Tech Tips

Has it been over a month since my last post? Needless to say, I have been busier than a beekeeper at the Rose Bowl Parade meeting tons of you guys at the Factory!

Since I have been doing a lot of training classes and meeting you out there; you have shared your job-site experiences with me. I figured I would answer a couple of situations that have come up in your customers mechanical rooms.

First situation brought to my attention is about the Zone Sentry zone valve. A few people have questioned if we at Taco are experiencing quality issues in the power head, more specifically the manual override dial. I hadn’t heard of any QC issues, so I asked further; “How did it break? Was it that way when you took it out of the box?”

zone sentry top

It appears to happen on startup of the system, more specifically when purging the system. Hmmmm, I think I am beginning to understand!

Then what did you do? “I would try to turn the manual override dial to allow flow, but it was dang too hard to turn! So I noticed a slot on the manual override dial that looks like it was designed for a screwdriver, so I used one and …..viola! It opened and I broke the dial!” I know what you are talking about, I got a couple of samples in my garage and was building a display and almost experienced the same thing, man this valve is hard to turn and then it occurred to me, it is a ball valve, not the motors fault. Ball valves when they are brand new are freakin’ tight, doesn’t matter who makes them. That initial turn of the handle is hard to do, but then it becomes easy after that.

Well, it’s the same thing with the Zone Sentry. The valve body is a ball valve and the override dial is gonna be tough to turn the first time! So what do we do about it? Keep using a screw driver and breaking it? No way. Here are two methods to make it easy;

First, when getting ready to install in the system whether it is a sweat or thread model, remove the motor by pressing in on the release mechanism (you were gonna do that anyway!)

zone sentry apart


Don’t take it all the way off, just clear the locking posts but keep the motor engaged on the valve stem.

Then, rotate the motor and “break” the seal of the ball valve.

Continue with what you were going to do. Finish up the system, and when ready to start purging the system, you can now easily turn that valve with your fingers.

Of course there is a much easier way! Wire it up to a Zone Valve Controller and make the associated zone valve open using an STS (Sophisticated Thermostat Simulator). The Zone Sentry motor has more than enough umph to “break” the ball valve when power is applied.



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