three zone system one zone not heating up

Reply

  #1  
Old 01-03-12, 08:13 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: usa
Posts: 15
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
three zone system one zone not heating up

ok guys heres my problem

i have a weil mclane gold series boiler with an indirect hot water heater. i have three zones in my two story house. one zone is for the upstairs one for the middle level and the third zone being the hot water heater. they run though a taco priority zone box with the hot water heater being the priority. now when i turn the middle level tstat on the zone works and when the middle is off and the upstairs tstat on that zone works but when i turn the middle and the upstairs tstat on together only the upstairs zone works and receives heat even though the middle level zone valve is energized and open.

i know its not the zone valve( which are taco gold) because i just changed it the other day because the old green powerhead was leaking the wax and burning up.

any help would be appreciated as i cant seem to figure this one out

thanks
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 01-03-12, 09:32 PM
NJT's Avatar
NJT
NJT is offline
Member
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 23,539
Received 3 Votes on 2 Posts
Almost sounds impossible, doesn't it?

How's the pressure in the system look? What PSI and TEMP are you reading on the gauge?

Are there any air bleeders on the zone piping?
 
  #3  
Old 01-03-12, 10:29 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: usa
Posts: 15
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
cold its around 12-14 psi

hot around 19 psi

the temps around 180-190

there are air bleeders and i checked them all. no air.

yea this one has me stumped
 
  #4  
Old 01-04-12, 03:32 PM
NJT's Avatar
NJT
NJT is offline
Member
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 23,539
Received 3 Votes on 2 Posts
When both are energized, does the 24 VAC remain solid? or does the voltage sag ? I'm wondering maybe the transformer is somehow weak? I know that's a far-fetched idea, but it is a far-fetched problem...

You say you changed a valve head... you are absolutely CERTAIN that you didn't somehow cross up the wiring in some weird way ... ? Just for the heckuvit, re-check all the wiring.
 
  #5  
Old 01-04-12, 06:21 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: usa
Posts: 15
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Trooper
Yea when both valve are energized the voltage is steady.
The powerhead is wired correct as well.
Yea I can't seem to figure this out. I'm getting to the point where I'm just going to call a hvac tech.

Could bad pressure in the system cause the problem?
Maybe a bad pressure gauge?
 
  #6  
Old 01-04-12, 06:42 PM
Member
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: US
Posts: 552
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Here is my W.A.G.
There is some air, somewhere, in the 2nd zone.
When it is on alone, there is just enough flow to make heat.
When both zones are on the air moves around somewhere and the flow all goes to the third zone.
Seems backwards as typically all the air goes up to the high zones and they don't work while the lower zones do.. but stranger things have happened.

Unless it is an electrical issue.


Peter
 
  #7  
Old 01-04-12, 07:09 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: usa
Posts: 15
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
So how do I get the air out? I opened the bleeder valves and all that came out was air.
Thanks
 
  #8  
Old 01-04-12, 07:33 PM
NJT's Avatar
NJT
NJT is offline
Member
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 23,539
Received 3 Votes on 2 Posts
I opened the bleeder valves and all that came out was air.
OK, you must have meant to say WATER?
 
  #9  
Old 01-04-12, 07:44 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: usa
Posts: 15
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Yes sorry about that I meant water
 
  #10  
Old 01-04-12, 07:57 PM
NJT's Avatar
NJT
NJT is offline
Member
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 23,539
Received 3 Votes on 2 Posts
Thought so...

Do you know what it means the term 'PURGE STATION' ?

If you have a camera, take some clear, in focus, well lighted pictures of the boiler and all the piping and valves around it... we'll take a look and see if we can tell you how to do it... IF you have the proper valves installed.

Set up a FREE account at Image hosting, free photo sharing & video sharing at Photobucket and upload the pics there, come back here and place a link to your PUBLIC album for us to view.
 
  #11  
Old 01-04-12, 08:20 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: usa
Posts: 15
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
ok
here you go.
thanks for all the help i appreciate it


Pictures by milkman291 - Photobucket
 
  #12  
Old 01-04-12, 08:51 PM
NJT's Avatar
NJT
NJT is offline
Member
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 23,539
Received 3 Votes on 2 Posts
Did you install this, or are you friends with whomever did? (I have my reasons for asking... I'll be gentle...)

I can't really make out the path of all the piping, so I'm not 100% sure of this, but:

In the first pic, you see those two drain valves with the blue handles? and to the right of them are 1/4 turn ball valves?

FIRST, turn OFF the boiler and allow to cool to 100F or LESS.

Connect a drain hose to one of the two blue valves. Close BOTH of the ball valves to the right of the blue valves.

Direct drain hose to a laundry tub, out a window, floor drain... and OPEN the drain valve. You should get a flow of water through the zone and it should push air out as it goes.

Try it on both zones and see what happens.
First on the lower zone, and second the higher zone.

DON'T FORGET to open the ball valves before firing up the system!
 
  #13  
Old 01-04-12, 08:57 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: usa
Posts: 15
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
no
i bought the house like this last year.
why whats up?
is it the placement of the zone control?
i thought about that myself but looking around theres not really any good location for it so i assume thats why they installed it there.
 
  #14  
Old 01-04-12, 09:02 PM
NJT's Avatar
NJT
NJT is offline
Member
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 23,539
Received 3 Votes on 2 Posts
There's just so many things that aren't quite right that it's difficult to know where to even start.

Yes, the zone control panel ... should have been installed on the wall, not on the boiler.

The boiler is just jammed into that corner, that's why the piping is like a jungle gym... if they had pulled it out a bit, it would have given them room to do a proper piping job.

The expansion tank should not be mounted sideways like that, it should be hanging from a proper air removal device (air scoop, or micro-bubbler).

It's just in general a very poorly planned and executed installation... I'm sure there's more, but you get the idea.

See, I told ya I'd be gentle!
 
  #15  
Old 01-04-12, 09:09 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: usa
Posts: 15
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
lol
yea i would also have installed the taco valves on the vertical pipes not horizontal to allow for better cooling.

also i had to just change the expansion tanks last week the rubber bladder went. they didnt even have a support for it since they mounted it sideway i strapped it up myself because the old one was bending.

they hvac guy also never told the other homeowner that having a dryer venting in the basement can shorten the life of the taco valves.

i know who not to call now when i really need service!

thanks
ill purge the lower level and hopefully that will solve this thing!

thanks for all the info!
steve
 
  #16  
Old 01-06-12, 08:26 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: usa
Posts: 15
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Well apparently because of crappy piping the 007 taco circulator isn't enought to handle the flow on the first floor. Gonna try the 011 high velocity as it is the same dimensions. Then next summer when I split the back of the house on its own zone I'll re-pipe the system since right now he's got 1" coming out off the boiler going to 3/4 then back to 1". Not to mention upstairs he's got the 1" pipe opening up to the old steel 2" pipe. Pain in the u know what but hopefully the 011 will fix it for now
 
  #17  
Old 01-07-12, 10:49 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: usa
Posts: 15
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Oh yea come to find out after looking at the circulator in the system now it's only rated at a 10ft head.
So I'm not sure what the installers were thinking especially since I have a two story house. Anyway the 011 high velocity has a 30ft head and 30gpm flow rate so I'll let you know if that fixes it.

Thanks for the help guys!
 
  #18  
Old 01-07-12, 11:40 AM
NJT's Avatar
NJT
NJT is offline
Member
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 23,539
Received 3 Votes on 2 Posts
Misconception alert!

With a CLOSED piping system such as a heating system, the height of the building has NOTHING AT ALL to do with the head capacity of the pump.

This is because it is a closed system. The water in the pipes is a 'ferris wheel' of sorts. Your pump is pushing AND pulling at the same time. Additionally, you have GRAVITY pulling the water back down from the top. It is a 'balanced' system.

The pump has to overcome ONLY the flow resistance within the pipes and fittings themselves, nothing more.

This is as opposed to an OPEN system, such as a well pump, where the height PLUS the flow restriction has EVERYTHING to do with the pump capacity. In an OPEN system you are only PUSHING, there is no pulling at all...

I don't believe your diagnosis is correct.

If the pump works for the upper level, it will work for the lower level also.

Did you do what I suggested? Purge the zones ?
 
  #19  
Old 01-07-12, 01:16 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: usa
Posts: 15
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Oh yea I am aware of that troop. Actually I just had my uncle come over and take a look with me as he's been in the hvac field for close to 30yrs now. It's mainly a poor piping job in combination with a not so good circulator. Actually on purging the system the water flows quite well out of the hose. But on running the lower floor zone it took 20min to get hot water to the second baseboard rad. In 20 min the water should be returning to the system at about 140 deg and it's only returning barely lukewarm.

I was thinking the only reason it is flowing nice to the upstairs is because of gravity but since it's almost prob about 100yds of horizontal pipe on the first floor (because of the edition they built on the house) its not even making it around.
 
  #20  
Old 01-07-12, 03:45 PM
NJT's Avatar
NJT
NJT is offline
Member
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 23,539
Received 3 Votes on 2 Posts
ONE HUNDRED YARDS? as in 300 feet?

How much of that piping has finned elements installed on it? In other words, how many feet of fin-tube element is installed on that heating loop?

The return temperature is dependent on three things, the ENTERING water temperature, the flow rate, and the amount of baseboard element installed (and to a lesser degree the amount of total pipe).
 
  #21  
Old 01-07-12, 04:45 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: usa
Posts: 15
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
No that's an exaggeration it's about 150-175ft of pipe with about 50ft of copper fin. I guess with the extra head and flow rate(the head being 30ft and flow being 30gmp ) that should be enough to get it though the zones. Weil mclane says their 007 pump is good for 10ft of head with a 1 inch manifold out of the boiler but the installer has it immediately reduced coming out of the boiler. (and I'm upstairs now so I forget but it's either 3/4 or 3/8)

Very strange since my uncle does know the installer and says hes supposed to be very good. He mainly does forced hot air but he's not stranger to hot water heat
 
  #22  
Old 01-07-12, 05:23 PM
NJT's Avatar
NJT
NJT is offline
Member
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 23,539
Received 3 Votes on 2 Posts
Just because the spec says 30 GPM, you will NEVER flow that much... you absolutely do NOT want to flow more than FOUR GPM through a 3/4" pipe...

I still think that 11 is the wrong pump. The 007 is fine... you've got something else going on.
 
  #23  
Old 01-07-12, 05:27 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: usa
Posts: 15
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Well I've already exhausted my knowledge of hydronic systems I'm just going on what my uncle says. He does res and commercial work. But I guess we'll find out. I'll let you know if wind up swimming in the basement or have a nicely heated house
 
  #24  
Old 01-07-12, 11:10 PM
NJT's Avatar
NJT
NJT is offline
Member
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 23,539
Received 3 Votes on 2 Posts
Read through this thread... some good info regarding pump flow:

http://www.doityourself.com/forum/bo...flow-rate.html

The main thing to understand is that the pump has a 'curve' to it's operation. There isn't one single fixed point that it will operate at. The specs that you are looking at are at opposite ends of that curve.

The system piping also has a 'curve'. The more water you try to pump, the higher the resistance to the flow.

Look at the graph that is posted in that thread. You will see that the actual flow that the pump produces is completely dependent on the amount of resistance in the system piping.

It's a 'moving target'... the point where the SYSTEM curve intersects the PUMP curve is the flow rate you would expect to see.

That 011 is gonna pump it's socks off... bad choice.
 
  #25  
Old 01-08-12, 05:59 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: usa
Posts: 15
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Troop
I should mention that while I thought flow was good to the upstairs my uncle was saying its nowhere near what it should be. This is only a temporary solution until the summer when we are going to re-pipe the whole system in the basement. Like u had stated in your first post this guy did a number on his layout.
 
  #26  
Old 01-09-12, 07:26 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: usa
Posts: 15
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Troop
Well after talking to a Weil mclane rep we need to do something slightly different. I don't know if ur familiar with their gold series boilers but they have a flow restricter built in that diverts 30% of water leaving the boiler back to the boiler in case there is ever a cold back serge of water entering the boiler. So the only way to make sure the water gets the push it needs we are going to have to install a second circulator on the piping manifold exiting the boiler before the zone valves. The nice thing is because of the zone box it can be wired directly to the extra end switch in there. Lucky for anyone buying a newer Weil mclane they stop making them this way. Unfortunately for anyone else suffering this problem this is the only way to correct it.
 
  #27  
Old 01-09-12, 08:53 PM
NJT's Avatar
NJT
NJT is offline
Member
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 23,539
Received 3 Votes on 2 Posts
All their boilers are basically 'Gold' series... yours is a " GV " I believe a 'series 2'.

I don't feel right disagreeing with the W-M rep, but I don't believe what he told you. But that's just me... I'm a cynical old barstad.
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: