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Steamhead

Steamhead

Joined on March 11, 2004

Last Post on July 28, 2014

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Try the Find a Contractor page of this site

@ July 16, 2014 8:36 PM in Long Island Steam specialists

you can search by state or zipcode.

Check out these two links

@ July 16, 2014 6:58 PM in radiator cover box design question

http://www.heatinghelp.com/article/158/Radiators/1537/Radiator-Enclosures

http://www.heatinghelp.com/article/158/Radiators/1563/Radiaor-Enclosures-additional-info-by-Frank-Steamhead-Wilsey

These are in the site's Library.

And according to WikiPedia

@ July 13, 2014 2:46 PM in Anyone else getting unwanted calls from Angie's List?

Angie's List has never been profitable. Gee, I wonder why?:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Angie%27s_List

Anyone else getting unwanted calls from Angie's List?

@ July 12, 2014 1:05 AM in Anyone else getting unwanted calls from Angie's List?

We get them rather frequently no matter how much we tell them we won't pay to advertise on their site, and we don't want them to call anymore.

If this doesn't stop we may have to take some sort of legal action. Anyone else in the same position?

This needless death proves once again

@ July 11, 2014 11:35 PM in CO deaths because someone cut off the exhaust:

that YOU CAN'T FIX STUPID!

I'm glad that contractor is getting both barrels. He deserves it.

It's called "an accident waiting to happen"

@ July 11, 2014 11:30 PM in What is the name of this oil tank filling fitting?

assuming the tank is no longer there- every winter SOMEONE gets a basement full of oil because someone hooked up to the tank at the wrong address. That needs to come out NOW.

Same with the tank, if it's still there but no longer used.

And you say the house "used to" have a steam heat system?

Another thing to check

@ July 9, 2014 9:27 PM in Icesailor are you there?

what type of shut-off valves are on the main, water heater and branch lines?

The usual stop-and-waste type really chokes back the flow. A full-port ball valve does not. 55# should be plenty of pressure to operate this system if the flow capability is good.

Many people confuse flow with pressure. If we have good pressure at the water service where it enters the house, and insufficient pressure when someone uses one of the facilities, there is a flow problem somewhere.

Not that simple

@ July 2, 2014 4:51 PM in New gas boiler sizing

first you need to make sure it's safe to do it that way.

Typical requirements are that the pipe must come out of the building at least a foot above the highest recorded snow accumulation in your area, with clearances as much as four feet from windows, doors, inside wall corners etc.

Also, there is much controversy over using PVC pipe for venting these units. Some manufacturers say it's OK to do this, but in general Codes want any venting material to be listed for that purpose. PVC manufacturers haven't done that, and likely won't. There are listed materials but they cost a lot more.

You might try calling Slant/Fin

@ July 1, 2014 11:55 PM in anyone know of a place where i can get dedietrich products?

they don't market DeDietrich directly, but their Eutectic boilers are based on DeDietrich blocks. They may know where to send you.

Nice boilers, BTW.

If you strike out, from the looks of that control you might find another manufacturer's unit that would work. Tekmar would be my first call.

Update

@ July 1, 2014 11:25 PM in One of the greatest heating tech' has passed away

From our favorite Dragon:
 
"FYI: For those interested.
There will be a gathering of family and friends on 7/9/14 from 6:00-8:00pm to say good-bye to Chris and share a story or two.
 
American Legion, 14 Church St., Manchester-by the Sea, MA"
 
I can't make it- any of you going?

What's probably happening here

@ July 1, 2014 5:06 PM in Converting Oil to Gas

is that Weil-McLain sees the writing on the wall, and doesn't want one of their boilers being replaced with those of another brand. So now they don't stand in the way of conversions.

In the past, the answer pretty much depended on who actually answered the phone. This may still be true.

Yikes- Chris was only 51

@ June 30, 2014 10:32 PM in One of the greatest heating tech' has passed away

younger than me.

A poster on one of the other sites said he had a heart attack, and no one was with him at the time. So far, that's all we know.

First order of business

@ June 29, 2014 3:15 PM in Utica boiler clicking

is to call a pro. Fixing gas equipment is not a DIY job, especially with propane that can pool on the floor and be ignited, causing an explosion. Seriously. People have died this way.

If that boiler has electric ignition, I suspect it's the old White-Rodgers setup due to its age. The successor to the AGB series, the MGB, originally came with this system when ordered with electric ignition. I seem to recall this system is no longer approved for propane (if it ever was), since it will try to light the pilot indefinitely rather than locking out as newer systems do.

If I'm right, you'd need to upgrade the ignition system and main gas valve. Honeywell still makes a kit for this that is approved for use with propane. At any rate, parts for the White-Rodgers system are getting hard to find.

Call a pro. Try the Find a Contractor page of this site.

Call a pro

@ June 28, 2014 9:33 PM in Pilot goes out when trying to turn on..

fixing gas equipment is not a DIY job. The risk is way too great. 

One question that hasn't been asked

@ June 28, 2014 4:33 PM in Heat loss on DC rowhouse?

is your current system a steam or hot-water system?

Or

@ June 25, 2014 7:37 PM in One Pipe Steam - What Is This?

it might be a False Water Line.

More pics are needed.

If you click on my company's name

@ June 23, 2014 10:39 PM in Need help rating these radiators.

at the bottom of this post, it will take you to a discussion of a project where we cut a co-op building's gas consumption by a third- by de-knuckleheading the steam system. Despite what you may have been told, it really is possible.

Two points:

@ June 23, 2014 9:44 PM in Need help rating these radiators.

1- Radiators with blowers- also known as fan-driven convectors- were never standardized like a lot of cast-iron radiators were. We would need to know who made these units and what their dimensions are. Pictures would help.

2- Calculating the heat loss of a building is not, has never been and will never be the way to determine an A/C load. They are two entirely different things.

You've had recommendations to contact Dave Bunnell, "The Steam Whisperer", and I'll add my recommendation. He's one of the best in the business. Why don't you get in touch with him?

I still use a similar boiler

@ June 20, 2014 1:06 AM in Can Anyone Identify this Honeywell Control?

which came with a Sunray FC burner. The problem with that burner was that before I got into the combustion end of the business, techs would try to set it up like a Beckett. You can't do it that way. Sunray burners have their own setup technique, which is more like Carlin's. Once they're set up they run very well.

I actually had a chance to meet the gentleman who designed my Sunray: Dr. Bola Kamath. This man is a combustion genius. I think of him whenever I work on one of his burners.

I've tried the OEM Carlin burner in my boiler, as well as the Beckett AFG and am currently running a Beckett NX. Proper setup is key for any of these units to run well. If a burner doesn't run properly in my boiler I change it- I'm too busy working on other people's boilers to have much time to mess with mine!

Now as to that control- yes, it was original to these boilers. It was designed to make packaged boilers easier to assemble at the factory, by eliminating separate controls and their associated wiring. But I suppose it got so expensive that using separate controls and wiring was cheaper- later versions of these boilers had separate controls.

We also need to re-state

@ June 20, 2014 12:44 AM in Oil to Gas conversion

the other advantage of converting an oil-fired boiler to gas... better efficiency.

AFUE can be quite misleading. We need to look at a boiler's thermal efficiency, which means what percentage the DOE or Gross Output rating is of the Input rating. Typical atmospheric (so-called gas-designed) gas-fired steam boilers have thermal efficiencies of 80-82%, whereas wet-base steamers normally sold as oil-fired boilers and equipped with good power gas burners rate up to 86%.

There are two reasons for this:

1- The wet-base boiler's cast-iron heat transfer surface almost completely surrounds the flame, whereas the atmospheric's flame is completely below the cast-iron. So the atmospheric loses a lot of heat out of the base. DOE doesn't care about this because technically the heat is released inside the building, but we want the heat to go to the radiators- not the basement, unless there are radiators located there.

2- The power burner offers much better control over the combustion air supply than the atmospheric. Excess air on an atmospheric is often 35-50% whereas a power burner can usually run at less than 25% without making CO. Excess air just blows heat up the chimney, so for best efficiency it needs to be limited. How do I know these figures are correct? Because we test every unit we work on using a digital analyzer! Can everyone in this thread say the same?

If you use a conversion burner with different available air tubes, flanges etc such as the Carlin EZ-Gas, you can easily transfer the burner if it becomes necessary. This protects the customer's investment.

I have read that in Europe, in cases where condensing boilers are not used, this wet-base/power-burner setup is standard. They call it "blown gas". We seem to be the only major country still using a lot of atmospherics.

Another possibility here

@ June 18, 2014 9:53 AM in Hot Radiators

is a lack of heat-transfer grease in the aquastat well, resulting in the aquastat bulb not getting the full effect of the heat so it wouldn't shut off the burner.

It may have an adjustable differential

@ June 17, 2014 1:11 AM in Hot Radiators

remove the cover (WITH THE POWER TURNED OFF) take a picture and post it here. 
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