Shutdown during winter (on purpose)

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ITO
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Shutdown during winter (on purpose)

Post by ITO » Sun Feb 18, 2018 9:48 am

So we will be shutting down the outdoor boiler and switching to indoor propane boiler for the last part of the year due to an extended absence. Although we have had the system for 17 years this is the first time we have attempted a complete shutdown during freezing temps. My thoughts are to drain the tank and blow out the lines to the house then fill with RV antifreeze from the pump back to the tank. Please shoot holes in my plan if you see problems. RV antifreeze is so much less expensive than boiler antifreeze and we would pump it all out again and refill the system with fresh water in the spring so the RV stuff would never see high temps.
Any ideas or concerns would be greatly appreciated! Thanks.

becarp
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Re: Shutdown during winter (on purpose)

Post by becarp » Mon Feb 19, 2018 6:53 pm

I am also wondering about shut -downs. Hope someone responds I have heard RV anti freeze is a no,no


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RSI
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Re: Shutdown during winter (on purpose)

Post by RSI » Tue Feb 20, 2018 8:03 pm

Draining and blowing out the lines and filling with RV antifreeze sounds like the best option.

I don't think the RV antifreeze would hurt anything. It is usually not recommended because some of it uses alcohol to lower the freeze point which would evaporate the first time the stove got up to temperature. Some is just glycol but you really have no idea what ratio it is actually mixed and I have heard it is a lower grade.

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walleye
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Re: Shutdown during winter (on purpose)

Post by walleye » Tue Feb 20, 2018 10:20 pm

I have used RV antifreeze to winterize my boat engines for many years and never had any issues. Picked up 12 gallons last fall and was reading not for use in engines. Did a little research and it's due to the alcohol used in it now and that it would evaporate. Just to be safe I ended up ordering a marine grade antifreeze made with glycol rated at -60. I dont think there would be any problem with the alcohol evaporating, especially if it were in a closed system. Only other thought is RV antifreeze has no anti-corrosive additives that I know of.

ITO
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Re: Shutdown during winter (on purpose)

Post by ITO » Wed Feb 21, 2018 4:47 pm

Thanks for the responses, never thought of it being able to evaporate. I use RV antifreeze in my camper every year and this seems like a pretty similar use since my intention would be to only have it in the lines for a couple months and of course never heat it up. I think that will be my plan, I will try to let you know how it goes.

RSI
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Re: Shutdown during winter (on purpose)

Post by RSI » Wed Feb 21, 2018 7:32 pm

Alcohol boils around 170 degrees so if you heat it up to 180, it will boil away.
In a closed system, it would boil at a higher temperature but if it does boil then it would be released through the air remover.

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Yotehunter66
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Re: Shutdown during winter (on purpose)

Post by Yotehunter66 » Thu Feb 22, 2018 5:49 am

What Temps are you expecting during your absence?
Plants need to breath too, CO2!
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ITO
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Re: Shutdown during winter (on purpose)

Post by ITO » Thu Feb 22, 2018 5:05 pm

We live in NW Wisconsin and March can still have some below zero lows and April will have below freezing temps. We have deep frost in the ground this year and I need to have some antifreeze in the underground piping so I can sleep at night.

ITO
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Re: Shutdown during winter (on purpose)

Post by ITO » Wed Mar 14, 2018 8:11 pm

Ok, blew out the lines to the house and the tub last night, pumped them full of RV antifreeze and we are on the bottle(LP)! All went well but surprised me on the amount of antifreeze I needed to pump. The distance from the house to the boiler is about 50 feet so total of 100 feet of 1" for supply and return plus 70' total of 1/2" tubing for the tub. That took me nearly 9 gallons of antifreeze which I didn't expect, no big deal but I thought it would be less.
Sure feels strange tonite not going out to feed the boiler!

becarp
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Re: Shutdown during winter (on purpose)

Post by becarp » Fri Mar 16, 2018 7:34 pm

ITO wrote:Ok, blew out the lines to the house and the tub last night, pumped them full of RV antifreeze and we are on the bottle(LP)! All went well but surprised me on the amount of antifreeze I needed to pump. The distance from the house to the boiler is about 50 feet so total of 100 feet of 1" for supply and return plus 70' total of 1/2" tubing for the tub. That took me nearly 9 gallons of antifreeze which I didn't expect, no big deal but I thought it would be less.
Sure feels strange tonite not going out to feed the boiler!


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