Baseboard Heating Problem (No Heat)


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Old 11-17-07, 05:44 AM
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Baseboard Heating Problem (No Heat)

I have a 3 zone hot water baseboard heating system. The pipe that feeds the zone in my basement is HOT all the way down to about 6" before the baseboard unit, it then becomes warm at the elbow and thru the "fins", and gradually gets cooler throughout the basement to the the other baseboard units (5 total baseboards). Any suggestions?
 
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Old 11-17-07, 06:04 AM
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Zoned with electric valves ? or circulators ?

Can you tell if the valve is opening, or the circulator is running ?

The other zones appear to be working fine ?
 
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Old 11-17-07, 08:33 AM
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Electric valves.

They are opening.

Other zones are fine.

The pies going thru the first baseboard appears to be getting hotter and then the pipe gradually gets less hot as you go towards the (2nd) baseboard, and completely cool by the 3rd. Distance from hot - less hot approx. 20', or about 10' past 1st baseboard.
Hop I don't sound to confusing.
 
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Old 11-17-07, 10:30 AM
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Not confusing at all!

You obviously have very little flow in that zone. Make sure there aren't any valves closed that should be open.

I'm assuming that the boiler is in the basement where the bad zone is.

It is possible that the heat you are feeling in the upper zones is from gravity flow and that your circulator isn't running/pumping. You may also have an air lock in that zone.

Can you hear the circulator running ?
 
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Old 11-17-07, 12:00 PM
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Bolier is in the basement.

What is a circulator, and what does it sound like?

On each pipe for each zone there is a Honeywell electrical box attached. Is that the circulator?
I hear that clicking when I lower & raise the thermostat temp.
 
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Old 11-17-07, 03:12 PM
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Circulator or 'circulating pump' is the pump that pushes the water through the pipes. It may be near the bottom of the boiler after where the pipes from the zones join together, and feeds return water back into the boiler, or it may be on the supply pipe that comes out near the top of the boiler, ahead of where the pipes split to go to the zones.

The Honeywell boxes are your 'zone valves'.

Depending on the type of circulator that you have, it may make some noise, or it may be nearly silent. It's sometimes difficult to tell if they are running.

Can you take some pictures and post them on www.photobucket.com (free) and put a link here ? If we can see the circulator pump, we can offer suggestions how to tell if it's running or not.
 
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Old 11-17-07, 04:03 PM
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Old 11-17-07, 06:26 PM
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The circulator on your boiler is that red motor connected to the pipes in the pictures.

Switch off the power to the boiler (emergency switch or circuit breaker).

There is a screw slot in the middle of the round part on the circulator. Using a screwdriver, unscrew that part, it is a cap to cover the hole. Don't lose the cap.

Look inside that hole (you may need a flashlight) and you should see another screwdriver slot. That is the back of the motor shaft. Put your screwdriver in there and turn in the direction of the arrows on the cover. It should turn freely. It may feel 'sluggish' when you turn it. If it does, keep turning in the direction of the arrows and it should feel like it is freeing up.

When it feels like it's freed up, put the cap back on and turn the boiler back on and see if the zone works.
 
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Old 11-18-07, 03:54 AM
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I turned the screw until about 1/8 of a turn and water started to leak out from behind the screw. I turned back just a little until it stopped dripping. I then turned the switch back on, turned up the stat and heard the the zone click on, but the pipe still only got hot for about 6'.
 
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Old 11-18-07, 07:54 AM
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Water not good !

No no, that's not good. Should be no water in there ! I think you need to have that circ repaired/replaced!
 
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Old 11-18-07, 08:05 AM
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Three zones, lowest is NOT working, all others okay: = pressure must be good, circulator must be good.

Third Zone not heating for more than 6", and lowest loop: = end switch on zone valve not making, circulator NOT running on that zone on heat call. Minor gravity flow seen.

Verify that the circulator is indeed running on the basement zone on a heat call.

And it does sound like a failed seal on the circulator, but that isn't why one zone out three would fail.

Pete
 
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Old 11-18-07, 08:11 AM
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Originally Posted by radioconnection
And it does sound like a failed seal on the circulator, but that isn't why one zone out three would fail.
Gravity could explain that though!

There won't be flow in the zone at or below the boiler level.
 
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Old 11-18-07, 09:26 AM
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I think If you do not have circulator isolation valves you can not remove the center cap on that circulator without it leaking. some models you can others you can't

8. Failure to Operate
When the pump is first started, the shaft may rotate slowly
until water has fully penetrated the bearings. If the pump
does not run, the shaft can be rotated manually. To
accomplish this, switch off the electrical supply, and close
the isolation valves on each side of the pump. Remove
the indicator plug in the middle of the nameplate. Insert
a small flat blade screwdriver into the end of the shaft,
and gently turn until the shaft moves freely (see Figure
7a). Replace and tighten the plug. Open the isolation
valves and wait 2 to 3 minutes for the system pressure
to equalize before starting the pump

where is a pic of your zone valves? Do they have an end switch and does the circulator come on when the zone valve is energized for the downstairs circuit?
 

Last edited by brewaholic; 11-18-07 at 10:35 AM.
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Old 11-18-07, 11:57 AM
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Originally Posted by brewaholic
I think If you do not have circulator isolation valves you can not remove the center cap on that circulator without it leaking. some models you can others you can't
Yep, brew could be right about that!

Take all internet advice with a grain of salt!
 
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Old 11-20-07, 07:25 AM
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Just want to thank everyone for all of thier help & suggestions, but had yo call in the "Pros".
Had new pump installed yesterday, all is well!
 
 

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