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Thread: Radiant heat

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Default Radiant heat

    The attached pictures are of the mainifold for an in floor radiant heat system. The feeds from boiler are all copper, the supply piping is what appears to be a Watts radiant EPDM product. The system was installed in 1987. This is my good buddies house (8000 sq. ft.) he is considering buying. The house has sat for awhile and there are some leaks in copper lines. When we drained the system a brown sludge came out. My question is, is this a good product and what are the problems he could face. What is causing the expansion in lines near manifold. It has an aluminim boiler so I don't think it is a problem that the rubber does not have an oxygen barrier. Any help or links would be appreciated.

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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Radiant heat

    Somehow your pictures actually get smaller when I click on them. Do you have any larger pics? It looks like the hose is about to burst. Is it in floor, as in in a concrete slab or gypcrete? I'd be pretty nervous about what is not visible in that system.

    Jim Robinson
    New Mexico, USA

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Radiant heat

    Jim, It is in gypcrete. Sorry about pictures, I don't know how to fix.

    Tom Rees / A Closer Look Home Inspection / Salt Lake City, Utah

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Radiant heat

    Size the pics at 640 X 480 or similar.

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  5. #5
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    Default Re: Radiant heat

    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Rees View Post
    . The system was installed in 1987. This is my good buddies house (8000 sq. ft.) he is considering buying. .
    1987? Sat for a while? Maybe thru a winter?

    Run.

    I wouldn't be overly concerned about the dirty sludge coming from the piping or the copper leaks. That could be corrected by a good flush and cutting and patching of the copper. But did the copper leaks come from freeze bursts?

    The flex piping is a very real problem and the fact is likely that you have 8,000 LF of it buried in gypcrete. And I am assuming that the system was not flushed and filled with anti-freeze so it is very possible that when the system is filled and pressurized you will have numerous wet spots appear thru the gypcrete.

    Please keep us posted on this, sounds interesting.

    Last edited by Rod Butler; 12-06-2010 at 04:32 PM. Reason: Grammar

  6. #6
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Radiant heat

    For a house that size, I expect it isn't cheap. I would call for a pressure test on the in floor system. They can pressurize it with air and cap it, and then check it the next day or later to make sure it holds pressure.

    Jim Robinson
    New Mexico, USA

  7. #7
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Radiant heat

    Looks like they may have been installed wrong (not coming off straight from the fittings) and that may (or may not) be a contributing factor to the failure of the hoses (they are failed).

    Even seen a washing machine water supply hose about ready to burst? Looks just like that.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
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  8. #8
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
    Ted Menelly Guest

    Default Re: Radiant heat

    Those lines can all be blown out if the home was going to sit a while and hopefully they were not all filled and froze over time. It could be isolated areas. If the connections are just a problem then it is no real big problem. Kind of like the old radiator hoses in a car. the first place to go was at the connections from being crimped. As mentioned hopefully the copper was not that extensive in the hidden areas.


  9. #9
    David Bell's Avatar
    David Bell Guest

    Default Re: Radiant heat

    Looks like a failed connector, leaking into the outside sheathing, maybe an over temp situation.


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