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Bob_McBob

Slow steam boiler fill SOLVED

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I've recently been doing some major renovation on my 10 year old original model Duetto, and I ran into a very frustrating issue where the flow to the group was perfectly normal, but I was only getting about 80 ml/min into the steam boiler when it needed to fill. I spent a while checking flow at various fittings, disassembling the solenoid valve and removing the armature to see it was impeding flow (it wasn't), even swapping in a new pump. I couldn't figure out how the group was getting normal flow until I unscrewed the fitting indicated in the photo which I had previous avoided because I was concerned about damaging the pipe. Inside there is a little steel wool filter with a tiny amount of debris which was almost completely obstructing the flow.

 

 

 

To clean it out, I removed the solenoid armature (the moving part inside) and hooked up the fitting backwards with some flexible rubber hose and used the boiler fill call on the pump to backflush the filter. It's now working perfectly and I just wanted to post my experience in case anyone else comes across this problem in the future.

 

 

 

Another tip I have found useful is to mark the orientation of the two sides of the fitting for the long copper pipes so you don't need to play around with the alignment to get everything back together. This is especially frustrating with the hot water tap pipe since you need to remove a ton of fittings and several electrical connectors and pull the whole steam boiler out just to adjust it.

 

 

 

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Interesting information. What were they thinking of to put the filter where normally you would not expect to find it. If anywhere, a filter should be upstream of the pump unless this filter was catching bits from the pump vanes.

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I was definitely not expecting to find a filter in that location. The amount of debris accumulated after a decade in service was negligible, but the pipe is narrow and the filter material is dense, so it was reducing flow to a tiny trickle. It was just enough to top up the boiler after steaming without hitting the 60 second limit, but anything else was a no-go. Very happy I got it resolved, and I don't want anyone else to go through it!

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After 6 years of light use the little filter clogged up and the steam boiler stopped filling. The failure was sudden so at first suspected the valve or solenoid. The"culprit" was tiny fibres from the vanes.

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