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Old 11-05-2011, 06:22 AM   #1
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What requires electricity?

Hello all,

I have a general question... during the recent power outage in NJ, my sisters steam heat system did not work. Her thermostat is battery powered. What part of this system would generally require electricity. Is it the ignition/modulation for the burner?

How much electricity would it take to keep this system going (is it very little?).
Assuming there is no pump, or fan connected to a steam system, it would seem that it wouldn't take much electricity to back this system up (?)

Last edited by pcampbell; 11-05-2011 at 07:39 AM.
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Old 11-05-2011, 08:42 AM   #2
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What requires electricity?

Without more info you'd have to tell us. Could have pilot or electronic ignitor. Could have cirulation pumps. A quick look at the system including any label plates should answer your questions.

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Old 11-05-2011, 09:02 AM   #3
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What requires electricity?

Basic residential steam system can be ran on a small generator. Gas or oil burner will require less then 1KW.
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Old 11-05-2011, 11:39 AM   #4
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What requires electricity?

If there are no circulation or fuel pumps then you might be able to switch over to a standing pilot system using a thermopile and millivolt gas valve. The thermopile will generate the electricity needed to open the gas valve. A professional will need to asses the system to see if this is possible.
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