The Ultimate Hot Water and Steam System Troubleshooting Quiz

By: Staff

4 Min Quiz

Image: refer to hsw

About This Quiz

If you have an older home, you may appreciate some troubleshooting tips for hot water and steam distribution systems. Understanding the basic operation of these systems may help you to better maintain them. Take this quiz to see if you are steamed up about how to troubleshoot hot water and steam distribution systems.

Where may you find hot water and steam distribution systems?

New homes do not typically have these systems installed, but existing homes may.


Which is a hot water system?

The gravity system and the hydronic system are both hot water systems.


What fuel is used to power hot water heating systems?

Gas, oil or electric are use to power hot water heating systems.


Gravity systems heat water _________ degrees Fahrenheit.

Gravity systems heat water to 180 degrees Fahrenheit.


A hydronic hot water system uses what mechanism to move the water?

A motor-driven circulating pump is used to move water. Because of the pump, the water moves faster than with a gravity system and less heat is lost in the process.


What is indicated by hammering noises and a failure to heat?

The incorrect slope of the pipes or radiators is indicated by hammering noises and a failure to heat.


What is the suggested water level of a system's boiler?

The boiler should be kept half full.


What will too little water in the boiler cause?

Too little water may cause insufficient heating.


What mechanism keeps the boiler around half full?

An automatic filling system maintains the boiler at the proper water level.


How can you check the expansion tank's water level?

If the tank feels hot all over, it has too much water and must be drained to allow room for air.


After draining the expansion tank, how much water should you refill it with?

Do not refill the expansion tank; it will fill up with normal system operation.


For proper radiator operation, how should the radiator's inlet valve be set?

The valve should be opened all the way.


What is the purpose of a circulator?

A circulator is a pump that pushes hot water towards the home's radiators.


How often should hot water and steam systems be flushed?

Flush the systems annually.


What should you do during a long winter power failure?

If pipes are in danger of freezing, drain the hot water system.


If some home radiators are hotter than others, what may be the problem?

The vents may need adjustment. The vents farthest from the boiler should be opened the most.


If the circulator pump leaks water, what may be the problem?

The seal may be damaged. A professional is required for this type of repair.


When the boiler is shut off, what happens to the water in the radiators?

As the system cools, the water will flow out of the radiators back to the boiler.


In older systems, where may the expansion tank be housed?

Older systems may house the expansion tank in the attic, while newer systems hang the tank from the basement ceiling .


For hot water and steam systems, what direction will the pipes slope?

The pipes must slope back toward the boiler.


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