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  • Snow Melt systems

    Looking at doing a snow melt system for my house. So far what im thinking is Viega control 17023 - Viega 17023 - Basic Digital Snow Melt Control II, using that to control the circulator pump and running wirsbo he-pex. Just wondering if the wirsbo he-pex is what i want to be using. Or is there a better type of pex to use ? This will be used just for a small side walk about 30 feet long.

  • #2
    Re: Snow Melt systems

    watts sells a good brand of ice-melt pex. it has a coating to prevent oxygen infiltration. a cross-linked pex-aluminum-pex pipe may be a better option. it is more durable and also does not allow oxygen infiltration. oxygen infiltration causes premature failure of the boiler and components due to corrosion and rust. many manufacturers sell both types of pipe. farmtek.com has both types also in many different lengths.
    ~~

    ... it was plumbed by Ray Charles and his helper Stevie Wonder

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Snow Melt systems

      I have often wondered if a passive snow melt system would be plausible.

      I'd like to have a solar heated solution that was circulated by a solar power pump,
      so basically zero operational costs. Would only work on sunny days I know but still.
      Last edited by Bob D.; 12-31-2012, 02:54 PM.
      ---------------
      Light is faster than sound. That's why some people seem really bright until you hear them speak.
      ---------------
      “If I had my life to live over again, I'd be a plumber.” - Albert Einstein
      ---------
      "Its a table saw.... Do you know where your fingers are?"
      ---------
      sigpic http://www.helmetstohardhats.com/

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Snow Melt systems

        i had a thought about something similar, using pond water pulled from near the bottom. the water there is always about 45-50 degrees. 2 solar pumps - one for the pond and one for the anti-freeze/plate exchanger loop. the major costs would be pumps, panels, and trenching.
        ~~

        ... it was plumbed by Ray Charles and his helper Stevie Wonder

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Snow Melt systems

          Pond water is not hot enough
          The solar system would work but you cant over heat the walk way or driveway so you have to temper the water
          A friend of mine in Maine has a very steep driveway and it is heated . It has to run for a long time to melt the snow but he cleans it off by hand and then it drys . This way there is no ice on it . It has a moisture sensor that works with the slab temperature to tell the system when to come on .There are times if he knew a storm was coming he would over ride this and pre heat it .
          It is not a cheep system to run
          Charlie

          My seek the peek fundraiser page
          http://observatory.mountwashington.o...nal&fr_id=1040


          http://www.mountwashington.org/weather/conditions.php

          new work pictures 12/09
          http://public.fotki.com/hvachawk/

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Snow Melt systems

            Originally posted by HVAC HAWK View Post
            Pond water is not hot enough
            The solar system would work but you cant over heat the walk way or driveway so you have to temper the water
            A friend of mine in Maine has a very steep driveway and it is heated . It has to run for a long time to melt the snow but he cleans it off by hand and then it drys . This way there is no ice on it . It has a moisture sensor that works with the slab temperature to tell the system when to come on .There are times if he knew a storm was coming he would over ride this and pre heat it .
            It is not a cheep system to run
            Interesting. I would think that if the system runs all the time that the temperature of the concrete would be kept within a certain range, and that maintaing a more uniform temperature would be better for the concrete. Excess heat could be shed by various means but since the heat source is free (solar collectors) and the power to run the pump (solar panels) is free how expensive could it be after initial installation. How hot does concrete get on an August afternoon? I can't see this system taking the mass of concrete over 90° in the winter, and in the summer you can just shut it off. Those were my assumptions in making the suggestion but I have no real world expierence with snow melt systems. I know at work we have so much waste heat it is not funny. We could probably heat a small city with the waste heat that is lost, most generating stations are the same in that they have loads of waste heat. Some sell off their waste steam to heat nerby buildings or for other uses. I worked at a commercial laundry in the 70s where we installed a big Cleaver Brooks package boiler in 4 weeks because the coal fired electric plant where they had gotten their steam for the past 50 years was shutting down for good. They only gave the laundry a months notice to find an alternate heat source. We brought in a large portable boiler mounted on a flat bed truck to provide some steam while we got the permanate installation completed. Had to build a building to house the boiler, install oil tanks, run hundreds of feet of large bore copper (4, 6, and 8" L), install all the controls for the boiler, plus all the associated electrical work. It was a big job and we worked around the clock to get it done.
            Last edited by Bob D.; 01-01-2013, 09:21 AM.
            ---------------
            Light is faster than sound. That's why some people seem really bright until you hear them speak.
            ---------------
            “If I had my life to live over again, I'd be a plumber.” - Albert Einstein
            ---------
            "Its a table saw.... Do you know where your fingers are?"
            ---------
            sigpic http://www.helmetstohardhats.com/

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Snow Melt systems

              Im not an engineer but i was told that to hot of water in a slab will crack it ,now this may happen because its not even heat like the sun on it .
              Now you were talking about the summertime i wounder how much heat you can take out of the slab with the sun on it to preheat your water .
              If you have a big enough pond or lake you use that water to make hot water for your slab ,geothermal.
              Charlie

              My seek the peek fundraiser page
              http://observatory.mountwashington.o...nal&fr_id=1040


              http://www.mountwashington.org/weather/conditions.php

              new work pictures 12/09
              http://public.fotki.com/hvachawk/

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Snow Melt systems

                I would use Watts Radiant Onyx tubing no matter what design you use.


                Watts Radiant - Onix
                26+6=1

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Snow Melt systems

                  There is no such thing as an "Ice Melting PEX". Any one will do. If you use ferrous metal components you will want an Oxygen barrier - though it is less important as the operating temperatures drop.
                  Commercial snow/ice melting systems may run at an idle - keeping the slab just at freezing until snow and cold are detected. But residential systems nearly always start from a cold slab.

                  Concrete "shock" is hard to achieve in residential snow melting and if you think about a cold rain on a hot slab you have to ask yourself if it matters much.

                  You will want to size the PEX and loop length for the load dictated by ASHRAE standards for your area.

                  You may or may not want full automation and a few thousand dollars worth of controls. Tekmar and Caleffi are two of the few manufacturers.

                  I would not pay more for rubber pipe but I do like your logo EJ.

                  Attachment

                  We design and install residential snow melting system here in Minneapolis every year. Some are fully automated. Some are operated with a light switch. But almost all are driven with a condensing boiler. If you use an atmospheric boiler you may benefit from full control but there are cheaper options for this as well.
                  Attached Files
                  When in doubt, find someone without.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Snow Melt systems

                    Originally posted by HVAC HAWK View Post
                    Im not an engineer but i was told that to hot of water in a slab will crack it ,now this may happen because its not even heat like the sun on it .
                    Now you were talking about the summertime i wounder how much heat you can take out of the slab with the sun on it to preheat your water .
                    If you have a big enough pond or lake you use that water to make hot water for your slab ,geothermal.
                    when I visited the Hoover Dam a few years back they said they were still taking heat out of the concrete using the system that was installed during construction. they knew that huge mass of concrete would generate heat and they planned for its removal. there is a system of piping runing through the concrete which circulates water to pick up that heat and move it out .
                    ---------------
                    Light is faster than sound. That's why some people seem really bright until you hear them speak.
                    ---------------
                    “If I had my life to live over again, I'd be a plumber.” - Albert Einstein
                    ---------
                    "Its a table saw.... Do you know where your fingers are?"
                    ---------
                    sigpic http://www.helmetstohardhats.com/

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Snow Melt systems

                      Bob i knew there was system like that there but i dont know where the heat is coming from. I thought it was the curing of the concrete?
                      Charlie

                      My seek the peek fundraiser page
                      http://observatory.mountwashington.o...nal&fr_id=1040


                      http://www.mountwashington.org/weather/conditions.php

                      new work pictures 12/09
                      http://public.fotki.com/hvachawk/

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Snow Melt systems

                        Originally posted by HVAC HAWK View Post
                        Bob i knew there was system like that there but i dont know where the heat is coming from. I thought it was the curing of the concrete?
                        Curing concrete? or heat gain from being exposed to desert heat and sunshine??

                        Comment

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