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Thread: weill mcclain boiler, cast iron baseboard

  1. #1

    Default weill mcclain boiler, cast iron baseboard

    in the spring of 08 i had an electric water heater installed...the idea being to turn off the boiler in the summer for domestic hot water (lookingf a $4 oil). When I turn the boiler on in October, I found back bedroom wouldn't heat. (ranch, one floor, 3 brms.). heating guy here at 9:00 a.m., left at 5:00 p.m and all he did was move the air block from backroom to front room. said he would have to return and tear out my (new) basement ceiling. emailed weill.mc. ,this is the answer i got back.

    "What has happened is that when they opened the piping lines to install the electric water heater, air got into the lines. They should have bled at the highest point in the house.
    If they did, instead of tearing up your ceiling, our engineers recommend you have an air scoop added to your system to eliminate the air. The contractor you choose to do this should call our Tech Service Engineering dept. to ask about purging air with an air scoop and Dawn dishwashing detergent"

    next heating man looked at message, didn't (wouldn't) call and spend several hours trying to drain...still an air block.

    i have spent close to $600 so far, and afraid to call anyone else. I tried purging air from blocked baseboard. Only cold water comes out. (wonder what happens at the boiler as I drain.)

    can you suggest the next step. another tech who doesn't know what to do and spends several hours and several $$'s.?? anyone I call wil say $79 to come and LOOK and then estimate. The previous 2 did just that and couldn't fix it. Telling them they won't be paid unless its fixed won't work...they simply wouldn't come. And tearing out my ceiling downstairs is not an option. HELP.

  2. #2
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    New England


    Are there bleed valves at the radiators in the rooms that don't get heat? Does your boiler have an automatic makeup valve (i.e., it adds water automatically to keep the pressure up)?
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  3. #3

    Default weill mccain baseboard heat or lack thereof

    yes there are bleed valves...that's what I've been using to purge. as to the automatic feed for the furnace, I don't know! the depth of my lack of understanding about such is awesome!!

  4. #4
    Master Plumber nhmaster's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    S. Maine


    The boiler should have an automatic water feed valve such as a Watts S1156F. It should also have an air eliminator (scoop type or better yet a Sprio Vent) that continuously removes small air bubbles from the system. It should als have purge valves on the return piping.


  5. #5

    Default cast iron baseboards

    thank you for all the help. i have saved your answers and will try to find someone who can fix this. it appears the fellow who installed the hot water tank removed the air scoop for the furnace. don't know why, but he has caused me worry and money. Unfortunately, he went out of business (lack of new building) and works for a plumber elsewhere, so I can't get him back to fix this. I guess I'm on my own in finding a good h/c mechanic. Weill Mcclain's website gave a few contractors in my area, the the first name on the list was the fellow who spent all day and couldn't fix the block..(also never saw/mentioned that an air scoop was missing!), so I can't ask them for a reliable reference. Thanks again for all the info...I really appreciate your time. mlb


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