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  #1  
Old 02-22-2013, 12:53 PM
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Hot water heat question

One of my responsibilities at my new job is getting our lab certified. One aspect of this involves curing of concrete test cylinders. The Standards requires curing in an atmosphere of greater than 98% humidity. They define this as having free moisture on all the specimens. The other requirement is that the temperature is controlled to 73 +/- 3 degrees F. As a way to simplify the climate control ( A/C usually removes moisture) we hit upon the idea of using fogger nozzles to spray water all around the curing room. There are companies that make a temperature control system that regulates the water temperature to achieve the desired temp inside the curing room. These are EXPEN$IVE-- at least in my employer's opinion.
We hit upon this solution--using the fogger nozzles and tap water to humidify and cool the room to below 65 degrees. Then use a single stage, waterproof thermostat to control the heat. Electric heaters are problematic at this high humidity level, so how about hot water baseboard heaters at opposite sides of the room, and the hot water supplied by a domestic water heater? The heat load would be very low.
My question is simply a lack of experience in hot water base board heat. It SEEMS as if the system I described would have way more capacity that required, but I would appreciate comments from people with experience in hot water heat.

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Old 02-22-2013, 03:56 PM
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Many years ago

I had occasion to rent a very small house. It was two stories and totalled about 900 sq ft. I lived there almost two years.

It had hot water baseboard heat that was supplied by a common gas powered domestic hot water tank. A second hot water tank suppied domestic hot water for showers and such.

That was the best heat I ever had. It was even, moist and very economical. The size of the house may have had something to do with it. I think for a larger application, you may need a water jacket furnace.
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Old 02-22-2013, 05:46 PM
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How big are the test cylinders? How large a test chamber needed. Simple would just be a recirculating small pump with a nozzle or nozzles misting over the curing cores in a closed chamber.

Temperature control of the water and test chamber might easily be managed and automated. Basically temperature control of the return tank from the mister. Now if a chamber has to be room size is a more complex issue.
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Old 02-22-2013, 05:46 PM
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Thanks, Rocky,
The moist curing room will be about 10 X 12 feet, and constructed inside a garage with heat and A/C, and will have free space all around--not built onto any exterior walls. I figure I need to raise the temperature only 5 degrees, or so. Plus--curing concrete is exothermic, so it will give off a little heat--thats why I plan to use a cold water mist.
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Old 02-22-2013, 08:27 PM
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I think you will find some radiators or tubes in the floor slab for radiant floor will provide very adequate heat using a domestic water heater. I'd start with a 30 or 40 and go up from there if necessary, which I doubt. There are very small pumps availalbe about the size of a large plumb to circulate the water, then hook it to a t stat.

simple simple simple.
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Old 02-22-2013, 10:10 PM
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Originally Posted by t walgamuth View Post
I think you will find some radiators or tubes in the floor slab for radiant floor will provide very adequate heat using a domestic water heater. I'd start with a 30 or 40 and go up from there if necessary, which I doubt. There are very small pumps availalbe about the size of a large plumb to circulate the water, then hook it to a t stat.

simple simple simple.

Any type of domestic water heater should find it a walk in the park for a ten by twelve room. Regulation of heat within six degrees sounds doable as well.

There are thermostats that can control both the heating component and the air conditioning component in a seamless overlap. Most people would be familiar with them in the motel heating cooling units. You set your desired temperature and the units separate internal systems fufill your demands producing either heat or cold to maintain it. .
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Old 02-22-2013, 10:19 PM
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Why not go with an ultrasonic humidifier connected to a humidistat instead of fogger nozzles? Less chance of actually making things dripping wet as opposed to just moist on the surface. Secondly, waterproof electric heating units exist and are used in bathrooms, which approach 100% humidity when the shower is in use.
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Old 02-22-2013, 10:51 PM
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Yes, I'd use finned hot water radiators and a hot water heater. A tankless one would work too I think.
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Old 02-23-2013, 08:44 AM
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Originally Posted by spdrun View Post
Why not go with an ultrasonic humidifier connected to a humidistat instead of fogger nozzles? Less chance of actually making things dripping wet as opposed to just moist on the surface. Secondly, waterproof electric heating units exist and are used in bathrooms, which approach 100% humidity when the shower is in use.
In my experience, ultrasonic units can't take the 100% duty cycle.
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Old 02-23-2013, 08:45 AM
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Next question--where can I find ginned radiators?
Tom, what did your numerical references mean?
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Old 02-23-2013, 09:34 AM
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I am not certain but think Tom was reffering to the gallonage of a heater tank. In my opinion a tankless type heater would not be a good source.
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Old 02-23-2013, 09:45 AM
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Next question--where can I find ginned radiators?
Tom, what did your numerical references mean?
Try a backwoods still in West Virginnie?

Or try this -- there should be a similar supplier closer to MD...
Fin Tube / Bare Elements
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Old 02-23-2013, 10:34 AM
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Originally Posted by barry12345 View Post
I am not certain but think Tom was reffering to the gallonage of a heater tank. In my opinion a tankless type heater would not be a good source.
This Old House recently installed a tankless water heater for heating and domestic hot water.
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1985 409d 65k--sold 06
1984 300SD 315k--daughter's car
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Old 02-23-2013, 02:49 PM
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Yes, I'd use finned hot water radiators and a hot water heater. A tankless one would work too I think.
Unless they have changed I don't believe a tankless will work if gas fired. i tried that with one for a client and it did not work. they had to replace it with a small boiler. egg on my face.

Yes, I meant a 30 or 40 gal tank type heater.
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Old 02-23-2013, 03:03 PM
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Maybe what I saw on This Old House was some kind of combo unit that looked like a tankless water heater. It definitely hung on the wall like a tankless heater and it definitely provided both domestic hot water and hot water for the heating system.

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