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Old 08-27-2011, 03:36 AM   #1
123champ
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Default Hot Water Recirculation Pump Recommendations

I have an 'Armstrong Astro Express' hot water circulation pump, which has stopped working after 3 1/2 years of service - so I am looking for a replcement.

I came across a variety of brands online; so am looking for recommendations.
Does any of the following outshine the rest?

1. Armstrong Astro Express (The brand which I was quite happy with, but which died out rather prematurely in my opinion)
2. Watts Premier (Cheapest one available)
3. Grundfos
4. Any other?

Another question -- should I also replace the check valve between the water heater and the pump?

Thanks!



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Old 08-27-2011, 05:54 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 123champ View Post
I have an 'Armstrong Astro Express' hot water circulation pump, which has stopped working after 3 1/2 years of service - so I am looking for a replcement.

I came across a variety of brands online; so am looking for recommendations.
Does any of the following outshine the rest?

1. Armstrong Astro Express (The brand which I was quite happy with, but which died out rather prematurely in my opinion)
2. Watts Premier (Cheapest one available)
3. Grundfos
4. Any other?

Another question -- should I also replace the check valve between the water heater and the pump?

Thanks!
Grundfos
May even bolt into the same flanges if yours has flanges.

Just don't get one any bigger than you need to move the water.
If you move the water to fast it will cause internal errosion in a copper system


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Last edited by Mr_David; 08-27-2011 at 05:56 AM.
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Old 08-27-2011, 06:27 AM   #3
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^ I agree with this!

grundfos.jpg  
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Old 08-27-2011, 01:58 PM   #4
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Wow! I've never seen or installed a Grundfos that isn't hard wired. ^ Pretty cool to have a plug in.

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Old 08-27-2011, 02:11 PM   #5
speedbump
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Have you ever tried running the return pipe to the bottom of the heater and let gravity circulate it? That's how a plumber friend and me did a house I built many years ago. It worked great and no pump!

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Old 08-27-2011, 02:42 PM   #6
123champ
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Thank you all. I guess Grundfos it is!

Speedbump -- I haven't tried running the return pipe to the bottom - will have to ask the plumber if he could do it. I am not handy enough to figure it out myself :-(

Any thoughts on my other question - does the check valve need to be replaced?

Thanks!

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Old 08-27-2011, 02:49 PM   #7
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It's just a matter of finishing the loop from the top of the heater to the bottom fitting where the drain valve is. As the water moves through the pipes, it cools enough to make the warmer water in the heater to go up to make room for the cooler water at the bottom. It just self circulates. Of coarse you would want to insulate the pipes very well. I didn't think to do that the first month and my electric bill was half the price of our National Debt.

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Old 08-27-2011, 02:50 PM   #8
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Quote:
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Have you ever tried running the return pipe to the bottom of the heater and let gravity circulate it? That's how a plumber friend and me did a house I built many years ago. It worked great and no pump!
I just did a small job and saw this same set up, but that was where the Grundfos was installed. Made for a clean installation and works perfectly.
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Old 08-27-2011, 03:26 PM   #9
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Tey turning off the pump and see if it still works.

Seems like we put a check valve at the far end of the hot water run. A flapper check valve.

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Old 08-27-2011, 04:39 PM   #10
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Gravity method doesn't always work. That's a hit and miss method. I've seen systems where the pump has failed and the return was still hot. I 've seen more systems where the water was turned off and the return wasn't flushed. The return got air locked and the pump would not move the water.
Tips:
It's always better to install the pump below the drain cock connection to the heater. any air trapped in line will float up into the heater.
I ussually intall a brass nipple with a IPS ball into the drain cock hole of the heater. This way you can service the pump and flush the return line easier.
I then use a brass tee to connect return line and reinstall the drain cock.

The pump that Havasu posted is for a system that does not have a designated return line and connects directly to the hot oulet nipple on top of the heater.



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