Heating, The Test Of Time by Sylvan Tieger




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Far be it for me to say "I told you so" but here we go with another plastic piping failure.

Now I am wondering who decided plastic should even be considered for heating?

I was under the impression that ANYTHING that is a good conductor of electricity is also a GREAT conductor of heat.

I want to see who is pushing this concept and who is also pushing "basic business advice" and what is lacking in both these thoughts.

First of all, I still think radiant heating is a good system as I have worked on systems over 80 years old. What this old system had going for it was a common sense installation.

The US Postal Service has a main GPO in Manhattan using both hydronic and steam heating in this one building. The key to the steel pipe schedule 40 slab heating is simplicity in installation.

It is called "Ceiling Rads."

The old timers had the common decency to worry about the next generation of plumbers and made the piping accessible for INSPECTION and REPAIR. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to know the following:

Cement is a poor conductor of electricity and THUS a poor conductor of heat, otherwise we would be cooking with stone pots, Correct?

These old timers installed these Ceiling Rads on the ceiling. It seems they liked TRUTH and honesty in those days and plumbers did plumbing. They had real pride in their workmanship.

The heat from these ceiling radiators warmed the floor above them BUT because the floors are thick the hot air was also forced to "circulate" down as the rads threw off more heat than the concrete could absorb (floors bad conductor; air better huh).

Now when the plastic fiasco hit, everyone was caught holding the bag and radiant heating took a beating.

Now the contractors are holding the bag (told you so) As the manufacturer's product wasn't installed properly according to the manufacturer. As heating guys are NOTORIOUS for not having codes or licenses or any Bonifide apprenticeship training (un like steamfitters/Plumbers/Gas fitters)

Suppose the "heating experts" thought about this. On the basement slab, leave NO pipes buried but install long lasting Cast Iron base board all along the out side walls.

Separate Zone as you don't want to mix Copper and Cast Iron in the same zone, as the copper gives up the heat much faster, But CI heat holds longer.

(Plastic giving up heat?? OK then why have plastic on metal handles? COMMON sense).

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