What is involved in bleeding air from a multi residential hot water baseboard heating system installed in 1965?


Yes. In fact, I had to do this exact same thing in a house in MN that had baseboard copper freeze and burst in an attic. I ended up replacing the cooper between the boiler and the baseboards with PEX.

I'd suggest using SharkBite connectors to transition between the copper and PEX. They're designed for that and it's super-easy to install.

As Ecnerwal points out, be sure to use PEX with an Oxygen Barrier.

While doing this, be sure to fully insulate the PEX. PEX can withstand freezing, but it's best to avoid freezing in the first place. If you can move it into conditioned space, that'd be best. If not, wrap it in quality pipe insulation (not the cheap stuff but the ones that self-seal).

The biggest challenge might be finding just the small amount of PEX needed as they are often sold in large rolls. You may want to check with a plumbing supply warehouse to see if they'll sell you a remnant...

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I am in a situation now where I am having to choose between hydronic heat distribution and forced warm air heating.

There are many factors to evaluate and this question is not about the plusses and minuses of forced air heating/cooling vs hot water pipes and radiators.

For a reasonable sized home for a family of four, well insulated to low energy loss (not passive), what is the usual difference between the cost of the piping/radiators/installation (water) vs cost of ducting and venting (air)?

Are there differences in the types of duct? I notice some websites show rectangular ducts, some circular, sometime different materials it seems.

From what I have seen so far, the air ducting system looks like it could be much cheaper, as rectangular ducts can be run around the ceiling to avoid space loss, masked as beams, or installed in a suspended ceiling (which I might end up having anyway).

Any advice much appreciated!

UPDATE: The system would not...

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What is the proper method for bleeding air from hot water systems,, should the system be circulating or off?? I havent tried anything because ive heard different things for my type of system.

The pipes are very noisy with bubbling and gurgling sounds and the constant water faucet sounds in them. Im not sure how to bleed them, so here is how the system is piped now.

There are i believe 2 zones. Out of the boiler the piping goes to a Bell&Gosset Flow control valve-----Then an Air purger/expansion tank----- TEE to separate upstairs and downstairs radiators ----- back to thier respective purge valves then TEE back to another Tee for a manual Freshwater makeup---- valve then to the circulator pump.

There are no bleeds at the radiators, and i am unsure how exaclty the "purge valves" work. The boiler pressure is around 15 psi when the boiler is up to temp. and drops a few psi as it cools.

Any help would be appreciated.
Thanks, and Happy...

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Credit: dreamaker

How to Install Hot Water Baseboard Heating, is an article that will walk you through the steps required to install the radiation part, or baseboard components, to a forced hot water hydronic heating system.

When a system is designed to heat a home, each room or area within the system must have a set amount of baseboard heating, by the foot. A normal sized 15 ft. x 15 ft. bedroom for example, may have a few windows and an outside wall requiring ten to fifteen ft. of hydronic, or hot water baseboard heating. The actual footage, would be decided by a mathematical formula that totals all heat loss factors within any room.

This baseboard heating, or radiation, takes heated water from the boiler, circulated by a pump and heats the room.

Once the element within a piece of hydronic baseboard gets hot, the convection process begins. Heat rises as a natural phenomenon and when the air within the enclosure is heated by the hot water running through the...

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I was thinking of running oxygen barrier PEX under the floor between the joists in a cold room with a crawl space below and then putting rigid foam insulation below to keep the heat in. I have an existing boiler that is used to supply the hot water radiators. Can I hook this system up to my existing boiler?

The systems uses a Weil-McLain gas fueled boiler that circulated the water at 140 degrees F. This boiler used to run 10 large radiators but we remodeled and added an in attic forced air unit and it now only runs 5. The 9 x 15 room already has forced air heat but because it has a crawl space below, three exterior walls, 8 windows, and is located in Minnesota means that that the floor gets very cold in the winter. I thought I could use one of the empty runs to heat the floor of this room and make it more...

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We have a 3 zone system that has gotten very noisy this season from air getting (?) in the system. First we're not sure where the air is coming from. Second, we can't seem to get the air out when we bleed from the baseboard units. We've had trouble with one zone for a few seasons now and the second one just started this season. The third zone is quiet...at least for now :)

After reading several posts here, I realize there is a way to bleed the system with a hose.

We tried to do this based on a compilation of different posts, but we must be doing something wrong...still gurgling! I had the hose connected to the spigot which is located above a shut-off valve, which is located above the thermostat (one set-up like this for each zone), the hose I ran upstairs, above the highest baseboard, and into a large bucket (which we emptied several times, rotating buckets). I made sure the zone was on and water was moving through the zone. We did one zone for 45 minutes!


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In North America there are mainly two types of hot water boiler heating, radiator or hot water baseboard. There is also in floor heating but I'm not as familiar with that so I can't comment on it directly.

To bleed air from a radiator, there will be a butterfly looking screw that can be loosened to let built up air out.

A baseboard heater looks like an electric baseboard heater except of having a electric heating element, there is plumbing for a copper pipe and aluminum fins. This is what I will I will concentrate on from here.

If for some reason air gets into the system and you need to bleed it you will need to find the bleeder screws. The bleeder screws usually will be located on one of the baseboard heaters if they were plumbed correctly. If it was not like my system you will need to have them installed.

There are two types of bleeders, a manual one or a automatic one. The bleeder ideally should be located at the highest point of the heating system as...

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Each radiator or baseboard unit has a small, cylindrical fitting sticking up from its supply line. The valve is approximately 1 inch in height and has a screw at the top with a small nozzle on the side. Some bleed valves are located out of sight behind the shroud or end cover.

Turning the screw in a counterclockwise direction opens the valve, allowing air and some water to escape. To bleed the unit completely, the valve should remain open until a steady stream of water escapes. When valves do not release air or water, corrosion is likely closing off the opening, requiring cleaning or replacement of the valve.

Upon completion of the bleeding procedure, turning the screw in a clockwise direction closes the valve. Upon removal of the air from all units, owners should check lines for correct operation and replace any covers that were removed.

Learn more about...
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Old-fashioned steam radiators have given way to longer, sleeker, lighter-weight and more efficient versions that run hot water through pipes housed in baseboard-like enclosures which hug the bottom of the wall. Hot water baseboard heat is similar to radiant floor heat but with lower initial installation costs; it doesn't require tearing up the flooring in an existing home and can be used where there isn't space for an under-floor installation. Typical costs:Installing a hydronic (hot water) baseboard heating system in a 1,400 square foot home runs about $6,000-$8,000.Related articles: Electric Baseboard Heater, Radiant Floor Heating, Central Heating What should be included:Hydronic (hot water) baseboard heaters are relatively inconspicuous and don't have the fan noise of a forced-air system. They can be used to replace expensive-to-operate electric baseboard heaters where adding ducting for a forced-air system is cost-prohibitive, according to the US Department of Energy....
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There are a number of different types of heating systems for homes, offices, and industrial settings, though some are more optimized for certain locations than others. Size and power considerations are some of the biggest differences, since heating something like a small home or basement apartment is a lot different from regulating temperatures somewhere like a high-rise or major shopping structure. Still, the basic operating technology is usually somewhat consistent no matter the setting. Most systems are one of five major types, namely forced air, radiant heat, hydronic, steam radiant, and geothermal. Each type should be considered for its effectiveness in meeting the budget and heating and cooling needs for the space at issue.

Forced Air Systems

The forced air system is most commonly seen in residential structures and is also used a lot in larger buildings like offices and stores. It works by heating air in a furnace and then forcing the air out into various areas...

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