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OT: any steam heat wizards here?

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  • #46
    It's making 9lbs of steam?
    Hard to determine from the photo what it's reading.
    Last edited by reggie_obe; 01-16-2022, 08:14 PM.

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    • #47
      A low pressure steam boiler is not over 15 psig . I can not read the gauge picture posted , anyway the gauge should be 0-15 and the relief should have been replaced also. Was this a DIY boiler install?
      Retired - Journeyman Refrigeration Pipefitter - Master Electrician

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      • #48
        Originally posted by reggie_obe View Post
        It's making 9lbs of steam?
        Hard to determine from the photo what it's reading.
        Actually, it was broken at that point. I didn't know how long it had been broken, there was an incident where a tenant flooded the system attempting to stop a leak from a broken condensate return, it might have been damaged by that.

        wmgeorge, you're not reading what I write. 30 psi gauges are by law, regardless of the fact that steam operates typically at <3 psi. The install was by a well regarded steam pro (sadly unavailable anymore) and was city inspected. You're barking up the wrong tree.
        Location: Jersey City NJ USA

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        • #49
          Never saw in over 30 years a LPS boiler with 2 gauges. You seem to know it All... good luck!!
          Retired - Journeyman Refrigeration Pipefitter - Master Electrician

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          • #50
            Seems like there is a need to immediately determine what is going on with the fire. Isn't there a door, or cover somewhere to see the fire?

            You REALLY need to know what is going on, because you do not want the fire heating up dry heat exchangers, or blowing out unburned gas, carboning up the heat exchanger, etc.. First is to determine if the fire is on all the burners. And preferably if it is firing efficiently, complete combustion. You can do some of that visually, checking whether you have a yellow feathery flame (bad, carbons up the boiler and makes CO). or a tight blue one (better).

            Yes, is seems that your idiot child "tech" should have checked that, and maybe he did check some of it. Did you tell the guy what the problem is? And he did no checking of many things that could affect that? I think "idiot child" may be not strong enough.

            So, what is this deal with some sort of water level issue previously? Where some tenant started mucking around with things and may have broken a gauge, as well as who knows what else?

            When was that relative to these problems? What was the issue, and what did he do?

            Call me crazy, but that sounds like it could have some relevance to the problems. Water level seems pretty relevant here, especially if there could be a low spot causing a "water blockage".

            You also might look through that PDF and see if you can identify your system type within single pipe systems, and identify the various pipes, the relevant distance "A" and "B", whether there is a Hartford loop, if the risers are "dripped" etc.

            The troubleshooting part might be relevant.




            Originally posted by wmgeorge View Post
            If I was on a service call and suspected the gauge not reading correctly I would pull it off and check the calibration or replace the gauge. Instead of mickey mousing around with something else the Homeowner had. When your charging $80 - $120 an hour the customer expects a professional.
            Thanks for agreeing with me.

            Looks like any "argument"is over.

            The OP tried the manometer because he could KNOW it was accurate, for his test. Makes sense, since the "expert" who gets paid seems to be saying the thing is 100% normal, and that is very obviously not true.

            His "tech" seems not to be listening, and that is a bad sign for getting anything fixed.
            Last edited by J Tiers; 01-16-2022, 10:08 PM.
            CNC machines only go through the motions

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            • #51
              I have to jump in again and be a $hit slinger. Pressure gauges ARE NOT ALL THE SAME, PERIOD!!!!!!! Most measure pressure as "Guage" pressure. This is what wmgeorge is talking about and what most people will see. There are also "Absolute" pressure gauges, Differential pressure gauges and a few others. A Manometer is a first order "Differential" pressure gauge just like Jerry said! The OP obviously has the knowledge to understand pressure relationships. The fact he had the where-for-all to set up a water Manometer to CONFIRM gauge indications speaks volumes about his abilities. When you do not have a service truck full of new parts to "TRY" at customer expense, you use what you have and understand!!! Keep at it Gellfex, you are on the right track. Use your common sense and intuition and you will figure it out.
              Robin

              Happily working on my second million Gave up on the first

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              • #52
                Originally posted by rdfeil View Post
                A Manometer is a first order "Differential" pressure gauge just like Jerry said! The OP obviously has the knowledge to understand pressure relationships. The fact he had the where-for-all to set up a water Manometer to CONFIRM gauge indications speaks volumes about his abilities.
                Thanks, but all I can claim is stealing a good idea when I saw it, in a discussion of low pressure boiler gauges. I could see it was foolproof! I still believe the answer is in the missing heat. Or unburned gas. No matter how dysfunctional the piping might possibly be, the heat needs to go somewhere. Mr Newton said it, more or less.
                Location: Jersey City NJ USA

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                • #53
                  That is the best reason for examining the fire, and the condition of the heating surfaces.

                  There needs to be water inside the heating surfaces, and there needs to be fire under them without accumulations of soot etc that reduces heat transfer. Are you sure those conditions are taken care of? Have you looked at the fire to see what the flames look like?

                  Are you sure the vents on the main line work?

                  Is it certain that the heat is not getting to any radiators?

                  What happened with whatever conditions started, or resulted from the problems your tenant had? And what were they?

                  Do you have any banging of pipes? I don't expect you do, but.....
                  CNC machines only go through the motions

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                  • #54
                    Hmm? I did not see a spec question.

                    We do all the taloring, Silk scree nd everything, JR

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                    • #55
                      Originally posted by deltap View Post
                      Download " ITT steam book". I think it is free in pdf form. It has a chapter on troubleshooting steam systems. It explains the different types of steam systems and how they work. One pipe was the first and later systems, two pipe, vapor, and vacuum were improvements.

                      Yes. I would do that ITT steam os a good route. JR
                      " I read the entire thing, front to back.. " Yeah, sad JR
                      Last edited by JRouche; 01-17-2022, 02:27 AM.

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                      • #56
                        The Homeowner asked for an experienced steam person then rejects the advice he gets? He does not understand that answering questions is part of the troubleshooting routine. Basic questions go un-answered and may seem simple and not related to what He understands but are part of the process. Instead he insults and rejects questions.

                        When was the last time the system worked as it should and what has changed?

                        I asked what is the water level in the boiler? Sight glasses unless cleaned and the + at top and bottom are cleaned may not tell the story. I have seen the X's and sight glasses plugged. Does the LWCO work when you blow down the boiler? Does the burner fire and stay on? Have you turned off the main (at the boiler) to see if the boiler will build pressure?

                        I had an old building where the pipes to the radiators were laid in the backfill sand, 40 years later it would not hold pressure because of the rusted pipes leaking steam. No heat and the boiler fired all the time.

                        System could be waterlogged with too much water in the boiler and returns.

                        Could be any number of things, but you need to check it all with an open mind.

                        This might help, I used to have a lot of B&G books but I think I left them back at the school when I retired from teaching, I carried them all in my Service truck!! Copy and paste in a new window >
                        TES-375B-Steam-Heating.pdf (xylemappliedwater.com)
                        Last edited by wmgeorge; 01-17-2022, 07:00 AM.
                        Retired - Journeyman Refrigeration Pipefitter - Master Electrician

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                        • #57
                          Originally posted by JRouche View Post
                          Hmm? I did not see a spec question.

                          We do all the taloring, Silk scree nd everything, JR
                          Hoist the sails men! Cutty Sark sails once again!

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                          • #58
                            Two questions, my last ones.

                            1) Why didn't the boiler mechanic replace the broken pressure gauge? He must have seen it during the cleaning and adjustment.

                            2) Do you blow down the boiler ( at least ) monthly, during the heating season when it is firing?

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                            • #59
                              Also my last Question, which I asked long ago ( #16) and for some reason everyone is arguing pressure gauges.??
                              YOU do not get steam until 212 Degrees F...so the pressure gauge discussion is for nought !
                              What is the temperature of the water ?
                              All the boilers I worked on had a temp and pressure gauge .
                              If you don't have one, go to the kitchen and get one and stick it on the top of the boiler......PROBLEM SOLVED
                              NO 212 means you have a burner and /OR control problem

                              Rich
                              Green Bay, WI

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                              • #60
                                Rich I suspect there is more to the story than what has been posted here. Yes you are correct a low pressure boiler steam gauge has both.
                                Last edited by wmgeorge; 01-17-2022, 11:01 AM.
                                Retired - Journeyman Refrigeration Pipefitter - Master Electrician

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