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The great piping fiasco? Need help!

Post in 'The Boiler Room - Wood Boilers and Furnaces' started by RowCropRenegade, Jan 4, 2010.

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  1. RowCropRenegade

    RowCropRenegade Feeling the Heat

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    Is there guidelines for placement of thermostats? Outside walls? Not over baseboards? I didn't know Fedex delivered on Sunday, happy they did. I got all day to figure it out now.

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  2. heaterman

    heaterman Minister of Fire

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    Loc:
    Falmouth, Michigan
    Thermostat location:
    On an inside wall, away from any direct source of heat such as a cooking stove, sunlight, any heat emitters including electronics like computers or printers and then if possible, centrally located within the zone it controls. Sometimes tough to fulfill all those requirements but ya gotta start somewhere.

    I had a service call to a large church where the secretary was complaining that when she came to work in the morning her office was nice and warm but as the day progressed, seemed to get cooler with every hour. The office was in a corner of the building and as such had two outside walls so by the end of the day is would be down to the low 60's even with the electric heater running under her desk. We had done a preseason inspection on the whole system and found everything in working order so I was a bit puzzled by the lack of heat and the way she said it got cooler as the day went on. When I got there it was immediately apparent what the problem was. They had rearranged the office and the computer was on top of the desk about 20" directly below the thermostat. When the computer was off during the night everything worked normally but when she fired it up in the morning the warm air discharge from it kept the t-stat from ever calling for heat. Moved the thermostat and ..........drum roll please................what do you know, she has a warm office. :)
  3. RowCropRenegade

    RowCropRenegade Feeling the Heat

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    Thanks for the details, heaterman. I've got 2/3 mounted and wires run. The last one I'm mulling over 2 or 3 different spots. The bedroom is last on this particular loop. I'm thinking about putting it in there. There isn't a good central location for that loop.

    Funny how a little computer can cause the entire system to not work right.
  4. PJF1313

    PJF1313 Member

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    Is the B/R on the South side? If so, it's not going to give you the best "demand" location - found out the hard way...

    Had my t-stat on the North wall on my South facing living room - interior wall. But if we didn't have the Verniecian (sp?) Blinds (yes the old, real metal type) 1/2 way down for the winter sun angle, the sun would cook the t-stat - saying it was 80+ °F , but walk around the corner, it was in the upper 50's/lower 60's. My fix was to use a remote temperature sensor directly behind the t-stat, all of 6" of wire, to get a "real" reading.

    Good luck to you and your Garn. I've been following this thread from the first post (in envy) and you seem to be getting there a bit at a time :)
  5. RowCropRenegade

    RowCropRenegade Feeling the Heat

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    Hi PJ,

    The BR is on the south side. 3 big windows, heavy curtains covering them all the time. It also sits on its on "wing" from the rest of the house. It's generally the coldest room in the house. These rooms all are in a straight line from each other. The den (20x20 and has LP log fireplace), my office (10x15), the bathroom (5x10) then the bedroom(22x22). You see my dilema.

    Thanks for the wishes. I hope you can take something away from this thread, too.

    Because of the next snow storm coming in, both electrician and HVAC will be here tomorrow. Maybe see some pumps by weeks end!
  6. Gooserider

    Gooserider Mod Emeritus

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    Another thing that is worth keeping in mind when locating thermostats is the relationship to any doors... The house I grew up in had the thermostat for the upstairs right next to my bedroom door - if I closed the door, it cut off some of the airflow to the stat, and made it read low... As a result I wasn't allowed to close my door most of the time.

    Gooserider
  7. heaterman

    heaterman Minister of Fire

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    A room by room heat loss will give you a good clue as to the best location for the stat. If the bedroom is the coolest you could possibly balance the rest of the system by closing the damper on the baseboards in some of the other rooms if they overheat.
  8. RowCropRenegade

    RowCropRenegade Feeling the Heat

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    I can try the wireless option on this one to see where it fits best. I just don't trust wireless. See what the HVAC guy says tomorrow.
  9. RowCropRenegade

    RowCropRenegade Feeling the Heat

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    43-44 is verified as primary pump.

    Decided to move heat exchanger back into oil boiler room.

    Piping the Garn and oil boiler in parallel.

    Eliminated one downstairs t-stat and decided to go with Tekmar (sp?) controls. Outdoor reset and the whole nine yards.

    I enjoyed speaking for 7 hours with this fella. Learned alot and used what I learned here to "debate" with him. He absolutely loved the Garn. He had previous experiences with the Tarm and Greenwood. Also is into solar hot water and solar electricity generation. The investment was worth it.

    I can go ahead and assemble the primary manifold. Wait on the 43-44, fill and fire the Garn. Tying into the oil boiler will be final phase.
  10. Jim K in PA

    Jim K in PA Minister of Fire

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    Sounds good Reed. Sometimes it pays dividends in confidence to hire an outside person to be the second set of eyes. We do that for a lot of clients (wish they were GARN customers . . . )
  11. sbleiweiss

    sbleiweiss New Member

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    Reed,
    How does the Tekmar / Outdoor Reset fit into this puzzle? I thought the outdoor reset would just modulate the temperatures of the oil boiler based on outdoor temperature. Are you planning to continue to burn oil in the shoulder seasons? Can the Tekmar somehow integrate with the wood boiler system?
  12. RowCropRenegade

    RowCropRenegade Feeling the Heat

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    Loc:
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    We are going to use it to detect temperature at the manifold with the HX and oil boiler, which are in parallel. Then use variable speed pumps controlled by the Tekmar controller to determine GPM needed based on outside temperature/hx temp required. Also, it will help manage the domestic hot water, allow for solar controls and data tracking. This unit will be in the house and allow me to custom tweak setpoints on the controller. I'm going to put in a seperate HX for DHW only, the Tekmar can make it priority over the heating. I liked eliminating the two Taco controllers (since they never called me back) for one fancy Tekmar. Versatility is nice. I'm starting to think I can use 140 degree water in 20 degree outside weather. The boiler has been running 50% of the time in 10 degree weather at 160 max. Apparently you can program the temperature of water required based on the outside temperature. So if the Garn is 200, it's sipping from the primary. If it's 140, shes a cranking, unless outdoor temp controller says otherwise. It will also simplify tying the oil boiler into the setup.

    I've had alot of time to read about different variations of setups I could go with. The project has went from a self employed farmers project to a possible showroom for sales of Garns. Hence, datalogging and max custom control is been upgraded from low priority to high priority. It's difficult to discuss the ins and outs of the decisions I made but it sounded very interesting. Apparently there are quite a few grants that will pay for solar hot water in ohio. Ohio is pushing them to reach the mandate set for 2010. The Garn makes alot of sense for alot of solar collectors. The Tekmar ties in nicely here. I could eliminate burning wood in the late spring/summer/fall and charge up the big barn floor/tanks.
  13. deerhntr

    deerhntr Member

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    Loc:
    Kutztown.PA
    Reed,

    Just make certain you do some back of the envelope calculations on the solar to insure it is worth the effort no matter the incentives. You have to make certain that your (Garn stand-by loss + your Daily DHW use) is less than or equal to the BTU output of your Solar Hot water Panels on April 1st, or whenever you switch to you shoulder season. Otherwise, you will need to burn occasionally to account for your losses not made up by the panels.
    equation:

    (Garn Stand-by Loss + Daily DHW Use) <= (Solar Panel BTU Output); For system that requires no wood BTU input.

    If you lose 1/2 degree / hour on your garn, that is 200,160 BTUs/Day(24 hours). That requires a rather large Panel area just to replace stand-by loss. Average Hot water use for most is 40K-60K/day. So you may have to over size significantly to account for losses in the GARN.

    I'm not sure what to expect for stand-by loss, it is all a function of insulation. Maybe others with longer term GARN use can comment. You may want to consider a solar DHW system that does not use the GARN as storage. That has been my thinking recently.
  14. RowCropRenegade

    RowCropRenegade Feeling the Heat

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    Russ,

    I am just leaving the option open. Which means selecting the right controller. I've washed my hands of it for the most part. I'm moving on to retrofitting my sprayer with a new high tech gadget. It's magical ability is to prevent pressure drop across my 75 ft boom. Being able to variable droplet size without changing tips, from the cab. I'll post it here in the boiler room once it's in operation. Sprayermen speak some of the same lingo.

    My design guru eliminated the primary pump/closely spaced Tees. Turning my primary circuit into two different headers. His feelings was the primary/secondary setup wasn't necessarily benefitting me. The rationale is draw only the btus out of the garn that is exactly required. I liked the idea of taking tees back to the store and not needing a 43-44 which are 250. I'm supposed to be getting a diagram, will post as its in my hands.

    Been reading, just haven't been posting. No news here other than lots of snow and no "Garn-ification"
  15. deerhntr

    deerhntr Member

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    No, I like the Tekmar controllers. They are very nice. I have been thinking of installing a 263 at some point, and re-piping the oil boiler in parallel. You can also add the vdt controller for your variable speed pump. As for manifold vs pri/sec piping, you know I went the manifold route, saved a pump, and I deliver the same temp H2O to both loads.

    I have also thought about solar, but until I can determine my standby loss accurately, I'm going to hold off. Keep pluggin

    Good luck with the uber-sprayer. Sounds very nice, and complex! ;-((
  16. RowCropRenegade

    RowCropRenegade Feeling the Heat

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    A little update for you guys. Monday/Tuesday of this week should finish up the piping. Maybe a fire by the end of next week, when it's going to be 70 outside. Oh well.

    I'm a little P/O with Tekmar right now. They have failed to get my controller to me. Called early this week, they said they had shipped it. Then called again and said it hadn't shipped.
  17. Jim K in PA

    Jim K in PA Minister of Fire

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    I was wonder how things were going for you Reed. Sorry to hear that startup has been delayed. Looks like you'll be all set for next season though.

    Last weekend we were near 70. The last couple of nights have been back down in the 20s. Later this week we'll be back in the 70s. I guess it really is spring.
  18. RowCropRenegade

    RowCropRenegade Feeling the Heat

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    Should be in excellent shape for next winter. Expect to have a fire wednesday.

    Went to the extra effort to get supply header as low as possible. Pump should be even with bottom of the tank.


    Any opinions on water treatment? I'm thinking of filling it, firing it up to 200, then watching for leaks. Then treat it with the chemicals sent with the unit.

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