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Thread: Triangle Tube Prestige Boiler Problems, Solutions & Question

  1. #31
    DIY Member Buffalobillpatrick's Avatar
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    My Solo 60 also has an annoying loud howling sound shortly after firing, which fades away after about 30 seconds.

    It still only fires off part of the time E02 errors. This is worse if its already hot???

    My automatic reset modification that I described above works every time.

    My last contact with TT Tecc Support was over 3 months ago. He had me make some internal code changes which didn't work at all, boiler wouldn't fire. He said he would get back to me, which he hasn't. They must be swamped or take notes & loose them like I do or just slide by.

    In any case would anyone like to buy a lightly used TT Solo 60? This is the last TT boiler that I will ever buy!
    Last edited by Buffalobillpatrick; 02-14-2012 at 10:47 AM.

  2. #32

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    BuffaloBill: wouldn't an explanation of an "extended Status 6" be that the emitters don't have enough BTU output to drop the water temperature?

    I've been (somewhat blindly) bumping up the curve because when I minimized all the set points, the house was really cold -- oops -- too far!

    Dana: the Parameters were set at:

    4 120
    10 100
    11 30
    12 70

    The house has been too cold, so I just changed settings.

    They are now set at:

    4 126
    10 68
    11 24
    12 70

    I still can't find a simple and direct explanation of _how to calculate_ reset curve points online. I see articles about what reset curves _are_ but not how to make/use them.

    Anybody got any links?

  3. #33
    In the trades Dana's Avatar
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    In conventional houses the heat load increases approximately linearly with outdoor temps by the number of degrees below 65F. At 65F there's no heat load, and the output temp of the boiler doesn't really matter. But you can use fuel use against heating degree-day (HDD) data to determine the whole-house heat load at any arbitrary temperature, including whatever you outdoor design temperature (in Seattle the design temps are around +20F.) Get a gas bill, look at the precise meter-reading dates, then go to degreedays.net and download a spreadsheet of base-65F degree-days for a weather station near you, that covers the entire billing period, add up the HDD between the billing dates, and do the simple math of therms (or CCF)/HDD. 1 therm=100,000BTU, and for our purposes, a CCF is close enough to a therm to use the same numbers.

    For a mod-con, assume you'll be getting close to 90% no matter what, so once you have therms/HDD, multiply by 0.9 to come up with BTU/HDD. Then divide by 24 to come up with BTU/degree-hour.

    Now you have something by which you can estimate the load at any temperature: At 25F, you are 40 degrees below 65F (your presumed heating/cooling balance point), and your whole house heat load is 40 times your BTU/degree-hour number. At 0F you have 65 heating degrees, so the heat load would be about 65 x your BTU/deg-hr number.

    To set the curve you then have to know how much heat your radiation will put out at given water temperature with your given number of feet. Pick a number close to your design-temperature (say 20F) the calculate your BTU/hr heat load number at that temp. Then looking at the specs for your radiation, given the number of feet you have, figure out the water temp that's necessary to deliver the heat at that rate. For the sake of argument, lets assume your calculated heat load at 20F was 18,000 BTU/hour and you were running a total of 40 feet of radiant baseboard rated at:

    580BTU/ft @ 180F

    320BTU/ft @ 140F

    160BTU/ft @ 110F

    With 40' of radiation needs to be able to put out 18,000/40= 450BTU/ft to keep up, which is about half-way between the 140F and 180F output numbers, so the water temp would have to be about halfway between 140F and 180F, or ~160F for the radiation to keep up when it's 20F outside, so you would set the bottom of your curve to deliver 160F @ 20F outdoor temps.

    Then calculate what your heat load would be at some significantly warmer temp. If it's 18,000BTU/hr @ 20F (a 45F delta below 65), that's ~400BTU/hr per degree below 65F. So at say 55F, it would need to deliver about 400 x (65F-55F)= 4000 BTU, or 100 BTU/ft. Most baseboard is somewhat non-linear below 110F, but you can assume that with 90-95F water would still be delivering at least 400 BTU/ft, or you could do a linear interpolation from the 140F and 110F numbers to estimate it.

    Another approach for picking the higher outdoor temp of the curve would be to use the 110F output number to determine the outdoor temp at which would need that. With 40' x 160BTU/ft= 6400 BTU/hr, that's good for 6400/400= 16F below 65F, or about 49-50F for an outdoor temp. Similarly, calculate the outdoor temp at which the radiation balances with the heat load with 180F water, and set the other point on the curve there: 40' x 580BTU/ft= 23,200BTU/hr. 23,000/400BTU per degree is 58F below 65, which is +7F.

    Using those as starting points for defining the reset curve, if it's keeping up when it's cold outside, but doesn't when it's fairly warm out, but up the water temp at the 50F outdoor point. If it keeps up when it's mild out but not when it's colder, bump up the water temp at the 20F point of the curve. If it's keep up all the time, start backing off the water temps at both points on the reset curve ~5F at a time until it starts having issues, then increase them a degree or two at a time until it's back working for you. At that point you'll be getting about the best-possible efficiency out of the system.

    If the radiation was sized reasonably on a room-by-room basis by the original designer, the heat loads and temperatures room-to-room and zone-to-zone will pretty much track, but don't be surprised if one zone keeps up a slightly lower temp than the other. It's up to you to decide if tolerating a slightly cooler zone or room is worth the extra percent or two in efficiency, but hopefully it'll be close enough to not matter very much.

  4. #34
    In the trades Dana's Avatar
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    BTW: Tweaking the initial curve to something pretty close based on a heat loss calculation (Manual-J or similar) is something a competent installer SHOULD have done as part of commissioning the system. The evidence here is that either the load changed dramatically (air sealed & insulated after the installation), the calculation was way off (which NEVER happens, right? ;-) ), or the installer didn't bother to program the curve, leaving it as an exercise for the homeowner.

  5. #35
    DIY Junior Member Jason C's Avatar
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    Default I have this same problem with delayed ignition....almost.

    First off, this has been an info packed thread. Thanks to all the pro's that have chimed in.

    Now my scenario.

    And before anybody judges me, I have called a local service man to come take a look tomorrow. But in the event that he doesn't find anything, I still wanted to pass this by you all.

    I assembled a TT Prestige Solo 110 NG with Indirect DWH Smart 50 in my 80 year old house this past fall. It all went reasonably well and I have had problem free heating for the past 6 months. The biggest problem I have had so far has been short cycling which I know is a result of having only a handful of little second hand Slant Fin baseboard radiators upstairs, so the thermal mass of my hydronic loop is very small. I am getting close to the end of my basement reno and will be installing bigger panel rads and that should help a lot. I know that having this equipment cycle like this is terrible, but I hoped that it could get through one winter until I was in a position to install the rest of the heat emitters.

    But the real problem that I am worried about is the same DELAYED IGNITION problem as these other gentlemen. Because I have so many standby cycles (state 6 where boiler has reached max temp but there is still call for heat), this was happening quite frequently. A fairly deep THUD noise on start-up. The other day I got freaked out to the point where I turned off by boiler and will only turn it on now to heat up our 50 gallon DHW tank. Electric space heaters are on for the time being, and hopefully the service guy can help out tomorrow.

    Now some details.
    1) I have never had the E02 for failed ignition. So I really don't think that I am having the bad controller issue (green dot=good, no green dot=bad)) that many have talked about. My boilers SN does fall within the affected range, but my unit has never failed to ignite.

    2) I never did have a professional adjust my fuel/air mixture. I am now realizing how stupid this was and hopefully tomorrow the service guy will have his combustion analyzer and make sure that my unit is dialed in.

    3) Now my last symptom....I smell raw gas when I am in state 6 (burner off due to reaching max temperature). I know this is BAD. I know that everybody will say you should NEVER smell gas. One other post on this thread made mention to this. The location of the smell is very clearly coming from the air intake. So my thoughts on this are that my gas valve could be leaking and diffusing out through the air intake while the blower isn't on? This would also cause a really rich mixture on start-up and cause my delayed ignition as the vent would already be flooded with fuel.

    So my thoughts are
    A) I just have a bad air to fuel mix and the gas valve adjustment will sort this out.

    B) My fuel valve isn't sealing properly (maybe due to the many many ignition cycles I have put it through by short cycling the machine) and creating a rich air/fuel mix that upon ignition, is combusting in my vent.

    Anyways, any thoughts would be very helpful.

  6. #36
    DIY Junior Member montanajack's Avatar
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    Default I have the VERY same problem!

    I am now on my 4th gas valve in two years! Yes, there is gas coming through the air intake tube, sometimes fills my utility room with gas stench. I've been in touch with both TT and Honeywell (who makes the gas/air intake unit), both say "There should be no gas!" But, I can tell you that there is gas, and has been identified by both my gas supplier, and "professionals" (who have actually replaced the valves). So, it is verified.

    I am beginning to look again at heat inside the cabinet, and Post Firing air purge time. The air purge time is factory set at 30 seconds, and no instructions on how to change. TT has never mentioned this as a potential fix, but they have replaced 4 valves! Also, (if at my house) if I get wind blowing directly toward my exhaust and intake pipes, I get gas coming out into my house. So, here again, perhaps ALL of the gas has not been purged, and blows back down the exhaust, up through the heat exchanger, and back out through the fan, and down that little plastic intake pipe!

    Also, I seem to have more problems when it is very cold, and the unit has been working hard at nearly 180 degrees. Inside the cabinet, it gets pretty hot. I've measured the temp in the past, but readings fell within the Honeywell operating range for the valve. So, I really feel that "The Buck" is being passed on this problem.

    Jack





    Quote Originally Posted by Jason C View Post
    First off, this has been an info packed thread. Thanks to all the pro's that have chimed in.

    Now my scenario.

    And before anybody judges me, I have called a local service man to come take a look tomorrow. But in the event that he doesn't find anything, I still wanted to pass this by you all.

    I assembled a TT Prestige Solo 110 NG with Indirect DWH Smart 50 in my 80 year old house this past fall. It all went reasonably well and I have had problem free heating for the past 6 months. The biggest problem I have had so far has been short cycling which I know is a result of having only a handful of little second hand Slant Fin baseboard radiators upstairs, so the thermal mass of my hydronic loop is very small. I am getting close to the end of my basement reno and will be installing bigger panel rads and that should help a lot. I know that having this equipment cycle like this is terrible, but I hoped that it could get through one winter until I was in a position to install the rest of the heat emitters.

    But the real problem that I am worried about is the same DELAYED IGNITION problem as these other gentlemen. Because I have so many standby cycles (state 6 where boiler has reached max temp but there is still call for heat), this was happening quite frequently. A fairly deep THUD noise on start-up. The other day I got freaked out to the point where I turned off by boiler and will only turn it on now to heat up our 50 gallon DHW tank. Electric space heaters are on for the time being, and hopefully the service guy can help out tomorrow.

    Now some details.
    1) I have never had the E02 for failed ignition. So I really don't think that I am having the bad controller issue (green dot=good, no green dot=bad)) that many have talked about. My boilers SN does fall within the affected range, but my unit has never failed to ignite.

    2) I never did have a professional adjust my fuel/air mixture. I am now realizing how stupid this was and hopefully tomorrow the service guy will have his combustion analyzer and make sure that my unit is dialed in.

    3) Now my last symptom....I smell raw gas when I am in state 6 (burner off due to reaching max temperature). I know this is BAD. I know that everybody will say you should NEVER smell gas. One other post on this thread made mention to this. The location of the smell is very clearly coming from the air intake. So my thoughts on this are that my gas valve could be leaking and diffusing out through the air intake while the blower isn't on? This would also cause a really rich mixture on start-up and cause my delayed ignition as the vent would already be flooded with fuel.

    So my thoughts are
    A) I just have a bad air to fuel mix and the gas valve adjustment will sort this out.

    B) My fuel valve isn't sealing properly (maybe due to the many many ignition cycles I have put it through by short cycling the machine) and creating a rich air/fuel mix that upon ignition, is combusting in my vent.

    Anyways, any thoughts would be very helpful.

  7. #37
    In the trades Dana's Avatar
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    Just to be clear, the minimalist baseboard problem is primarily an inability to emit the boiler's min-output @ minimum-fire heat into the zone when running at condensing temperatures, and not a thermal mass issue. Thermal mass is the band-aid that can save the boiler from death-by-short-cycling when you don't have sufficient heat emitter to get the min-fire output of the boiler to the heat out of the radiation into the room/zone. With sufficient low-temp capacity on the emitter end, with the boiler can be in balance with the radiation, the thermal mass of the zone becomes irrelevant. On houses that are micro-zoned to the Nth degree (as has become popular over the past couple of decades), higher thermal mass is often cheapest solution to short-cycling, but more radiation (or combining zones) is ultimately a better solution.

    Big panel rads should be an improvement in both comfort and BTU/hr @ lo-temp, as well as adding thermal mass. It's generally better & cheaper to actually do the math on all of it rather than hack/observe/correct, but as long as you know the symptoms and causes you can still get there.

    I hope your mixture & misfire issues sort out cleanly with the burner-tech pro.

  8. #38
    DIY Junior Member Kurt Webber's Avatar
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    Default Micro-explosions in the exhaust of a Prestige Solo Triangle Tube boiler

    I had a prestige Solo 110 Triangle Tube water boiler with a hot water heater installed. I did not realize I was having micro-explosions until one day when I was standing in front of the exhaust. I reported it to my contractor but he did nothing. The explosions continue and with they happen now they blow the condensation tube off the bottom of the boiler. I was wondering if Larry found a solution to his problem?

  9. #39
    In the trades Dana's Avatar
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    This is a serious problem- call the manufacturer or distributor, and get somebody out there to properly diagnose and fix it pronto! If the contractor can't or won't fix it, you really need to find one who will.

    Don't wait until the pops are big enough to blow the boiler off the wall. Inspecting the vent pipes for cracks would also be prudent with that kind of history too.

  10. #40
    Master Hot Water Mpls,MN BadgerBoilerMN's Avatar
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    Before buying a condensing boiler from anyone, ask them for a sample of their ACCA Manual 'J' heat loads. Sizing any boiler is the first step in every hydronic heating system. Sizing the radiation to the load of each room is the second step. Balancing the loads so that the properly sized boiler does not receive a call from a zone that is too small for the lowest output of the boiler comes next.

    When designing hydronic systems these are the steps we never skip.

    Once the proper boiler is chosen it must be installed by an experienced professional using a combustion analyser. The analyser will tell the technician if the boiler is firing with the correct fuel/air mix. It is the only way to determine this.

    Micro-explosions (actually known as delayed ignition) is not particularly dangerous in condensing boiler of this class but is certainly detrimental to the equipment and will effect components in negative ways. Like Dana, I am more concerned about micro-zones than micro-explosions as it relates to the long term reliability of a The Prestige boiler.

    When manufactured one of the first condensing boilers, we received a dozens of perfectly good gas valves every month. If a technician takes out a good part for another and doesn't fix the problem, he is known as a parts changer. Sometimes this is inevitable, but more often it is the lack of training easily overcome by a quick phone call to the factory.

    No, don't call direct, as the factory support hasn't time to train everyone in the country.

    Yes, do call the factory and ask for the local supplier whom can generally recommend a local boiler tech who has been to school.

  11. #41
    DIY Junior Member boulderbri's Avatar
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    Hi - I have a TT Prestige Solo 110 with the TT Phase 3 Indirect Fired Water Heater. I live in Granby, Colorado at around 8600 feet altitude. The night temps get down to around 0*.

    I've been trying to figure out why we aren't getting the same heat as before (a little chilly in the morning). By early day, things have caught up. Settings are all factory default except for the CH Target Temp is 170* instead of the 186* and the pressure is 12 PSI, which is recommended in the manual for residential.

    In the morning, when several zones are requesting heat, the measured supply temp never goes above 125*. I guess I expected it to be much higher since the CH Target Temp is 170*. Is this right or does it sound like there is a problem

    There are no error codes or lockout. The only issue I see is that the domestic water temp sensor from the side arm water heater shows -22 but if I turn the hot water on in the house and the TT heats the water heater, the domestic water temp sensor shows 240 (which the manual shows as a short).

    So, in short, things seem to work fine for the most part except in the morning, the house is at 65* when all the zones are set for 69*. Any insight would be greatly appreciated!

    Thanks!
    Brian

  12. #42
    Master Hot Water Mpls,MN BadgerBoilerMN's Avatar
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    A common complaint from people with an over-sized condensing boiler. Who performed the Manual 'J' heat load?

  13. #43
    DIY Member Buffalobillpatrick's Avatar
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    Boulderbri,
    What does your "before" mean?

    In morning, step mode from standby to info, 1st display is boiler output (supply) temp.
    Step to 2nd, which is boiler return temp.
    If they are close to the same temp. then your heat emitters are undersized,
    adjust your 4 ODR parameters, as Dana suggests, you need installation manual
    & set the MCB access code 1st.
    if they are wide apart, then your boiler is undersized and can't keep up with your load.
    If it can't keep up, about all you can do is maximize your target temp. parameter OR pump with higher head.

    Add insulation, storm windows, air seal, etc.

    BTW, your indirect works fine? There is parameter for DHW sensor type or some such.
    Last edited by Buffalobillpatrick; 02-19-2013 at 06:53 PM.

  14. #44
    DIY Junior Member boulderbri's Avatar
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    Thanks for the response. I say "before" because I don't recall this problem happening the first year or two after the TT was installed. But, I also started seeing this after adjusting the CH Target Temp to lower over the summer. I put it back up to the default 186* and I haven't seen the problem since.

    What would be considered wide for determining undersized or oversized? I just looked and it is a ~20* difference this morning.

    I do think I need to look at the DHW sensor. I'll check out the installation manual on the DHW sensor type. Thanks for the help!

  15. #45

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    I have just got my hands dirty with this delayed ignition problem with a prestige solo 250. Triangle tube's fan during ignition starts off at around 50% and apparently the "thud" or "boom" you are hearing is normal... So says everyone at triangle tube. My experience is mostly with other boiler brands. With the high efficiency boilers I typically install all you can hear if anything during ignition is a very low blowing noise from the blower. You don't actually hear them igniter with a thud or boom. Going over the unit with my combustion analyzer I found the original contractor had set the unit to run too rich. The O level was only 3.2 and the CO was well over 100 (130) and well out of spec. They also installed a 20' length of 1" gaslight after the reg (done so at the recommendation of Triangle tube head office support techs) to act as a buffer? We were getting a pretty serious pressure drop of over 4" between not running and running at 100%. The drop shouldn't be more then around 1". It was so bad the unit at high fire was dropping below the min of 5" to 4.9" from 9" standing. I replaced the gas regulator to a green cap specifically designed to work with high efficiency appliances and re-piped the unit with only a couple of feet of gas pipe which helped to reduce the drop to 2". Still not what I would like to see but a huge improvement. After all this I replaced the ignitor and control board at the recommendation of Triangle tube's support line. The thought was the board was not providing enough voltage to generate a hot enough spark. This didn't solve the problem of the "thud / boom" either. I adjusted my O level to 4% which is right on the money and my CO level came down to 80 which is great. The "thud" is now much less then it was when I first came to site, but in my humble opinion still unacceptable. I feel the best solution to this delayed ignition problem would be to lower the fan's rate during ignition to 20-30% but it is impossible with Triangle tube boilers software to adjust this setting. So in other words, not a unit I would recommend unless you are installing it in a bunker where noise is not an issue and a must would be to get the extended warranty. That being said, TT boilers are rated by others as a high end boiler so perhaps I am missing something. I would only recommend a Locinvar / Knight boiler as they seem to have a much better product.

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