Lincoln Park, Chicago High Efficient Boiler Needs Repair Already?

This Lincoln Park neighborhood high efficiency boiler was installed about two years ago by a different Chicago boiler repair contractor, Gremillion Mechanical was called in when the problems started with this boiler system about a year later.

The following article is for informational use only and is not intended as a “how to” guide.  Gremillion Mechanical provides this information to help people understand the basic functions of their mechanical system and it’s components.  Please remember that we are highly trained professionals at what we do and always stay within your own level of skill while trying to fix or repair you own equipment.

It’s always difficult to tell a client that the equipment they had installed recently will need to be replaced.  Gremillion Mechanical always tries to repair any equipment that is in a condition that it can be repaired, but sometimes the original installing contractor has done such a poor job that the equipment will be cheaper to replace then repair.

HE Boiler Repair

What a mess!

That being said, we got a call to repair a high efficient boiler in Lincoln Park, Chicago and upon arriving found a one year old unit serving domestic hot water, hot water coils and radiant floor heating.  This is was a very nice system  in a very nice new home and was professionally engineered.  We were surprised to be called out on such a new system, but we found that the gas valve was bad and we replaced it under the boilers original warranty.  We were called back for a boiler clean & check and found that the condensate drain was clogged and we of course fixed this issue but we also noticed that there was some discoloration around the burner assembly.  The system checked out and functioned normally, so we noted the discoloration and finished our work.  We got called back about 6 weeks later for issues with the boiler working properly, we returned again.  This time the discoloration around the burner assembly had perpetuated around the entire assembly, this was not good.  This discoloration was the result of the combustion condensation  (a highly acidic fluid) pooling around the primary high temperature gasket that separates the combustion chamber from the outside environment.  This gasket works great for heat when dry, but the combustion condensate ate through the gasket and caused a gas/air mixture imbalance.  This caused the units electronics to trip off on a fault code.  This in and of itself is bothersome, but the real issue is the deterioration of the gasket material.  The total failure of this gasket would allow the flame from the combustion chamber to leave the chamber and possibly cause a fire.  This unit also has a plastic housing that will not be very friendly if the unit did catch fire.

Front view of Peerless Pinnacle HE Boiler

Plastic Housing?

Unfortunately, this client was in for some very bad news.  The cause of the boiler issues stems from the installation of the unit.  Peerless makes good equipment, Gremillion Mechanical installs this equipment when specified, but they need to be handled carefully while being delivered and installed.  HE boilers have to be installed plum and level, and care has to be taken to assure that the unit is plum and level.  The installing contractor placed the unit on the floor and piped everything to it.  The installation looked pretty, but the floor of the mechanical room is pitched towards a floor drain, and so was the boiler.  This caused the combustion condensate to pool around the burner bulkhead after the condensate drain became clogged and caused the failure of the gasket.

Gremillion Mechanical unfortunately had to inform the home owner that this piece of equipment will be cheaper to replace then repair.  We worked with this client to replace the boiler with one of comparable price and efficiency but in our opinion a much better product.

Front view of Triangle Tube HE Boiler

Metal Housing and adjustable stand

This is the Triangle Tube HE Boiler that Gremillion Mechanical used as a replacement to the existing boiler that was installed during the new construction of the home.  This boiler has a metal housing and has a optional adjustable stand making for greater pitch on the combustion condensate drain.  In the end, our client was happy and his family was comfortable, even if their wallet was a little lighter and this is what really mattered to our client.

This home owner used a well established architectural firm along with the general contractor and subcontractors and we are sure they all do good work.  The only real way to know your contractors are to research them, look on the internet at the reviews they receive and do your homework.  Better yet is talk to your neighbors, friends, family, co-workers or whom ever you know that has a contractor they deal with on a regular basis.  Even then, your chosen contractor may not be experienced in your particular situation.  Ask them for references and actually call the references to see if they are happy.  You can also ask if they have any bad reviews and to explain them to you.

In conclusion, not even the highly trained technicians working at Gremillion Mechanical can not know everything about every manufacturer of heating equipment.  We have a policy with our technicians that if they don’t know, ask.  Any of our techs may be sent to your home for service but our techs always communicate with our office any deficiency they may have in experience on your equipment manufacturer.  This allows us to guide them or send an appropriate technician to service your needs.

Chicago Heating Repair
3526 S. Paulina St. ChicagoIL60609 USA 
 • 773-234-4575

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