Boiler making a new noise

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Old 03-03-07, 03:06 PM
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Unhappy Boiler making a new noise

I have a hot water baseboard heating system and I just noticed that the boiler is making a new noise that it previously did not make. After the burner has been on for a couple minutes, I hear a high pitched hiss/whistle noise. When the burner goes off, the noise then slowly fades away over about a minute. My wife commented on the noise the day after I first noticed it, so I don't think it's something I just never noticed before. I can't see anything leaking anywhere, and the system seems to be heating the house as well as normal, but the new noise worries me. Can anyone suggest what may be causing this?

The boiler is a natural gas-fired Slant/Fin Galaxy GGW-150H. The plate on it says it runs at a maximum pressure of 50 psi, and the dial on it reads low 30's when it's not firing, and high 30's when it is (which is what I recall it normally reading) and reads a temperature of high 140 degrees F to 150 F. I moved into this house in 1994, so I know the boiler is at least that old. I believe the house was built in 1981, so it is probably that old.

Thanks.
 
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Old 03-03-07, 03:48 PM
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Does it sound like a whistle coming from the burner tubes?
 
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Old 03-03-07, 07:51 PM
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No, it does not sound like the whistle is coming from the burner tubes. It seems to fill the whole little alcove the boiler boiler is in, so I can't localize where it's coming from. But I can open the side at the bottom and watch the burner do its thing, and that doesn't make the sound any louder... so I think it's not the burner.
 
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Old 03-04-07, 08:49 AM
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Noise & Pressure

If the pressure is at or above 30#, something is wrong. The pressure relief valve should be opening. Call your installer back & have them look at the system. THIS IS A SAFETY ISSUE.
I suspect the noise is coming from the burners. This is usually due to an improper set up. It could be gas pressure, air setting, or orifice size. Unless you are at high altitude, the orifice size is not likely the problem.
 
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Old 03-04-07, 11:22 AM
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Yes, I am at high altitude (6300 feet). But this is not a new installation. I will call someone, however, if a pressure reading over 30 psi indicates something is unsafe.

Thank you.
 
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Old 03-04-07, 11:34 AM
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Not new installation

Sorry, somehow from the new noise, I got it was a new installation. An easy way to check the accuracy of the boiler gauge is with a tire pressure gauge.
On the expansion tank there should be an air valve if you have a bladder type tank. Just use a known to be accurate (within reason) tire gauge on that air valve. The pressure there will be the higher of the system pressure or that of the air pre-charge in the tank (usually 12#). If the tire gauge also shows over 30# you can be fairly sure the boiler gauge is right & the system needs to be looked at.
That noise could be related to the pressure if indeed the pressure is high.
 
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Old 03-04-07, 11:45 AM
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You can reduce the water pressure yourself. Let some water out of the boiler's drain spigot valve near the bottom, and watch the gauge drop. If it doesn't and you hear water trying to refill the boiler (and/or you can see your water meter turning), then you have an auto-fill valve letting it in and it needs to be closed down some, by, OPENING the screw more, after you loosen the lockdown nut that is around the screw.

If your water pressure takes a sudden climb to 30 or so after it was at a lower setting, climbing to 30 or so only after the boiler is fired up...then your expansion tank is water logged and needs to be emptied of it.

At about 30 PSI your Watts pressure relief valve should be going off. If it does not even dribble out water at that PSI either you have an inaccurate boiler gauge... and you can screw onto the drain spigit a $5 one from a big box store along with the appropriate brass fittings that convert the gauge's 1/4 thread to male hose thread... and see what you read when you screw it on and open the spigot. If it still reads 30 or so, you maybe better try flipping your relief valve lever to see if water can be released, and/or simply change out the relief valve for a new one. (To do so wil require draining the boiler down some of water to take off the pressure and leakage)
 
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Old 03-04-07, 02:04 PM
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Originally Posted by DaVeBoy View Post
... and you can screw onto the drain spigit a $5 one from a big box store along with the appropriate brass fittings that convert the gauge's 1/4 thread to male hose thread...
They also have pre-made up ones, look around where they have the inground sprinkler stuff. I think they're like $12 or so.
 
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