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Old 11-05-2012, 12:34 AM   #1
DropTopKingM3
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Arrow Plumbers/ Heat gurus please help me. Radiator air vent question.

Long story short Im having a problem in my 6 story building. The first story is on the ground/floor level with the boiler right under it. I have a slew of 1st floor tenants telling me its too hot in their apartment and other tenants on the 5th floor (top floor) telling me its too cold. Two of the top floor tenants are telling me that only some radiators heat up, but not all.

Earlier today I went to the hardware store and purchased some #D Steam angle vent for one of the 5th floor apartments. I changed all of the vent/valves on each radiator in the apartment. Now she's happy and she said she's getting equal heat in all of her rooms.

My question is, what kind of air vents do I get to keep the heat down on the main floor apartments? Also, are the #D valves the correct ones to use on the apartments that are furthest away from the boiler room (ex: top floor) I used my laser beam thermometor and Im getting 71 degree temps on the 5th floor and near 80 on the first floor. In one apartment is was 85 degrees in the bathroom. I dont want to lower the temperature on the thermastat because I dont want it to drop below 69/70 on the 5th floor.

System Im working with, a HB Smith gas boiler and 1 pipe old school traditional radiators. Its a steam boiler and the water levels are constantly at adequate level since I cleaned the self feeder.

Thanks very much in advance.



Here's one of the air vents that were installed in the 5th floor.



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Old 11-05-2012, 12:47 AM   #2
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Steam radiators, lol, what a sh!t hole.
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Old 11-05-2012, 12:55 AM   #3
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Steam radiators, lol, what a sh!t hole.
Anything but a sh!t hole, but thanks.
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Old 11-05-2012, 12:55 AM   #4
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Wait, what year are we in again? I wasn't aware it was 1884.
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Old 11-05-2012, 12:57 AM   #5
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Wait, what year are we in again? I wasn't aware it was 1884.
Most of the buildings in NYC have steam radiators. My building was built in 1931. If it aint broke, why spend all that money fixing it?
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Old 11-05-2012, 01:09 AM   #6
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Wait, what year are we in again? I wasn't aware it was 1884.
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Old 11-05-2012, 06:50 AM   #7
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Steam is by far the best way to heat. I have central heating and air in my place and WISH I had steam.
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Old 11-05-2012, 07:14 AM   #8
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I'm not a plumber and not familiar with steam, but doesn't each radiator have a valve you could close down on lower floors and open up on top?

Also, I know there is a delay setting on thermostat...and depending on where thermostat is...can be adjusted to run longer when it's on so hopefully the steam gets up high.

GL!
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Old 11-05-2012, 08:38 AM   #9
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I'm not a plumber but this video might help.

http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/vide...638722,00.html
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Old 11-05-2012, 08:39 AM   #10
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Sounds like you need to bleed the system
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Old 11-05-2012, 10:26 AM   #11
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Steam is by far the best way to heat. I have central heating and air in my place and WISH I had steam.
umm, radiant (steam) heating is nice for floors but I hated it for heating a room

a gas furnance, or hell even those weird A/C / furnace combos worked better and much more precise for me


one thing I DID notice about gas furnace heating is I prefer the central air duct to be located on the ceiling and not on the floor, even though heat rises. The difference (to me) seemed rather significant and the feeling of warm air blowing on your back while you're in bed is quite nice.
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Old 11-05-2012, 12:31 PM   #12
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Post a picture of the Radiator Valves. Every valve has a set Orifice this determines how much the valve can open too..
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Old 11-05-2012, 01:39 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DropTopKingM3 View Post
Most of the buildings in NYC have steam radiators. My building was built in 1931. If it aint broke, why spend all that money fixing it?
sorry man, I just had to.

The idea of steam-powered anything just strikes me as anachronistic.
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Old 11-05-2012, 01:44 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dmax View Post
I'm not a plumber and not familiar with steam, but doesn't each radiator have a valve you could close down on lower floors and open up on top?

Also, I know there is a delay setting on thermostat...and depending on where thermostat is...can be adjusted to run longer when it's on so hopefully the steam gets up high.

GL!
See below.

Quote:
Originally Posted by spotlaser View Post
I'm not a plumber but this video might help.

http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/vide...638722,00.html
Thank you!! My local carrier has those adjustable ones and Im on my way to pick some of those up. The super will have them installed by the end of the day so Ill update you with the outcome.

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Sounds like you need to bleed the system
The valves are supposed to self bleed. The defective ones weren't bleeding on their own but the new ones did.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AfghanScarface View Post
sorry man, I just had to.

The idea of steam-powered anything just strikes me as anachronistic.
Ahaha it doesnt bother me as I dont live there. This is an investment property. As long as I get all my money on the first of the month. In the future if it breaks down Ill fix it.. For now Im gonna keep it.
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Old 11-05-2012, 01:44 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by v8 5 View Post
umm, radiant (steam) heating is nice for floors but I hated it for heating a room

a gas furnance, or hell even those weird A/C / furnace combos worked better and much more precise for me


one thing I DID notice about gas furnace heating is I prefer the central air duct to be located on the ceiling and not on the floor, even though heat rises. The difference (to me) seemed rather significant and the feeling of warm air blowing on your back while you're in bed is quite nice.
That's what I have. It make the air dry as hell and when the outside temp dips really low, unless you live in a brand new building, it struggles to keep up. It is extremely inefficient. Steam on the other hand gives off a nice amount of heat and doesn't dry the air out. I'd swap in a heartbeat if I could.
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Old 11-05-2012, 01:44 PM   #16
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Quote:
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sorry man, I just had to.

The idea of steam-powered anything just strikes me as anachronistic.
Yes..... because nuclear power plants are anachronistic
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Old 11-05-2012, 01:48 PM   #17
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Sounds like you need to bleed the system
this go to the highest floor, dont burn yourself. the radiators shouldnt all be on the same loop. they should also have valves like these https://www.blastlineind.com/Product...Fek7OgodLzwAZg to isolate each radiator
maybe you arent describing your situation exactly correctly. im a plumber

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Old 11-05-2012, 01:51 PM   #18
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That's what I have. It make the air dry as hell and when the outside temp dips really low, unless you live in a brand new building, it struggles to keep up. It is extremely inefficient. Steam on the other hand gives off a nice amount of heat and doesn't dry the air out. I'd swap in a heartbeat if I could.
This.

Personally I hate heat and never turn it on in my home. Sometimes I leave my window open because I love fresh cold air. When it gets bitter cold out I close the window, otherwise it stays open.

In this building that I speak it gets comfortably warm. Hopefully by later today Ill be able to maintain the same temps all around the building. Its funny that my building is the only one on this street that never lost power. Every street around within a 4 block radius lost power, heat, cable, etc due to hurricane sandy.. My diva tenants cant appreciate the fact that they have TOO much heat but they choose to call me at midnight on saturday night and 8AM sunday morning to complain. I sorta wish the power did go out there, maybe they would appreciate things more #end rant.
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Old 11-05-2012, 02:09 PM   #19
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Yes..... because nuclear power plants are anachronistic
I don't immediately think of nuclear power when I think of steam power.

To me it conjures up images of locomotives or something from the "Hellboy" franchise.

Surely you understand I jest.
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Old 11-05-2012, 02:42 PM   #20
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This.

Personally I hate heat and never turn it on in my home. Sometimes I leave my window open because I love fresh cold air. When it gets bitter cold out I close the window, otherwise it stays open.

In this building that I speak it gets comfortably warm. Hopefully by later today Ill be able to maintain the same temps all around the building. Its funny that my building is the only one on this street that never lost power. Every street around within a 4 block radius lost power, heat, cable, etc due to hurricane sandy.. My diva tenants cant appreciate the fact that they have TOO much heat but they choose to call me at midnight on saturday night and 8AM sunday morning to complain. I sorta wish the power did go out there, maybe they would appreciate things more #end rant.
your diva tenants should complain, your ill operating building is wasting a **** ton of energy. you should hire an esco to do an energy audit and retrofit your building. you'd be surprised how quickly it will pay for itself.
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