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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Posts
    6

    High Wind causing Limit Switch to Trip now glacier after installing elbow pvc help!

    Hi Everyone,

    I live in Northern Minnesota and 282 feet off of Lake Mille Lacs (big lake) on 3 sides SO, the wind can get real bad
    from the North and Northwest primarily but can come from the South and East (kinda rare but does happen.) I don't have much for wind breaks and would take years for trees to grow tall enough to help.

    I live in a Manufactured triple wide home where the exhaust vent is "roof terminated," and can not be moved without great destruction. The vent limit switch tripped once and was replaced but service guy suspected wind and I agree as it was 50mph and gusts to 80mph at times.

    SO...he recommended that I install a pvc elbow and point it to the east...I did and it helped however winter came and now I'm knocking down little pointy glaciers from the dripping condensation coming out of the vent. Can't tell you how dangerous it is to be out in -14 weather let alone finding a good spot to plant your extension ladder so it's stable

    The vent resembles a candy cane top so the dripping is straight down to the shingles and builds it's way back up to the opening of the pipe...I haven't let it go so I do not know if it would in fact grow up far enough to actually block the vent but I didn't want to take the risk and lose my very necessary heat.

    I gotta come up with something that will block the wind, YET allow the condensation go back down the vent and allow the pump to shoot it down the drain. I'm thinking of cutting a pipe in half lengthwise and somehow securing it so that it will shield only the wind from the N, NW and yet leave the pipe open and able to vent.

    I'm looking for any advise you have, I've looked at "high wind vent caps," but I'm concerned that they will freeze up and clog on me? I'll await your responses and greatly appreciate your expertise and time, thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    nebraska
    Posts
    1,629
    Your guy should be able to talk to tech support. Using an unapproved termination isn't something I would do.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    4,670
    since this unit is vented in pvc/abs, you CANNOT use a metal cap on it as it will rust among other reasons!!

    can you post a photo of what it looks like?

    I have not heard of a vertical pipe having winds affect it, but horizontals most definitely.
    The Food Stamp Program, administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, is proud to be distributing the greatest amount of free meals and stamps EVER.
    Meanwhile, the National Park Service, administered by the U.S. Department of the Interior, asks us to "Please Do Not Feed the Animals". Their stated reason for this policy "... the animals become dependent on handouts and will not learn to take care of themselves."
    from an excerpt by Paul Jacob in Sun City, AZ

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lancaster PA
    Posts
    67,743
    Sounds like a single pipe system. Whee is the combustion air coming from.
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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Minneapolis, MN
    Posts
    725
    Some units must have both terminations on the same load plain (wall or roof). If it is the roof, then the exhaust straight up and the intake "candy-cane". This arrangement keeps the PS happy as no differential pressure is possible unless blower induced...happy pressure sw.

    If you only have one pipe, get two if the the manufacturer allow it of course.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Posts
    6
    Quote Originally Posted by BadgerBoiler MN View Post
    Some units must have both terminations on the same load plain (wall or roof). If it is the roof, then the exhaust straight up and the intake "candy-cane". This arrangement keeps the PS happy as no differential pressure is possible unless blower induced...happy pressure sw.

    If you only have one pipe, get two if the the manufacturer allow it of course.
    Thanks for the reply. I do have two terminations on the roof and the intake already had a pvc elbow "candy cane," config on it (but since it's the intake it doesn't give me any problems with condensation.)

    The icing/glacier problem only began after putting the same pvc elbow configuration on the exhaust pipe for the high wind issue. So, while it fixed one issue (vent switch tripping) it has caused another with dripping condensation freezing and building up on the roof.

    I keep plugging away for a solution & did an internet search, found what's called a "Concentric Vent Kit," now I'm wondering if this might be a solution? This is where expertise comes in handy Thx again.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    4,670
    The concentric will change nothing from the original configuration other than combining it onto one.
    You should NOT have both in the candy cane shape, it will cause more issues than it fixes!!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Toronto Canada
    Posts
    1,090
    Can you call my boss and tell him how dangerous it is to work in -14 on an extension ladder?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Posts
    6
    Quote Originally Posted by pacnw View Post
    since this unit is vented in pvc/abs, you CANNOT use a metal cap on it as it will rust among other reasons!!

    can you post a photo of what it looks like?

    I have not heard of a vertical pipe having winds affect it, but horizontals most definitely.
    I posted a picture of both the intake and exhaust pvc pipes and you can see the condensation blowing out of the exhaust toward the easterly direction if you look closely (it's 12 above so we're having a heat wave.) You can also see a small glacier that's beginning to develop on the shingles, I already knocked the taller one down 3 days ago.

    Like I said it gets so tall that I'm afraid it will actually go high enough to close off the opening of the exhaust (just didn't want to let it go that far..might not actually happen or cause a problem.) Everything works with this configuration, no problems except the glacier.

    I could just run heat tape up there and plug it in every winter so no glacier but I'm hoping for another solution, such as just a pvc pipe cut in half and attached to the top of the existing pvc thus blocking the wind but allowing fumes to escape and condensation to run back down pipe to the drain? Hope the pic comes across and is helpful, thx.
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  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    nebraska
    Posts
    1,629
    So why is the vent pointing down if the guy said point it east?Just so you know...many mfr's make high wind kits. That's why I wrote your guy should be able to talk with tech support.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lancaster PA
    Posts
    67,743
    So when the vent limit switched tripped. It was the first time you were having wind gust?
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  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    4,670
    I am curious just what limit tripped after seeing the photo.

    I am leery of the height on the intake. Per mfr instructions, it should be above snow level and in your area as described I wonder if that is tall enough.

    It also appears to have frost on it. Is there a screen of some sort on it, because that is not recommended either and can cause issues.

    Is the ice you are referring to at the coupler or from the end of the last elbow? It looks like there is some at the coupler which to me indicates that it is just slipped on there and not glued. This allows the exhaust to flow out there as well as the end.

    If this were my house, I would assure the intake was screen free and well above snow level. I would not use anything other than a 45 elbow on the end of the exhaust.

    Depending on the actual snow level, a concentric may be out of the question by design.
    The Food Stamp Program, administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, is proud to be distributing the greatest amount of free meals and stamps EVER.
    Meanwhile, the National Park Service, administered by the U.S. Department of the Interior, asks us to "Please Do Not Feed the Animals". Their stated reason for this policy "... the animals become dependent on handouts and will not learn to take care of themselves."
    from an excerpt by Paul Jacob in Sun City, AZ

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    wisconsin
    Posts
    270
    Quote Originally Posted by mettao View Post
    I posted a picture of both the intake and exhaust pvc pipes and you can see the condensation blowing out of the exhaust toward the easterly direction if you look closely (it's 12 above so we're having a heat wave.) You can also see a small glacier that's beginning to develop on the shingles, I already knocked the taller one down 3 days ago.

    Like I said it gets so tall that I'm afraid it will actually go high enough to close off the opening of the exhaust (just didn't want to let it go that far..might not actually happen or cause a problem.) Everything works with this configuration, no problems except the glacier.

    I could just run heat tape up there and plug it in every winter so no glacier but I'm hoping for another solution, such as just a pvc pipe cut in half and attached to the top of the existing pvc thus blocking the wind but allowing fumes to escape and condensation to run back down pipe to the drain? Hope the pic comes across and is helpful, thx.
    I would cut that elbow off asap on the exhaust, and get a bushing that is 2 inch, to 1 1/2 inch then a foot long piece of 1 1/2 pvc. The tech who was there should have done something like this, or find the reason the vent limit is tripping. Have him perform a combustion test as well

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