Gas boiler running out of hot water

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Old 01-28-14, 05:12 PM
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Exclamation Gas boiler running out of hot water

Ok, I'm new to this but here is my situation. I bought a new house. I noticed one of the zones in my heating system was knocking and not heating up. The hot water at this point was seemingly limitless. I sought advice at the local hardware store and they suggested bleeding the zone to remove the air in the pipes. I followed the directions given and the heat was restored. About 4 days later I noticed the hot water was running out quickly. The hot water I do get is extremely hot, but it ran out too quickly. I returned to the hardware store and was given the suggestion to bleed the expansion tank. I followed those directions and it seemed to fix the problem, however, the problem returns about 4 days later. Now I find my self repeating this every 3-4 days. Obviously something is wrong with the boiler, but I am at a loss. Any suggestions? Or do I need to call in a professional. I am at a loss.
 
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Old 01-28-14, 05:26 PM
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Guessing is all I can do and it seems that your pressure may be low and you have a leak, bleeding the system and the tank and then you refilled the system bringing the pressure back up until it leaked out again.

Need to know pressure and temp of the system for starters. Others will ask for make and model of boiler along with clear, well lit pictures of the system. Post back with those and help should be on the way
 
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Old 01-28-14, 05:56 PM
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I returned to the hardware store and was given the suggestion to bleed the expansion tank
Ummmm... be careful with hardware store advice. While well intentioned, and with all due respect to the aprons, they probably don't know WTH they are talking about... or just enough to be dangerous.

You may in fact need to service your expansion tank, as 'bleeding' it was probably a useless endeavor.

Tell us what type of expansion tank you have... is it a large steel tank strapped into the floor joists above the boiler? or is it the type that looks kinda like a propane gas grill fuel tank?

Yes, pictures please...

Is your domestic hot tap water coming from two small pipes in and out of the boiler on a metal plate with bolts all around it?

As Stel has said, make/model of the boiler, and readings on the boiler gauge, both PRESSURE and TEMPERATURE.
 
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Old 01-28-14, 06:37 PM
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The model of the boiler is a Columbia lbm-30. The domestic hot water comes from one pipe coming out of the system. The pressure has always stayed stead at around 17-18. The temp on the system is around 160. I have included as many photos of the system as I could. Just let me know if more would be helpful.
 
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Old 01-28-14, 07:13 PM
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Maybe stand back and get a wider angle shot of the whole boiler so we can see where all the 'pieces' fit in.

Can't do it tonight, but we can help you get that overhead tank properly drained... needs a bit of explaining... been meaning to write up and article about how to do ... maybe should do that soon.

I can see that you have the drain valve at one end of the tank, but on the pipe from the tank to the boiler piping, can't see that too good.

Is there a shut off valve on that pipe from tank to boiler? (take pic?)

Try to get some more light too... and focus if you can! Real camera is always better than cell phone, remember we need to see details in order to make out the piping connections to be able to help you.

The pressure has always stayed stead at around 17-18.
Those old square gauges are better than the garbage they use on new boilers, but it may not be accurate.

To the right of the gauge in the picture there is a gray box. Have you looked inside that box?

Would like to know what the settings are on the temperature dials inside that box. (I guess a CLEAR IN FOCUS pic of the dials would work... but pointless if we can't read them, so if you do post a pic, tell us what the settings are... the HIGH , LOW , and DIFF settings )
 
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Old 01-28-14, 07:39 PM
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I have attached more pictures. I hope they are clear enough. I included the dials as well as the temp and altitude readings.
 
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Old 01-30-14, 03:41 PM
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Any suggestions? Any help is greatly appreciated.
 
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Old 01-30-14, 04:04 PM
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Hi B-flat! 1434 is a strange chord progression!

I still can't see in the pics if there is a valve on the pipe leading from the boiler to the overhead tank.

Let me know about that and I'll give you a procedure to properly drain that tank.

Stand back with the camera, get MORE LIGHT down there, and take some pictures from a distance so we can see how it all fits together as a system. Individual closer pics are fine, but we need to see how it's all connected. Try to eliminate shadows so we can see ALL the pipes and valves clearly.

It's MUCH better for us if you can upload LARGER pics in higher resolution to a FREE ACCOUNT at Photo and image hosting, free photo galleries, photo editing into a PUBLIC ALBUM. Come back here and post a link to the album so we can view. The forum resizes photos and makes them difficult to see. On photobucket we can see the BIG picture.
 
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Old 01-30-14, 04:49 PM
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There is a valve leading to the overhead expansion tank. I will try to get some better pics but I'm kind of limited as I only have my phone and my laptop has recently moved on to a better place.
 
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