Leaking Steam Pipe

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Old 12-09-10, 12:10 PM
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Leaking Steam Pipe

Hi,

The steam (black pipe) in my basement develped a small hole in it creating a leak in my basement. I've temporarily patched it in order to stop the leak so that I can now remove it and replace it. I'd like to know if there is anything special I need to do before I remove the old pipe? Do I need to shut the heat off in the house before begining? What about water? Is there going to be a significant amount of water in the pipe when its removed? Is there a way to drain the water before removing the pipe?

Thanks.
Laurie
 
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Old 12-09-10, 12:17 PM
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Laurie...I'm moving this to the Boilers section, since you seem to have steam heat. The Plumbers may indeed know the answers, but lets give the Boiler Pro's their shot.

My opinion is YES, you will need to shut down and possible drain the system. You could be injured or cause damage otherwise.
 
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Old 12-09-10, 01:24 PM
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Thanks for your help. Yes, I do have steam heat. Do you know how one would drain the system? Is there a valve that would be located somewhere on my boiler?
 
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Old 12-09-10, 03:52 PM
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There are several steps to replace a leaking pipe and if you have never worked with steel pipe then it is going to be difficult to describe all the details over the Internet.

It would help immensely if you could post some pictures of your system, especially where the leak is in relation to the boiler. To post pictures you need to first upload the pictures to a photo hosting site such as photobucket.com or villagephotos.com. and then post the public URLs for the pictures (or album) here. More pictures are always better than fewer. Please have CLEAR pictures and have both close up pictures and ones from a far enough distance that we can see how the various parts are interconnected.
 
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Old 12-09-10, 06:34 PM
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Originally Posted by LaurieNieves View Post
Do you know how one would drain the system? Is there a valve that would be located somewhere on my boiler?
Draining the system is the easiest part of the fix: You would turn off the power to the system, and let the system cool down. Then open the boiler drain valve - if this is not obvious to you, best to call for help.

Replacing the pipe will likely require two 24" pipe wrenches and maybe a couple of cheaters, which are dangerous to use. Plus two strong arms.

Another question is why the pipe corroded? Possibly another problem with your system, air, etc.
 
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