Question? Just ask us!
Free Encyclopedia of Building & Environmental Inspection, Testing, Diagnosis, Repair
InspectAPedia ® Home
AFUE DEFINITION, RATINGS
AGE of HEATERS, BOILERS, FURNACES
BACKDRAFTING HEATING EQUIPMENT
BACKFLOW PREVENTER VALVE, HEATING SYS
BANGING HEATING PIPES RADIATORS
BOILER CONTROLS & SWITCHES
BOILER LEAKS CORROSION STAINS
BOILER NOISE SMOKE ODORS
BOILER OPERATING PROBLEMS
BOOKSTORE - InspectAPedia
BTU USAGE MONITORS
CHEMICAL TREATMENTS for BOILERS
CHIMNEY INSPECTION DIAGNOSIS REPAIR
CIRCULATOR PUMPS & RELAYS
DEFINITION of HEATING & COOLING TERMS
DIAGNOSE & FIX HEATING PROBLEMS-BOILER
DRAFT MEASUREMENT, CHIMNEYS & FLUES
DRAFT REGULATORS, DAMPERS, BOOSTERS
FILTERS, OIL on HEATING EQUIPMENT
FIRE SAFETY CONTROLS
FLOODED HEATING EQUIPMENT REPAIR
FLUE VENT CONNECTORS
FREEZE-PROOF A BUILDING
FUEL OIL TYPES & CHARACTERISTICS
FUEL UNIT, HEATING OIL PUMPS
GAS BURNER Flame & Noise Defects
GAS PIPING, VALVES, CONTROLS
GAUGES ON HEATING EQUIPMENT
HEATING COST SAVINGS METHODS
HEATING LOSS DIAGNOSIS-BOILERS
HEATING OIL PIPING TROUBLES
HEATING SYSTEM INSPECTION GUIDE
HEATING SYSTEM NOISES
HIGH EFFICIENCY BOILERS/FURNACES
GAS LP & NATURAL GAS SAFETY HAZARDS
MANUALS & PARTS GUIDES - HVAC
MOTOR OVERLOAD RESET SWITCH
NO HEAT - BOILER
NOISE, HEATING SYSTEMS
ODORS FROM HEATING SYSTEMS
OIL PUMP FUEL UNIT
PUFFBACKS, OIL BURNER
RELIEF VALVES - STEAM TP VALVES
Reset Switch - Heater Primary Control
RESET SWITCH - ELECTRIC MOTOR
Reset Switch - Stack Relays
SAFETY, HEATING INSPECTION
SAFETY RECALLS CHIMNEYS VENTS HEATERS
SOOT on OIL FIRED HEATING EQUIPMENT
SPILL SWITCHES - Flue Gas Detection S
STACK RELAY SWITCHES
STEAM HEATING SYSTEMS
THERMOSTATS, HEATING / COOLING
VIDEO GUIDES: Heating System Videos
ZONE VALVES, HEATING
Intermittent on-off heating zone operation: Heating zone circulator pump seems to run just intermittently - it starts and stops. What's wrong, how do I fix it? We start addressing this question by asking whether or not anything is wrong in the first place. When should the heating zone circulator be running? Then if it seems to be acting oddly, why & how do we fix it?
This article series describes how to diagnose & fix circulator pump problems on hot water or hydronic heating systems.
Green links show where you are. © Copyright 2014 InspectApedia.com, All Rights Reserved.
My furnace's circulator pump has been running in short bursts only lately, as opposed to full length cycles. It's a gas-fired hydronic system, a high efficient one w/ a Peerless Pinacle furnace. never experienced this before.Do you have any ideas? - mark4man 12/5/2012
(Dec 29, 2011) Richard VanMetter said:
When my thermostat calls for heat the gas comes on and the internal temperature of the furnace increases (approaching 250 degrees) but the circulator pump only runs intermittently (5 seconds on 30 seconds or more off). Shouldn't it run constantly once the internal temperature of the furnace is adequate?
(Nov 11, 2012) Anonymous said:
Hi i have an open fire with back boiler the pump is beside the back boiler and the thermostat is on
My circulator pump turns on then shuts off in 3-4 sec. could this be a switch?
First I'd check for a bad circulator control relay or possibly a thermostat wire that is intermittently shorting together. Occasionally a bad thermostat can also cause intermittent on-off calls for heat that can lead to odd circulator behavior.
A second set of possibilities might be a circulator pump that is binding or failing.
A short on-off circulator cycle such as you describe sounds to me like a wiring (damaged wire), thermostat, or circulator relay problem.
Phil, I wonder if there is a bad relay in the circulator control, or an intermittent short of the thermostat wires. Try disconnecting the thermostat entirely to rule out that source. Then connect the red and white heat wires (or equivalent if yours are different) that calls for heat. Connected = heat on. Disconnected = heat off.
Watch out: other readers note: other reasons that a heating zone circulator may not run continuously include
Circulator Pump Diagnostic Q&A
Suggested citation for this web page
Green link shows where you are in this article series.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
No FAQs have been posted for this page. Try the search box below or CONTACT US by email if you cannot find the answer you need at InspectApedia.
Use the "Click to Show or Hide FAQs" link just above to see recently-posted questions, comments, replies, try the search box just below, or if you prefer, post a question or comment in the Comments box below and we will respond promptly.
Search the InspectApedia website
HTML Comment Box is loading comments...
Technical Reviewers & References