Thermostat setting in hallway vs actual temperature in apartment

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I cant put one in the hallway, its not well heated. I cant trust tenants either but have one that it works. Years ago I bought a thermostat with a remote sensor and did not tell the tenant they had the thermostat and that worked. Best is one that averages several apartments with remote sensors
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How about isntalling thermostates in each apartment that aren't connected to anything? Gives teh tenants a thrill thinkng they are in control :) I have often thought of doing that in my house to cut down on some of the "disagreements".
Harry K
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Because WHEN, not IF the tenant's eventually figure out who to complain to in the government (in my area it is the local board of health) and an inspector comes out to check on the situation and your fake thermostats and the psychological manipulation of the tenants resulting from their installation will likely serve to increase whatever fines and penalties result from the units which are not maintaining the required temperatures deemed necessary by the AHJ in the minimum standards for human habitation...
Installing fake/false/dummy thermostats is a giant red flag which says "i am a giant douche and rather than fix the actual problem i am going to install a shiny toy on your wall and make you think that you have some control over your environment when in fact you do not"...
Either modernize the central heating system in your old apartment building with a new control system which allows you to have temperature sensors in all of the units but allows you to retain control of the set points as the landlord -- OR dump your old system and install electric baseboard heating in all your units and let the tenants pay to heat their rooms to whatever temperature they desire...
Having a whole building heated off ONE thermostat is insane... It DOESN'T account for the temperature changes outside like a weather responsive controller would NOR does it account for the fact that one side of the building will be cooler than the other depending on which way the wind is blowing...
You could covert your old single pipe steam system into a hot water zoned system where each radiator is it's own zone and could therefore have its own thermostat in that room/space using a new controller and some Pex piping...
Whichever way you choose to resolve this situation, I would choose one soon and deal with it in a significant way because the tenants can have you over a barrel if they complain enough to the local AHJ which could impose fines on you for your substandard system and demand that you bring the system up to current codes in a very rapid period of time in order for you to keep collecting rent on what are essentially un-rentable units because your heating system does not properly maintain the temperatures in the habitable areas of the building...
Look at this symptom as an opportunity to invest in your property and upgrade the heating system to be more efficient... You choosing one setting where the heating system maintains that temperature for one area of the building where people are not living and sleeping will definitely get you into trouble eventually...
~~ Evan
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You dont know too much, converting a low pressure steam system to handle the pressure of water results in leaks, which can be a major nightmare ruining the whole operation. You have very old pipe that never saw the pressure water will introduce, steam leaks are usualy no big deal, water leaks are a big deal. You assume he isnt supplying heat and runs a substandard building and that the inspector will screw him, I dont see that. I heat a 16 unit off one thermostat, its been that way since 1928, I guess until modern averaging units came out building owners were insane and tenants cold? BS. He just needs to learn about venting, and remote sensor thermostats. With todays cheap computers and option avalaible he can cheaply add a fancy stat he can monitor, track, chart and adjust from his home.
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LOL...
Who said anything about reusing the existing steam pipes...
You can't turn a one pipe anything system into a zoned heating system...
However, if you had actually taken the time to read what I wrote, I presented two modernization options for this aging and inadequate heating system: One which would simply upgrade the controls to be weather responsive and accommodate UNEVEN heat loss/demand in an old building by adding proper temperature sensors (not controls) in the apartment units, and the better one of turning the system into a zoned hot water system reusing the existing radiators by fishing a Pex tubing run and return line to each one and pairing it with it's own theromstat...
You assume that since 1928 the minimum standards for human habitation have not changed and that there are not additional fire and health codes that apply to rental properties... You would be in the wrong on that one there Ransley...
A one thermostat system would NOT PASS an inspection by the health department who investigate complaints of inadequate heating in an apartment by placing a temperature recorder and monitoring the temperature over several 24 hour periods...
I don't have to assume anything about the heat this landlord is not providing... I know that he has no idea what temperature the units are other than when he is standing there measuring it, which is not the same temperature it will be when it is cold outside (below freezing) and in high winds when the building will lose more heat; but the thermostat in the protected inner core of the building will be satisfied and thus not fire the boiler to provide more heat to the cold apartment units...
~~ Evan
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You did see the smiley? I'll give you a D grade on your rant. Some of it even approaches reality.
Harry K
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Thanks, coming from someone who gets an F- for your own reply, that's a compliment...
~~ Evan
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LOL
Harry K
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Mikepier wrote:

You have been suckered. At the ceiling the temp in a room much higher than on the floor. That themostat should have been at "living altitude". Smart guy that landlord.
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On Sun, 14 Nov 2010 02:55:58 +0100, Sjouke Burry

When I lived in a 49 apartment, 6 story building, the furnace didn't seem to go by a thermostat. It had a control marked heat output.
The LL would illegally turn the heat down during the day when most but by no means all people were at work. I had to use an electric heater in my bedroom most of the winter. (Story about that omitted.) He also had the photocell bypassed, so that it woudln't turn the furnace off when the furnace room in the basement filled with smoke. One man later told me his baby had gotten sick and died from the cold.
I broke into the furnace room, looked around, found the Heat Output control, which was set for 5 or 6, say 5. I turned it up to 6, removed the knob and put it back on pointing at 5. Then I closed up the furnace room leaving no sign that I had been there. After that, we were okay for the rest of that winter, and maybe the next winter too. I never told any of the neighbors what I had done, because I didn't know who could keep a secret.
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I kept a Bic lighter and a spray can of freon when I was in a "controlled environment" - when I wanted more heat in the winter, I applied a little freon to the thermostat that was locked in a tamper proof box. When I wanted more cooling in the summer, a little blast from the Bic did the trick - until I got careless and partly melted the box. (-;
-- Bobby G.

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Yes, very likely.

How high on the wall? That can bring the temperature up as the hot air rises. Where is the closest radiator to the T-stat?
Have you put thermometers in the apartments to see what the actual temperature is? Also, remember that the apartments have a high heat loss through outside walls and windows while the common area is well insulated by those heated apartments. You may have to set it higher to get the apartments at proper temperature. During the day, the apartments getting sun will be warmer also.
Tell each tenant they have to open the interior doors and run a fan to circulate the air and then things will even out.
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Are you serious with that suggestion, Ed? Besides the questions of privacy, noise, and odors there's also security. I don't know anyone that would welcome such a request. It's the landlord's responsibility to provide heat to an apartment, not the tenant's to have to go and get it. R
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Didn't think I'd need the smiley face.
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We need a sarcasm one :)
Harry K
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Reading this thread makes me glad I own my house. I have enough arguments with my wife about how warm it is were in here without having to fight about it with an apartment sup as well :).
Harry K
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