Boiler pressure gauge says 50 psi

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Old 10-15-09, 08:15 PM
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Boiler pressure gauge says 50 psi

I have a Governale RM 22 US II Gas Boiler. I finally got it heating, but the pressure gauge says 50 PSI,Is that too high? Last winter the plumber had to come because the basement was flooded with water gushing from what i assume was some sort of pressure release valve. How do I get the pressure down?

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Old 10-16-09, 09:18 AM
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Yes, it is very high. Your relief valve should be blowing off. If it is not, I'd replace that valve as well. The boiler should be at 13-15 psi for a typical residence.

I agree with Mr. Fix It, your boiler feed water pressure regulator needs to be replaced.
 
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Old 10-16-09, 09:34 AM
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I just turned up the heat and and the gauge has gone up to 60 psi on the boiler pressure. Here's the incoming water supply and the valve. Is there a way to adjust these two that might reduce the pressure?



 
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Old 10-16-09, 09:45 AM
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I live on the 3rd floor and the boiler is in the basement, should I be looking for like 20-25psi?

here's the gauge. pics of water supply below.

 
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Old 10-16-09, 10:07 AM
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I am willing to bet that your so called plumber did something stupid that he should not have done... it sounds to me as though you either no longer have a pressure relief valve, or he put a plug in it.

PLEASE, for SAFETY SAKE, don't mess with this anymore, and call a professional that knows the safety implications of running without a proper relief valve! When a boiler EXPLODES, it very often KILLS!
 
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Old 10-16-09, 10:26 AM
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The FIRST thing to do is to look on the boiler's name plate and see what the Maximum Allowable Working Pressure (often abbreviated MAWP) is for the boiler. While most residential boilers have a MAWP of 30 psi there are some that are rated at 60 psi.

The SECOND thing to do is to inspect the safety valve. Make sure the outlet of the safety valve is not plugged in any way. Look at the tag or name plate to check the set pressure of the safety valve, it should be the same as the boiler's name plate MAWP.

If the safety valve outlet is not plugged and the set pressure rating is in agreement with the boiler's MAWP then you can proceed with several other tests and/or replacements; the first being to lift the handle on the safety valve and blow a quantity of water through it. Watch the pressure gauge when you do this to see if it quickly drops in pressure and how fast the pressure returns to the previous reading. You may have a defective pressure gauge.

Please post several more pictures of your system, both close ups and several from far enough away that we may see how the different parts are piped.

One last thing. If you are in a multiple occupancy building it may not be legal for anyone but a licensed plumber or heating technician to do ANYTHING with your boiler and associated equipment.
 
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Old 10-16-09, 10:35 AM
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OK lets not get carried away here. Nobody said he removed the releif valve. I've known my plumber for many many years. He's certainly not dumb enough to do anything that could kill us. He's certified to do work for the city, and he's been doing this a long time, he's always talking about safety stuff and avoiding lawsuits, and he's a cool guy.

OK so there is water dripping already from somewhere, I'm guessing from the release valve.

But even when it was cold it was at 45 psi. Does that mean that its the water supply and not the boiler? I notice too that the gauge for my neighbor that lives above me is at 45psi, they live on the 4th floor. I am on the 3rd. The ones for my neighbor below me are at 12psi for both the houses on the first and second floor. Could it be that they are set that way to get the pressure head needed to climb the floors to the radiators on the 3rd and 4th floor?

I'm more afraid of calling a random technician who doesnt know this building, he announces that the boiler is about to explode and everybody's life is hanging by a thread. He makes permanent changes, and then I dont have enough heat when i crank it up in january. Then I'm stuck because I cant undo the changes and I have to call someone else to reconfigure it right back to the way it is now. Afer all of which I'm out of pocket for god knows how much.

What do you think?
 
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Old 10-16-09, 11:14 AM
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furd: thanks

I will check on that stuff.

For now I've turned off the boiler and I'm using my portable heater.
 
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Old 10-16-09, 01:02 PM
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The specs on the panel say:

max working water pressure 50 psig

min releif valve capacity 32 lbs/hr

Thanks





 
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Old 10-16-09, 02:56 PM
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I don't think anyone is getting carried away... stating FACTS... when and if a boiler explodes, people are often killed... that's a fact. Boilers explode from excessive pressure, that's a fact. Your boiler is exhibiting excessive pressure, that's a fact.

While it is true that the gauge MAY be in error, the fact is that in cases such as this, one should ALWAYS assume that the gauge is correct. To do otherwise is foolish.

To get water to the third floor from the basement... that's what, maybe 40 feet? and the 4th floor maybe 50 feet? To get water to 50 feet, you don't need more than 27 PSI... OK, maybe you DO have a boiler that has the 50 PSI rating for that reason, but you are already showing us that the gauge is above that point.

As a point FYI, to calculate the pressure needed in the system, determine the height from the boiler to the highest point in that system, in feet. Multiply that distance by 0.43 and add 4 PSI 'headroom'. That is what determines the pressure that the system should run COLD.

The expansion tank should be sized such that the pressure is not closer than 10% of the rating of the relief valve. So, if you have a 50 PSI relief on your boiler, you MAXIMUM pressure when HOT should be not more than 45 PSI.

Heed carefully furd's warning about multi-occupancy housing, and the legalities of non-licensed persons servicing the equipment. You could be opening yourself up for a liability lawsuit by working on this equipment.

No matter how 'cool' your tech/plumber is, if he can't properly maintain the equipment, find a different cool guy to do so.
 
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Old 10-16-09, 03:47 PM
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I suspect the 30 psi relief valve was replaced with a water heater 120lb t&p relief. An inspection of the relief would be advisable.
 
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Old 10-16-09, 05:23 PM
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Need a few more pictures.
 
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Old 10-17-09, 12:12 PM
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The pressure releif valve looks new and says 45psi. When the boiler is cold the boiler gauge also says around 40 psi.

here are all the pics.

Boiler pictures by mrsoze00 - Photobucket
 
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Old 10-17-09, 12:24 PM
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I don't see a pressure relief valve in any of the pictures?

If the relief valve is set at 45 PSI, then how come the boiler gauge is showing above 50 PSI ?

Are you confusing the RELIEF valve with the REDUCING valve?

The Green valve is a REDUCING valve.
 
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Old 10-17-09, 12:28 PM
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the releif valve is behind the boiler, its gold in the picture from the side. I'll add a close up.
 
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Old 10-17-09, 12:39 PM
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here's the close up of the relief valve.

Boiler :: reliefclose.jpg picture by mrsoze00 - Photobucket

and the whole album with all the pics

Boiler pictures by mrsoze00 - Photobucket
 
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Old 10-17-09, 01:05 PM
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That relief valve looks right. But the indicated setpoint is 45 psi, so it should have lifted before the boiler reached 50+ psi. I would say that there is something haywire with either the pressure gauge or the relief valve.
 
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Old 10-17-09, 01:10 PM
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Originally Posted by mrsoze00 View Post
When the boiler is cold the boiler gauge also says around 40 psi.
As Trooper stated, 40 psi is too high (cold) for a four storey house and a 45-psi relief valve - 27 psi is more like it. Did it possibly get up to 40 by you or somebody overfiling the boiler? What is the automatic fill valve set for? Maybe it's leaking past the seat? Troubleshooting time.

Bourdon tube gauges sometime read high if they are old. I would replace the gauge.

Do you notice the black mark somebody put on the gauge - showing the normal cold pressure? That mark looks to be right at 27 psi, or I'll be a monkey's uncle. Clearly, something is not as it should be.
 

Last edited by Mike Speed 30; 10-17-09 at 01:30 PM.
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Old 10-17-09, 01:38 PM
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If you mean the green pressure reducing valve, its set for 12 psi.
 
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Old 10-17-09, 01:59 PM
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Originally Posted by mrsoze00 View Post
If you mean the green pressure reducing valve, its set for 12 psi.
Yes. Are you going by what the tag says is the factory setting? 12 psi wouldn't lift the water up to your fourth floor or even the third. Please post a picture of the tag on that valve.

My guess is that the person that originally installed that fill valve adjusted the stem to give 27 psi (cold).

Turn off the boiler, let it cool, and drain water from the boiler drain valve until the pressure gauge shows, say, about 25 psi (cold). Then see what happens over a few hours or a day or so (keeping an eye on the gauge).

If the pressure creeps up on past 27 psi (cold) and beyond, then your auto fill valve is leaking through and must be replaced. Until you can get it replaced, drain the system back down to 27 psi, and shut the city water valve feeding the fill valve - you can continue to operate temporarily, but get it replaced ASAP.
 
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Old 10-18-09, 04:36 PM
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Heres the Pressure reducing valve with the 12 psi original setting.

Boiler :: prv12psi.jpg picture by mrsoze00 - Photobucket

Heres the album of boiler pics. How do I know the water drain valve, there is nothing down towards the bottom of the boiler that would look like it. and if its above I dont want to confuse it with the return pipe.

Boiler pictures by mrsoze00 - Photobucket

Thanks
 
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Old 10-18-09, 04:57 PM
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Again though, remember that just because the valve was at 12 PSI when it left the factory, doesn't mean someone didn't diddle with it and raise the pressure... note that the tag also says 'adjustment range 10-25 PSI' ...

ANY drain on the boiler can be used to let some water out and drop the pressure down.

UNTIL you KNOW that the pressure gauge is accurate, you are spittin' into the wind.
 
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Old 10-18-09, 04:58 PM
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There is a drain valve under the gas manifold. Follow the piping coming out of the bottom of the circulator pump and you'll see it. It looks like it may have a plug in it and it will also be impossible to get a hose on without removing the bottom (grilled) portion of the boiler casing.
 
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Old 10-18-09, 05:06 PM
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I dont think its a faulty pressure gauge, because the pressure gauge for my 4th floor neighbors boiler says the exact same thing, 40-45 psi when cold. And the gauges for the lower floors both say 10-12 psi. I think he increased the boiler pressures for the high floors (but too high) and kept the pressure down for the lower floors.
 
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Old 10-18-09, 05:11 PM
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Thanks furd. Never let anyone say its a waste of time to post lots of pics on a DIY help forum.
 
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Old 10-18-09, 05:23 PM
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From your photo of the fill valve, it seems that somebody has loosened the adjusting stem to change the setpoint - and didn't bother to tighten the lock nut.

But anyway, like Mr. Fixit said before. Likely your automatic fill valve is leaking through. I would replace it wlthout further ado.
 
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Old 10-18-09, 05:54 PM
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I dont think its a faulty pressure gauge
If you can explain to me why your gauge said 55 PSI, and yet your relief valve is set for 45, and it wasn't spewing water all over the place, then I might agree with you.

Just because the gauges on two separate boilers read the same does NOT mean that EITHER or BOTH are accurate. That is flawed logic. What's that all over the front of your shirt? Looks like spit!
 
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Old 10-18-09, 06:58 PM
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Wait a minute. If I'm the one with the bad boiler, why do you seem to be the one all upset with your head banging against a wall? Take it easy man. I'm OK, I've got a space heater. Its not that important
 
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Old 10-18-09, 07:35 PM
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I'm fine man, no problem... it's just that this thread is going round and round and round ... same questions, same answers...

So, it's like bangin' yer head against a wall... that's all.

And chances are pretty good that it may not even be legal for you to be working on that system... and you pretty much ignored that part.

I'm pretty close to closing this thread, for that reason alone.
 
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Old 10-29-09, 09:23 AM
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Running perfectly at 25psi cold and 30 psi hot.

While it was cold I let some water out of the system and that was all it took. As I was doing that I watched the pressure gauge and it immediately started dropping from 40 cold to 25 cold. Its now stabilized at 30psi hot instead of 50psi hot, and its nice and warm in the rooms.

Thanks guys.
 
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