where to install circulators

Re: where to install circulators

PostBy: windyhill4.2 On: Mon Dec 19, 2016 9:05 am

Wow !! After reading all of that ,i like freetown fred's heating system lots more. My water to air system is a multi-zone system too,i adjust the register in each room to get that room to the desired temp. :)
windyhill4.2
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: 1960 EFM520 installed in truck box
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Crane 404 with variable blower
Coal Size/Type: 404-nut, 520 rice ,anthracite for both


Re: where to install circulators

PostBy: jrv8984 On: Wed Dec 21, 2016 10:25 am

These ECM circulators, do they run continuously, or do they turn off when there's no demand. I'm wondering if they're like constant pressure well pumps, they're supposed to save you money, but end up using a ton more electricity because they are constantly working.

I'm planning on going 100% solar, so being frugal with electricity in the winter is important.
jrv8984
 
Other Heating: Blaze King Princess

Re: where to install circulators

PostBy: windyhill4.2 On: Wed Dec 21, 2016 10:34 am

jrv8984 wrote:These ECM circulators, do they run continuously, or do they turn off when there's no demand. I'm wondering if they're like constant pressure well pumps, they're supposed to save you money, but end up using a ton more electricity because they are constantly working.

I'm planning on going 100% solar, so being frugal with electricity in the winter is important.


Well, with that admission ,you indeed should ought to have gone with hand fed stove(s) for heat...

No electric at all required for warming you & the air around you. :)

Problem with that idea is that you would have no place to install circulators. ;)
windyhill4.2
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: 1960 EFM520 installed in truck box
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Crane 404 with variable blower
Coal Size/Type: 404-nut, 520 rice ,anthracite for both

Re: where to install circulators

PostBy: Rob R. On: Wed Dec 21, 2016 10:49 am

You can setup ECM circulators either way. If you are using TRV's, I would just leave them powered on. They use very little power.

Do you have commercial power available?

Have you arrived at a piping configuration?
Rob R.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM DF520
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 50-93
Coal Size/Type: Lehigh Rice
Other Heating: Dad's 1953 EFM Highboy

Re: where to install circulators

PostBy: jrv8984 On: Thu Dec 22, 2016 8:58 am

Yea, we have grid power, but it goes out constantly, perk of being the only house on the line. We are not a priority for ppl to make repairs.

Anyway. Can regular ball valves be used When talking about balancing/flow control valves. How do you regulate the flow without some kind of gauge?

And the split tee method is used for 2 radiators in a room, how would you plumb it with 3 radiators, or an odd # of radiators in multiple rooms?
jrv8984
 
Other Heating: Blaze King Princess

Re: where to install circulators

PostBy: CoalisCoolxWarm On: Thu Dec 22, 2016 10:42 am

jrv8984 wrote:Anyway. Can regular ball valves be used When talking about balancing/flow control valves. How do you regulate the flow without some kind of gauge?

And the split tee method is used for 2 radiators in a room, how would you plumb it with 3 radiators, or an odd # of radiators in multiple rooms?


You should use brass or bronze HOT WATER full port ball valves. They do not have to be lead free, though that may be all you find these days? Teflon is fine, which usually means up to 400F. The system is low pressure (operates typically max about 30psi), so no need for super expensive, high pressure ratings.

I'm not an expert on ball valves or plumbing, but some here are. Maybe they can offer additional info?

As for balancing, obviously gauges are best, but I did mine by ear and touch. One side is cooler than the other, then as you start to close that side, the neglected side gets warmer. Note that point. Go until the previous side gets neglected (cooler, less flow that you can feel if you hold the pipes), note that point. I usually set it in between those points, biased just a bit to the weaker side.

I also prefer to have my ball valves on the return side of the loop. I don't know if that is right or not, but it makes sense to me. Any turbulence or noise is then down in the basement rather than amplified by the radiators/baseboard.

For Split tees, you can split up the zone anywhere you want, with any number of radiants. Each "half" is simply connected in series. It is the initial supply and final return of the zone that is split out of/into a tee.

As an example, I run a 1" supply line to the far side of the living room along the basement ceiling (happens to be perpendicular to the floor joists). Just before it goes through the floor I put a 90deg to turn it vertical with a short stub of pipe, then a 3/4" x 3/4" x 1" Tee is tucked up inside the joists and oriented so the 3/4" ends are parallel with the joists.

I then added the longest pieces of 3/4" copper pipe I could still maneuver into the joist with wires and such in there. One side runs to the East side and one runs to the West side of the living room, each turns up through the floor to meet the end of the first baseboard on that side. (actually the West side goes almost straight up into the North wall's baseboard, but we'll call it the West loop anyways ;) )

The baseboard sections are daisy chained on each side, the output of one connected to the input of the next. The return of each then comes back to the basement the same way, but just before another 3/4" x 3/4" x 1" tee, they each get a 1" ball valve for balancing. If you KNOW one side will be weaker than the other, you can maybe get away with a ball valve on just the heavy side, but there are other benefits to having valves, such as closing one side to purge air during initial fill.

The return side then has a shorter run of 1" pipe to the return side of the primary loop. I deliberately chose to have the longer runs be the supply sides.

Radiants' BTU output varies significantly for as little as 10F difference in water temp. One decent size cast iron radiator can easily drop it that much. Putting 2 or 3 in a row can end up with a cooler, or even a cold radiator at the end of its series row. Split tees can help significantly by providing full temp supply water at two points: at the beginning of each of two halves.

Make sense?
CoalisCoolxWarm
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Keystoker KA-6
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: old Sears rebuilt, bituminous- offline as of winter 2014
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite Buckwheat
Other Heating: Oil Boiler

Re: where to install circulators

PostBy: Rob R. On: Sat Dec 24, 2016 9:48 am

I must have missed the part about baseboards, I thought the system was all cast iron radiators with TRV's. If that is the case, a home run to each radiator via a manifold will deliver equal temperature water to every radiator, and the TRV's take care of the balancing.

You can pipe baseboards off a home run manifold as well, but the split tee method mentioned above works very well when you have a lot of baseboard on a particular zone, or when it is important to limit the temperature drop through the baseboards. Ball valves work for balancing, but they are very sensitive. Globe valves are specifically made for regulating flow, but most people avoid them due to cost.
Rob R.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM DF520
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 50-93
Coal Size/Type: Lehigh Rice
Other Heating: Dad's 1953 EFM Highboy

Re: where to install circulators

PostBy: CoalisCoolxWarm On: Sat Dec 24, 2016 1:58 pm

Rob R. wrote:I must have missed the part about baseboards, I thought the system was all cast iron radiators with TRV's.


That's my comment, I think he is still looking at a large number of cast iron radiators. Sorry if that made for any confusion.

I know cast iron radiators can suck the heat out of water quite well, and I know it's not uncommon to have cool or cold radiators due to long-ish strings of them in series.

I was using the term "radiants" to generically refer to whatever radiant device is being used.
CoalisCoolxWarm
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Keystoker KA-6
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: old Sears rebuilt, bituminous- offline as of winter 2014
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite Buckwheat
Other Heating: Oil Boiler


Re: where to install circulators

PostBy: jrv8984 On: Thu Dec 29, 2016 12:17 pm

I think my options on how to plumb this are limited by my home construction. Everything has to start in the basement of the main house and then pass through the stone walls to get to the other parts of the house.

Before anyone brings it up, the only access from one block of the house to another is through access holes in the stone foundation. Absolutely NO holes will be cut through the stone walls in the 1st or 2nd floor to run piping or electricity from one block of the house to the other.

I can zone every room with circulators and thermostats, but then I'm assuming that's going to cause a nice increase in my electricity usage or,

I can use 3 radiant manifolds and TRV's and home run almost every radiator back to the manifold or, (most expensive)

I can try to set up some type of reverse return with TRV's which I think would be problematic because of having to drop back down into the basement or,

I can create a hybrid system with manifolds and reverse return with TRV's
any other ideas?

1st sketch is of the house as is,
2nd sketch is of the finished footprint

So the center portion of the structure is 27'x24' 16"-18" stonewalls denoted by the heavy black lines, (basement, 1st floor-living room, 2nd floor-2 bedrooms, 3rd floor future attic bedroom)

the East (Left) section is 16'x24' (5' tall crawl space, 1st floor-Kitchen, bathroom, 2nd floor-storage space) which will be enlarged to 21'x29' denoted by the green dotted lines, (1st floor-Kitchen, bathroom, mud/laundry room, 2nd floor-Master bed/bath, 2nd bathroom, 3rd floor-attic bedroom or storage)

the West (Right) section is gonna be roughly 25'x19' depending on how much room the in-laws want (open 1st floor?, 2nd floor-2 bedrooms 1 bathroom, 3rd floor-storage
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Last edited by jrv8984 on Thu Dec 29, 2016 12:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
jrv8984
 
Other Heating: Blaze King Princess

Re: where to install circulators

PostBy: jrv8984 On: Thu Dec 29, 2016 12:25 pm

so the other problem is that my wife wants this up and running with the radiators, and indirect right now (and rightfully so) but I am trying to come up with a basic design for the house as if it was finished so that I can easily add on, instead of having to completely redesign it every time we make a change to the house.
jrv8984
 
Other Heating: Blaze King Princess

Re: where to install circulators

PostBy: McGiever On: Thu Dec 29, 2016 8:14 pm

Plan out your headers for your total zones include counting your future needs and leave all inactive future zones w/ a ball valve (off) to be completed in the future...easy peazy. :)
McGiever
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: AXEMAN-ANDERSON 130 "1959"
Coal Size/Type: PEA / ANTHRACITE
Other Heating: Ground Source Heat Pump
Stove/Furnace Make: Hydro Heat /Mega Tek

Re: where to install circulators

PostBy: CoalisCoolxWarm On: Thu Dec 29, 2016 8:58 pm

In an old house with stone foundation with needs that sound similar to yours, we put the NG boiler on one side, plumbed 4 zones on the primary loop (1.25") there, then from the ends of the primary, we ran long primary extension to the other side where it was centrally located and plumbed 4 zones from there.

We stubbed out with 1" copper to install zone circulators, then transitioned to 1" PEX to run through the house to supply the baseboard and radiators mix.

We have only 2 pipes running through that single hole in the stone foundation, which also passes water lines and electrical supply.

We put a zone controller at each of the two sections and wired them together with single set of 2 wire thermostat cable. The zone controller only needs a single 120v supply, which it then sends to each circulator, making a fairly neat and simple installation.

Hope this helps.
CoalisCoolxWarm
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Keystoker KA-6
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: old Sears rebuilt, bituminous- offline as of winter 2014
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite Buckwheat
Other Heating: Oil Boiler

Re: where to install circulators

PostBy: jrv8984 On: Fri Dec 30, 2016 4:06 pm

So I have an idea to use a 12 port pex manifold (1 extra port for Murphy's law), feeding 21 radiators. So then each manifold port will feed roughly 2 radiators of equal size. I can use the flow valves on the manifolds to balance out each set of radiators, and then the TRV's to control the radiators output. Most of those paired radiators will be in the same rooms.

So the question is do I use reverse return for my paired/tripled radiators, or just tee them.

Going to feed the basement radiator (dump zone) and indirect water heater before I go to the manifold

Is there a problem using a 1.25" inlet manifold through the circulator coming off of 1.25" pipe, or should it be a 1" inlet.
jrv8984
 
Other Heating: Blaze King Princess

Re: where to install circulators

PostBy: CoalisCoolxWarm On: Fri Dec 30, 2016 7:23 pm

I'm on just my phone, so short comment until later.

You can do 2 separate manifolds, one on each side of the house to make things easier. Usually around the same price
CoalisCoolxWarm
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Keystoker KA-6
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: old Sears rebuilt, bituminous- offline as of winter 2014
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite Buckwheat
Other Heating: Oil Boiler

Re: where to install circulators

PostBy: jrv8984 On: Fri Dec 30, 2016 7:35 pm

It would be at least $350 more to have 2 manifolds and 2 circulators. It's not gonna add that much extra length to the pipe runs, everything is going to be pretty much centered in the basement. But if I have to do that I will.
jrv8984
 
Other Heating: Blaze King Princess