DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum

DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum (
-   HVAC (
-   -   Hot Water Heating System Estimate Cost ? (

helpless handyman 12-08-2006 08:09 AM

Hot Water Heating System Estimate Cost ?
Hi guys, and thanks for those that help me out on the last several post. I am going to move on to hot water heat, and I am looking to see how much (ball park) fig. would a hot water heating system cost? Boiler, copper pipes, baseboards, etc. I think my steam heat days are going to be over, we are getting some heat but I just can see this type of heat being a problem down the line. When things start to give you problems in the beginning, its never a good sign. I have come to realize that steam heat it very crucial when it comes to pitches on pipes. If one pipe is off, the whole system will create problems. Basically you have to set the radiators, adjust the pitches and make sure you never move these things ever in your life span, or else you will have nigtmares like me...

#CARRIERMAN 12-08-2006 01:07 PM

Hi helplesshandyman

I don't know what the cost of changeover would be in your area. But have you considered the steam trap?. I shure hate to see you put all that work and money into something and have to change it. I know its your project and not mine. If you decide to go to a hydronic system give the Dunkirk Q95 a good look. It is a very good boiler.

Good luck

helpless handyman 12-08-2006 02:10 PM

Hey Carrierman, hope all is well. I am comming to the conclusion that I would love to have hot water heat, but I already invested alot of money, I paid $1,000.00 for labor which was a steal, $1,200.00 in 3 new radiators and 4 new heat elements with metal cabinets, and ($950.00) in pipes. I could of used this money for a new system, but could of, would of and should of! I was up in the house last night till 2:00am tryting to get this thing going. (Thank God I am not living there yet, otherwise my family would have froze last night.We move the vent from the pipe that is carring the steam up like 5 incs on a nipple, this way it can give room for the steam to go up, and the water to come back. Now we have two radiators working lovely, but the heat elements are the ones causing the banging. You can actually hear the water running in the heat elements. One of the heat elements works fine, we got another one to work fine, doing fine adjustments to them, lifting here, and droppoing there. I have two more heat elements to go. It's that this is so annoying, I thought this was going to work fine, that is why I had invested this type of money. I truly understand your suggestion about the steam trap, but I just came to realize that pipe pitch issues has alot to do with this whole thing. How much would a steam trap cost me? Where does it get installed? at the end of the return? Also why is that I set my thermostat to like 60 degrees, and it never reaches that temp? Can the 7 day programable thermostat be bad? Its a Honeywell TH 411OD1007, is this type good for a steam heat system? The thermostat seems to not go higher than 56 degrees inside temp. Thanks Carrierman, I have already two sleepless nights, and I am hear at work trying to get ideas so when I go over to the house tonight. I left the boiler set at 50 degrees last night, (since it was so cold and was scared of pipe freeze)just in case the boiler kick on, so I shut the valves off on the problem ones, and will see what happened tonight.

helpless handyman 12-08-2006 08:17 PM

Carrierman, just came from the house, started her up with the non working raditors shut off and I still heard a few bangs here and there, running out of patience...

#CARRIERMAN 12-08-2006 09:46 PM

Hi helplesshandyman

On your operating pressure control will be a pressure setting for the off and the differential pressure. What is your off pressure and what is your differential set at. I think we may be able to fix your problem with some pressure adjustments. If you will let me know the pressure settings I will give you some to see if we can counter the problem, just don't give up yet.


helpless handyman 12-08-2006 09:57 PM

I will check tomorrow morning when I go back to the house.


#CARRIERMAN 12-08-2006 10:04 PM

Hi helplesshandyman

I have a busy day tommorrow so I will keep checking in. We will get this beat.


helpless handyman 12-09-2006 08:15 PM

Hi Carrierman, hope your day wasn't as bad as mine. I decided to lower the return pipe, I put a level on it and it looked level to me, so I pitched it to the direction of the boiler. I was sheetrocking the house and needed to remove one of the heat elements that was in the way. When I took it out, this thing was full of water, the heat element as well as the pipe. This one is on the ground floor, so I looked under the basement to look at the piping and it pitched down to the return. My question is if this is pitched to the return, and its actually about 4 feet from the return, Why is this one full of water? This banging noise is really starting to get on my nerves. If it wasn't so cold, I would of teared everything down. I feel so pissed off :furious:at myself for investing so much money on this system. Can it be that the boiler doesn't want to accept the water that is coming back? I am new to this and just don't know what to do anymore. I couldn't even get heat to one of the rooms upstairs for the compound to dry, because I couldn't take the banging. It was loud as if someone was hitting the pipes with a sledge hammer not a regular hammer. Should I continue with this, or should I just stop and convert the whole system. It seems to me that this water is not going into the boiler, and its just running around in the pipes. Also the return pipe, is it suppose to be hot? The return pipe gets hot as if it was a steam pipe. Isn't it suppose to be steam running in the pipes, not hot water? Please help me out, Thanks

#CARRIERMAN 12-09-2006 10:17 PM

Hi helplesshandyman

You have verified my suspicion, let me explain the steam trap. A steam trap is basically nothing more than a resivoir to keep a steady pull on the condensate return line. When you dont have a steam trap it allows the steam to travel up both the supply and return pipes. By doing so you will never get the condensate back to the boiler. One of the earlier post I left for you I said it sounded like the system is waterlogged, this is what I was talking about. I wish I lived in NY or somewhere close to there. I could show you first hand what I am trying to explain. But now you will just have to trust me. If you install a steam trap in your return line just after the last return pipe, you will stop your problem. The steam trap should not be all that expensive, but once again I am not familiar with your area. Give the steam trap a try, you already have the invesment in what sounds to be a good system, you just need to finish it. Let me know if I can help further.


helpless handyman 12-10-2006 05:57 PM

Hi Carrierman, hope all is well. Well today I was at the house all day installing sheetrock, and my friend that installed the pipes came by. I had to remove some sheetrock from the ceiling, he wanted to check the pitch on the pipes that go up and run across the ceiling. Well Carrierman everything has a pitch back, and I saw it for myself. He came to the conclusion that by the boiler, there is a tee on the steam supply pipe that goes up to the radiators, on the tee the top part heads to the radiators, and the bottom part heads to the water return line. Is this suppose to be like this? We figured that the steam pressure is not letting the water go back to the boiler. All the water coming back from the radiators is sitting on the return line, ans some how gets pushed back into the radiators because of this tee. He took it apart, and I have to go to the plumbing place tommorow to get some parts. Is the water return have to be connected at anytime to the steam pipe?

helpless handyman 12-10-2006 06:23 PM

I am trying upload pictures, but I am having trouble.

helpless handyman 12-10-2006 06:31 PM

Hi Carrierman, hers a link to the photo


#CARRIERMAN 12-10-2006 06:46 PM

Hi helplesshandyman

I couldn't tell real well from your picture what you have going on. But the steam and the return lines should be two seperate entities. The steam supply line should be coming out of the top ot the boiler at some point and the condensate return line should be going back to the boiler at the water level on this particular system. When you use a condensate return tank with a pump you can pump it back into the top of the boiler, but that is not reccomended. It sounds like to me, if you could give me a little better pictures around the boiler I bet we can fix your problem. But for now you definatley need to seperate the steam away from the return. I will wait for some better pictures and please don't get discouraged I will help you through the duration.


helpless handyman 12-10-2006 08:07 PM

Carrierman, I will try to take a picture of the back of the boiler tomorrow, but its a tight space in the back. Also the pipes are now removed from the back, we are going to seperate the steam from the return. Yes I know the steam comes out of the top 2 inc pipe from the boiler, but at the back of the boiler there is 2 inlets, and the water return in connected to both, and I beleive one of them is throwing out steam and its keeping water from getting into the boiler from the return line. We bought the house in June, and the boiler was turned on by the inspector and when he found a gas leak, we repoted and they shut the system down, until the sellers got it repaired. Thanks so much for your help.

#CARRIERMAN 12-10-2006 08:26 PM

Hi helplesshandyman

I think you are now getting to the bottom of your problem. Whenever you use a gravity return system you always want to use the lower port for the return water. If you look at the pipes on the back of the boiler, one of them should be lower than the other. This is the point you want the water to return into, this will work as a steam trap by keeping the return pipe below the level of the water. Just plug off the other port and you should be on your way to happiness. You may to keep from any future problems want to consider a steam trap, but for now lets get this baby going for the winter. The other thing you may have to do is where your return pipe goes into the back of the boiler, you may have to put a tee on the return line as a vacuum breaker. You will want the tee as high as you can get it in the air without repitching return line. As I said before I will stick this out with you as long as you need me.


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 02:40 PM.

vBulletin Security provided by vBSecurity v2.2.2 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2017 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2017 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.

Search Engine Friendly URLs by vBSEO 3.6.1