Oil Fired Hot Water Boiler Question

Hello:
My current oil fired boiler [for baseboard heating] is a little over a year old. It is the HMT model, manufactured by international comfort products in Canada. I know this may not mean much to people out there, but perhaps a few may be familiar with it.
The boiler has what the manual calls an "automatic air vent" protruding from the top of the unit. This vent is gold/bronze in color, cylindrical, with a hole on the side [presumeably for air to seep out], and a black screw in the top of the unit.
For weeks, I had been experiencing air in my pipes so I suspected that this "automatic air vent" was not working properly. On inspection recently, I noticed that the screw in the top of the vent had actually popped off. In its place was a slight amount of water dripping out of the hole. I left it off, and noticed that when the system starts up, there is a little more water coming out each time. My service guy didn't seem to concerned, and simply screwed it back in. He claimed that the air problem is unrelated to this phenomena.
Since his last visit, the air in the pipes continued. I then noticed that the screw had popped off yet again, and continues to do so each time I replace it. It is not immediate, but if I check in a day or so, it is usually on the floor. In order to check things out, I have left it out, and now notice that the air in the pipes seems to have vanished.
If anyone is knowledgeable about such things, is it possible for these vents to clog and force air up throgh the hole where the screw is located? Also, should the screw be in tight, or loose?
Thanks,
Dave
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Can you purge the system to get the air out? It might be time to replace the automatic air vent. I have never had very good luck with them, just do not last long in my experience. there are tanks made that allow the air to collect, then you can bleed manually every so often. the depot has them not sure about hot water though. Am sure you can find a tank that WW Grainer would sell.
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