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Old 09-14-2017, 09:52 AM  
Lev
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Default Steam boiler post summer

Hi all,

Thanks for reading.

My house is heated by steam.
In preparation for the winter, we tested the boiler to check whether it's ready.

We turned up the temperature, and the boiler fired up.
After a couple of minutes, the pressure in the gauge started rising. Once it started rising, it just didn't stop. At some point the safety relief value was triggered and the boiler shut down.

Here are pictures of the boiler:
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Click image for larger version

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I tried to clean the boiler:

Emptied the boiler through the cleanout (#4 in the picture), then scraped as far up for any sediment. There was quite a bit - looks like it got hardened.

Then unscrewed the vial (#3), then the pressure sensor (#1) and then the pigtail pipe (#2).

I turned on the bottom valve right above the bucket in the picture. No water came out. So I shut it back off.
I let water run, and it came up through where the glass vial would be.
Then I put the vial back in there.

I let water run again, and it came up through where the pigtail pipe would screw in.

I cleaned up the pigtail pipe so water could go through, then put it back in and screwed the Honeywell pressure sensor back on top.

I filled the boiler with water up to 4/5s of the vial.
Then fired up the boiler.

It took the boiler a while to heat up the water, but then the pressure gauge again went up, crossed the 15PSI, then I shut off the boiler.
The pressure gauge kept on going up and crossed the 30PSI, as shown in the picture. The safety relief valve (located on the other side of the boiler) did not go off. But it's not normal (that I can remember) for the boiler to reach anywhere past 10PSI.

Any advice on bringing this boiler back to normal operation?
Thanks again.


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Old 09-14-2017, 09:01 PM  
frodo
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Call a professional, there are safety devices and interlocks on your boiler.
they can not be bypassed and need a pro to figure out why she wont act right


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Old 09-15-2017, 01:12 AM  
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Thank you, but I was hoping someone here could provide some specific technical advice, at least as a diagnostic step to check.
I have a feeling this is not a rare problem and there are only so many points of interface with this boiler.

Any thoughts?
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Old 09-15-2017, 03:20 AM  
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There is a temp or pressure switch that should shut it down and it is not working.
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Old 09-15-2017, 04:08 AM  
Lev
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Hi Neal! Hope all is well with the grandkids.

Thanks. The strange piece is that the safety relief valve did not go off. Is that not a physical valve that is just driven by pressure?
I wonder if something inside is clogged up, or maybe the pressure gauge is somehow not working correctly.

I pulled the trigger on the safety relief valve and held it open, but nothing came out.
Not a sound of deep water or anything.
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Old 09-15-2017, 05:23 AM  
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I read your post yesterday and didn’t comment because that is also out of my line of expertize. Like electrical High pressure steam is not anything to guess at.

That doesn’t mean it can’t be a DIY fix, but we really want to make sure in these cases we get the right people talking to you and you get solid advice. I know we have a few members here that are pros in those fields and the ones I would hope will chime in. Frodo is one I had hoped might have some insight and when I heard his advice to seek a pro I would believe him and take that route or at least hang around and see if any other pros have some thoughts.

It is a case of wanting to be 100% sure before acting. I could also guess at solutions as you are but really don’t want to see you proceed on guesses at this point.
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Old 09-15-2017, 06:10 AM  
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Old 09-15-2017, 12:05 PM  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lev View Post
Hi Neal! Hope all is well with the grandkids.

Thanks. The strange piece is that the safety relief valve did not go off. Is that not a physical valve that is just driven by pressure?
I wonder if something inside is clogged up, or maybe the pressure gauge is somehow not working correctly.

I pulled the trigger on the safety relief valve and held it open, but nothing came out.
Not a sound of deep water or anything.
The kids are good thanks.
Pulling that valve should have produced water or? and that is where I would stop and get help.
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Old 09-18-2017, 01:03 AM  
Lev
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Guys thank you very much for the responses.
I appreciate you being responsible with this.
You were great help and support in the past, and actually it's amazing to see the same group here still.

I was able to get good guidance so far on this topic at HeatingHelp.com.
https://forum.heatinghelp.com/discus...er-help#latest

I have work to do...... I'll post here too as I'm progressing with it.
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Old 10-13-2017, 10:53 AM  
Lev
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Hi guys,

I made progress slowly on this.
https://forum.heatinghelp.com/discus...er-help#latest

Some very helpful HVAC pros helped me get that boiler back in shape.

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I cleaned out the Low Water Cut Off, replaced the pressuretrol (pressure control unit), replaced the pressure gauge and rearranged some of these pipes and valves.


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