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Old 11-30-2008, 11:14 AM   #1
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Furnace - Help me label photo


I call it a Furnace, but is it actually a Boiler?

I have a heating question or two, since my house has been experiencing lack of heat from the baseboard radiators. I have 3 zones, oil fired, hot water heat. Not valve on baseboard radiators to drain/bleed. Perhaps I need to bleed the system? I just don't know how to do it. Which valves to close, which to open...
Would you help me identify parts of my system? I have attached some pictures with items specified with arrows. This will help with any explanations.

Thanks
Norm
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Furnace - Help me label photo-furnace-label-1testestetste.jpg   Furnace - Help me label photo-furnace-label-2.jpg   Furnace - Help me label photo-furnace-label-3.jpg   Furnace - Help me label photo-furnace-label-4.jpg   Furnace - Help me label photo-furnace-label-5.jpg  



Last edited by eastcan; 11-30-2008 at 12:40 PM.
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Old 11-30-2008, 11:21 AM   #2
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Furnace - Help me label photo


Photo 1:

N and O : I don't know which is going TO the radiators, and which is coming BACK from radiators?

Photos 1 and 2: A and F are the same item.
Photo 5: This is a valve with a long copper pipe, for draining. But, draining for what?

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Old 11-30-2008, 12:12 PM   #3
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a= circulating pump, b=oil burner, c=circ pump, d=unused valve, e=zone control valves operated by thermostats, f=circ pump, g=unknown (air vent?), h=boiler water fill valve, j=shutoff valve, k=thermometer, l=plug, m= pressure/temp relief safety valve, n and o = shutoff valves

Sounds like you need a pro to check the expansion tank/drain and refill it. I would get it replaced with a bladder tank. Also some of your rads may need air bled from them and the zone valves checked to see if they open. Best to get a pro to do it and an annual maintenance of the oil burner/nozzle/tank filter/efficiency test or you will paying LOTS to the guys in the desert.

Last edited by yuri; 11-30-2008 at 12:16 PM. Reason: add more info
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Old 11-30-2008, 01:58 PM   #4
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Thanks for the reply. I had it serviced last week - they do the filter, nozzle, and clean inside. That was it. What else should I ask of a heating/furnace technician?
My rads do not have a valve for bleeding out air. According to your labelling, I just bled through the safety valve 'M'.
I notice my gauge is reading almost 0 psi.
Other than call the service guys tomorrow, can you suggest anything for me to do now? It is cold!!!
By the way, the 'G' has a sticker on it indicating a spirovent, or microbubble eliminator.
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Old 11-30-2008, 02:14 PM   #5
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Admittedly my hydronic experience is limited but what is with the plastic water line?
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Old 11-30-2008, 02:14 PM   #6
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Since I let out some air and water from the safety valve (air did come out at first), the heat has since been restored to all 3 zones' radiators. Pressure is up to about 18-20 psi.
Thanks for labelling my photos - that has helped me understand my system more.
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Old 11-30-2008, 03:09 PM   #7
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The plastic water lines always made me curious, but keep in mind I know very little about such matters. This was the first house I have ever owned, but I never saw plastic water lines like that in my house growing up. Is it unusual to see the plastic in that particular spot - going to the boiler? The water lines going from the water tank/well pump are all plastic throughout the house.
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Old 11-30-2008, 03:23 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eastcan View Post
The plastic water lines always made me curious, but keep in mind I know very little about such matters. This was the first house I have ever owned, but I never saw plastic water lines like that in my house growing up. Is it unusual to see the plastic in that particular spot - going to the boiler? The water lines going from the water tank/well pump are all plastic throughout the house.
I just might be too old school. Everything I have ever seen or worked on boiler has been either copper pipe or black steel.

Just looks to flimsy for what I know a boiler can do if it over pressures or lines freeze.
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Old 11-30-2008, 03:27 PM   #9
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Admittedly my hydronic experience is limited but what is with the plastic water line?
PEX supply line.
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Old 11-30-2008, 03:57 PM   #10
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Wirsbo PEX line, have it in my house. I would get a licensed oil fitter to do a combustion analysis of the oil burner/smoke to the chimney and have him set the burner for best results. You may still want to drain and fill the expansion tank and get a experienced plumber to check the system at least once. A bladder tank will eliminate the hassles of the old school expansion tank.
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Old 11-30-2008, 05:15 PM   #11
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PEX supply line.

Agh.

Just another way to cheapen up the trades.
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Old 11-30-2008, 05:40 PM   #12
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It has some advantages. Quick, easy to work with, less fittings/pressure drop. Can withstand one good freezing (will expand and go back to original size once thawed). Good for infloor radiant heating. Would hate to hang a picture on a wall and pound a nail thru it. Copper would be better for that. Need a expensive special tool and fittings to work with it.
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Old 11-30-2008, 05:49 PM   #13
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It has some advantages. Quick, easy to work with, less fittings/pressure drop. Can withstand one good freezing (will expand and go back to original size once thawed). Good for infloor radiant heating. Would hate to hang a picture on a wall and pound a nail thru it. Copper would be better for that. Need a expensive special tool and fittings to work with it.
I have yet to see any plastic product stand up to heat over the long haul.
First there was plexvent and Ultra vent for furnace venting, then the radiant floor heating plastic tube failures...just a matter of time for pex tube.
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Old 11-30-2008, 06:27 PM   #14
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Fortunately I have a Bungalow and can rip it out myself if I ain't pushin daisies by then.
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Old 11-30-2008, 06:32 PM   #15
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A- pump for your zones.
B- oil burner
C-circulator for hot water tank
D- backflow preventor installed incorrectly
E-zone valves
F- see A
G- air seperator (very nice and expensive auto vent) bleeds air from the system
H-reducing valve regulates fresh water coming into system.
J- supply water shut-off valve
K- domestic hot water (DHW) loop for water heater tank
L- it is just a plug for the boiler (do not remove) should have been a boiler drain I think.
M- high pressure relief; it should start leaking at 30psi
N- supply side of boiler
O- is return side

the PEX is on the water supply so it is not exposed to boiler hot water notice the copper after the pressure reducing valve.

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