Motor on Boiler Making a Noise

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Old 01-30-10, 05:36 AM
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Motor on Boiler Making a Noise

I have noticed that a sorta humming noise has been coming from my radiators. In the basement, it seems the noise can be isolated to the Motor next to the boiler system. Although through the years (and the help of this forum) I have learned to maintain the boiler better (adjusting pressure. etc)...I have never maintained this motor. Could it need oil? Please advise. Thank you kindly.
 
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Old 01-30-10, 06:32 AM
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Mornin' yer Highness...

Might need some maintenance... the motor is part of the circulator pump that moves your water through the system.

What brand/model is it?
 
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Old 01-30-10, 11:33 AM
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Thanks for writing NJ Trooper! I took a photo of what seems to be making the noise. It is a Bell & Gossett and looks to be about a million years old (just kidding). I posted the photo here:
KODAK Gallery | Photo Merchandise

let me know if you can view it. Thanks!
 
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Old 01-30-10, 11:42 AM
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P.S. There are two photos
 
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Old 01-30-10, 01:20 PM
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I think maybe a half million though!

My guess is that the rubber motor mounts are shot, and the motor is out of alignment and vibrating. Those parts can be replaced... but is it worth it? You could have it replaced with a unit very similar (or the same as) the one next to it.

There are oiling points on there, one can be seen in the photo, a little spring loaded 'hat' that lifts up... there should be another at the other end of the motor, and also one on top of the actual pump part... 30 weight non-detergent oil ... but I don't think it will help much.
 
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Old 01-30-10, 01:54 PM
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So I probably should fix it rather than just learning to cope with the noise! So, if I am following you correctly, the green thing in the photo is also a circulating pump? And I could replace the noisy black one with something similar to the green one? Is replacing it a DIY job or do I need a professional? Also, what would I search under for the replacement unit?
 
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Old 01-30-10, 03:12 PM
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You _probably_ could replace the old one with the same one that's on the other zone... which is probably a Taco 007.

What you need to check is the distance from flange to flange. If they are the same, the 007 should bolt right in in place of the old one. You will need new bolts... and gaskets. Hopefully, the old bolts are not so rusted that you can't get them apart without cutting them...

You will probably have to drain the system to change the pump, as I don't see any 'isolation' valves around that pump. That can be a major PITA... draining it ain't so bad, but refilling and bleeding all the air out is sometimes difficult...

I don't know your skill level, so it's kinda hard to say whether it's a DIY for you or not.
 
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Old 01-30-10, 04:33 PM
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They may be out of view in the pix, but I don't see any check valves to prevent backflow through an idle pump. You can purchase the Taco version that has an integral flow check. Look up the the existing Taco pump's model number to see if it has an IFC.
 
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Old 01-30-10, 10:21 PM
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Taco IFC:
TACO - HVAC

Taco Std.
TACO - HVAC

Both will fit. IFC will have reduced flow rate, but will address
ghost flow issue. Good luck with non-isolated change out.
I hate that- What was that installer thinking? Was there ANY
thought of future service needed here?

Consider replumb to "pump away" system. (with iso valves)
I use iso flanges- cheaper than flange and valve, easier too.
 
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Old 01-31-10, 12:38 AM
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I'd try oiling the relic before anything else. I've seen old B&G pumps that had been rattling for months quiet right down after adding oil. I wouldn't worry too much as to whether or not it is "non-detergent, #30 SAE" oil as long as it is slippery. Add several squirts from a pump type oil can to the bearing bracket (pump assembly) and just a few drops to each of the motor bearings. You might also try to gently lift the outboard end of the motor to see if the noise changes.

If the noise does change then look closely at the rubber rings that support the outboard end of the motor (you probably won't be able to see the pump end very well) to see if it is oil soaked and deteriorated. Look also at the coupling from the motor shaft to the pump shaft and make sure it does not have any broken arms or springs. Broken parts would likely be found on the floor near the pump.

If you do have deteriorated motor mount rings I would suggest that you rig a piece of heavy twine or maybe flexible wire from the ceiling to hold up the outboard end of the motor. Don't put a lot of upward pressure on it, just enough to minimize the noise.

This is not the time to change parts on your heating system unless absolutely necessary. If the oil or the suspension string helps to alleviate the noise then watch (and listen) but plan on doing a proper job in the spring or summer when you no longer need to heat the house. At that time I would strongly suggest that you follow the advice already given and replace that B&G relic with a "canned" pump.

One more thing, that type NM cable going to the other pump (the green pump) is NOT code approved for that service and it should be replaced this summer with the proper flexible conduit.
 
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Old 01-31-10, 07:57 AM
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All good suggestions!

Yeah, by all means, try oiling first... there's little effort in this, and it might just work...

furd's idea of 'rigging' something to temporarily re-align the motor is also good.

He's absolutely correct that this isn't the time to change a pump if it's not absolutely necessary!
 
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Old 01-31-10, 08:05 AM
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Thank you all so much. I can't tell you how helpful much I appreciate your insight. This forum is very, very helpful. I am going to start with the oiling suggestion and move forward from there. Again, thank you so much. I will keep you posted.
 
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