QuickSetter™ Balancing Valves Contribute to Ambience of Brooklyn, N.Y.’s New Wythe Hotel


Project (Summer 2012):  Two Trees Development Corp, Wythe Hotel: Floor warming system installation

Place:  Williamsburg- Brooklyn, N.Y.

Design:  Caleffi QuickSetter™ Balancing Valves

Purchaser:  (Engineer) Ettinger Engineers, New York, N.Y., (Manufacturer's Rep) Rathe Associates

It’s a cold day in January and you are checking into the beautiful new Wythe Hotel in Brooklyn, N.Y. You see the old wood beams and brickwork preserved in this renovated factory. Your charming room has customized local wallpaper, vintage mirrors, and locally handcrafted beds. You are greeted by the soothing warmth of radiant heated concrete floors: radiant heat made possible by Caleffi QuickSetter™ balancing valves.
The QuickSetter contributes to the hotel ambience thanks to Don Rathe, owner of Rathe & Associates. Don worked with Ettinger Engineering to help design the building’s radiant floor heating system. This feature became part of a package of attractive, eco-friendly hotel benefits, which is now catching the attention of many New York area critics who are spreading the word about the hotel since its opening in May 2012.
Don recommended QuickSetter valves to balance the system without requiring a balancing contractor. “With its ‘set it and forget it’ feature, we balanced the 72 rooms in only one day where traditional balancing would have taken us three or four days”. Adds mechanical contractor Leo Andreadakis, owner of Danica Group: “It was so easy - we could have sent an apprentice to go around and accurately set the flows.”
Each room has an access panel with a QuickSetter 132 series balancing valve, used to properly balance the hot water circulating through the radiant tubing installed in the concrete floor. Don wanted to make sure equal flow was available to every room and that the balancing valves were installed and set to the design flow rate. He says “even though a lot of engineers call for balancing valves in their projects, they are installed but not set properly.”
According to Don, “Traditional balancing devices rely on pressure ports and complicated instrumentation to set flow. Though they are often specified, the iterative process for balancing takes skill and balancing contractors with the required knowledge are rarely called in. Instead, the building staff will tweak them on a guess”. So if modern equipment such as the variable frequency pumps used at the Wythe is deployed, the intended goal of ultimate comfort and energy efficiency can be missed. “The cost of inefficiency is big here. New York City doesn’t exactly have low electrical rates you know” adds Don.
The hotel owners wanted to be as ‘green’ as possible. The Caleffi QuickSetters did their part to help them accomplish that. Plus, the ability of Caleffi QuickSetter balancing valves to heat floors during cold winter months will make the Wythe Hotel the hot place to stay in New York City.

(photo of Wythe Hotel courtesy and copyright of Lucas Allen)

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