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Boiler Talk

Boiler Talk

Joined on February 3, 2012

Last Post on April 29, 2014

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What was the reason for replacing them?

@ April 29, 2014 2:55 PM in new radiator vents are puffing

What you hear might be some other symptom.  I think the first question to answer for us is the reason you had the vents replaced.  I used VariVents and I had similar breathing sounds.  I had a new system put in, so I needed to clean out the oil in the system.  Did you have other work done on your system? 

Iron or Brass?

@ April 17, 2014 2:50 PM in Iron or Brass?

The service tech told me the black iron nipple that holds the pressuretrol and gauges should be switched to brass.  He said it will likely rust out.  This is the third full year for my boiler and there is some corrosion inside the 3/4" black pipe.  Same with the iron skimming plug.  Where isn't there rust?  The pipe is about 6" long.  Is this worth it? 

How to adjust the PTrol Micro switch.

@ February 28, 2014 3:03 PM in Pressuretrol Issue

See those screws on the micro switch inside of the Ptrol.   Turn off the power to the boiler.   Loosen them screws and then push the switch down and then retighten the screws.  Turn on power.  This is what I did and I don't have pressure above 18 ounces.  These units are not made to demanding specs. 

Black siding

@ February 19, 2014 4:17 PM in How to vent oil

Lucky the house didn't burn?  Sure looks like it runs dirty.  Am I wrong or is the soot likely to do that if this were safe? 

Pool Store

@ February 3, 2014 3:12 PM in Gauge Glass - Odd filmy movement

Thanks.  Much of maintaining a home and other equipment is enough to make me loose patience.  Sorry.  I will make a trip to a local store I know of and see if they have the 6-12 type you mention.  Your video is helpful.  With my past attempts I did the skimming even slower.  I don't suppose there is an optimum flow?  Thanks for your help.  I'll try boiling it also.  

Do you need a video to see what I'm talking about?

@ February 1, 2014 10:19 PM in Gauge Glass - Odd filmy movement

I had no replies and 36 views.  Yes, the stuff on the side of the sight glass goes up and a small portion is going down?  True.  I don't think it is an illusion.  

Where do you buy a kit to examine the Ph?

@ February 1, 2014 10:17 PM in Gauge Glass - Odd filmy movement

A plumbing store?  I haven't a clue.

Gauge Glass - Odd filmy movement

@ February 1, 2014 4:54 PM in Gauge Glass - Odd filmy movement

I've read that the glass above the water line should be dry. I've heard that PH could be an issue. In my glass I see a film of something going up most of the glass and then a small amount moving down at same time during a run of the boiler. Please explain again what might be happening and how to cure this. The water line doesn't move very much, but it moves fast and on occasion a surge will come over the glass in limited amounts. The water level is about half way up and just over the LWC probe. I have tried on and off to skim it accumulating several hours of time. Thanks.

Anatomy of a antique traction engine boiler (locomotive style.)

@ January 21, 2014 7:07 PM in Anatomy of a antique traction engine boiler (locomotive style.)

Thought this might be interesting.

Continued - Too Cold Upstairs

@ January 14, 2014 1:38 PM in Too Cold Upstairs!

Yeah, I had thought about relocating the T-Stat, but I like the idea of an averaging T-Stat.  Do you have any recommendations for such a device?  I have a two-family with a hallway that is always too cool.  It's hard to place a T-Stat in a two-family with one zone, but that's what I have to deal with for now.  Thanks. 

Too Cold Upstairs!

@ January 13, 2014 4:04 PM in Too Cold Upstairs!

I have a two-family and when I have lots of activity or guests downstairs, where the thermostat is, the second floor gets cold.  Other than opening door to the hall or outside to cool the first floor, what else can be done?  My system is properly balanced.  I have 3 Gorton 1's on each of my single piped steam branches.  Normally each unit is quite comfortable and equal in temperature.  Only when I have company do I have this problem. 

Cut the fiberglass outside

@ January 12, 2014 9:26 PM in Alternatives to fiberglass steam pipe insulation

I'd start with the straight runs first. Measure want you need inside. You should plan to cut the insulation outside and open it while your at it. You get to shake some of the loose stuff off before reentering your basement. Loose stuff is dust from cutting and manufacturing. Best of luck. Your wallet will be better off.

How to measure your steam chest?

@ January 6, 2014 4:06 PM in Vent sizing

I have much more main venting than the required.  I guess this helps vent the boiler faster, but how can you estimate?  I have a PB WBV-03.  What would that mean?  Is that data on the volume in a manual?   Thank you. 

Clothes Dryer

@ November 29, 2013 2:36 PM in High Humidity/Boiler Leak?

Is your dryer in the basement?  Does it vent to the outside?  Seems to me if you have so much condensation, it would be worst when it is cold inside.  But then I didn't see your home. 

New boiler, new liner

@ September 26, 2013 1:20 PM in chimney relining?

My chimney is straight, so you could stick mirror inside and look up.  It had no liner.  I had at least 150,000 btu's added - water heater and oil steam boiler.  I bought a 25' - 30' 6" stainless steel liner.  I was told the equipment determines the liner.  Carbon monoxide is the problem.  The cost for the liner was about $1900, if I remember correctly.  This is NJ.  Your chimney needs to be certified.  The key word is certified. 

Look Here - Here's an updated photo and questions.

@ September 22, 2013 6:22 PM in When is it skimmed enough?

Yes, there is an old portion of the header that was left by the installer.  The old boiler is shown also.  I wonder how much would be saved in costs of efficiency by redesigning the piping.  It is two-inch pipe all the way.  Could there be a diagonal pipe off the boiler to the original header, then turn 90 degrees and down to the pipe behind the VXT water controller?  That water feeding line is annoying.  Everything right now is well above the water line. 

Second Look

@ July 25, 2013 9:42 PM in Copper prices affected by Bank manipulation of Markets

I tend to think that if the Huffington Post now has anything to report about it, it must be reviewed for more clarity.  I stand by my opinion that further study will likely find no illegal deals or reason for governmental intervention.  I think you and I are told to be victims when the real issue is something else.   We can go on forever about who is exploiting who.  Also, it is really difficult not to want to express the impression one gets.  Probably shouldn't do it. 

Interesting. Thanks.

@ July 22, 2013 4:04 PM in Copper prices affected by Bank manipulation of Markets

I haven't been in the market for copper pipes lately, but this doesn't surprise me. But I have to wonder why we become so passionate about someone attempting to make some money.  I suppose local and state governments should deregulate plumbing.  Get rid of licensing to allow more individuals in the market and allow me and others a chance at lower prices.  Who says an unlicensed individual is bad.  Licensing is a classic example of government market intervention to limit those who can practice; i.e. reducing competitive pressure to lower prices.  We know Plumbers generally have a market area,  so we expect to find another individual who doesn't want to charge crazy prices or does more competent work.  The article states manufacturers are finding ways around "the cartel"  (my emphasis).    Any monopoly is doomed to fail to hold the market for long.  Railroads are good example of past transportation control, because of roads and trucking.  Government busted them also I think.  For many decades RR's were struggling.  Now that fracking oil is increasing and new pipelines are being discouraged by environmentalists, RR's are seeing increasing profits and the potential for disaster.  My guess is the President and governments will allow more pipelines, because they are a safer means of transportation and will lower the prices (more jobs) for the citizens of the USA.  Oh, pipelines are owned by just a few companies.  Where do we go from here?  I really don't see copper any differently than say Walmart or Kmart selling groceries to compete with ShopRite or Krugers.  Walmart has market power to sell products lower in cost, but does it really hurt the consumer?  I think the article on copper might need a second look. 

Fluidmaster 400A

@ July 17, 2013 2:23 PM in Fluidmaster 400A

I recently replaced that 1" gasket under the Cap, but I'm sure the unit is older than 5 years.  The instructions on the replacement gasket say I should replace the whole unit.  Has anyone seen a catastrophic failure because it was just older than 5 years? 


@ July 10, 2013 4:18 PM in Radiator under kitchen counter

I've never seen it available.  I touched the stuff at an astronomy club, but thought it was too exotic and not applicable.  Anyway, laminate needs to be protected from heat.  Never put a hot pot on it or it could separate from the core wood.  If you have a dish washer, the laminate should be on the bottom of the countertop as well to protect it from the moisture from the dishwasher.  The radiant barrier sold at local hardware stores probably is enough.  What is most important is the space between the aluminumized surface or sheet of aluminum and the counter top.  The radiant barrier sold in hardware stores tends to be the type with bubble in it or the space you need.  A piece of aluminum, which is probably old school, should be a quarter inch from surface.  Probably cheaper to use the radiant barrier and easier.  That's my take.  Thanks for providing the space for my expression.

Radiant Barrier

@ July 9, 2013 4:13 PM in Radiator under kitchen counter

If you don't want to buy $30 of the stuff from Lowes or HD, you can buy a solar shield for your dashboard at a car parts store.  It is mylar with aluminum affixed to it.  How stingy can you get?

Silicone it all

@ May 25, 2013 9:11 PM in Plumbers putty or silicone?

I'm assuming you are referring to using silicone to seal the sink to the counter and not the basket strainers?

Nope, I meant the whole thing.  Good luck. 
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