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  • recirc line

    One of the plumbers at our shop had a call back on a recirc pump another plumber installed. This lead to a conversation as to how it should be done. No body seemed to agree on the correct method. I'm kind of ashamed to admit it but I never learned a correct method myself. It's kind of funny, our code spells out in great detail how to install an island vent but recirc loops are left to the plumber in the field to build without any code standard. I'm not talking about anything fancy, just a residential single loop set up. Any ideas? And what about the loop line, pex or copper? I read somewhere that pex should not be used in that application, but it seems better than copper.

  • #2
    Re: recirc line

    I have a concrete slab home. Went with Grundfos home comfort. Manifold under vanity,
    pump on tank hot nipple. Go to the grundfos site ,Ibelieve It's all there
    I can build anything You want , if you draw a picture of it , on the back of a big enough check .

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: recirc line

      Best way: Starting from the bottom of the W/H: Brass nipple, fxfxc tee (drain in one), copper up, valve, tee w/drain valve (for bleeding air through loop), pump, swing check valve.
      Ideally the pump would be on the horizontal but most end up on the vertical. I usually use a check that comes straight down instead of angle, then put enough of a bend in the pipe so the flapper hangs a little open when doing a gravity loop, that way it doesn't hold up the circ and also doesn't slam too bad when they draw water.
      Circ lines done w/o checks will pull water off the bottom of the W/H, which both brings crap in the line down the road and also mixes cold with the hot at the further faucets. Once the check is in, you have to be able to bleed the air, cause they won't self bleed anymore. There has to be a valve between the bleed boiler drain and the tank, or it won't do the circ loop.
      Unfortunately, too many plumbers don't learn this. I see them all the time where I end up doing corrections later when I go on W/H service calls.
      I always prefer copper. You should at least do it out to the check.
      sigpic3:00, I mean 5:00, and work is done. Time to crack a cold one.

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      • #4
        Re: recirc line

        Originally posted by boillerman View Post
        Best way: Starting from the bottom of the W/H: Brass nipple, fxfxc tee (drain in one), copper up, valve, tee w/drain valve (for bleeding air through loop), pump, swing check valve.
        Ideally the pump would be on the horizontal but most end up on the vertical. I usually use a check that comes straight down instead of angle, then put enough of a bend in the pipe so the flapper hangs a little open when doing a gravity loop, that way it doesn't hold up the circ and also doesn't slam too bad when they draw water.
        Circ lines done w/o checks will pull water off the bottom of the W/H, which both brings crap in the line down the road and also mixes cold with the hot at the further faucets. Once the check is in, you have to be able to bleed the air, cause they won't self bleed anymore. There has to be a valve between the bleed boiler drain and the tank, or it won't do the circ loop.
        Unfortunately, too many plumbers don't learn this. I see them all the time where I end up doing corrections later when I go on W/H service calls.
        I always prefer copper. You should at least do it out to the check.
        Yep, they should be piped almost like a boiler zone, with an isolation valve, air-bleeding valve and check-valve. The bottom of the heater is best also for obvious thermal reasons.

        Actually, everything boilerman said is right as far as I know.
        Water Heater Reviews & Water Heater Information

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        • #5
          Re: recirc line

          Of course if there is a mixing valve you wouldn't go into the water heater. Same setup, but it comes back to the cold inlet line. More checks could be necessary too, usually we'ld use a spring on the hot side of the mixer so it has more resistance and doesn't overheat.
          sigpic3:00, I mean 5:00, and work is done. Time to crack a cold one.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: recirc line

            Thanks for the good info and feedback. I think I understand everything except the air bleed valve. If air gets in the loop wouldn't it bleed out through the faucet? I know I'm wrong on this I just never understood the whole air bleed concept. Thanks again to everybody for your help.

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            • #7
              Re: recirc line

              go with grundfos comfort--best setup on market--i sell tons of them and never have complaints--actually, next month grundfos is sending a photographer and a journalist out to my shop to do a national advertising campaign story on my dept and how and why i do it---in a few months look for me in the new grundfos circular--kudos to me
              if anyone installs the grundfos systems, contact them b/c they have a recirc pro program where they give u marketing $ and shirts and hats and all kinds of cool stuff, like the opportunity im given!!!its called hwr pro--all u have to do is keep track of how many u install or buy and fax them copies---obviously its benefitting me!!i have the comfort system in my home and it runs 24/7 and i never saw any difference in the electric bill. i tried 3 other systems and they all were a problem in one way or another. this is the best solution to running new copper and lots of $. the system is inexpensive and very good looking and very effective.lots of plumbers quote total recirc systems around here for homes and i quote 1 pump and if necessary an additional valve and i press it in over the hwt and im out in under 2 hours--keeps me busy and profiting!!!

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              • #8
                Re: recirc line

                I didn't go on the web to check it out. But is this a retrofit system with a bypass valve at the end of the line? Or putting in multiple valves if necessary?
                What other systems have you tried?

                Thanks.

                J.C.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: recirc line

                  grundfos uses a small pump that installs on the hot outlet of the water heater and a little bypass is installed under the fixture at the furthest point of piping--it basically uses the cold line to recirc--it works very well--if u want the other names , i will look them up 2 morrow and post--its been awhile and im not sure of the names,they are in afile of "do not use products" at the office-try one at home if you have a faucet that takes a little time to produce hot water--once insalled, u will never have problem again

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                  • #10
                    Re: recirc line

                    2 x i have installed 2 valves, as they were big branched pipng lines in big homes, one valve at the end of each branch--u wouldnt believe how many customers write letters thanking me for fixing the problem they have dealt with for years--

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                    • #11
                      Re: recirc line

                      I've seen several that operate in the same manner. I've installed several LAING systems (same principal) with no callbacks and nothing but satisfied customers.

                      J.C.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: recirc line

                        laing is one of the first i tried--i installed one and had to go back in 3 months ,as the timer burnt out--i replaced with the g-fos and sent it back to laing and got no response, but my $ back----we use mostly grundfos pumps for boilers and anything that warrants a pump, so i stuck with a familiar product and the rep is good to me

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                        • #13
                          Re: recirc line

                          im sure they all work fine, i just have real good luck with gfos and its a preffered pump around here as stated earlier

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                          • #14
                            Re: recirc line

                            Originally posted by plumberjr View Post
                            2 x i have installed 2 valves, as they were big branched pipng lines in big homes, one valve at the end of each branch--u wouldnt believe how many customers write letters thanking me for fixing the problem they have dealt with for years--
                            I heard about those four or five years ago.It would be nice to install to see how much it would affect a snivlers cold line to where he would complain about his lukewarm cold.I myself wouldn't mind.

                            Have you guys ever heard of a toilet cracking from being plumbed hot?I've heard the tale never seen it. If they do crack how long is it going to take for a particular condition to pull enough hot out of a cold branch used as a recirc to do this?

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                            • #15
                              Re: recirc line

                              Never heard of a toilet cracking from hot water. Doesn't add up either. The only way I could see it happening is with real cold to real hot real fast. Would have to be on a constant recirculating line and I still don't see it happening with the residual standing water mixing with the incoming.

                              Set one up in the front yard and try it.

                              J.C.

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