Zone valve moves, but doesn't contact switch

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Old 01-20-15, 04:24 PM
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Zone valve moves, but doesn't contact switch

Our system has 5 zone valves of the Honeywell V8043G1018 variety. I noticed that three of the zones weren't working properly, so I replaced the motors on all three. One of the three now works again. On closer inspection, I've found that the second valve opens and closes properly in response to that zone's thermostat, and that the little button switch is getting pushed in, but the pump still doesn't activate. So tomorrow I will take apart that valve's powerhead and swap in a different switch.

On the third valve, the motor is opening and closing the valve as expected, however, the brass piece which is supposed to press in the little button switch is not moving far enough to contact the switch. If I stick a little screwdriver in there I can press the little button in and the pump comes on, so I know the switch is still good.

What I find odd is that when you move the 'Manual' lever on all 5 of the zone valves, plus a few spares that I have on hand, the brass piece does not contact the switch. Only when they're wired up and controlled by the thermostat do they seem to move far enough to push in the switch.

My questions are: why doesn't the brass part move far enough? Nothing seems bent or broken. Is this a problem others have encountered, and if so, what did you do to fix it - replace the whole valve? I imagine I could take it apart and attach something to the brass part so that it will contact the switch, but that seems a bit extreme.

Alan.
 
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Old 01-20-15, 04:29 PM
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What I find odd is that when you move the 'Manual' lever on all 5 of the zone valves, plus a few spares that I have on hand, the brass piece does not contact the switch. Only when they're wired up and controlled by the thermostat do they seem to move far enough to push in the switch.
That is NORMAL for those valves. Manually opening the valve will NOT fire the boiler.

My questions are: why doesn't the brass part move far enough? Nothing seems bent or broken.
OTB (Over The Border) cost reduced manufacturing is probably to blame.

Can you do some bending to get the tab a little closer?
 
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Old 01-21-15, 07:03 AM
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Thanks for the quick response. You have confirmed what I suspected - that it is normal for the switch not to make contact when manually operated. After all, they couldn't ALL start malfunctioning at once, so it must be normal.

It seems to me then that this one zone valve is acting like it is in manual mode when responding to the thermostat (the gap between the brass part and the switch is the same). What worries me about modifying it in order to close the gap, is if it starts working properly again it could do more damage.

I have a variety of spare parts, so I might try replacing as much of the valve as I can and will see if that helps. I'll report back with the results.
 
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Old 01-21-15, 02:16 PM
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So I changed the switch on Problem Valve #2 and it now works properly.

For Problem Valve #3 I had already replaced the motor and had also confirmed that the switch worked, so there didn't seem to be anything else I could do to the powerhead. On a hunch I took it completely off, then put a vice grip on the stub which turns the actual valve and carefully turned it back and forth through its full range of motion. It seemed sticky at first, or maybe that was just my wishful thinking . I put it back together and it now works.
 
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Old 01-21-15, 02:35 PM
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Vice grip is a wonderful tool, eh? That was "ACME" brand vice grip, right?

Glad ya got it all working! beep-beep!
 
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