fitting upgrades & additions for an old cast iron rad hydronic system?

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Old 12-14-13, 05:09 PM
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i just meant i was planning on buying a few sets of ball valves to isolate other spots in there for a while now...before i even knew i needed another pump.

50404 - Webstone 50404 - 1" Sweat Isolator Flange (Pair)

something like that would work, i'm guessing? those are purely for pumps/fittings that use the standard flange connections, i'm guessing, for whenever one of them dies? easy enough swap out. good idea or not necessary to buy a set of those flanged isolation ball valves for each of the pumps in there?

just need to decide on some kinda crud filter now. it'll have to be ordered separtely, as this expansion tank/circ pump is obviously a big/the main problem. i like the idea of that fernox TF1, but it's $200, and basically designed and marketed for the UK, it seems. not sure if that's a good idea for being across the pond.
 
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  #42  
Old 12-14-13, 06:20 PM
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i just meant i was planning on buying a few sets of ball valves
Gotcha, I misunderstood what you meant...

something like that would work, i'm guessing?
Yes, would work, and yes, mostly for servicing pump, but also for isolation purposes otherwise, like if you had to work on some part of the system.

There's also these, with built-in drains. These come in real handy for purging air, flushing, etc...


41414 - Webstone 41414 - 1" IPS Isolator Flange w/ Drain & Rotating Flange (Pair)

Rotating flanges are handy too... with those you can use different pumps if you have to even if the flange orientation on the pump is different.

designed and marketed for the UK, it seems. not sure if that's a good idea for being across the pond.
I tend to agree with that. I would think the Spiro would be a better choice for that reason.
 
  #43  
Old 12-15-13, 02:55 PM
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so i'm putting together a list of stuff i'll order from pexsupply...



103-1 - Amtrol 103-1 - #60 Extrol Expansion Tank (7.6 Gallon Volume)

007-F5-7IFC - Taco 007-F5-7IFC - 007 Cast Iron Circulator with Integral Flow Check, 1/25 HP (do these pumps normally include flange gaskets?)

41414 - Webstone 41414 - 1" IPS Isolator Flange w/ Drain & Rotating Flange (Pair) (would it be wise to get a set of these for the 2 pumps i already have as well? not sure if i can even fit any more hardware within that manifold where the one circ pump is, under the boiler...)

51702T - Webstone 51702T - 1/2" Sweat Full Port Ball Valve w/ T-Handle (was thinking of getting one of these to put in front of the expansion tank, in case the new one ever goes south in future. good idea? bad idea?)

0590712 - Watts 0590712 - 1/8" HAV Auto Air Vent w/ Manual Override (was thinking of buying a box of these - a few of the rads in my house only have a slotted bleed valve, which i find annoying)


that list make sense? am i missing anything?
 
  #44  
Old 12-15-13, 03:45 PM
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(do these pumps normally include flange gaskets?)
Yes. One of the pics at PS shows them, round rings... you can also use the flat flange type, but these fit in the 'groove' that's machined into the pump body.



would it be wise to get a set of these for the 2 pumps i already have as well? not sure if i can even fit any more hardware within that manifold where the one circ pump is, under the boiler..
When it comes time to change the indirect pump... IF it ever becomes time to... replace them at that time if you feel they are useful, but I believe that you've already got valves to and from the tank anyway, non?

I would not mess with the premade piping at all. You can isolate that just fine with the valves you have already.

was thinking of getting one of these to put in front of the expansion tank, in case the new one ever goes south in future. good idea? bad idea?)
GOOD IDEA! But I would expand on the idea one step further... use one of these:


40612 - Webstone 40612 - 1/2" Threaded Pro-Pal Ball Valve w/ Hose Drain

Have you looked at this post yet? Explains why I recommend this valve.

http://www.doityourself.com/forum/bo...sion-tank.html

Toward the end I mention some optional service valves... and a shutoff is one of them, the drain the other. The webstone combines them into one valve.

was thinking of buying a box of these - a few of the rads in my house only have a slotted bleed valve, which i find annoying
HATE 'EM!

Does this sound like something you want tucked away, out of sight, inside a baseboard cabinet?

The HAV valve utilizes moisture retaining discs within
the body which vary in volume when they change
from a wet to a dry condition. As the discs dry, they
allow air to escape from the system and when wet,
provide a positive shut-off.
• Easily maintained–replacement cartridge can be
installed without system shut down
A periodic check of the condition of the discs will
establish the need for replacement. When the discs
are damaged, the valve can only operate manually;
to restore to automatic working, the cartridge must
be replaced.
To replace the cartridge, unscrew the handwheel,
clean the seat of the valve of any foreign matter and
then assemble a new disc cartridge. The body contains
a check valve, preventing water leakage, therefore,
this operation can be carried out without draining
the water from the radiators.
After a couple years, trust me, they WILL require the maintenance described. The goal of any heating system should be to minimize maintenance, not increase it. Once the system is purged of air, barring any leaks, no more air should come in.

I had one of those leak after about 2 years... and I didn't know it... and I ended up having to replace some carpeting and a section of subfloor... didn't leak bad enough to notice, but after a while we smelt the mold... no, stay away... keep it manual only!
 
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Old 01-02-14, 03:47 PM
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so after much phone tag, i've finally managed to get in touch with someone locally that actually knows what they're doing, and who's willing to fix it up. this guy checked out my rental house today (the soonest i was able to schedule an appointment with him). he cursed the original boiler installer the entire time he was there, as expected. he said it would take a day to a day and a half to install all the fittings that i bought, and to reroute the piping around so it makes more sense and is more easily serviced/accessible.

ended up buying the new taco circ pump, a couple isolation valves for the other circ pump for the indirect heater, a new expansion tank (and a draining ball valve for that), and that inline Fernox TF1 filter for the return side as well. figured i would eventually get the dirt filter, but if i was introducing that much more flow through the system, that chunks of metal/non-metal would start floating around, potentially gumming up the boiler itself; so i bought it now as well.


anyway, he said he didn't feel comfortable doing any or all of this until spring, when it's warmer out. his point was that he'd need to drain the entire system even to replace the expansion tank. it's been -20 to -40 celsius for the past 3 or 4 weeks, without really any warmer than that -20. not good. he's worried about the few pipes near exterior walls freezing solid and me having a much bigger mess on my hands (and even colder tenants).

heard anything about freeze plugging pipes for residential purposes like mine? basically using C02 or nitrogen to freeze a section of pipe, so you can work on it (eg. install or replace a valve)? the idea seems to make sense to me, even if to just install one ball valve - which would allow for work on the rest of the system, thereafter. this method is used quite a bit in industry/commercial use, just not sure if it would be for a residential heating system like mine...

how else would you deal with something like this in the middle of a deep freeze winter?

at this point i'm doing some damage control, and trying to keep the tenants happy, as the thermostat apparently dips down to around 60f sometimes, and then a few hours later might be the same, or might be up to 72 or 74 for a little while. super variable, and generally cold in the same section of the house. i bought a few electric space heaters, but obviously they're worried about cost of running these. i'm assuming i'd have to cover a good chunk of running these (by ontario law), since the primary heating source in the house isn't working properly at the moment. as much as i want to say 'put on a sweater', that doesn't really go over well as a landlord

any suggestions?
 
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Old 01-02-14, 04:42 PM
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You need to get that pump in there... no matter what it takes. That's the first order of business.

heard anything about freeze plugging pipes for residential purposes like mine?
I have heard about it... that's about it... not sure what it might do to copper pipes though...

how else would you deal with something like this in the middle of a deep freeze winter?
Work as fast as possible is all I can really say... even if the pump is installed in a not so ideal location... such as pumping toward the expansion tank on one of those long runs of pipe...

I might think about picking up some 'Sharkbite' valves and pipe caps...

Depressurizing the system so the only pressure was the height of the water column above...

It's going to be messy with lots of water...

Cut the pipe as quickly as I could and as quickly as possible slap a sharkbite valve on the pipe... and a cap on the other end... then make another cut and quickly slap a sharkbite valve on there...

At that point you've bought some time because you've got isolation valves in place and can then mount the pump.

There's going to be a LOT of water spilling in the time it takes to get those valve on though.
 
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Old 01-03-14, 12:27 AM
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thanks for the advice. not sure this guy would be alright with this procedure you suggested (i believe he's around 70, and sounds like he goes at his own pace), but i'll run it by him.

looked up the freezing idea...apparently it's pretty popular. mostly in commercial uses, but sometimes in home heating systems too. there's specific 'pipe freezing services' and also units that plumbers sometimes own (https://www.ridgid.com/us/en/sf2500-superfreeze)

that said, not entirely sure anyone in my town even knows these things exist.
 
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Old 01-03-14, 05:25 AM
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i believe he's around 70
I would guess that he's not going to be 'keen' on them new-fangled push fit components.

Did he have an understanding of PRIMARY/SECONDARY piping? and familiar with the concept of "PUMPING AWAY FROM THE PONPC" ?

He immediately understood that a pump was missing?

Not talking down 'older folks'... I'm one too... but some of the older guys are kinda set in their ways and unaware of or resistant to newer technology.

What were some of the 'defects' that he was cussin' the installers for?
 
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Old 01-03-14, 10:22 PM
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don't know exactly what he was cursing about, but likely regarding the same crap we've been discussing on this thread. i'm still many provinces away, and i'm just going by 2nd hand stories of what his reaction was. also don't know about his piping assessment, so i should probably make sure he's doing what i asked my father to get him to do. another plumber agreed to use his ridgid pipe freezing machine so we can at least get a ball valve on that copper line (likely a sharkbite, hopefully sometime this weekend). my father is most concerned about the bad expansion tank, as it's full of water and isn't supported by anything but the valve threads.

if my priority is the new circ pump, do you think the added flow would move around a considerable amount of crud/dirt in the system? i am a bit nervous about willfully putting bad things through the boiler itself...then again, i have no clue how much potentially bad crap has flown through there since the initial install.
 
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Old 01-12-14, 10:57 AM
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well, a bunch of stuff was installed. the older boiler guy i was going to get to do this job didn't feel confident doing it until the spring. a friend of my brother's figured he could tackle the job, so he took over, with the help of my father.

first and foremost, we had to get the system isolated to work on it. the plan was to do this without having to drain all or most of the water when it was -35 C outside. freeze plugging, then throwing on a 1" shark bite ball valve was job number one. creating the ice plug with the pipe freezing machine took just over 2 hours on that 1" line. i could only imagine how much quicker it would have been if we somehow had access to liquid nitrogen.
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installed the larger expansion tank and new circ pump. filled up the expansion tank to 20psi (up from the stock pre-charged pressure of 12psi). the vertical piece of 1" copper on the right was where the pipe freezing machine was set up on.
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the second flanged isolation ball valve was a bit redundant for this install, as the shark bite valve we threw in after freezing was right beside it.
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lastly, needed that inline filter installed on the return side, just before the boiler.
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it's no longer obscenely cold outside (for now); has been hovering around freezing the past few days since the fitting updates. that said, we haven't been able to find out if everything is working that much more smoothly in the problem areas of the house yet. from what i've been hearing from the tenants though, the rads are more evenly heated thus far, so here's hoping no more hiccups!! thanks again for all your advice, NJ Trooper.
 
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