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Joined on September 13, 2010

Last Post on August 20, 2014

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Thanks for letting us know:

@ January 15, 2012 7:45 AM in Problem Pinnacle, need some help

Thanks for letting us know of your success. Not everyone tells us here that their problem was resolved. We here also learn from you telling us you were successful. I had always heard that Pinnicle parts were cheaper from HTP/Munchkin and you confirmed it. And their Tech Support is very good. As you found out.


@ January 14, 2012 10:19 PM in Converting antique oil furnace to gas

You seem to be really hung up on keeping the old girl.
So, being experimental, if you REALLY want to save and use it, and you can find someone who will do it, get a Hot Rod gas wall hung boiler and put a hydronic air handler inside that thing. Cut a hole in the back and remove whatever is in there for whatever, like the chamber and whatever so it is a shell of its old self. Connect the return to the return for the air handler to the existing return. Connect the piping from the wall hung Mod Con. You can do an indirect water heater if you want.
Put the sheet metal back. If done carefully, someone would be hard pressed to find it in there.
Just a thought from one who sees a challenge.

Carlin 301 CRD

@ January 14, 2012 9:56 PM in carlin 301 crd

Funny, that stupid end cone falling off will really screw up the flame.
 No matter where you set the retention head, you just can't seem to get enough pressure in the flame to get complete combustion.

Wooden Ductwork:

@ January 14, 2012 9:35 PM in Wooden Ductwork!

If you wired it, and it is as bad as you say it is, I hope you filed a permit to CYA.
And make sure the electrical inspector does an inspection of your work. If there's a problem later, you are covered. And hope that the electrical inspector will do his job and report that mess.
If one wants to live in a firetrap, that's your right. You do not have a right to put children in danger. Its called child abuse.

I think you found it:

@ January 14, 2012 9:11 PM in I am stumped....

Those shower valves you found that are cold? They are the culprits. They and others like them. Like I said earlier, Symmons type have the spool in the stem. They are positive shut off valves. When the valve handle is turned off, there is a 100% positive shut off in the valves. Older Moen's, Deltas and the Kohler Rite Temp type have the spools outside the shut off and there is a direct cross connection between the hot and cold at all times, regardless if the valve is off. They depend on the check stops. Leonard valves are used for hot water temperature control. They depend on the check stops. And if you try to service a valve, and the check stops don't shut off the water, it can and will cross flow. One passing valve will screw the pooch.
And watch out for janitors closets with mop receptors with hoses connected. Soap sellers like Ecolab put automatic soap dispensers on the hose fitting so that mop buckets can be filled. If there are no check stops on the H&C, and the valves are open with a hose turned off, there's a cross connection. Or, like I said previously. The wrong cartridge is installed because the correct one is more expensive, I see it with T&S all the time. Where I work, it is a restaurant capitol. I always see restaurant maintenance people coming in got T&S stems. My supplier doesn't stock the ones that fit the Pre-Rinse units that need the check stops. They get used to having cold water coming out of the hot water for years. If you want the correct ones, they bring them from Central Distribution on Tuesday.


@ January 14, 2012 8:50 AM in HELP!!! Seven zone hydronic conversion.

It is MY experience that what you want to do (make 2 zones into seven) will cost far more than you ever will see in savings. And there will probably be absolutely no savings.
Unless the original system was inadvertently installed with a way to easily split the supply/system piping, it is an exercise in spending a lot of money for no real return.
Most (if not all) the people I have dealt with who want to do this, don't do it when they find out the cost. People I know who have done it have unfilled expectations.
Usually, when I see it done in renovations and new construction, a Mechanical Engineer/Designer specs it and the owner doesn't have a choice. It looks good on paper but doesn't fly in cost of installation or operation.
It's like stepping over a $10.00 bill to pick up a dime.

That said, the original install should have had more zones. I can see why you want to do it. To balance through design and install a building heat system like your is giving me a head ache just thinking about it.


@ January 13, 2012 11:22 PM in carlin 301 crd

And if it isn't set up properly it will soot up in an instant. To clean it, you have to take the bonnet/hood off the top, the cleanout plates from the left side, and brush it all into the chamber. Then, take the front off and clean it all out.
The target in the back wants to fall over. That makes it run like crap. Take the rug out and clean under it. I replace the factory rug with a piece of Lynn Wet Blanket so next time, I can easily slide the whole rug out to clean under it and suck the kibbles and bits off the rug. Set it up to Carlins OEM specs and you are good to go. But that baffle in the back is critical.


@ January 13, 2012 11:10 PM in Only one baseboard in zone working

I don't understand.
You have three radiator sectiions. How many drops do you think you need?
Did you purge it like I suggested?

Cold Starts and Indirects:

@ January 13, 2012 10:31 PM in maintaining temp vs cold start boiler

But, if the indirect isn't wired to start the burner and run the indirect circulator, it is wired wrong. The indirect MUST be wired through the ZC/ZR terminals in the 8124.
When the indirect is wired correctly, you can set the low limit/operating setting at 140 degrees and get no condensation in the boiler. You can set the high limit at 160 to 170 and get good performance from the indirect. The higher boiler temperature will keep the boiler cleaner and give you better heat transfer.

Finding Things:

@ January 13, 2012 10:12 PM in I am stumped....

That's the kind of thing that can throw you when you don't do your basics.
I'm not telling you anything you don't already know but I have this job I've worked on since 1988. It was built in 1980 and was really screwed up. The heat (bridge loop crossover for the secondary drawn and installed with the return coming first, then the supply) to a Watts 2" hot water extender used as a hot water controller to control hot water temperature, In a nursing home where the hot water in the building can't be over 116 degrees, Except in the kitchen and laundry where it can be 180 degrees. All circulated to 4 wings and recirculated. Because the hot water was out of control, I thought that it just needed a new element in the N2 hot water extender. I called Tech Support at Watts and got my head ripped off by a woman engineer for installing a valve that clearly states that it is NEVER to be used as a temperature controller. :Hey, I didn't design or install it that way". What do they have? Nothing. Symmons doesn't make a thermostatic pressure balance valve for this application. I used a Leonard. They specialize in these valves. Because everything was piped 2", I bought the closest thing to what was there which was 1" in, H&C, and 1 1/4" out. WRONG!!!!!. Read and understand the valve and its application. They only work when there is high flow. The bigger the valve, the higher the flow to make them work. In this 44 bed nursing home, the proper valve was actually between 1/2" and 3/4.  The mixer I used was WAY, WAY too big. I resolved the issue by looking at the whole problem like it was a radiant floor system. I put a Taco 012 or 013 Bronze high flow circulator on the return and a Danfoss 3-way mixer so that the flow through the return always made the Leonard Mixer "think" that there was a very high flow through the valve. And when the return cooled, the Danfoss would open and allow more high temperature water to enter through the valve and keep the recirc up to temperature.
If the primary mixers are over-sized and under utilized, a perfect storm may occur.
In the "greening" of buildings, especially in renovations, The laws of unintended consequences will come forward in royal splendor. That no good deed goes unpunished.
If the tank water and system water isn't hot enough, the mixers won't work because there isn't enough hot water volume to mix with the cold to get the water hot enough for proper and designed use. Some or all of your problem may be not enough flow from lack of use or water that isn't hot enough or too cold.

Approach it like a hydronic system and it will be easier to "see" how it works and how to find it.

Magical Occurences:

@ January 13, 2012 9:18 PM in Peerless Pinnacle blown fuse

Which fits in perfectly with my point. With all those things able to align, it could be anything.

Munchkin Fuses:

@ January 13, 2012 9:06 PM in Peerless Pinnacle blown fuse

It's my experience that fuses sometimes blow. Sometimes, it seems like FM.
* Magic.
Sometimes, the Sun, Moon and a certain star must align along with a Neap Tide. Then, due to the special energy generated by this phenomenon, the fuse blows. It won.t happen again until this Perfect Storm occurs again.
Those of us who do a lot of troubleshooting, are aware of this odd occurrence. If you wonder why you didn't get any responses, its because we feel we might look foolish trying to explain the unexplainable.
I know I'm foolish but at my age, I really don't care anymore. So, in a few words, it's unexplainable. Especially with the information provided.


@ January 12, 2012 11:41 PM in Problem Pinnacle, need some help

Pinnacles are Munchkins in a green beer cooler. Sounds like a bad brain or control. They are made by HTP. Does it have the 925 controller or the board?.

Cross Connections:

@ January 12, 2012 11:33 PM in I am stumped....

You will have fun with that one.
Symmons mixers have the balancing spools inside the cartridge. Moen's and Kohler's are outside. I don't remember where they are on Powers. The place I honed my cross connection detective skills has a few Powers valves but I don't remember that they gave me trouble. You can usually tell if they are outside the cartridge if you slam a lav faucet and you hear a "click" behind a shower valve. They will have check stops on the valves. A bad check stop will cause a cross connection. If you run low temperatures, the shower valves won't pass hot enough water to allow the valves to mix properly. Find a cold bathroom, turn on the shower and see if it gets better. The cross connection is near bye.
Mop receptor with soap dispensers and hoses with sprays on them.The soap sales persons put those on. Abandoned showers with hoses on the shower heads are another good source.
A really great one. T&S spay units. Years ago, they had check balls. The balls get lost because someone doesn't know what they are for. The newer ones have the check in the cartridge. The check cartridge is $40.00. Without, maybe $12.00. The cheapskate, going for two replacement cartridges is quoted $80.00 for two and goes for the $25.00 value. They never wonder what that springy thing is on the old cartridge. If needed, I'll think of some more. Ive never looked for one that I didn't find. There's a valve open somewhere.

Good luck and good hunting.
And remember, it may have always had a problem. You may be looking for an old problem that they are telling you is new.

Positive pressure Carlin:

@ January 12, 2012 8:16 PM in carlin 301 crd

The 680 M/M is a positive pressure fired boiler and the Carlin 301CRD is designed for such. Is it set up with instruments as per spec's?\
Did you call Carlin Tech Support?
You may have other issues. That's a very reliable and trouble free combination when set up properly. Proper set up is the key.

Beckett Vs Riello:

@ January 12, 2012 8:09 PM in 10 yr old Riello burner or new Beckett end cone/tube/flange

I would go with the Beckett parts unless you find that a Riello is approved for your furnace. The Riello is a very hot burner and may byrn right through the HX. The Becket won't. If it came with the furnace.

Running Pinnicle:

@ January 12, 2012 7:43 PM in Problem Pinnacle, need some help

Are you saying that the blower is running when there is no call for heat? That it runs all the time?
Call Tech Support at HTP. That's where it came from and they do a lot more of them than Peerless Pinnicle.

Purge It:

@ January 12, 2012 7:34 PM in Only one baseboard in zone working

The PEX zone is the one that doesn't work. You said that it was hot at both ends? Supply and return? Trace that back and mark them with red and blue tape. Red for supply, blue for the return. Your supply is the side with the circulator on it. The return has the zone valve. Turn the PEX zone thermostat all the way up. Turn all the other thermostats down as low as they will go (Off) Check to see if the lever on the side of the valve goes easily all the way down. Close the valve where the return goes back into the boiler and put a short hose on the draw off. You need a 5 gallon bucket. Check the pressure reducing valve/fill valve. Check the system pressure. If it isn't 15 #, it's too low. Raise the bypass lever and raise the system pressure to 25#. Open the drain valve and drain the water into the bucket. Put your hand on the copper pipe. You should feel the temperature changing. If it starts to get cold, you are being successful. Let it keep running with the bypass open. When the water starts to get warm, you should hear rumbles and thongs as the air bubbles come. When the water starts to get really hot and the hose isn't dancing, close the fill valve bypass and close the purge drain. Open the ball valve and the pump should make it flow.
Someone mentioned a Tee. If it is split, only one side may work. If you have that problem, write back.
If the pressure in the system is low, like around 10#, raising the pressure to 25# might make it start working. It needs a good purge.

Improving Comfort:

@ January 12, 2012 5:59 PM in Couple of quesitons on a gravity hot water system

Without some considering me an asshat, I would consider this. Because I have done this and was extremely surprised at how well it worked. Or at least a variation of what you have.
Your gravity system when designed and installed, depended on coal as a solid fuel to heat the water. If you haven't had a circulator installed to pump the system, it depends on the flow of warm water to heat the structure. The thermostat is only to turn the burner on. The high limit shuts it off. The heat loss to the outside controls the system temperature. What you really need is to pump the system with outdoor reset. That way, all the radiators will get to the same temperature. Regardless where they are and how well they flow. Your wife will be more comfortable because it eliminates the hot spots from hot radiators.
If its already pumped, put a 4 way mixer like a Taco I series valve with outdoor reset. You can keep the boiler hotter or whatever and the system at whatever temperature the controller decides. It really makes a comfortable house.

Expansion Tanks:

@ January 12, 2012 5:28 PM in Embassy Boiler, AXIA 29E (cosmogas)

They'll be putting external Extrol type tanks on these boilers to solve this problem. Get a #30 tank and connect it to the system with a double hose connection. If the problem stops, you have a leaky tank.
Another expensive cost cutting idea gone expensive.

Expansion Tanks:

@ January 12, 2012 5:28 PM in Embassy Boiler, AXIA 29E (cosmogas)

They'll be putting external Extrol type tanks on these boilers to solve this problem. Get a #30 tank and connect it to the system with a double hose connection. If the problem stops, you have a leaky tank.
Another expensive cost cutting idea gone expensive.

No Flow:

@ January 12, 2012 5:17 PM in hot water radiator

Are you sure that the circulator works? Does the main curcuit to the third floor get hot? If it doesn't, why?

Pictures please.