Control board panel for hydronic system


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Old 04-10-22, 04:34 PM
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Control board panel for hydronic system

Hi

Long story short, we are trying to upgrade to smart thermostats in the house we bought. Novice for hydronic heating system and just ran into a maze of wiring - no idea what goes where?

Any recommendations on how and if we could put together some sort of sense into this via adding a control board or panel so the wires can be arranged nicely and we can probably determine the need to say add a c wire ("if needed"). First things first though before I get too ahead of myself. Any control board recommendations and how to get started on it?

Added some boiler pictures as well to see if they help

Help would be tremendous





 

Last edited by PJmax; 04-10-22 at 06:12 PM. Reason: removed un-needed pics
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Old 04-10-22, 04:49 PM
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Those Honeywell valves with the four wires always look busy.
You could make a custom panel. The wiring is very straightforward.

I see two transformers so your zone valves are probably split into two groups.
How many zone valves are there ?
You want to put a smart thermostat on every zone ?

They do make zoning control panels but they are not inexpensive.
 
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Old 04-10-22, 05:10 PM
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Thanks PJmax

They have 8 thermostats in the house (am not sure why lol). 4 are 2 wire heat only, 2 are both heat and cool (5 wire) and 2 are cool only. Have the wiring diagrams done - maybe i could start another thread for it in parallel? Dont want to overcomplicate it too as if we put 8 probably would need to get higher level transformers which am not sure how easy to install. Anyways believe that would be step 2 after i sort the wiring out) or

Any recommendations on which zone panel to get and how to wire? am assuming all the current wires going to thermostats from the valve would go on 1 side but not sure which one the other side would be? One going to transformer from the valve? Also any indication on yellow, brown and red would be in terms of wire colours?

Thanks for your help. Much appreciate it

 
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Old 04-10-22, 06:20 PM
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Ok.... I removed the extra pics and resized these.
I moved the thread to the thermostat forum. Post your diagrams right here.

I see all six heating zones and valves. It looks they are wired three and three on each transformer.
In order to run smart or wifi stats you need a minimum of three wires from the stat to the zone valves or zone panel area. If you want to get involved with the nests and their two wire systems (not recommended) I can help you there.

If you want to put the smart stats on A/C and heat..... then you must have an extra wire to the air handler to carry the C (common) to the thermostat. Two wires to the zone valve is ok in this application.

You would need to extend the zone valve wiring to reach a central zoning panel if you went that way.
 
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Old 04-10-22, 06:36 PM
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Great. Adding thermostat wiring (current).

Could go with ecobee too if nest is an issue. Whatever makes it easier. Just wanted a more cleaner look on the wiring as well with the control panel so was thinking if HPZC106 Hydronic Zone Valve Controller from HWL would be a good bet( got confused as it has 2 inbuilt 24V 40 VA transformers so would they over ride the current transformers i have?). or say Truzone panels probably similar

Sorry for being ignorant but have never even dealt with something close to this (even though we are handy DIYers lol).

Would like to avoid having to draw wires as well - as this is a new house for us and dont have much idea on the wire routing in this house. Maybe power adapters or connectors better option? They have their downside as well i guess. Minimal fuss would be awesome besides cleaner look on the wiring (with say zonr control panel) and smart thermostats for efficiency.

Am really thankful that you have been so helpful with your time and effort
 
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Old 04-10-22, 07:18 PM
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Great. Eventually we'll probably post some of those pics but necessary yet.
Just some quick observations....
1 - main floor - three wires.... not four. red, white and green. Basic A/C only. no C wire.
2 - green room - two wires. white and red. Basic heat only. No C
3 - near 1st flr washroom - three wires...... green not used. Basic heat only. Has wire for C.
4 - entertainment rm - a three wire... red(Rc), white and green to A/C. No C
................................ - a two wire.... red(R) and white to heat/zone valve. Ok
5 - master - a three wire... red(Rc), white and green to A/C. No C
..................- a two wire.... red(R) and white to heat/zone valve. Ok
6 - upstair foyer - three wires.... not four. red, white and green. Basic A/C only. no C wire.
7 - Ani room - two wires. white and red. Basic heat only. No C
8 - basement - two wires. white and red. Basic heat only. No C

So only 3 has a common wire. That presents quite a challenge. Wifi/smart stats need a C to operate as I mentioned. You'll need to address that before going on. I don't install wifi/smart stats without a C so I'm not sure what's out there that doesn't need a C other than the nests. With the nests you'll need a power adapter for each stat. It's going to get very expensive.
 
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Old 04-10-22, 07:31 PM
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aah damnn....i see u r in Northern Jersey...am in that area too...would this be of interest to you? If you could, definitely feel free to PM...sounds like quite tricky at my end lol
 
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Old 04-11-22, 05:06 AM
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Think better to start with just getting a zone control panel on first. Thermostats we can add later.

Any recommendations on where and how to start please? Like get the HWL zone controller and how to wire?
 
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Old 04-13-22, 03:32 PM
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Just to clarify a few things;

You have 8 stats.

- 4 stats are hotwater heat. I am guessing these are radiant baseboards or floor heat? Can you confirm the stat wires go straight to the zone valve? Can you confirm how many conductors there are in the wire that runs between the stat and the valve? YOU NEED ATLEAST 3.

- 2 stats are heat and ac. How is the heat produced in the zones? Does it come from the air handler or is it also radiant? If its from the air handler, does the airhandler have hydro air coil or is it heat pump or electric (I would guess hydroair coil since you have two more zone valves at the boiler)?

- 2 stats are AC only. I am guessing these run to air handlers as well?


A zone panel will tidy things up and are pretty easy to install. I like my Taco panel (you can look at the ZVC 406), but I dont know much about the honeywell you linked to above.

I have for ecobees and they are great in my home. For ecobee, you can use a power extender kit (ie a common maker) but you need at least 3 or 4 wires to do so.

~~~~~
So first... for the 4 heat only zones (those for stats), you need at least 3 conductors in the wire between the zone valve (or ZVC) and the thermostat. If not, you will need to run more wire.

For the 2 AC/Heat zones, you will need to figure out (1) how is heat provided and (2) how many conductors run between the thermostat and the air handler. Pictures of the control board or relays in the air handler will be helpful.

For the two AC only zones, confirm how many conductors you have in the wire between the thermostats and the air handler.

Lastly, you have four AC zones. Do you have 4 separate airhandlers or do you have zone dampers dividing air to each zone off of one or two handlers? If its dampers, it can further complicate things.
 
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Old 04-13-22, 03:38 PM
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As for wiring the ZVC, it will be very straight forward and the install instructions will be your best option. The two most important thigns are (1) how do you get your hot water and (2) what controls your circulator in the current set up (the end switch on the zone valves or the aquastat)?

 
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Old 04-15-22, 08:30 PM
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Home Made Control board panel for hydronic system:

Years ago, DH split original one zone system to 8 with zone valves. Some ZVs were in difficult to access places 20 feet from boiler. Resulted in major improvements to home heating but mess to diagnose and service.

Eventually using 4 wire cable connected everything to a panel on wall near boiler.

In link below see DH Posts #13 & #7 for DIY homemade control 8 zone 2 circulator panel. Layout is schematic type, thermostat in on right side, out to circulators on left side . Each item has a LED pilots making easy to see status and diagnose issues. Circulator 120 volt relays with pilot lights are on boiler

Screw type terminal blocks make wiring easy. On small gauge wire, #18 and under twisting wire nuts often breaks strands and have to be untwisted to separate.

One 24 volt transformer powers everything, including central AC controls, stack damper, ODR/aquastat, etc.. If some component goes bad is cheaper to replace that a multi zone panel.

Homemade board may not look pretty, but when wife says heating issue some place, can see zone status, boiler temp, circulators, etc..

24Vac from Honeywell 7224 for wifi thermostat's c wire
 
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Last edited by doughess; 04-15-22 at 09:03 PM.
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Old 04-16-22, 12:22 AM
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@ pbct.... those questions are all answered.... right down to exact wire counts.
No zone dampers, basic two wire heating.
Only 1 spare wire in one cable puts a damper on wifi stats.

If you don't want to build your own system you could go with a Tekmar 306v six zone valve controller.
 
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Old 04-16-22, 08:33 PM
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ajxxx ".. got confused as it has 2 inbuilt 24V 40 VA transformers so would they over ride the current transformers.

When multiple transformer are used on system, if not wired correctly, can cause problems. Using just one transformer with LED to show 24 volt power on, makes life simpler, especially for novice DIYer.

DIY link below describes system with flakey multiple transformer problem and DH Post #19 & 21 comments.

Adding C wire - steal from existing system or add a dedicated transformer?

Multi cone controllers made with complex semiconductors electronics, frequently add issues that can be difficult to diagnose, isolate and repair.

Dumb home made controller can add zones, bells whishes, replace defective parts.

DH has long experience on complex systems. On home heating system most want quick answers and fixes for cold winter nights.
 

Last edited by doughess; 04-16-22 at 09:08 PM.
 

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