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OT: any steam heat wizards here?

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  • gellfex
    replied
    Originally posted by deltap View Post
    If you are producing soot with a gas burner, you have a potentially lethal problem. Lots of CO there. Not enough air for complete combustion. Probably dirty fan or air inlet.Could also be flame impingement. Seriously get a professional to take care of it. Brushing off soot did not take care of the problem. You do not have the tools or training to solve the problem. The advice you get on this forum is worth what you paid for it.
    Agree 100%. Maybe you didn't read the whole thread, I don't blame you, but the only reason I'm doing self-help is because the steam tech who came, who's actually highly regarded on the heating site, did not do a combustion test. He was completely focused on the water supply, and lo and behold his prescription was the most expensive possible job that could be justified given that the boiler was only 9 years old. He wanted to rip out the entire condensate return system! I texted him I was not comfortable going ahead with that until he ran a combustion test. He never responded.

    Obviously I need a new steam tech. But weather like this makes professionals very hard to get for a system that is working marginally vs all the calls they're getting for systems not working at all.

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  • J Tiers
    replied
    Yep, probably CO generation, poor economy, etc.

    Poor economy costs money. CO has potentially higher costs. And there are other issues as well when things are not done right.

    I lived in an apartment where (as I found out) the landlord did the boiler maintenance. 7 unit apartment, I lived in the one that was partly over the boiler.

    One fine morning there was a dull noise and my floor jumped a bit.

    I went down to the basement to see what was up. The gas boiler had apparently had a late ignition, and had blown the door out of the boiler room, as well as dislodged some concrete blocks in the wall of the boiler room, and blown off the door of the boiler itself (it was a converted coal burner). Could not see if the flue was dislodged, but it looked possible. I went to the electric service and pulled breakers until I got it shut off, then called the landlord. I was not happy, and neither was he after the call.

    That one could have ended badly.

    Don't be "that guy".

    Leave a comment:


  • deltap
    replied
    If you are producing soot with a gas burner, you have a potentially lethal problem. Lots of CO there. Not enough air for complete combustion. Probably dirty fan or air inlet.Could also be flame impingement. Seriously get a professional to take care of it. Brushing off soot did not take care of the problem. You do not have the tools or training to solve the problem. The advice you get on this forum is worth what you paid for it.

    Leave a comment:


  • J Tiers
    replied
    Originally posted by gellfex View Post
    .................................................. ..

    Of all the commentary on 2 sites, no one said "a sooty boiler can reduce your heat significantly, try cleaning it yourself".......................................
    Actually, if you look back a couple of us DID say soot can reduce heat input, or something of the sort. Perhaps nobody said "clean it yourself".

    . Item #1 in post 117 is one mention of the "insulation" due to soot. I am pretty sure one or two others mentioned it also.

    Leave a comment:


  • gellfex
    replied
    Christ this thread has become a ****show with Mr George thinking he vanquished me from the site with his unwaveringly wrong advice. I don't know where anyone got the idea I had a tech coming Friday, I had to take my 88 year old mom to the hospital for tests, and it felt so good to be away from this mess I stayed away.

    As my stalker already knows (it's bad form to dox someone's username on a different site, privacy and all that) I finally gave up on getting a tech, bought a boiler brush, and cleaned the damn boiler myself yesterday. I didn't dare mess with the burner. Result: Flue temp is 340 down from 400, and rooms that were cold are at setpoint. I still need to get the combustion checked and burner cleaned, but at least my tenants and their baby aren't cold.

    Of all the commentary on 2 sites, no one said "a sooty boiler can reduce your heat significantly, try cleaning it yourself". Most of the comments on the heating site were to balance the venting, like you can get 2 full cups of water by pouring some from a 3/4 full cup to an half empty one! It appears my gut was right. It should be, the damn thing is big enough.

    Leave a comment:


  • wmgeorge
    replied
    Originally posted by J Tiers View Post

    Taking bets on THIS system?
    Nope and someone is going to jump on "mud and sludge" and its kind of a rhetorical statement I have never seen any mud but lots of cruddy water in the Mud legs. We were told right or wrong to remove those plugs on all four corners, drain and flush with clean water and leave open all summer. Until the OP gets a professional with an analyzer on the boiler he will not have an answer he wants. We had a burner expert in the shop that would do that once a year on the ones we had a Service contract on. I could get it close by eye, but today you do not want to waste any energy.

    Once again if this Thread is annoying to you please scroll on by.

    Leave a comment:


  • J Tiers
    replied
    Originally posted by wmgeorge View Post
    ..........................................

    When we shut down our steam boilers we always blew them down to clean out the mud and sludge in the bottom.
    Taking bets on THIS system?

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  • wmgeorge
    replied
    Originally posted by jmm03 View Post
    a little late in the discussion but does this type of system use steam traps that hold the steam in the radiator until it condenses and then they open to return the condensate back to the boiler? If so is it possible that it is just letting the steam pass through one or more of the radiators not allowing it to ever build up pressure, which would occur if the trap was malfunctioning. I am not real familiar with residential systems but fairly conversant with industrial boilers used for tank/process heating in a anodizing shop. Jim
    Not sure if I am allowed to answer you after the rants from folks who turned out to complain but never posted! If your not interested just scroll on by.

    Jim, No its a simple old one pipe low pressure steam system. Put in years and years ago and updated in 2012 with a oil fired boiler that was switched over to gas at the same time. It relies on less than 1 lb or perhaps a bit more or less of steam pressure to take the steam to the radiators. Very sensitive on piping as the water condensed returns in the same piping to a point by the boiler where the pressure in that return line takes it back to the boiler. The magic number is 28 inches of water height, which is 1 psi gauge. The vents in the radiator control the steam coming into it by either venting or closing. No traps like a two pipe system you and I have worked on before.
    Sensitive to the returns being piped properly and the sludge kept out.

    When we shut down our steam boilers we always blew them down to clean out the mud and sludge in the bottom.
    Last edited by wmgeorge; 01-26-2022, 03:15 PM.

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  • jmm03
    replied
    a little late in the discussion but does this type of system use steam traps that hold the steam in the radiator until it condenses and then they open to return the condensate back to the boiler? If so is it possible that it is just letting the steam pass through one or more of the radiators not allowing it to ever build up pressure, which would occur if the trap was malfunctioning. I am not real familiar with residential systems but fairly conversant with industrial boilers used for tank/process heating in a anodizing shop. Jim

    Leave a comment:


  • wmgeorge
    replied
    Originally posted by Bob Engelhardt View Post

    "Everyone"? I don't think so. I don't think anybody else gives a damn.

    I'm sure that plenty of us were hoping this thread would just die. We were given hope of that in your post #74: "Please post here when you get it fixed, because I am done wasting time on you ..."
    Everyone who took the time to read ALL the posts and give answers cared. Jells or Gellfex said he was getting an expert... it appears he did not and all those who posted were waiting for a answer. I don't think either Bob or SVS posted?? So stop reading.

    Leave a comment:


  • reggie_obe
    replied
    Originally posted by Bob Engelhardt View Post

    "Everyone"? I don't think so. I don't think anybody else gives a damn.

    I'm sure that plenty of us that were hoping this thread would just die. We were given hope of that in your post #74: "Please post here when you get it fixed, because I am done wasting time on you ..."
    Maybe not everyone, but many would like to know what the expert who was scheduled for last Friday, had to say about the issue.

    Leave a comment:


  • Bob Engelhardt
    replied
    Originally posted by wmgeorge View Post
    ... Everyone is waiting for the professional testing to be done and a report... except for you. ...
    "Everyone"? I don't think so. I don't think anybody else gives a damn.

    I'm sure that plenty of us were hoping this thread would just die. We were given hope of that in your post #74: "Please post here when you get it fixed, because I am done wasting time on you ..."
    Last edited by Bob Engelhardt; 01-26-2022, 12:28 PM.

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  • wmgeorge
    replied
    Originally posted by SVS View Post

    So What!….. You’ve thrown three tantrums, said you were done with this thread, and now you’re giving updates like a tattling four year old…..
    Who now is throwing a Tantrum? This Thread has gone on and on with interested people posting and the OP leaves saying he is going to have a professional combustion test done. Everyone except for you who could be the OP with another login name? Everyone is waiting for the professional testing to be done and a report... except for you. Turns out the waiting is over here anyway and the OP did not have a Combustion analysis done but he keeps posting else where. Is that not news?

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  • SVS
    replied
    Originally posted by wmgeorge View Post
    He's B a c k on the other Forum not answering direct questions, will not check what the experts suggest... unless He understands. He did Not have the combustion testing done for what reason it is not stated. But still has the same issue, and not only did he find the boiler nameplate, He also found and used the burner sight glass that I said had to be there. So it goes on.
    So What!….. You’ve thrown three tantrums, said you were done with this thread, and now you’re giving updates like a tattling four year old…..

    Leave a comment:


  • wmgeorge
    replied
    He's B a c k on the other Forum not answering direct questions, will not check what the experts suggest... unless He understands. He did Not have the combustion testing done for what reason it is not stated. But still has the same issue, and not only did he find the boiler nameplate, He also found and used the burner sight glass that I said had to be there. So it goes on.
    Last edited by wmgeorge; 01-26-2022, 07:49 AM.

    Leave a comment:

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