adding a third zone

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  #1  
Old 09-17-08, 06:31 PM
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adding a third zone

ok new to this because i never really needed help. So this is what i have going. My sister and my brother inlaw built themselves a nice appartment in the basement so we had to plumb in heat. The system we have is an oil burner boiler setup with two zones and two recirculater pumps,that looks like it is controled by the master relay that has all the sensors and a second one the controls the second pump.To me i see kind of how they work together....confusing....well alittle but i think i got it. Now the new piping is installed the same as the first two zones but the wiring has me unsure how to get the third zone working without an over load on the system....going by how i see it wired now. The question is can i get a switching relay that will work all three zones or should i just get one more relay and wire that in and how. One that does all three would be easy...any help would be great.....thanks.
 

Last edited by itstheshark; 09-17-08 at 06:33 PM. Reason: spelling
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  #2  
Old 09-18-08, 05:26 PM
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Switching Relay

You could use a Taco SR 503 switching relay to control all three zones. Personally, I always install a relay with at least one more zone than is needed at the moment. This provides an extra zone for future expansion or a backup should one of the other zones crap out. Here's a page from Taco.
http://taco-hvac.com/en/products/Swi...t_category=139
 
  #3  
Old 09-18-08, 06:28 PM
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t/y for the info...but it is looking like this taco unit prioritizes..spelling w/e.....it gets very cold here and sometimes you need all the pumps to be on. I'm talking 50 below wind chills and 20 below temp,could it get stuck on one zone trying to heat that one and let the others get nothing causing the house to get cold? Like i said this one is new to me and i just want to be sure it is going to heat the whole house and not get stuck doing one zone. love the idea of one switch box....sounds prefect...but will it do what i need it to? Sorry so pushy but it is going down into the 20's tonight and yet we still have no heat. I just want to do it right..well at this point i just want it working. t/y again for your help
 
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Old 09-18-08, 06:38 PM
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The priority is optional. It's usually used for a domestic hot water circuit (e.g., indirect water heater). Normal operation is if you need three zones running, all three zones run.

Happy owner of a Taco SR-503. Works great. Simple wiring. Go for it.
 
  #5  
Old 09-18-08, 06:49 PM
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t/y xiphias that was the only hold up sounds perfect. well i'm a member now so you peeps can put me in the automotive group...def can help there. Definetly should have it all up and running by the weekend.t/y again
 
  #6  
Old 09-27-08, 06:06 AM
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update....well after pricing out the new switching relay at 150 dollars and having two good relays working i ended up getting one more relay and mirrored how it was wired to the second zone.....all is good all three zones work fine alone or together....perfect.....i just couldn't see throwing away a 100 dollars worth of relays....sure would have been less work than getting three wires on the trigger...but it is all working for only 30 dollars so be it.......i do thank you for your help and if i loose the main switching relay i will def get that taco
 
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Old 09-27-08, 09:23 AM
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30 vs 150

At $30 vs $150, pretty much a no-brainer. The mult-zone relay panels make it neat & easy to wire when doing more than one zone but for your application, I can't blame you one bit. I'd probably do the same myself.
 
  #8  
Old 10-18-08, 05:29 PM
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kk....more help...i'm not sure if the third zone has caused this or not.....but the pump for the upper level runs and i have no air pockets but the water does not circulate. I think it is just the pump not the mod...so i'm asking is there different pumps for higher level or are they all the same......just want to get the right one....oh and what i mean higher level...the zone not working is the top floor.....didn't notice till it got cold i was just going by that it kicked on after the mod....thanks again for everyones help
 
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Old 10-18-08, 05:55 PM
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No Heat-Top Floor

How much pressure is on the boiler? Are you sure all valves are open? The top floor worked with that same circulator before you added the basement zone, did it not?
 
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Old 10-18-08, 07:31 PM
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i have no air pockets
Dollars to Donuts, you do ...

What Grady said about the pressure... how much ?

When you say 'top floor', how many floors up IS the top floor ?
 
  #11  
Old 10-19-08, 07:55 AM
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not sure if the gauge reads right but it says 7 lbs.....and this is just a 2 floor house we just added the basement zone......the upsairs is a straight run baseboard system except for the bathroom has a small sort of radiator with a beeder and then there is one other bleeder inline about 2/3s down the run......and i get no air out of either one anymore....just so you know if i could find a date on this pump i think it would say something like 1200 BC....it's very big i'm sure draws way to many amps
 
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Old 10-19-08, 08:14 AM
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Pressure

When you open the bleeders upstairs do you get a good stream of water?
 
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Old 10-19-08, 08:22 AM
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If that gauge is correct, then the pressure is probably too low to make it to the 2nd floor.

You need appx 1/2 PSI per foot of height above the boiler, PLUS about an extra 4 PSI.

Example: Let's say that your boiler is in the basement, and the highest point in the system on the 2nd floor is 20 feet above that. You would need 20 X .431 = 8.62 + 4 = 12.62 PSI to get that water up to the second floor. (and that number should be a clue as to why a minimum pressure of 12 PSI is usually specified!)

So, first thing you need to do is verify that the gauge is correct.

Next, determine why the pressure is low, and correct the condition.

THEN bleed the upstairs zone.

and i get no air out of either one anymore...
OK, no air... but do you get WATER ?
Does is just sort of dribble out ? or is it under pressure ?

Grady beat me! Hi Grady!

Oh, one more thing... in 1200 BC, pumps were called 'goat skin bladders' ... they didn't have electricity then... they didn't invent electricity until like 600 BC ...
 
  #14  
Old 10-19-08, 09:16 AM
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ok so the gauge does not work...sooooo.....if i'm going to get one i may as well replace that energy sucking pump and be done with it....i'll let you know how i made out after i get the new stuff
 
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Old 10-19-08, 09:37 AM
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How do you know the gauge doesn't work ?
 
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Old 10-19-08, 10:59 AM
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i closed off the other 2 zones hooked a hose and bled off all the pressure and the gauge didn't move....i was thinking bleed it off not add pressure not knowing how much it already had
 
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Old 10-19-08, 12:42 PM
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No, don't do that ... you can't run with zero pressure...
 
  #18  
Old 10-19-08, 01:00 PM
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i know that....it was just to check the gauge.....so after i checked the gauge i turned off the upstairs zone turned on the other 2 and gave it enough pressure to run them till i get the new parts.....but thanks for the heads up....the other zones are working fine with how ever much pressure i gave them....i hope to have the new parts tomorrow
 
  #19  
Old 10-25-08, 01:37 PM
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ok....i got the new pump and gauge today....set the pressure at 17 turned off the return on the third zone and opened the drain the is just above that till the pipes stoped making noise and no air came out and then bumped the pressure back to 17.....then bled out the two bleeders.....i have heat in the bath room so i think i got it......less than 100 bucks not bad.....it's a bit warm today to really test it but it will be cold this week so i will find out then.....thanks for all the help......Beer 4U2
 
  #20  
Old 10-25-08, 02:35 PM
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Why did you choose 17 PSI ? If the boiler is cold, that's a tad on the high side...
 
  #21  
Old 10-25-08, 02:43 PM
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that was from what you said and what others have said......useing what you said i come up with about 14....going by other heating people running it should be 20.....but my system has and expandsion tank so the pressure remains the same all the time running or not...soooooooooooo.....i picked 17 just to see
 
  #22  
Old 10-26-08, 07:42 AM
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ok it got down to 30 last night and guess what.....NO HEAT....so i thought about it there has to be air trapped somewhere....so i closed off the two zones that work closed off the return on the one that doesn't.......cranked on the water and put a hose on the drain and waited till the return pipe got hot and......omg.....lots of air......so i think i really have it this time....set the pressure to 14......guess i will find out tonight if it works .....thanks again
 
  #23  
Old 10-26-08, 08:10 AM
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If your expansion tank is large enough to limit the pressure swings, there's no reason that you can't set to 17, I was just wondering if your home is that tall !

When you add fresh water to any system, a lot of air will be driven out when it's first heated (and more on subsequent heatings) so you may have to bleed a few more times... but by actually PURGING as you did, you will again be adding fresh water and the vicious cycle repeats over and over...

So, if you have manual air bleeds on the highest zones, just open them to let the air out and add as little fresh water as you can.

To make sure that 14 PSI is enough pressure for the upper zone, if you open the manual bleeder, and you get a good stream of water, it should be enough. If it's too low, you won't get any (or only a liddle piddle) of water out. You could also install a pressure gauge up there if you are curious. It should always read at least 4 PSI on the uppermost level.
 
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Old 10-26-08, 08:29 AM
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will do..... but i think i have it this time and yes a good stream....so i'll keep checking for air.....thanks for your help and i'll let you know tomorrow
 
  #25  
Old 10-28-08, 05:57 AM
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I HAVE HEAT!!!! good thing too cause it's snowing like crazy....and the pipes don't even make noise anymore....they always did before...anyway thank you guys for adding yet another thing i can do.
 
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