Not all residential hvac contractors install residential and light commercial boilers. We here ar Chicago Heating enjoy the challenge of a big clunky old steam boiler repair or replacement.
There`s a few simple repair tips to alleviate the clangs you hear with Residential Steam Boilers. Often times, over years a steam boiler builds up sediment in the radiators as well as in the bottom of the boiler itself. That is why it is important to flush your system once a week at a minimum (especially when the boiler and radiators are really old). If the steam boiler was installed correctly then there is a skim valve at the boiler water level for skimming oils and such that float on the top half of the boiler, that skim valve should be open weekly to remove oils and such. Remember to use proper safety procedures when performing these tasks. If your not sure how to perform this maintenance, call us at Around The Town Heating and Cooling!
Another reason for pipe clanging is lack of condensate return water returning back to the boiler. As the steam travels through the piping and radiators, the steam gives off its heat, and by doing so, the steam turns back to condensate. This process is continual. There are several reasons for this. It could be that the radiators are pitched the opposite way from the steam shut off valves. The radiators should have a pitch back towards the valve so the water can travel back to the boiler for the process to continue. Why would the steam radiators be tipped the wrong way? Often times in older homes, apartments, and some commercial structures, the wood or surface the radiators are standing on sink just due to the weight of the radiators.
Other problems related to clanging is basement renovations. We see from time to time where the low hanging pipes are bothersome and the homeowners will have them lifted a bit. This has caused many of steam boilers to start clanging, because the lifted piping was trapping condensate. If you remodel your basement and you keep your steam boiler and you want to raise your piping, remember its expensive and has to be performed by a skilled Steam boiler contractor.