HELP! Plumbing Closed loop wood boiler to indoor boiler

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Jcc583

New Member
Nov 30, 2018
60
New York
To start, the tees in the storage are oriented wrong. Should be a straight shot from wood boiler to storage. Supply and return to house should be going up from tees. Next, it looks like a big air trap where the circulator is with no way to vent. Those are a couple places I would start
Your saying the boiler lines shouldn’t be meeting a tee, I see what your saying!
 

Jcc583

New Member
Nov 30, 2018
60
New York
I’ll have to drain boiler and tank to correct the tees! Any further suggestions are appreciated so I can address well drained! Thank you!!
 

Jcc583

New Member
Nov 30, 2018
60
New York
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And which way are those check valves allowing flow? I haven't checked out that sticky for a long time, but something isn't looking quite right there.

I have to go out for most of the day though so won't be back to this for quite a while.
 

Jcc583

New Member
Nov 30, 2018
60
New York
I tend to think it might be the above thought. Also I believe the purge valves are on the wrong side of the ball valves on the zone returns, if you opened the purge valves you’d be purging the boiler instead of the zone.
You have me thinking! This system was in when I bought house, I’m adding the wood and buffer. The purge setup is as you stated or I’m missing something!
 

Woodman1

Burning Hunk
Jan 15, 2018
138
Michigan
I don't like how the return makes that big up/down loop. And I hope you have a bigger expansion tank somewhere you didn't show
 

maple1

Minister of Fire
Sep 15, 2011
10,773
Nova Scotia
I’ll have to drain boiler and tank to correct the tees! Any further suggestions are appreciated so I can address well drained! Thank you!!
Some suggestions have been made that you haven't fully addressed yet. I am reading kind of a scattered approach to trying to figure out what's going on here. So more should be done here to try to sort things out now before draining everything - methodically, one thing at a time.

To repeat somewhat. You at first said heat isn't getting to storage. Then said return got hot. Which is kind of contradicting. So - first things first. Maybe elaborate on that. Then get your wood boiler going, and only open the two ball valves at the ends of the pex coming in. Make sure wood heat is going through the storage tank. Then open that to the system with the other two ball valves & see what happens. Does the heat go anywhere further at all? If so, where? And when?

First obvious possible trouble spots I see are the high spots on the top of those two pipe runs between the storage & the system. I don't see anywhere to get the air out. And as mentioned above, that's not plumbed very good for getting air out of the zones. But if the house is otherwise heating OK, there must not be an air issue there. Is the house otherwise heating OK?

If you work through this one step at a time, you might not need any serious replumbing & it might work - aside from maybe air vents at those high spots.
 

Woodman1

Burning Hunk
Jan 15, 2018
138
Michigan
I agree with maple. Isolate the house side and make sure the wood and storage side works correctly first. Expansion tank?
 

Jcc583

New Member
Nov 30, 2018
60
New York
Some suggestions have been made that you haven't fully addressed yet. I am reading kind of a scattered approach to trying to figure out what's going on here. So more should be done here to try to sort things out now before draining everything - methodically, one thing at a time.

To repeat somewhat. You at first said heat isn't getting to storage. Then said return got hot. Which is kind of contradicting. So - first things first. Maybe elaborate on that. Then get your wood boiler going, and only open the two ball valves at the ends of the pex coming in. Make sure wood heat is going through the storage tank. Then open that to the system with the other two ball valves & see what happens. Does the heat go anywhere further at all? If so, where? And when?

First obvious possible trouble spots I see are the high spots on the top of those two pipe runs between the storage & the system. I don't see anywhere to get the air out. And as mentioned above, that's not plumbed very good for getting air out of the zones. But if the house is otherwise heating OK, there must not be an air issue there. Is the house otherwise heating OK?

If you work through this one step at a time, you might not need any serious replumbing & it might work - aside from maybe air vents at those high spots.
Well the issue was that when I fired the wood boiler up it was able to dump the heat, the return lines at the boiler where it meets the boiler are what where becoming hot it seemed as if it was almost plumbed in backwards even in the house it seemed the return pex was hotter than the supply. After the boiler passed 220+ it blew the pressure relief valve on the oil boiler filling the basement with water. The wood boiler never was able to return cool water or fill buffer.
 

Jcc583

New Member
Nov 30, 2018
60
New York
Well the issue was that when I fired the wood boiler up it was able to dump the heat, the return lines at the boiler where it meets the boiler are what where becoming hot it seemed as if it was almost plumbed in backwards even in the house it seemed the return pex was hotter than the supply. After the boiler passed 220+ it blew the pressure relief valve on the oil boiler filling the basement with water. The wood boiler never was able to return cool water or fill buffer.
Wood boiler wasn’t able to dump heat sorry.
 

maple1

Minister of Fire
Sep 15, 2011
10,773
Nova Scotia
What about the expansion question also asked earlier? I see no temp or pressure on the guage on the wood boiler. More pics of that end might help.
 

Jcc583

New Member
Nov 30, 2018
60
New York
I had good pressure until my temperature started to pass 220 that’s when I got to 20+.
 

maple1

Minister of Fire
Sep 15, 2011
10,773
Nova Scotia
If heat isn't getting out of the wood boiler then seems the problem is all the way back there. As long as the valves weren't all closed. Can't tell much on the wood boiler piping since the pics seem to be of work in progress. First thing to rule out is airlock. Did you purge all air from all lines with house dhw pressure?
 

Jcc583

New Member
Nov 30, 2018
60
New York
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Ok First I had a thermostatic bypass at wood boiler to help eliminate cold water return but it turned into more of a headache then I felt it was worth! Now I have a 3 speed taco 0015 pulling from wood boiler on supply which is 1 1/4” copper to 1 1/4” pex. Nothing fancy just hot supply cold return. I attempted to fill system two ways. The fist time I filled manually with a hose both the boiler and buffer using gravity.Second time I allowed my system to fill buffer and boiler, that time the buffer was filled with hot water from my oil boiler and seemed great “no wood heat yet” and looped only through boiler and buffer. I never attempted to open zones and run everything through one giant loop in an effort to eliminate air which now that I think about makes sense as to ensure it travels through air scoop on boiler supply. So as you stated this morning I agreed 100% with the flow on my buffer Tees being incorrect and my potential for air lock in load supply plumbing. Being said I have disassembled everything and installed ball valves on both manifolds to allow me to re plumb load supply plumbing well allowing system to still function. My thought was to install an additional air scoop on buffer supply and possibly make straighter runs. And obviously correct buffer Tees! My DHW is an indirect water heater and I assume you suggest because it offers the smallest loop? I really appreciate the help and apologize for my 100 mph approach. I added a few pictures to provide update.
 

Jcc583

New Member
Nov 30, 2018
60
New York
I’ll add this is my first attempt at plumbing and am just a DIY guy. I know when I need help.
 

Woodman1

Burning Hunk
Jan 15, 2018
138
Michigan
Nothing wrong with DIY but you need to be careful. Your working with things here that could hurt you or your existing system if something goes wrong
 

Bad LP

Minister of Fire
Nov 28, 2014
1,563
Northern Maine
I don't like how the return makes that big up/down loop. And I hope you have a bigger expansion tank somewhere you didn't show
Yup and not having the pipe level would drive me insane.

Is there a reason you can't go to the wall for the return?
 

Woodman1

Burning Hunk
Jan 15, 2018
138
Michigan
that's what I was afraid of. The only way you will get heat to the storage like that is after it goes through the house and back through the oil boiler and back to storage return. Were the valves on the house side open or closed when you fired last? I think You need to move that circulator between the wood boiler and storage and plumb those tees the way I suggested
 

Woodman1

Burning Hunk
Jan 15, 2018
138
Michigan
I think you have a lot of issues with your current layout that need to be addressed. There should be no problem with the thermostatic bypass if it is plumbed correctly. You will do a lot of damage to your wood boiler without it
 

Jcc583

New Member
Nov 30, 2018
60
New York
that's what I was afraid of. The only way you will get heat to the storage like that is after it goes through the house and back through the oil boiler and back to storage return. Were the valves on the house side open or closed when you fired last? I think You need to move that circulator between the wood boiler and storage and plumb those tees the way I suggested
There is a pump from wood boiler to storage