Orlan 60 inheritance

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Old 02-05-18, 09:45 AM
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Orlan 60 inheritance

Hi, I recently purchased a property that had a new Orlan 60 boiler brand new on the skid never hooked up. The place has 24 pipes coming out of the floor. I am far from civilization and it costs big $$$ to get someone here to do anything. So being a pretty handy guy I did a lot of looking around talked to some guys who knew what they were talking about, rented a threader and started building. Some advice was good, some not so much. Best bad advice was to use the 500 gal fuel tank previous owner bought for water storage (tank was rated for about 5psi ... you can guess what happened at 40 psi when we tested.)

-We fished the lines in the floor and measured them. They are all 240' to 250'. Slab is 40'X80'
-We ran 1 1/4" pipe out of the boiler to the pressure relief valve (40psi) then to a supervent for air elimination and a 20 gal pressure tank. Then out to our floor and radiator loops (both have their own pumps). Then into the 500 gal tank
-Rads are simple... small manifold, rads, pump then back.
-Floor has a Watts mixing valve to keep temp down but basically the same. From the main 1 1/4" line to Watts to Manifold, through floor, a small auto air eliminator and manual valve to let air out, then pump then back.
-Main 1 1/4" line runs from top of boiler straight to the 500 gal tank with the floor and rads coming out and returning in between.
-From the tank we have our main pump back to the boiler. The pump runs 24/7 through the boiler.

We fired the boiler and identified a few issues.
-Our fuel tank buckled... didn't break but was pretty scary
-Watts Mixing valve has a small screen which immediately plugged. We cleaned it every few hours for the next 3 days.
-It was crazy how much wood it took to bring water temp up, then if fire went out it dropped quickly.
Modification number one
We went out and bought a new tank (500 gal propane tank) for big $$$ and a strainer and installed both, changing all our water in the process.
-The strainer is not as fine a mesh as the watts, the little screen still plugged very frequently. Our solution which has worked pretty well so far is to insert a used dryer sheet into the strainer which filters out anything that will block the smaller Watts screen.
-Still have same water temp issues.
Modification number two
Our Danfoss Boiler protection valve finally arrived. We installed it, changed our main pump to be controlled by the boiler, not running 24/7. We also changed our floor/ rad loops so they do not come out of the same pipe as they return to. They now take water from the tank and return back into the main line that dumps hot water in to the tank. (this kinda sucks because the tank has to heat up before we get heat to the floor or rads but without pipe threader we are using copper and our re-design options are limited)
-Now when we fire the boiler it works properly (the water in the boiler heats up much faster to 140 degrees and stays there) when the Danfoss opens up our tank begins heating up.

Our problems now are limited to how much wood we are using, and consistancy.

It takes a long time to get the tank up to even 130 degrees (like three or four full loads of wood). By that point we just let it cool because we cant keep dumping one wheelbarrow after another of wood in there. The setpoint on the boiler is set to 180. The Danfoss valve has a 140 degree element and keeps the water going in between 130 and 140. The boiler is usually 20 or 30 degrees above that but rarely gets above 170. It seems to stall as soon as the Danfoss opens up and starts sending the tank water in.

The last 2 days our Pressure release valve has opened dumping about a litre (1/4 gallon) of water. Boiler was unattended both times but when we looked pressure was only 30psi.

So after all that, I am hoping someone can tell me

-What's with all the stuff in there, why do we need to filter the water so much? Our pex is all oxygen barrier. When we clean our filter we let lots of air into the system which takes time to get rid of and we have to add water.

-Why does the temp stall trying to heat the tank? The boiler is 60,000 BTU It should be more than enough to get the water up.

Today we will try leaving the floor off and see if the tank temp goes up

We have burned over ten cord of wood in January. We have five left. So in between cutting standing dead wood to try and make it through the winter we need to figure this out.
 
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Old 02-05-18, 02:01 PM
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Edit.. Sorry our Pressure relief is 30 psi not 40. Explains why it lets water out at 30.
We start cold (70 deg) at 15 psi. When it heats up to 140 we hit 30 psi. Does that indicate that our pressure tank is too small?
 
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Old 02-05-18, 07:20 PM
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Welcome to the forums.

I'm not the boiler pro and am having trouble following exactly what you've done.
You are heating 500 gallons of water ??
Yes.... your pressure tank appears to be too small.
The loops are normally flushed before connecting to the system. Was that done ?

Some general pictures would be very helpful..... How-to-insert-pictures

The other guys will stop by.
 
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Old 02-05-18, 07:25 PM
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Why are you attempting to heat a 500 gallon storage tank? What size is the expansion tank and how is it plumbed?
 
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Old 02-06-18, 05:01 AM
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I am not familiar with this name or type of boiler but from what I have seen from looking on-line it is a fairly efficient wood burning boiler. You stated that the boiler is rated at 60,000 BTU, and is that the rated input or output? Can you recheck the rating of the boiler? Are you sure that you are firing the boiler correctly.? From what I have seen on line the boiler has about a 90% efficiency rating. I haven't heated with wood for over 45 years but when I did, 10 cords would have lasted me about 2 years where I live north of Pittsburgh, Pa. Now for some guess work; wood has a btu content of somewhere between 20 and 35 million BTU/cord. Your 500 gallon storage tank has a 500 gallon storage capacity. The amount of heat required to heat that 500 gallons of water from 50 to 160 degrees F. is (500 X 8.33 lbs/gal X 110 = 458,000 BTU'S). If your boiler is actually rated somewhere around 60,000 BTU's then it would take your boiler about 8 hours just to heat the water in the tank ( correct me if I am wrong). Wood is rated somewhere between 20 and 35 million BTU's per cord. If I were to take a figure of 25 million BTU's per cord and your boiler can produce about 60,000 BTU,s / hour it would take 17+ days for your boiler to consume 1 cord of wood. There is more such as , what is the construction of the building. There are some pretty smart guys that follow this site . Maybe some others can weigh in with ideas and correct any mistakes I made. Be very careful when choosing items for your system, I have seen many people hurt from using the wrong type equipment on pressurized and heated systems. I am glad no-one has gotten hurt. Make sure that every item is rated for the pressures you will encounter. " Hope this helps".
 
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Old 02-06-18, 07:23 AM
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Thanks for your feed back. I appreciate the help.

The system was flushed ... the second time we filled it. The screen plugged so often the first time we flushed and flushed when we had to replace our tank. It just seems like black dust / mud on the screen... no debris or corn or mouse nests.

We are heating the 500 gal of water to store the heat. The fire can go out and the heat is there to circulate.
The expansion tank is 20 gallon and is piped through 10' of 1/2 " pex from the bottom of supervent.

We did more of a documented test day yesterday.
We turned off all heating loads... just to heat the tank.
We fired the boiler at 11 am. The tank was 70 degrees. The pressure was 15 psi
At 3 pm the tank was up to 120 degrees, pressure was 30 psi. Pressure release valve started dribbling. I let 2 gal of water out bringing it to 25 psi. Added wood
Watched pressure close.... had to dump 2 gal every hour or so to keep pressure below 30.
At 7 pm the tank was up to 160 degrees. Added wood.
We turned on the floor pump.
at 8 pm tank was at 150 degrees.
at 9 pm tank was at 140 degrees
Fire went out about 11 pm
by 9 am this morning the tank was 75 degrees and the pressure was 5 psi. We replaced the water we had to remove yesterday.
We will re test today with different air settings on the boiler.
 
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Old 02-06-18, 07:48 AM
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Checking some charts, you need about a 60 to 70 gallon expansion tank
 
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Old 02-06-18, 09:01 AM
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As said above, your expansion tank is severely undersized. And I think your going to need more then 1/2” pex rubbing to it.
I see nothing insulated. Is this 500 gallon storage tank insulated at all? Is it outside?
 
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Old 02-06-18, 09:10 AM
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The tank is very insulated and vapour barrier it is inside losing very little heat. None of the pipe is insulated yet. We did not want to waste pipe insulation before we had all the parts (boiler protection valve). Last modifications (hopefully) are done so I will insulate pipes as soon as I can.
 
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Old 02-06-18, 09:20 AM
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I will order a larger pressure tank today. Any suggestions? Would 3/4 pex be large enough to connect it? I am lacking tools to run anything bigger except $$$ copper $$$
 
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Old 02-06-18, 01:11 PM
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I would run a bigger line at least 1". I am still a little confused and I asked before but how large is this building and how is it constructed? How could you burn 10 cords of wood in 1 month with a 60,000 BTU boiler. If you are right about the size 60,000 BTU/hr X 24 hours = 1,440,000 BTU/ day and wood has 20 to 35 million BTU/ cord depending on the type 10 cords is a lot of wood. If the boiler were 200,000 that would still only be able to burn a cord in about 5 days (25,000,000 divided by 200,000 = 125 hours divided by 24 hours in a day = 5.2 days per cord burning at max fire nonstop.
 
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Old 02-06-18, 02:58 PM
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Building is 40 X 80 with 18' ceiling. 2X6 walls insulated and vapour barrier. attic is blown in not sure how thick.
Slab is 6" with 1 1/2 foam under it. Foam is garage door pieces so it has metal on both sides. I see no plastic.
Wood use is my best guess... I am talking 4'X8'X16" it might be closer to 8 rather than 10
 
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Old 02-07-18, 12:02 PM
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What are the downsides of adding a second or 3rd 20 or 30 gallon expansion tank in parallel with the 20 I already have? The bigger ones are not cheap at all. Can I use domestic water expansion tanks?

I managed to borrow a pex expander so I can run the 1" pex to them
 
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Old 02-07-18, 12:23 PM
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For the expansion tanks you can manifold any number of them together to get the required capacity . From your explanation of the size of the logs you are burning, the cords you are referring to would be more like 1/3 of a cord. A normal cords is 4 X 4 X 8 or 48" X 48" X 96 ""and yours are about 48" X 16" X 96". Did you check the actual size of the boiler? I would call the factory and ask for their recommendations on the settings of the primary and secondary air and the expected stack temperature so as not to waste wood.
 
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Old 02-07-18, 12:33 PM
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N,
There are no downsides. It can and is done when undersized tanks are installed and don't work.

I would increase the main line going to the tanks and as long as the expanded water has a place to go it should work.

I have added on another 30 in place of a 60 nd it worked fine.

As far as residential goes, your boiler is only 60,000 BTU's which is residential so I don't see a problem.

From what I can see are you running that 500 gallons of water through your boiler to heat the tank. Am I understanding this correctly or am I missing something.

If you are did you ever consider using a FLAT PLATE HEAT EXCHANGER which would increase your BTU output and would run without running all that water through the boiler and then you would just run the boiler as a boiler with the expansion tank that you have.

I have included a sight where you can get info if interested.

http://www.supplyhouse.com/Bell-Goss...ger-12690000-p

This is only 1 example, there are others on the sight.

Just a thought, hope this helps a little.
 
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Old 02-07-18, 12:33 PM
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Yes I talked to the company rep in Canada. He thinks my slab is losing too much heat into the ground. I adjusted the air to recommended settings and we used much less wood in the last 2 days.

I apologise for the confusion with the wood. In my area a cord is what you refer to as a 1/3 cord also known as a face cord. What you call a cord we call a bush cord or a full cord.
 
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Old 02-07-18, 01:14 PM
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Thank you Everyone for your comments. I really appreciate the help.

Now I will throw a curveball in...
Remember I am not a heating guy...
Orlan 60 puts out 60KW of heat not 60,000 BTU
60 KW = 205,000 BTU.
Sorry Steamboy I appreciate all the work and calculations you posted. Hopefully this all makes a little more sense.
So...
205,000 X 24 =4,900,000 BTU /day if boiler runs at max 24 hours a day = 151,900,00 in Jan

1/3 cord of wood = 8,300,000 BTU 8 or 10 of these = 75,000,000 BTU ish

So I burned at about half the capacity of the boiler. So now I need to figure out if 75 million BTU is reasonable to heat 40X80 X 18
 
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Old 02-08-18, 03:59 AM
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Here's an idea that may or may not work for you. If you are trying to heat the building with just the slab, what if you reduced the temperature of the slab to a respectable 65-70 degrees F. or as low as you could, and installed another type of heating for the open space, say "fan coils" .. That may reduce the high loss of heat through the slab and put most of the heating into the air which may increase the overall systems efficiency. The floor would still be warm The insulation in the walls could be as much as practical including the roof and ceiling fans could be utilized to move the heat from near the ceiling area towards the floor area. A mixing valve would be used for the slab to keep the water temperature as low as necessary and full water temp would be used for the heating coils. Just an idea I had
 
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Old 02-08-18, 04:23 PM
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That's pretty close to what we have worked out the last couple days... dropped the temp on the mixing valve to minimum and turned the circ pump on the slab to low instead of high. With three cast iron rads pumping out heat it has been pretty easy to keep the place warm the last couple days.

New pressure tank arrived today will install tomorrow. I will look for a couple ceiling fans and some pipe insulation in the next few days.

Spott I like the heat exchanger idea but to use something like that I would have to re design and re-pipe a lot. I might order one to add a rad to the garage using glycol so I can turn it off if I dont need it.
 
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Old 02-08-18, 06:50 PM
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Make sure if you use glycol that all the materials in the system are compatible with it' Since the solution will be more slippery, leakage of joints may be more common and heat transfer will be impeded somewhat. I would use a lighter mixture of glycol rather than a stronger mixture.
 
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