And What Can Be Done
To Extend The Life Of My Pump?
Summer Shutdown time is done! But, you may have asked yourself these questions:
- Should I keep the circulation pump on all Summer?
- What are the advantages of allowing the pump to run all Summer?
- What can I do to extend the life of my pump?
- What is the silver button on the front face of the pump and how does this help me?
Here are the answers to these important questions:
First, the answer is YES, you should keep your pump on all summer. Here are two reasons why:
1 - Pumps last a long time if they are run continuously.
2 - If you heat your domestic water with your outdoor wood furnace, your hot water heater will use less fuel if you keep the pump on. Why? Let's say the water in your outdoor wood boiler is 80 degrees because your furnace sits in the hot sun all summer long. That 80-degree water is being circulated into your house and your plate heat exchanger.
When you use hot water for a shower or to wash dishes, cold water is added to your hot water tank. Most well water and city water comes out of the ground at around 52 degrees, even in the summer. Your hot water tank must heat that water from 52 degrees to 110 degrees using lots of fuel(electricity or propane or whatever).
If your pump is on, the warm water in your outdoor wood burner will heat that 52-degree water to about 80 degrees FOR FREE, thus cutting your fuel cost by HALF for your hot water heater during the summer!
Also, it is advised that you use your circulation pump all year because this will help maintain the chemical treatment blended in your boiler water and prevent any sediment from settling. It will also help keep your pump(s) lubricated, which will prevent a pump collapse.
Please make sure your furnace has PROPER WATER TREATMENT for the summer months. Whether the pump is on or not, you are the only one who can be responsible to protect your investment in your outdoor wood burning boiler. Read more reasons why you should use water treatment HERE.
What is that silver button on the front of the pump face?
You will see on the front of the pump (in the photo above), in the CENTER, there is a round silver button that can be removed with a flat-head screwdriver. If the pump is not functioning, you can remove that button to see if the shaft of the pump is spinning.
If you are not sure, or if it is stuck, turn off the power to the pump. Then, you can insert an Allen wrench into the pump shaft and turn it a few times. If it is caught on something or has some sediment buildup, the pump will not circulate - but by doing this simple repair, you can usually save the pump!
You can also do this simple repair to solve the pump airlock. An airlock is when air is trapped inside the pump that prevents the pump from working properly. This has the ability to harm pump components and burn out the pump.
To solve the airlock issue, turn off the system and undo the silver screw in the middle of the pump's motor end. You may get air before the water dribbles out (it will not spray out).
For our available pumps, you can click HERE.
As always, let us know if there is anything we can do for you! Just call our office at (231) 861-8200 M-F 9 am - 8 pm, even during the summer!
You can also visit our website OutdoorBoiler.com to browse for more outdoor wood furnace parts.
For more information, click HERE to read our newsletter on this topic