Closed Circuit Hot Water Heat

Old 01-27-06, 08:02 AM
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Closed Circuit Hot Water Heat

My hot water heat furnace was installed in 1987 and at the time the builder told me it was a closed circuit using anti-freeze, as we live in Michigan and this was to be a summer home. He said this would allow us to shut down the furnace for the winter months and not have frozen pipes. Two years ago I asked the plumber to check to see if we needed more anti-freeze. He drained off about a cup of liquid and later said it was alright. Since then we have had a problem with vapor-lock and now he wants to add a water line to the system to automatically add water to eliminate the vapor-lock. Should I let him do this ... and if not, how can more anti-freeze be added to the system?
Old 01-27-06, 09:18 AM
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Since '87? That seems like a long time for anti-freeze. I thought that stuff had about a 5 to 10 year lifespan. The autofeed is bad with antifreeze because it could gradually dilute it. A closed system shouldn't require any make up water. If it does, fix the leak.

If the house now has no risk of freezing, I wouldn't bother with anti-freeze because it costs much more to maintain properly and doesn't work quite as well as just plain "dead" water.
Old 01-27-06, 07:58 PM
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Anti freeze can be added with a force pump. What is vapor lock? I had it in my car in the 70s but never heard of it in a heating system.


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