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heatpro02920

heatpro02920

Joined on January 28, 2013

Last Post on April 21, 2014

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I do this in my own home

@ April 21, 2014 7:02 AM in Replacing AC with heatpump?

I run the heatpump in the shoulder months as aux heat and my primary heat in the colder months once the heat pump is not efficient do to the outdoor temps.. I have installed many systems like this, sometimes moving or adding a return can make ceiling supply heating systems much more efficient and comfortable...

I don't mind the debate, lol

@ April 20, 2014 10:02 AM in losing heat

I would rather debate something I know about, since knowing that these new washers with 3 and 4 {some have a triple on the hot and then a single on the cold that just feeds to the hots valve assembly, try to figure that one out} solenoids can cause crossover is one of the only things I know about them, lol...

I have been on many service calls and have a few friends in the business that feel they can call me when ever they have a problem that takes more than 5 minutes to diagnose, so I tend to see A LOT of "different" situations.
I don't mind it, I like the challenge, and I like to think I am good at trouble shooting because I use what I like to call "Kid Logic", thats when you take something like a banging steam pipe from a clogged return and convert it to something so simple as thinking about it like an old man walking through a rocky tunnel, or thinking about power as a bouncing ball bouncing in and out of each rollout switch, or warm combustion air as a hot air balloon always wanting to rise and being pushed and pulled in the easiest direction but deflating when there is negative pressure...
I once walked into a basement that a well known local oil company with 15+ techs and 2 service managers had been pulling their hair out trying to figure out why this boiler was sooting up, as a favor to see what I thought could be causing the problem... It was a 3 section gold that would run for 5-8 days and plug rite up... They had done everything, measured combustion air, down fired, put a larger smoke pipe, a draft inducer, and this thing would still clog rite up in a week...

I asked when it started and no one knew, they had bought the house with a new boiler in it in the summer time and it didnt start sooting up until they used it for heat..

So I started by, getting everything back to where it should be, I put the correct nozzle back in, set the pump psi, set the combustion, draft was great, I went rite through it... And I take a smoke test- trace to zero, perfect... So what does that tell me, it runs fine while I am watching it, so WHAT CHANGES? I start looking around, basement is as good as clear, some storage in a corner, the laundry is upstairs, nothing to take my combustion air away...
So I close it up tight, shut the basement door, and take another smoke test again PERFECT....

Now I take a walk around the house, what is causing this? no cat fur in the burner fan, no loose debris getting sucked in, no centri air door, all the weird stuff I have seen in the past, so I am thinking this is going to be a new one, kind of excited about it to be honest...

And then I see it...............

A turbo blower, the type you would use to dry carpet. It was sitting next to a closet door with an extension cord wrapped around it.. I asked what they use that for and the replay was, His wife cooks for her side business from Friday night to Sunday night every week, and she puts that in the window since there is no kitchen exhaust fan, AAH HAA, lets throw it in the window and take a smoke test shall we, what did we find a 4 smoke...
I read the label and it was something like 2000 cfm, she used it all summer, but didnt plug the boiler because it was only running for dhw, as soon as it got a little cold and ran for heat {probably non stop since she was pumping heated air outside} it sooted up... case closed.. The service manager that was with me, said "you can not use that fan" I said "sure they can, just open this window at the same time and it wont go negative..." But they agreed it was not going to get used in the winter, since this was just a shoulder month, and she wouldnt be blowing out heated air in January...

Anyway, when it comes to trouble shooting, you need to think of everything you wouldn't think of, and use anyone elses experiences you can...

good call..

@ April 20, 2014 7:06 AM in Tiger loop

you are going to love that pump, it has more uses than just priming to... It can clear clogged oil lines, if it wont do it with vacuum, then hook it to the other side of the line and it should blow it out, sometimes keeping pressure on it and tapping the line with a wrnech helps, but it works..
It can also be used to pump detergents, anti frz, ect into systems, its an essential tool in the oil techs arsenal for sure...

Some other oil tools that help a lot...
small pocket draft gauge {bacharach, comes in a little leather pouch}
The Mitco tm2 ignitor tester {you dont have to open the cover, just sit it on the ignitor and it will tell you if its good from outside the burner...}
and the last one is a tool I made myself, its a clear chemical resistant hose with the connections to install between the jet line and the drawer assembly, so when I go to a service call, I can looses the jetline, move it over install my clear line, throw the ignitor tester on top of the burner, open the site door and hit the reset, now I can see some of the oil situation and the ignition before I even open the burner....

Anyway I can talk about this stuff all day ,good luck with the new tool...

OK

@ April 19, 2014 10:30 PM in new crown twz100 oil boiler will not start up and run

First, that control needs a good ground, make sure you hooked up l1 l2 and ground....

Next, the 8 code can mean a few things, it can mean the burner is running, the burner is not running but the primary locked out or that the high limit is satisfied, kind of a BS code...

So it sounds like your burner will not stay running, and locked out on 3 strikes... So you need to hold the reset button in until it resets the hard lockout...

Now most likely if your burner lit and didnt stay lit, you are not bright enough, meaning the fire isn't in tune so the cad cell detector is not telling the primary control there is a fire in the boiler and it is locking out... Sadly to say you need to adjust the burner and get it to fire correctly, you will need a combustion efficiency test...

How cold is the boiler, I have had crown and other brands that do not like to fire cold, for instance a buderus GB will not fire full of 40 degree water with a cold chimney, I had to run a blow dryer in the chamber on a few cold installs in the past... Another option is cutting the air back and running it rick until everything heats up, thats not going to help your cad cell issue but turning back the air until you see smoke then adding air until the smoke goes away should get you running...

You will want a pro to set your draft, pump psi, nozzle size, and combustion air, doing it by eye is risky business...

Curious- How did the fire look when it lit for 20 seconds, smokey, rumbly, yellow, orange, white, red?

How about another option entirely, lol

@ April 19, 2014 7:48 PM in Boiler Protection Piping

just to confuse you a bit more... Heres how I would do it...

I would add a circulator to the system that is ran by an aqaustat mounted in a flat plate heat exchanger, the other side of the fphx would have its own circ that runs with the low temps zones t-stat or floor sensor.. I have better drawings at my office but heres a fast one to give you the idea...

there are obviously a few other components, like prv's, expansion tanks, ect that will be needed, this drawing is just to give you the idea of how it will work...

The 180 boiler water will heat the fphx, but only until the a-stat is satisfied, so if you set the a-stat at 110 degrees that is all it will maintain... I would use a delta t circ with the fphx so you can control the transfer better...

you are welcome

@ April 19, 2014 8:06 AM in Can we split tankless on-demand hot water unit for hydro air & domestic hot water?

I would get prices both ways a propane high efficiency furnace like the Armstrong 97mv. Or the Lennox 98 or any almost 99% efficient furnace with variable speed and modulation should last 30 years and coat very littleto run... Plus for short money you cam add a case coil and condenser for ac... I know a combo or nodded takless sounds like a good way to take care of Dhw and heat but as ice sailor would say "you are stepping over 100 dollar bills to pick up pennies"

Most of the new controls

@ April 18, 2014 7:40 AM in Tiger loop

have a purge setting, you are rite after its full the vertical rise has very little to do with it...

They called their appliance repair guy

@ April 18, 2014 7:35 AM in losing heat

thats exactly what i did Ice, how it was explained to me is one valve turns on hot one valve urns on cold and then one turns on the tub, they mix in the valve housing and if you look at it you can see how it works inside the valve.. I am not an appliance tech, and no very little about them, besides this incident and my own washer I have no idea how they work, I put clothes in and they come out clean....

I was told that the new washers come with a check valve that screws on the hose inlet before the hose, so it must be a common problem, I mention it because if not for my thermal imager I would have had a hard time finding the issue...

Just something to look into, I seen it with my own eyes, turn the kitchen faucet on and the hot wter went hot all the way to the washer but came out of the wall behind the washer luke warm, turned off the cold supply to everything but the water heater and it was hot all over so I new it was cold mixing, checked all the shower valves, everything I could thnik of, traced it with the ti cam and watched it happen like a video game, it was like the hot was sucking the cold out of the washer hose.

The issue was old but when I put the Rinnai unit it the water must have thought it was easier to go through the washer solenoid than the rinnai unit and followed the path of least resistance... I noticed when I took the pre filter out of the loop it got warmer, that little resistance would help but when I shut the washer box off, it was perfect hot water everywhere....

If you could hold that valve in your hand you can see what I am talking about, not a great design and to me I dont see the point in using another valve to start and stop the tub, but they do, one for cold one for hot and one for the tub-2 water inlets and just one out to the tub...

I didn't mean to start an appliance debate, just sharing one of my experiences.

very nice

@ April 17, 2014 9:15 PM in Twin Steam Boilers - 4 Stages of Firing Rates

as always..

I have done a couple dual steam boiler setups, never staged the burners though, just the boilers so 2 stage..

Are them steam pipes getting insulated...

Did you hook up the vac gauges?

@ April 17, 2014 7:45 PM in Tiger loop

50 ft 9 feet high, I would pull oil to the tl with the hand pump first, that is a good run for sure, was this a suntec pump? 3/8 line with a few loops at the tank and burner?

Hand pump can be your best friend, if that pump didnt like pulling the oil with the tl imagine without it...

no oil tech should be without it.. they are around $75 at sid harveys or patriot supply online... http://www.westwoodproducts.com/product_group_t2_t30.htm

All you have to do is hook up the hand pump to your line, pull it 5 or 6 times and you will have oil, as soon as you see the tl is filling, connect your line back to your burner pump and fire her up, it will fire by the time the prepurge is done and the solenoid kicks... Riellos are notorious for this, they dont like pulling oil too far, high, or past an osv or check valve for that matter.. Once the oil is there, she will run for ever but you will need the pump to get the oil there for systems with osv's, long runs or overhead lines...

refractometer

@ April 17, 2014 2:44 PM in Glycol

get a total amount that the system holds and do the math to get your gycol percent, I would use your refractometer to test what is there... best bet would be to check with the manufacturer to see what and how they want it done..

May be

@ April 17, 2014 2:39 PM in losing heat

I am not a small appliance repair tech, they called someone in to fix it, but I seen the old part and it had the 3 solenoids, I have heard of others with a similar issue and I have seen the other dobule inlet setup with a triple valve assembly and then a single..

The washer we have at our house is crazy, Im sure it has a bunch of crazy valves in there, it has a a touch face controller that you can dial a temp range in...

call the pro back

@ April 17, 2014 12:41 PM in pilot light going out

give him a chance to figure out the issue, a call to slant fin tech support to see if this is a common issue wouldn't be a bad idea either...

Ice I hate to dissagree

@ April 17, 2014 12:31 PM in losing heat

But I was there on this one, lol...
The valve had 3 solenoids, and one outlet the middle solenoid was stuck open causing the water to mix through that valve.... These are popular now with them fancy machines and the energy star units...
heres a picture of what one looks like.. the one they pulled out was a little different, but you get the ide, the one I seen had the solenoids in a triangle pattern, I can not remember the brand.. I can not believe you made me look up a picture of a washer valve... I know I don't have the experience you do but I am hoping I know when I fixed something and when I stumbled through it, lol...
http://www.partselect.com/1482390-3-M-GE-WH13X10026-Triple-Water-Valve.jpg

There is another version of washer out there that will do the same thing, it has 3 solenoids on one side and 1 on the other, the cold pipes into the hot and then into another mixer, very weird way to get something done but they design the machines not me...
http://www.buyspares.co.uk/image/100/5045174321341/0/z/ and the other side is just a single, so they do the mixing with just one outlet..

I know the old washers and simple standard units may not have this stuff, and they just have a simple on off for each cold and hot, but I can promise you this has happened, I seen it with my own eyes... I wish someone told me about it before I had to figure it out myself....

thanks for second guessing me again though Ice, I think the first time was the vaughn pros being cement lined? LOL, keeps me on my toes.....

My drawings are in the pc at the shop

@ April 17, 2014 12:08 PM in Can we split tankless on-demand hot water unit for hydro air & domestic hot water?

here is a fast one I just made, this would be the best way to get it done, as you can see there are a lot of parts, and its not going to be as cost effective as you would think.. Beleive it or not you can get even more complicated than this, I have done this and tried and tested this to death...
I have a system out there I built very similar the gentleman actually repped Rinnai and loves the product, he wanted me to install it in the closet of his guest room {large room with a full bathroom, it was 600 sq ft total with a heat loss under 20K btus. I used a first company air handler with an additional water coil stacked on top of it {couldnt oversize the air handler too much because I would have had to oversize the a/c coil too which would have led to issues on that size}...

That system has worked well for years now and is propane... I went a few steps further with his, I installed a flow sensor on the hot water line so it would cut a call for heat and make hot water priority, I wired it with pre/post purge circuits so the air handler had hot water in it before it ran the fan and ran the fan until all the heat was gone at the end of the cycle...
His air handler side was ran low pressure with glycol so no frz circuit was needed, and since it did not mix with the dhw it was ok..

Keep in mind, these are expensive parts, you will need lead free fphx, circ, zone valve, ect everything on the dhw side will need to be lead free..

I would look into a properly sized tankless for DHW and a properly sized lp 95% furnace for heat, Ill bet the budget will be similar, and if you go with a small 30 ga direct tank, Ill bet the budget comes out less...

Now you can do this without the fphx and I have done it, but it doesnt work as well, and if your coil ever lets go and you have full domestic pressure feeding it, you may drown, and your insurance co will not be happy about the damage a domestic water line in your attic does...

good luck, like I said it will work, and can be setup nice, but its not a great practice...

Are you going to do this your self?

@ April 17, 2014 11:31 AM in Can we split tankless on-demand hot water unit for hydro air & domestic hot water?

Or higher a pro...

I have done this, but be warned if it is not done correctly {especially with lp} you will soot up that heat exchanger from close deltas...
First I will explain the process and parts...
Use something like a ru98 rinnai tankless, a 3 way zone valve a flat plate heat exchanger a switching relay, thermostat, ss circulator, aquastat, and 1 regular circulator...

So you plumb the tankless so that the hot out tees into the dhw piping and the fphx, then you have the cold in tee into the domestic cold with a check valve, you bridge the 3 way valve between the supply and return and use the aquastat to control it so when the delta comes back too close and would make the unit fire low and soot up it redirects it back into the air coil until it returns cold enough to fire the tankless at a good rate.. Over size the coil so that it can work at a low temperature, do your heat losses correctly, and plan the job well and it can work...
BUT, I can almost promise you it would be cheaper to install a small 90+ furnace in the duct work, it will be more reliable and work better with less thinking...
Just install a small water tank or a small tankless in the basement, then a 90+ furnace in the attic or where ever your ac is... done and easy..

If you are interested in using the rinnai, I have drawings of how to make it work and I have done it,

I use apollo valves

@ April 17, 2014 10:40 AM in Skimmer valve failed!?

never heard about an issue.. The brass plug will be your best bet if its becaoming an issue, did you use any skimmer chems in the boiler initially or ever? if so maybe they were corrosive...

dave figure it this way

@ April 17, 2014 10:33 AM in Loctite 55

Relative average cost- you buy 2 for $30 each then 2 for $7 each that lowers your per piece price to $18.50, so if you buy 10 at $7 that will get you around $10 each... Or you can just cancel the other order, lol...

Dave I wish you would have posted

@ April 17, 2014 10:17 AM in Loctite 55

before you bought it, fastenal has tons of it on clearance for $7 a container...
http://www.fastenal.com/web/products/details/0151181;jsessionid=LvXqTPghZmQnQ756Q1Hw6nDKjZw9tpZ1hP1hnCJ9yj0kSnmKTst2!403118208!-254826502?isPunchout=false

you can buy it online, but I know my local store has a shelf full of it last time I seen it, and I just checked my zip code and almost every store in CT has it in stock....
http://www.fastenal.com/web/products/availability?sku=0151181

I have seen it and remember years ago when it was coming out they had displays setup and demos, BUT i was just never sold on it, I get it and in the demo they put 120psi through a hand tite fitting then submerged it in a fish tank with no bubbles, ,BUT when it comes to thread sealant guys are tough to get away from what works for them, especially the rope because it kind of defies logic {not by a lot}, its easier to sell them a nicer teflon tape or new dope than a magic rope.. I have heard from guys that it works well... If you can not get it locally I can pick it up here, we have tons of it available...

I have a bottle on my truck, I can't remember if i used it, I have so many types of tefflon and sealers, I have profitter grey for stainless steel {handy on the ss buderus stuff and the ss water tanks, it is strong and doesn't rip up like the other stuff}, I have monster for almost everything else in 5 different sizes, then yellow anti seize tape for csst, then I have the ceramic tape for the food grade jobs, low density, medium, high, pink, blue, yellow, white, 1/2, 3/4, 1, 1 1/4" ect ect ect ect.... I literally have about 40 different teflon tapes between the trucks and the shop...

we get this question often

@ April 17, 2014 9:51 AM in pressure relief valve

First we need a little more info maybe a picture..

Your problem can be from a few different areas- But first make sure it is actually going to 30+psi, if it isn't getting that high than it is a bad PRV opening too soon{run the system through its paces, check temps run pumps}, make sure your PRV is installed vertically with an air gap, I see prv's facing down or sideways all the time, that is wrong...

next if all of that is ok, and the boiler is indeed going over 30psi, then you can either have First-"new water" coming in, this can only come from 3 places, one is high pressure piped into the boiler, this is very rare, I have seen it though, someone puts a hose end on a boiler drain then connects that to faucet and it over pressurises the boiler...
You can also have a faulty pressure reducing valve, this is the valve assembly that allows water to feed into your boiler, it turns your "street" pressure of say 60psi down to a boiler safe 12-18psi, if these are stuck open or "leaking by" they will over pressurize your boiler...
Another problem could be a faulty indirect water heater , flate plate HX, or tankless water heater, these devices share a water bath with the boiler and have 15psi boiler water on one side and 60psi domestic pressure on the other, if there is a pin hole in there the 60psi will bleed into your boilers water supply and over pressurize the boiler...

Another potential cause is a faulty expansion tank {or undersized/improperly installed}, If it has a broken bladder, is not properly charged {the pressure in the bladder should match your feed pressure}, ect.. Hot water takes up more space than cold so it needs to go somewhere...

Next is a rare one, you could have a pump/circulator causing system havok, if it is installed in a bad spot a pump can create suction on its supply side and suck water in from the feeder, if it is installed wrong and large it can raise the boiler pressure and open the prv... This is rare, but it happens...

Last make sure your boiler isnt getting too hot, you dont want a 250 degree high limit, lol...


So if I were going to your house for a service call, I would first make sure the unit was indeed going over 30 causing the prv to open, I would plug your prv for a second {I am a pro, I don't recommend you do this, I can open the boiler drain to relieve pressure if need be, but some prvs are leaking and wont allow you to test the system without changing them and I dont want to abuse a new one, sometimes they open and dont close}...

Once I seen it go over 30, I would set your water feed to 12psi {or what ever psi your home needs, more floors more psi}, set and check your expansion tank, then shut off your supply water the valve before the water feed}, if it over pressurized again with all of that done, I would move onto dhw, check tankless or indirect by shutting their supplies off, if that isnt the issue and your piping and cirs are up to par with nothing else out of the ordinary {boiler isnt running to 250 degrees}, I would call a ghost expert because that is all that can be wrong...

Most of the time it is a faulty water feed or expansion tank, then you will sometimes find a faulty dhw system, everything else is pretty rare...

The last guy ddn't do it

@ April 17, 2014 9:14 AM in Slab house/Boiler in kitchen

so why bother, lol... just kidding...

I have been on more than a couple of these jobs, I have to say there is always a way, I wouldn't run an oil boiler without a draft control, sure it will work, but you can end up with very high stack temps, erratic combustion habits, sooting, ect ect ect..

I can dig up some pictures when I get home, but there is always an answer, this one seems pretty simple since that boiler can be top vented and its easy to pop a new thimble in the chimney and plug the old one...

Years back I went to a job that the inspector tagged {they were selling the property} because there was no control, so they wouldn't give a loan on the property without passing the home inspection... So I go out there and its a rear flue jammed in this tiny closet, we had a laundry list of things to fix, combustion air, electric fireomatic, double 5/8 sheet rock, ect this inspector was on the ball.

So now of course its a tight budget and the guy that installed the boiler was doing it as cheap as he could and not well at that, but the home owner said "It has worked for 7 years" cant argue with that, I guess... So there was literally NO way to get a draft regulator between this thing and the chimney, to be honest if that pipe ever rotted out, you would have to remove the boiler to replace it. So I broke a new hole in the chimney above the boiler and installed a larger regulator there, not perfect by any means, but it did the job, the draft adjusted well and the boiler ran better with it there... The inspector passed it on his next visit...

Another job I did was similar, existing boiler couldnt fit it between there and when the boiler fired the stack temps were very high as well as their fuel bills... So it was a rear flue jammed into the chimney, I plugged the existing chimney hole, I made a sheet metal box that I fit into the back of the boiler and came up the front of the chimney and behind the boiler, I installed the draft regulator into that box and then a 90 on top of it that went into a new hole in the chimney.

So picture it the boiler had a 6" termination, I built an 8" wide x 5" deep x 15" tall box, I fit a 6" collar to fit into the breech, made an oval to round termination on the top so I could get to a 6" elbow, then a 6" hole in the front for the regulator, I also made a small side cleanout toward the bottom so it could be vacuumed out.. It has been there a while and no issues, works fine... If it was any closer I would have had to collar into the chimney instead of the elbow but it fit this way and it allowed me to install it with furnace cement, if I collared it I would have had to put it in there blind...

These 2 jobs were both existing, if I were installing them boilers I would have installed equipment with top outlets, I have done this a ton of times, you have a boiler backed into a chimney, you pick something like the WM golds, they have top flues, top supply, front return, and you plug the rear pressure relief tapping and install it in the front, now you can back that boiler in and install it correctly with no future service nightmares...

Good luck... Remind me if you want a picture, I know I have one of the box I made probably dont have one of the other job though..

I changed it a little

@ April 16, 2014 10:40 PM in How To Make Current System More Efficient

I changed the drawing from the other job, I would do yours similar to this, so the zones are using the closely spaced tees and the boilers are on the loop like the picture shows. Then you can wire the system pump to run all the time or on an aquastat, I would use delta t pumps on your zones and then size the system pump according to what you need, a bumble bee would be fine, I wouldn't set it up delta t, but play with the speeds and settings until you find the best way to run it...
You can wire it so the boiler is kept hot no matter what and you will have plenty of hot water with the tankless...

Use your burnham as a buffer and if you don't want the stand by losses from the pellet boiler when you are running the burnham you can install a bypass and some iso valves... Not too hard to figure out, I am sure there are a ton of options for you, but if you can save the expense of a tank and not have it in your system then do yourself a favor and do so... I install a lot of equipment and by far the most failures I see before warranty and after is tanks, for some reason we can not make a good tank that will just last 15+ years, indirects, storage, directs, no matter what kind of tank I have seen them fail far sooner than they should...
And for no reason, I wish a company would come out with a thick high quality ss tank that would last as long as a ci boiler, a nice 30-40 year life expectancy tank, heck I would be happy with one that would consistently last 20, they cost almost as much as a boiler after all...
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