Open venting on boiler top

Ancient boiler, 1947 house, New Jersey.
National-U.S. Radiator. Not sure of the year, any help on that is appreciated, but I know its old and past its life expectancy. It actually fired up.
The question is about the open vent on top. Shouldn’t that be sealed? However, it didn’t appear that a cover was ever attached there.
Thank you

Cool find! Old unit, a good chance it’s original to the home. Similar unit here, with same type draft hood.


Ha! Thanks for posting that link Junior. That’s exactly the unit!
Amazing how that works by being open.

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They double as a mailbox… :cowboy_hat_face:

The cool air in the basement stops the exhaust and up the chimney the warm air goes.


It fired up but you determined it is beyond it’s useful life, but yet don’t know if the venting works (since 1947).

So there is noting in your home that is old but still working?

You’re welcome! :slight_smile:

Hi David, I know you are trying to teach me something but I’m just not getting it. Can you elaborate please, thank you.
(and hey, who are you calling old lol?)

[quote=“eklugmann, post:7, topic:171619”]
(and hey, who are you calling old lol?)
[/quote] :wink: Not as old as me I’m sure…

Just be careful about that ‘useful life’ thing. You don’t know what it’s useful life is. There are a lot of these around and they don’t make them like they used to.

I know of a coal fired boiler here, converted to run on Tractor Diesel, then converted to natural gas and is still heating a big farmhouse up in Kentucky. Runs like a clock.

Please note in your picture that there is a diagonal line inside the flue break hood. This indicates the draft of the flue. Aside from that, when you fire up an appliance with a flue/vent, you should always monitor the flue for a back draft. All equipment is allowed for ‘spillage’ so make sure you know how much is OK.

These things are made like a Tank. If they are cleaned and maintained they will outlive your young butt! :wink:

If this were oil fired, this would be a huge concern. Oil flues are critical in their operation. They can never be ‘sealed’ as you mentioned but must be balanced to maintain proper flue temperature.

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Thank you for all the great advice and information, much appreciated.