I have a job that I am installing heat and a/c via an Acadia heat pump.

So today, I get called in by the owner and wants to know how the solar system works with a Rinnai. I did not install the solar system. But it did make me question a few things and now I need help with answers.

The solar company has a 16 array of Sundra tubes on the roof, (2) 40 gallon electric water heaters, a flat plate heat exchanger, and 30 feet of baseboard in the crawl space as a dump zone. The home is energy star rated, so it is extremely tight, has the concrete in the crawl space completely encapsulated with 4" of foam and spray foam in the sill plates. The crawl space floor is dirt. This system is piped through a Rinnai tankless water heater. The house will be empty more than not.It is a british rental house.
My questions are:
A) I say that the dump zone baseboard will affect my cooling loads. The solar guys say that it wont, they say the earth will absorb the energy produced from the dump zone.  That dump zone will be working all of the time as the tanks will heat up and remain unused.
B) The solar guys claim that the Rinnai will work seamless in conjunction with the solar system. I believe that there are going to be short cycling issues with the Rinnai. I believe that because if the solar can only heat the tanks to 110 and the Rinnai is set at 125 degrees, when the water flows through the Rinnai and turns it on, it will heat up to 125 too quick and shut down. This will cause water temp fluctuations. I say that there needs to be a buffer on the outlet of the heater.

So please help me. I will be talking with the solar guys next week.

Cad Cell Relay-Symptoms of failure

@ January 15, 2010 9:09 PM in Cad Cell Relay-Symptoms of failure

What are the symptoms of a failing cad cell relay ? Are there symptoms ? How do you test it when you have intermittent lock outs ?


@ December 11, 2009 7:46 PM in wall hung non condensing boilers

The Baxi Luna is able to be set as low as 35,000 btu's. It modulates as well. And that Axia does the same as KCopp said. I believe there is a difference in the gpm for domestic water.


@ December 9, 2009 7:04 PM in Burnham: Flame Sensor problem or something else?

You should try to get another tech over and have him check it out. I would not advocate that you try it yourself. Yes, there may be other issues, and a qualified tech should be able to diagnose your issue.

Replace with RX30

@ November 29, 2009 6:11 PM in Expansion Tank #7 in 4 years

I have a few customers that have Onix radiant and each have the same problem with expansion tanks leaking. I have replaced them with an RX-30 expansion tank, it is a plastic lined tank, and they have not had issues again in years. I think that the RX-30 means radiant extrol. It is made by Amtrol.

I have one system that has onix, Rehau radiant manifolds, and the sight glasses on the manifold have rusted up. This system had a Taco 007 that had the volute filled with a slimy rusty type of paste and it took out the pump in 2.5 years.

How Old

@ November 29, 2009 6:04 PM in installed viessman 10 boiler with nx becket

How old is this Vitorond 100 ? A couple of years ago now they had some big issues with the NX burner. Does your boiler have the stainless steel insert for the combustion chamber ?  You could always contact RW Beckett.

gas/electric switch

@ November 15, 2009 7:52 PM in T Stat wiring issue

I had to put it on electric to energize the blower on heat. If not the blower would not come on at all. I currently have it set up that way, but the customer wants it the baseboard first and blower second. He has a continuous loop on the boiler and it costs him less by not using the blower, until he has to. The boiler is already heating for other parts of the building. Plus, now I am determined to see this work now......

Wiring help

@ November 15, 2009 7:13 PM in help with intelidyne controler

Find out which side of the aquastat is the load side. Remove wire, connect yellow to aquastat and then connect red wire to wire that you removed. The load side should be labeled on the wiring schematic on one of the panels of the boiler/furnace.

T Stat wiring issue

@ November 15, 2009 7:05 PM in T Stat wiring issue

I am currently working on a 2 heat 1 cool system that has a single speed air handler. What I am trying to accomplish is to have the zone of baseboard on W1 or first stage heat, and the air handler on second stage heat. The issue is that the tstat energizes R-G and turns the blower on whenever there is a call for heat. So now I think, why not install an aquastat set to 140, that will hold off the blower until the second stage zone valve opens. This would hold the blower off until the second stage calls on.  BUT, now how do I deal with turning on the fan during the cooling season ? There is only on Red wire with a jumper between RC and RH. Is there a way that I could wire in a RIB relay or something to bypass the aqaustat ? 

No disrespect intended

@ November 14, 2009 6:57 PM in Utica gas boiler - how to research its quality?

I would not use Utica boilers. I have had numerous issues over the years and they were not handled that well. When I was a wholesaler we carried the line for about 2 years and eventually we as well as other wholesalers in our area dropped the line. It is how issues are handled that make a boiler company. It is always possible that the rep agency had a lot to do with it as well.  No disrespect intended but they are a major sponsor to this site.

I can say that we carried Crown boilers as well and I will say that they represent their company as one of the best. Lee Ensminger is one fine reresentative of Crown boiler. They had always gone above and beyond as a company. I install Crown boilers because I know that if I ever need them in my corner that they will be there.

As many on this site would say a boiler is a boiler, it is the contractor that you should be researching. Ask him for some references, and possibly to show you a job that he has installed.

Keep in mind

@ October 27, 2009 7:44 PM in Triangle Tube Prestige Excellence Boiler

Why are you thinking about taking out oil and going to gas ?
 Keep in mind, you only get 92,000 btus per gallon of propane, and 138,000 btus per gallon of oil. So if you do the math, a 95% efficient propane boiler will net you 87,400 btus per gallon. And that is if the boiler is operating at 95% at any given moment. An oil boiler at 85% will net you 117,300 btu's per gallon. That is a difference of over 25% more heat. No matter how you cut it you will always get more heat for you dollar from oil than you will from propane.
Even with oil boilers, there are a ot of good, solid, control strategies to get the most efficiency from you boiler. I don't know your reasoning, but I hope this helps.

Troubleshooting Fireplace

@ October 12, 2009 7:09 PM in Troubleshooting Fireplace

I remember reading somewhere, the correct way to troubleshoot/test thermopiles. I am also interested in the correct procedure for testing a LP gas valve on a Vermont Castings freestanding fireplace. Can someone help point me in the correct direction ?

I have a customer with the Fireplace and the pilot stays lit, but when the knob is turned to the on position, the pilot goes out instantly. I suspect the coil in the gas valve. Would this act this way if the orifice is blocked ?

How to size a seperator

@ September 20, 2009 6:58 PM in Hydro Seperators

HR, how would I properly size a hydro seperator ?  I have a mod con boiler that has 1" supply and return tappings. It has a Taco 0013 as a primary pump that is factory installed. I have 180,000 btu's of load on the load side, split amongst 5 circulators.

Would I size the seperator based on a flow rate of 18gpm ? That would be a 1-1/2 seperator ?

SP rating

@ September 2, 2009 7:36 PM in Changing blower motor

Hi Paul - The manufacturer shows that at a .20 static rating I should have 1250 cfm available. That is where I am seeing the .20. When I measured the 10" and have 700 cfm, that shows to be .20.  And it is pretty quiet, probably because of the 11 outlets with no flow. I measured the 700 in the supply just before it goes into the ceiling. I then measured each outlet on the second floor.

Now, I think that I am losing the cfm through the flex duct. I believe there to be excessive lengths of flex duct between the floors. The other issue is that I cannot reach the dampers to restirct some of the no-flow. For an example I have 300cfms in an outlet in the WIC. I have the floor diffuser closed but that really doesn't move the air to any other outlets. How would getting more ductwork to the second floor help me here ?  My concern would be that all three zones will call at once and I will not have enough air available for the first floor and basement. 


@ September 1, 2009 8:07 PM in Changing blower motor

My customer added a second floor to his home, and the builder set up the ductwork for the second floor. The original trunkline, before the addition, which suppied the basement and the first floor is 20X8. Another contractor seperated the basement from the first floor and supplied the basement with 5 6" round outlets off of 10X8 trunk.  The first floor is still on the 20X8 trunk. The builder supplied the new second floor with 10" round and that floor has 11 outlets with 6" takeoffs. So as you can tell the duct system is in serious trouble.

I balanced the first floor and the basement to their required CFM's with dampers and a meter. I cannot get to the ductwork in the second floor to balance it properly. I am losing CFM's in the ductwork under the floor. I have 700 CFM in the main 10" going to the second floor but I am only getting 400 out of the 11 outlets. So the only thing that I can think of to come up with is to increase the blower speed to try to deliver more air to the second floor. I can always balance out the first and second floor with the dampers.

The only other restriction to overcome in the duct is the 1" filter at the return.

I just reread my original post and I actually have a 78 degree temp rise, the manufacturer post between 60 -90 degrees. So I have some room to work with.  

Paul, where did you come up with .05 ? I got to .20 static by measuring the airflow at the 10" going to the second floor. Their blower charts show between .10 and .50 static pressures.  I can really use any help that you can suggest on this one...

Changing blower motor

@ August 31, 2009 7:45 PM in Changing blower motor

I have a customer with an oil fired furnace that the blower only produces 1300 cfm at .2 static. The nozzle size is .75, and the temp rise is 60 degrees. I need 1500 cfm's. The furnace is approx 12 years old.

I am toying with the idea of changing the blower motor to a more powerful motor so that I can get the necessary cfm's. I would only do this provided I can keep the temperature rise within the manufacturers specs. What are your thoughts, has anyone ever done this successfully ?

Intellicon/Heat Manager

@ August 31, 2009 7:39 PM in Intellicon Control

I prefer the Intellidyne control over the heat manager because you can set the functions on the Intellicon, where you cannot change any of the variables on the Beckett Heat Manager.

It would be great if

@ August 13, 2009 9:01 PM in It would be great if

It owuld be great if there was a place that we could see who is currently somewhere on the site.