3 Zone Heating: Basement heat won't shut off!

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  #1  
Old 05-22-07, 12:01 PM
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3 Zone Heating: Basement heat won't shut off!

Hi,

I have an NY Thermal oil-burning furnace that I believe was manufactured in 1999. The plate on the front lists models C-85 to C-180, but does not say which one I've got. It is a hot-water baseboard system.

The furnace is set up with three heating zones: main, bedrooms, and basement.

I was having some trouble with the basement thermostat. It wasn't very responsive, and I had to turn the temperature way up to get the heat going in that zone. The other zones have always been fine.

I'm selling my house and had a home inspection done. The report notes: "The basement thermostat appears to be inoperable as it was not responding at the time of the inspection. This may be the result of malfunctioned thermostat, end switch, or zone valve. This condition may also be the result of an air lock in the system."

I decided to replace the thermostat about 2 weeks ago. There were only two wires and I connected it the same way, the black wire to "R" and the white wire to "W".

Changing the thermostat seemed to solve the problem. Normal adjustments to the temperature control resulted in a call for heat being sent to the furnace.

A few days ago a buyer came through the house and turned up the basement thermostat quite high. I noticed this a couple of days later as the temperature was quite high. I adjusted the thermostat to a normal temperature and went to bed. In the morning, the heat was still on in the basement. Turning down the temperature control even further did not seem to turn off the call for heat.

I tried disconnecting the thermostat, and the call for heat remained at the furnace. There is power going to the wires for the thermostat hookup.

I checked all the connections at the furnace and all seems to be in order. I shut off the furnace to see if that would get rid of the call for heat but this does not seem to work either.

Any suggestions on how to stop my basement zone from calling for heat when the temperature is in range??

Thanks.
 
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  #2  
Old 05-22-07, 06:06 PM
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Too Much Heat

First you have to confirm the if zone valve is open or it is just residual heat. If the valve is open, disconnect the wires at the valve. If it remains open, the valve is stuck & may require replacement.
 
  #3  
Old 05-23-07, 07:14 AM
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Thumbs up Thanks & Problem Solved?

Thanks Grady,

I disconnected the wires and the "call for heat" indicator remained on.

I wasn't sure about replacing the valve, but through some research learned that with the Erie Zone valves, you can just move the leaver to the open position, push a button on the side, and pull off the actuator/motor.

The actual valve on the pipe moved about a quarter-turn with ease, so I concluded that the propblem must be with the actuator/motor.

I was going to totally disconnect all the wires, which involved removing the motor from its mount. When I removed the motor, the spring snapped shut. It must have become jammed open in this position somehow.

I put everything back together, and sure enough, the call for heat is gone.

Now I just need to wait and see if the zone valve will operate properly the next time I need heat downstairs. If it does not work, I'm assuming I just need to replace this actuator/motor assembly, and not the actual valve.

Thanks Grady for your advice.

Any comments on the above?
 
  #4  
Old 05-23-07, 05:32 PM
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Motor

Save yourself the grief & go ahead & replace the motor. This is quite common in Honeywell & Erie zone valves.
 
  #5  
Old 05-24-07, 03:57 AM
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Right again!

You were right again Grady. I did have to replace the motor. Cost $65 including tax. It wasn't the identical unit (it's an updated version) but it works fine.

Tips for future reference: the motor comes wired, so don't worry about preserving the existing wiring. Just note the correct wiring (I marked my wires with tape), and you can replace the Erie assembly in about 5 minutes.

Thanks.

Jay
 
  #6  
Old 05-24-07, 05:00 PM
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Zone valve motor

Jay, You are most welcome. Glad I could help. Good job on the repair.

This is such a common problem, I carry 3 or 4 on my truck all the time.
 
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