Hot-water baseboard heat...one radiator is cold.


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Old 12-07-06, 02:07 PM
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Question Hot-water baseboard heat...one radiator is cold.

I own a house built in 1950, with an oil-fired boiler and baseboard hot water heat. This heating system is a but funky. For starters, the previous owners capped off the supply to the garage radiator, but I'm not complaining. Also, the two rooms above the garage ( furthest from the boiler ) have valves between the main pipe and the baseboard 'convectors'. I assume this was done so heat in those two rooms could be disabled.

The problem is, that even with both valves wide open, one of those rooms remains totally cold. With the boiler running, the valves and pipes out of the valves are hot...but the radiator is totally cold. When I opened the bleeder, I got a pathetic pfft of air and nothing else...even after 15 minutes! Additionally, there is a ceiling in the garage that prevents any access to the pipes.

Is there anything I can try before I start ripping down the freshly sheetrocked and painted ceiling in my garage to find the problem? Could the water level in the system be low?

An additional question: Can someone show me a reference for how these kinds of hot water heat systems work? It seems weird to me that a radiator can be plumbed in-line with the main supply pipe...wouldn't the water 'prefer' to travel through the lower, larger pipe rather than up and through the smaller radiator/convector? Well it obviously works I just don't know why

Thanks in advance!
 
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Old 12-07-06, 02:11 PM
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Wink

I opened the bleeder, I got a pathetic pfft of air and nothing else...even after 15 minutes!
Whats the psi on the boiler???? could need about 18 to 20 psi to get water up to that top bleeder. What do you have there. Could be you might have to kick up the auto fill.
 
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Old 12-08-06, 09:31 AM
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Hah! The gauge only shows about 5 psi. The needle wiggles a bit when the furnace if firing and the circulation pump runs, but that is it! 5psi all day.

It's weird because this odd-ball radiator is on the same floor as every other radiator...but no heat.

I see how the plumbing works to get fresh water into the heating system...but it doesn't look very automatic Could you explain the auto-fill thing? Thanks!
 
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Old 12-08-06, 12:31 PM
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Nice!

All I had to do was add water to the system, and bleed that one radiator. It's now working better than before!

Is there anything except a leak that would cause the system pressure to drop down to 5psi? Just normal operation? I suspect the previous owner never did the yearly flush-and-fill procedure.
 
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Old 12-08-06, 02:53 PM
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I suspect the previous owner never did the yearly flush-and-fill procedure.

let it alone you dont do a yearly flush and fill . Let it as is
keep an eye on it for now as to psi. The psi has to be what ever it takes to get water to the top bleeder.
 
 

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