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OT: any steam heat wizards here?

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  • Chimney here is clay tile lined, which equals no liner. (it's on the list, but nobody wants to do it, apparently that's not enough work and so not worth taking the job). Anyhow, no soot. Makes no sense anyway.... the gas is burned before it gets there.

    Might leak gas out the flue box, but I cannot see any reason for soot.

    Does the gallon counter indicate a fair bit of water use? If so, you have to wonder where the steam is going. And whether hard water might be clogging the water passages.
    Last edited by J Tiers; 01-19-2022, 11:46 PM.
    CNC machines only go through the motions

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    • Originally posted by wmgeorge View Post
      At the end opposite the burner there should be a view port, glass might have a screw off cover.

      Since this used to be an oil burner, is the brick chimney lined for burning gas? If not the brick mortar will be destroyed by the acids in the gas products of combustion . So parts of the chimney could be collapsed? Something to be checked.
      No lining also means a cold chimney which does not draw well, leading to soot.
      The chimney has a stainless steel liner that predates my ownership, and that was cleaned by a professional last March.
      Location: Jersey City NJ USA

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      • Originally posted by gellfex View Post

        The chimney has a stainless steel liner that predates my ownership, and that was cleaned by a professional last March.
        Perfect. Your guy coming tomorrow will give you answers, A. You have so many vents that are either open or off (leaks) you can not build up any steam pressure or B. Your underfired for the load and/or burner issues or C. You have water trapped in the system. I see some piping issues at the boiler but its been working so I am sure that's not the problem. Oh are you 100% sure the gallons used are actually being registered correctly? If you have a tube leak, (not unheard of), could be burning water.
        Last edited by wmgeorge; 01-20-2022, 07:41 AM.
        Retired - Journeyman Refrigeration Pipefitter - Master Electrician

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        • Originally posted by J Tiers View Post
          Does the gallon counter indicate a fair bit of water use? If so, you have to wonder where the steam is going. And whether hard water might be clogging the water passages.
          I'm sure it was covered upthread, but while a steam leak would account for the lack of heat, and a hole in the boiler would allow steam to go up the flue undetected, the counter, checked by the tech, is saying there's no water usage.

          I don't think the tech is interested in coming back. He wanted to do a rebuild of the returns in the basement, what was probably the most expensive thing he could think of given that the boiler was young, and when I said by text on Tuesday evening that I thought a combustion analysis and boiler cleaning was required before I would go for that, has not responded. Maybe I'm being unfair, and he's just super busy with people who actually have no heat, rather than low heat.

          Location: Jersey City NJ USA

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          • Yeah, well 125 posts and counting..... not encouraging to go and seach for a few words somewhere.

            Well, that leaves plugged gas or water passages, or a combustion problem, assuming the piping is not a problem due to "rust dams" or poor install that was OK until it started getting plugged..

            What was the deal with what your tenant did to break the gauge? Something about extra water.....? That might be a clue
            Last edited by J Tiers; 01-20-2022, 11:34 AM.
            CNC machines only go through the motions

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            • Originally posted by J Tiers View Post
              Yeah, well 125 posts and counting.....

              Well, that leaves plugged passages, or a combustion problem, assuming the piping is not a problem due to "rust dams" or poor install that was OK until it started getting plugged..

              What was the deal with what your tenant did to break the gauge? Something about extra water.....? That might be a clue
              There was a leak from the return piping and the not so bright tenant who could not tell opening a ball valve from closing one opened the main fill valve which filled the entire system with water. I have since marked every valve with tags. IDK if that was what broke the 0-30 psi gauge, but it did cause at least 1 main vent to jam shut. I finally managed to unjam it by accidentally dropping it on the cement floor!

              I'm trying to decide if I want to venture out in the snowstorm today and try and get a flue temp reading.

              Location: Jersey City NJ USA

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              • For the boiler to build pressure the system needs to be tight, IF the vents have been removed or are faulty and allowing any vapor to escape it will never build any pressure. IF you had a main shut off and you do not, valving off the boiler could test that. IF you shut off the make up water and the boiler went off on the LWCO then that would prove your using water, regardless of any electronics failure in the feed.
                Of course just because you don't have water leaks does not mean you have a tight system that will build and hold pressure.
                Last edited by wmgeorge; 01-20-2022, 12:00 PM.
                Retired - Journeyman Refrigeration Pipefitter - Master Electrician

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                • So there is a nameplate this is the #2 Fuel oil rating of the boiler, it now has a inshot power natural gas burner. Perhaps the overfilling with city water and pressure damaged vents.

                  Click image for larger version  Name:	ymabqc2w76l1.jpg Views:	0 Size:	224.9 KB ID:	1981899
                  Last edited by wmgeorge; 01-20-2022, 04:38 PM.
                  Retired - Journeyman Refrigeration Pipefitter - Master Electrician

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                  • My guess we will never see him again. The thought posted on the Other forum is he could have multiple issues Gasp, not just one. Since he has dismissed every suggestion that he could not understand, yes even over where the experts on Steam reside. IF the boiler was full of soot and plugged again after just a few months, he could be working on that? Who knows.
                    Last edited by wmgeorge; 01-22-2022, 12:32 PM.
                    Retired - Journeyman Refrigeration Pipefitter - Master Electrician

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by wmgeorge View Post
                      My guess we will never see him again. The thought posted on the Other forum is he could have multiple issues Gasp, not just one. Since he has dismissed every suggestion that he could not understand, yes even over where the experts on Steam reside. IF the boiler was full of soot and plugged again after just a few months, he could be working on that? Who knows.
                      Not necessarily. Give him some time. Friday was boiler mechanic day, perhaps the problem was solved after a prolonged investigation or may repair work continues today.
                      This thread is little different than others, like the conversion of his son's Honda into a Conestoga wagon to be used to cross the country. There will be a debrief to follow.

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                      • I do hope the OP does come back!

                        This thread sparked a weakness I have and got me interested in the single pipe steam heating set ups, and I have learned a bit digging into how they work on my own. EVEN THOUGH I will never have to deal with one in my lifetime, LOL!

                        Looking forward to hearing more as the scenario unfolds...and to the solution as well.

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                        • Lets hope he checks in with positive news after nine pages of posts about his problem!
                          Retired - Journeyman Refrigeration Pipefitter - Master Electrician

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                          • Heh............. 9 pages?

                            Set your posts per page to something reasonable, and you won't have 9 pages. For me, this is page 4. Much easier to deal with.
                            CNC machines only go through the motions

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                            • Originally posted by J Tiers View Post
                              Heh............. 9 pages?

                              Set your posts per page to something reasonable, and you won't have 9 pages. For me, this is page 4. Much easier to deal with.
                              Wait ... you can do that? OK, I tracked it down:
                              -click on your User name in the top right
                              - then on "User Settings" in the drop down menu
                              - then on the "Account" tab
                              - 1/2 way down to "Conversation Detail Options"
                              - "Posts per Page"

                              This will help the multiple-quotes reply problem of not being able to multiple quote over more than 1 page.

                              Comment


                              • 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.
                                Retired - Journeyman Refrigeration Pipefitter - Master Electrician

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