Safety leaking-Bad expansion tank?

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Old 03-23-03, 07:19 AM
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Safety leaking-Bad expansion tank?

I have a question regarding a hot water heating system.The safety valve is leaking,where it should if the pressure is too high.The make up valve on the system seems to be ok,not letting in too much water.(By that I mean it admits a little after the pressure is lowered on the bottom drain,then shuts off,not letting in any more.)The big problem is that the pressure gage is stuck,relieving the pressure on the boiler on the bottom drain makes no difference on the reading(15#).While I understand the importance of knowing the pressure on the system,if it is ok,could the problem be the expansion tank?What should the pressure be on it if the boiler pressue is relieved?The plumbing and heating shops are closed for the day,but what I plan to do is rig up a temporary gage on the bottom drain.I have a 30# gage that I think is accurate,to check the pressure on the system.If the tank needs air,will a tire pump work,and does the tank need to be removed for checking and adding air?How can I tell if its shot?I seem to recall something about tapping on it,but I don't know to listen for.Thank you for any advice.
 
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Old 03-23-03, 08:14 AM
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Look for 12psi on boiler. You may also have a wheeping water supply valve or auto fill valve.
 
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Old 03-23-03, 08:48 AM
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fjracheal

Thanks for the reply.Does that mean 12 pounds on the expasion tank or the boiler?If on the expansion tank,is that with the tank on or off the boiler?Also,can I add air with a tire pump if I need to?
 
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Old 03-23-03, 10:03 AM
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boiler

GET a gauge on that boiler now so you know what is going on. That blow off valve should go off at 30lbs. you could snap it a time or two and see if it stops leaking. info info.You dont say if that expansion tank is just an air tank or is it a bladder tank???????If you shut off the water to the autofill does the pop off valve stop leaking? You do have water at all bleeders?. If it is a bladder tank-------With no pressure on the water side you would put air in it too 12 psi. with an air pump yes. then let the water pressure on the other side in. If your home is just one floor look for pressure on the boiler 12 to15 lb You set the pressure on a boiler at what it takes to get water out of your top or highest bleeder valve ED
 
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Old 03-23-03, 10:58 AM
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Thanks for the reply

I am at work right now,so I can't tell if the valve will stop leaking if the shut-off is closed.The whole thing is shut off so there is no danger of anything happening.But when I get home,I am going to put a temporary gage on the bottom boiler drain,to check the pressure.Now then,if everything checks out pressure-wise,do I have to take off the bladder tank to add air,or can I just reduce the pressure on the boiler to zero?Also,if the auto-fill valve is letting in too much water,do I go clock-wise on the adjustment or counter-clock-wise?Thanks for any help.
 
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Old 03-23-03, 12:35 PM
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boiler

You can pull the boiler down to 0 lb and then pump the air tank to 12 lb then fill the boiler. You know you should not get water out of that schrader valve on the air expansion tank. But make sure you get all the air out of the boiler.You dont say how old this boiler is? I think you should just go out and get a new Feed water & Pressure regulator for this boiler.It will come set for 15 psi and the relief valve will be for 30 lb all new, The fill will adjust from 10- 25 lb. Get a new gauge for the boiler now so you dont have to drain it down again to put it on ED
 
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Old 03-23-03, 12:49 PM
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Ed

Thanks again for the reply.But just in case,what way to adjust the pressure valve/fill valve?It is a fairly new Wiel-McLane.It may be all the trouble,although I didn't hear water going through after it shut off.I can't get a new relief till the morning,and I need some heat tonite.Thanks again
 
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Old 03-23-03, 01:59 PM
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Angry No heat!!!

Ouuu..Home Depot or Lowe's isn't open out there?? They are about $30 each I think. Most of the time they are leaking because they get a piece of crud under the seat, Pop the valve a few times into a bucket till it drains no more, Make sure you kill all the valves first or the circuits may empty as well. Leave the tank in place...with the boiler at zero now check the air pressure ( two story is 12PSI, 3 story is 18 PSI)...open the fill valve till the boiler is full, gauge on boiler should be 12 PSI or 18 PSI for 3 story..., now open the circuit branches. Keep the water supply feed offand run the boiler for a complete cycle, shut switch off and add a little if it goes below 10 PSI...after it cycles for 10 minutes leave the supply fill off for a few days, check the pressure again if the boiler pressure is kicking the valve open again, the domestic water circuit has a hole in it. If it isn't leaking, open the fill valve , check back later for a leak, if it leaks...replace the water pressure regulator $29.95 at Home Depot. Mines 9 years old I just replaced it and the back flow preventer that was leaking...If your really cheap, they actually have a rebuild kit for them (Watts Company). Sometimes you just need to take em apart, If the TP leks through all this, replace the valve. Most people won't go through all this hassle and just replace it...
 
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Old 03-23-03, 02:04 PM
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Shut the water valve that lets the water go to the auto fill
 
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Old 03-23-03, 02:19 PM
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So what way do I adjust the fill Valve if it needs adjusting,(Clockwise or counter clockwise to get more or less water)out of curiosity?I tried opening safety to blowthe scale or whatever.Think it's just bad.Thanks again.
 
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Old 03-23-03, 03:32 PM
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Just Shut the water off to it A boiler doesnt need that water all the time if you dont have a leak!!!! do you???
Lot of the old boilers ,they would just fill them by hand with the water valve. Get both new ones and a new psi gauge ED
 

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Old 03-23-03, 03:43 PM
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Adjusting the WPR

CCW lessens the pressure, CW raises the pressure. Adjusting the regulator without a gauge is asking for trouble. The gauge on the boiler could be faulty or out of calibration. You shouldn't need to touch it, but , if you must drive on.....The boiler I grew up with was steam and we use to add water once a month with a gate valve and drain the sediment...Some experts think they are extremely dangerous, if one were to hang up and a boiler was dry and it let go...it would explode...unless you have a float safety of some sort...
 
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Old 03-23-03, 04:24 PM
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hvac01453,Thanks for the reply.I am going to install a new gage.There is no doubt the one on the boiler is bad.I opened the bottom drain to relieve the pressure to check it,still read 15#
I wont adjust anything till I know what the pressure is.I probably wont have to adjust it,just wanted to know just in case.Thanks again.Time to punch out and go home.
 
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Old 03-23-03, 07:40 PM
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The pressure gauge

Pull the pressure release lever on the safety to make sure there is 0 PSI on the boiler...sometimes you can open the boiler drain and nothing comes out the sediment gets so dence it's water tight...be careful and cautious with hot water under pressure!
Good luck!
 
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