Stephen Minnich has nearly 40 years of experience in the heating industry, primarily installing and servicing hydronic systems. He most recently operated Minnich Mechanical Design, based in the Chicago suburb of Elk Grove Village. Minnich is currently an HVAC consultant for Elevate Energy, Chicago.
Now that winter is in our rearview mirror, it’s time to review some of the core basics of an efficient, trouble-free hydronic system — starting with the concept of pumping away from the point of no pressure change.
These under-used components of today’s hydronic systems virtually eliminate boiler short-cycling and premature failure of other parts. Every time I look at one of these multizone projects on social media or upfront and personal, I’m looking for the buffer tank and wondering: Is the boiler short-cycling? Does this system need a buffer tank?