Strange problem - electrical or plumbing?


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Old 10-14-07, 03:18 PM
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Strange problem - electrical or plumbing?

Hi,

We have forced hot water(baseboard) and oil. There are five zones in the house (2 up and 3 down). We've noticed that when one of the first floor zone thermometers is turned up the baseboard heat in the 2 bedrooms upstairs immediately above the zone go on. The problem is that I don't know if this is an electrical problem or a plumbing problem. It's always been this way so I assume something was connected wrong when the house was built.

Any thoughts are much appreciated!!!
Thanks,
TracyC
 
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Old 10-14-07, 04:30 PM
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How is it zoned ? with zone valves, or circulators ?

Is the reverse situation also true ? If you call for heat in either of the two affected bedrooms, do you also get heat in the downstairs zone ?
 
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Old 10-15-07, 11:23 AM
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Hi,

It's zoned with zone valves. It appears that two of the three downstairs zones kick up heat in the bedrooms upstairs (not the Master BR- it's on it's own zone). When I turn the thermometer on for those bedrooms the heat downstairs doesn't kick on. The 5th zone in the office downstairs and the Master BR don't appear to be affected or to affect any of the other zones.

Thanks,
TracyC
 
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Old 10-15-07, 03:51 PM
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Without seeing the system, all I can do is offer a guess.

My guess is that you have "ghost flows" where the hot water being lighter than the cold is flowing into the other zones by gravity. Believe it or not, you can actually have water flowing both directions inside of one pipe. The hot water flows upward on the top of the pipe, and the cold flows back on the bottom, so even if your zone valve is closed, you can get heat into a loop.

Solution would be to have a plumber install 'flow-check' valves on the affected heating zones that would prevent the gravity flow.

Or, you could have some screwed up wiring or piping, but again, without seeing it ...

Can you post some pictures and provide a link so we can look ?
 
 

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