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Thermo controls for EKO

Post in 'The Boiler Room - Wood Boilers and Furnaces' started by Tony H, Nov 16, 2007.

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  1. Tony H

    Tony H New Member

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    In talking with the sales rep he said the EKO will be set to maintain a water temp at all times and will cycle off and on based upon that setting and the "keep alive" timer that will kick on and run the boiler every so often to maintain a hot bed of coals.
    The system will not have heat storage.

    I was reading on the lit that the unit can operate with a room sensor or a thermo and am wondering if any of you are doing that and how it works for you .

    I figure while I have a trench open for the water pipe and AC maybe some low voltage cable should be run in also any suggestions on what to run?

    Thanks
    Tony

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  2. Nofossil

    Nofossil Moderator Emeritus

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    Mine came with a house temp sensor, and it appears to be set up to use it. Just one, though, so I don't know how it would work in a multizone configuration. My first season, I had no storage so I let it idle when there was no demand. It seemed to work pretty well, though supposedly they're much more efficient running at full tilt.

    I've never used a temp sensor or thermostat connected to the controller on mine, so I can't give first-hand testimony about that part of it.
  3. Eric Johnson

    Eric Johnson Mod Emeritus

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    The way you describe the boiler water temp control is accurate. You set the dial (I'm always at the max, which is 80C) and the blowers run until it reaches that setpoint, and then they shut down. Actually, they modulate as the water gets warmer, so that they're blowing harder when the water is cooler. I have the Model 60 which has two nozzles and two blowers. Smaller models all have one of each, I believe. You can set the "keep alive" feature on the back of the controller to suit your needs.

    Hooking up the house stat and some of the other options is simply a matter of wiring the controller up right. I don't do that, but I imagine it works.

    I'd run some three- or five-strand 24-volt thermostat wire in the trench while you're in there. 14-gauge three-wire can come in handy too if you're dealing with aquastats. You can wire the black wire hot and wire the red one through an aquastat or aquastats, depending on what you need done on the other end. Like everything else made of copper, wire is expensive these days, but it's probably better to put in more than you think you need, especially if you're going underground.

    My rig has been idling some lately since it's been warm and I don't have my tank ready yet (someday I won't have to say that anymore). Last night I removed the exhaust pipe to check out the chimney, and nothing but a thin layer of fine, brown soot. The heat exchangers looked clean, too. So IME, the EKO idles well and even though you get a wisp of smoke sometimes in idle, apparently no creosote. New Horizon does say, however, that the things are up to 40 percent more efficient with storage. Ideally, you fire the boiler to maintain tank water temp, which is a lot easier than trying to match the output of the boiler to your call for heat from the zones.
  4. Tony H

    Tony H New Member

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    [/quote]

    Mine came with a house temp sensor, and it appears to be set up to use it. Just one, though, so I don't know how it would work in a multizone configuration. My first season, I had no storage so I let it idle when there was no demand. It seemed to work pretty well, though supposedly they're much more efficient running at full tilt.

    I've never used a temp sensor or thermostat connected to the controller on mine, so I can't give first-hand testimony about that part of it.[/quote]

    Does the house temp sensor connect remotely?
    I think runnning some extra wire while the trench is open is a good idea. I priced some 8-3 UF at 229.00 for 125' what a deal ?
    I am going to run that to the garage about 10' from the shed as my current feed is 10-2 and I want to put a welder and decent size air comp in the garage. I think a 12-2 for the boiler and maybe some low voltage and 14-3 as suggested would be nice also. Like they say more power . Maybe a empty duct between the building would be nice ya never know when I might need some fiber or coax so I can watch HD TV while cutting wood.
  5. Nofossil

    Nofossil Moderator Emeritus

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    For sure I'd bury some black plastic pipe - never know what else you'll want to pull through. Telephone hookup wire is more than good enough for temp sensors, though. The house sensor that came with my EKO is designed to be a remote unit. My controller has two dials. One sets the water jacket temperature. The controller cycles the fan to maintain the selected water jacket temp. The second dial is for house temp if you're using the remote sensor. I don't know what the controller does to maintain house temp - turn off the circulator, maybe?
  6. Gooserider

    Gooserider Mod Emeritus

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    I would bury at least two runs of plastic pipe - I'd use electric PVC conduit, but other stuff might work as well... Figure one run for AC / high voltage wiring, and the other for Low voltage DC type. I'd probably be using Cat5 for a lot of the signalling, anything where you would be running signal levels as opposed to power, the 24g in Cat5 will carry it, and it is good for minimizing signal cross talk, etc.

    When I put power and low voltage out to a friend's gazebo, I put a nylon "mason's twine" pull string in each pipe run, using twice the length of string as I had pipe, with each end secured. That way you always have a pull string available, I just bundle up the extra length and leave it stuffed in the box at one end or the other of the pipe run.

    Note that you don't want to be running signals and data through the same pipe as your AC power, ideally they should be on opposite sides of the trench in order to avoid possible signal corruption from noise on the AC lines.

    (Most of this is from my experience running computer data lines, but the same principles would still apply.)

    Gooserider
  7. Nofossil

    Nofossil Moderator Emeritus

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    I'll second everything that Goose says (in this post, at least). I use Cat5 for all my signals and sensors.

    I use the ShopVac technique for getting mason's twine through the pipe - just tie a strip of cloth to the twine and suck it through with a shopvac.
  8. Tony H

    Tony H New Member

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    Thanks for the input. I am running a 12-2 for the boiler a 10-3 to feed the sub panel in the garage and a 2" irrigation pipe for future. I will also connect the garage and shed with a 2" and a 1" sealtite pipe. Since I have a empty 1 1/2 pipe and a dual cat5 already to the garage this should take care of future wiring needs. Like Goose I have a backround in data and voice network design and always put in some extra duct for future use. The irrigation pipe is a low cost way to provide "conduit" to remote buildings. I have found regular duct assembled in 10' sections has a horrible failure rate in this area.
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