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Joined on February 27, 2010

Last Post on September 1, 2014

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@ September 1, 2014 12:19 AM in SUBMERGED Boilers and Water heater. What absolutely needs replacing?

This advice is reckless, dangerous, ill-advised, and just plain wrong. Submerged controls should NEVER be reused. I've seen water damaged furnaces "dried out and cleaned" and then light on fire a few months later. It is not worth the risk.


@ August 31, 2014 12:37 PM in Is buying a used threader risky?

We don't thread anything over 1" by hand. Actually, let me rephrase that. We don't WANT to thread anything over 1" by hand. It's not fun. We buy all of our threading equipment used. The usual parts go bad every few years like switches and belts (on older threaders).


@ August 31, 2014 8:14 AM in Oil to gas

Looks like that boiler is about 74% efficient.

I am a firm believer in mod/con technology for all systems. You should never use a setback with ODR. The reset curve will be the brains of the operation, and the thermostat should only act as a high-limit safety. Plus, boilers are most efficient in a steady-state of operation. Set it for one temperature and forget about it.

Right now, the cost of a mod/con is incredibly close to the cost of a cast iron boiler after buying and installing a thermal bypass and ODR control.


@ August 29, 2014 7:27 PM in Going around obsticals

I agree with Jamie on this. Should work fine with his suggestions. That 1/2" measurement should be a minimum. I would even go one pipe-size higher. You're basically building one big pipe out of the top and bottom pipes.

I would install full size tees with plugs for future cleaning of the bottom section.


@ August 29, 2014 6:31 AM in Directing heat down from Overhead steam baseboard radiator?

Radiant energy is like the Wonkavator...

"An elevator can only go up and down, but a Wonkavator goes sideways and slantways and longways and backways and frontways and squareways and any other ways that you can think of..."

A fan won't make heat go anywhere, though. It can make air go up or down, but heat goes everywhere on its own. Are you having trouble heating the room?


@ August 28, 2014 9:31 PM in Unbalanced Steam System?????????

It's possible that the main vents are not working properly, and the steam is favoring the second floor radiators. How long does it take to get steam from the boiler to the end of the mains?

The pressure is also way too high. It should be set as low as possible (about 1.5 psi). Most systems will run on just a few ounces of pressure. The radiator vents will also be damaged by any pressure over 2psi and may not function properly at your current settings.


@ August 28, 2014 6:05 PM in What is the solution?

Is the pipe drop exposed as it goes down the wall? It's often easier to install a new vent there.


@ August 28, 2014 6:26 AM in peeerless boiler WBV-04-100-WPCL oil to gas

We've seen many WBV's with Wayne burners. We've also removed a lot of Wayne burners from this boiler because they don't work very well. I would go with a Carlin EZ-Gas. They are far superior to Wayne in just about every way. The Carlin 9-slot diffuser also has a shorter flame pattern which is a better fit for that tall and skinny Peerless boiler.


@ August 27, 2014 9:07 PM in Bryant 244-7 Series A Gas Steam Boiler

That boiler must be 30+ years old, right? You won't be able to find new sections for it.


@ August 27, 2014 9:01 PM in new burner for old boiler?

Those old boilers have such a high water content, that you would save a lot of fuel-burning time with a newer, smaller boiler that holds a lot less water.


@ August 25, 2014 4:24 PM in Boilers which have power venting option

Technically, any boiler can be power-vented with the right equipment and installation. I tend to stay away from Burnham's residential gas boilers. With a third-party power venter, you are free to choose another brand.


@ August 25, 2014 8:12 AM in the latest on Boone, NC CO poisoning

Another poorly maintained pool heater....There should be mandatory inspections every 3 months for these systems. I'll never go into a hotel without my personal CO meter.


@ August 23, 2014 9:11 AM in Offsets in pipes between floors?

The offsets are there to allow the radiator and pipng to be pitched properly, as well as add swing joints for contraction.


@ August 23, 2014 8:16 AM in Need help on a complete system overhaul!!

That is a HORRIBLE idea. I mean, really dreadful. You will never be happy with forced-error heating.

Where are you located? We may know somebody who can help.


@ August 23, 2014 8:14 AM in Jstar to the rescue

....I better not screw this up now.

Cast Iron

@ August 23, 2014 8:11 AM in Cast Iron fittings

Our supplier stocks every cast iron fitting up to 4" for us. But, we're also there 2-3 times a week.

Where are you located? We might know another local supplier.


@ August 20, 2014 6:38 PM in Oil boiler with gas conversion burner

As far as I know, there is not yet a 3-pass steam boiler that is approved for use with natural gas. That means no warranty coverage. However, this wouldn't stop me from doing it in my own home. It will run great and last a long time if properly maintained.

If you ever want any field-assistance with the fine-tuning and setup, I'm not that far from you!


@ August 17, 2014 9:41 AM in New heating system

No, not at all. A hydro-coil is still a forced-air system. The best heat available is steam or hot-water with large radiators...exactly what you have now.

Forced air

@ August 17, 2014 7:31 AM in New heating system

I don't like tomatoes. Give me a red tomatoe, a green one, cover it in cheese...I still don't like tomatoes.

Adding variable speed blower technology does increase comfort and efficiency by a certain margin, but it's still forced-air, and it still feels the same overall.


@ August 16, 2014 8:30 PM in New heating system

Have you ever lived with "forced-error" heating? If you haven't, you'll be in for a big surprise, Also Known As disappointment. If you are truly deadset on removing the radiators, don't let them go to a junkyard. We may know somebody in your neighborhood who can salvage them for use in a deserving system.

Orifice plates

@ August 13, 2014 6:38 AM in radiator steam traps vertical pattern single union

We install orifice plates in almost all of our two-pipe systems with great success. They can be installed in unions as well as supply valves. They allow you to remove the traps, which need to be maintained and replaced every 10 years or so. The size of the orifice is very precisely calculated. The sizing charts are top secret, though. Talk to TUNSTALL and they can make them for you.

Heat loss

@ August 12, 2014 9:10 PM in Choices on gas conversion equipment

A heat loss needs to be done before anything else can be decided. Both contractors have chosen their boiler size with completely wrong methods. You do not measure the baseboards to find the boiler size, and you never trust the size that is currently there. If neither of them can perform a proper heat loss (the most essential factor in a boiler replacement) then what else are they not going to know or do?

Where are you located? We might know somebody in your area.
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