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GMR District addressing boiler after heat exchanger fails

On January 10, the heat exchanger in the GMR District’s (Greenbush site) boiler system failed, cutting off heat to various parts of the building. The district has taken steps to address this issue.

Between 4:30 am and 5:00 am on January 10, the heat exchanger in the Greenbush site’s boiler system failed, cutting off heat to various parts of the building. The district has taken steps to address this issue, Greenbush-Middle River Superintendent Tom Jerome announced at the January 22 school board meeting.

First, the district did some work on the boiler the day it failed to provide some short-term relief. Then, as Jerome reported, “the problems became more severe than we initially anticipated.”
The school eventually then determined that the heat exchanger failed on the old boiler system and is unrepairable. Lunseth Plumbing and Heating out of Grand Forks is working on this old system. The district is having four valves replaced within this “old” system and has ordered a new heat exchanger. Initial cost estimates for this repair project total just under $20,000.
The whole process is taking some time, as the parts ordered are being built to retrofit the current boiler system.
“Despite all of our efforts as of late last week, I did not hear anything different today. The soonest the parts would be completed, built, was the middle of February,” Jerome said. “… Shipping date is I want to say it’s February 16. We continue to do what we can working with Lunseths to move that up.”
While the district is waiting, the building is being heated by one system, one Jerome called the “new” boiler, covering a majority of the school building.
Areas within the school impacted by the failed boiler include: Mr. Mack’s shop room, Mrs. Rhen’s science classroom, Mrs. Laura Dahl’s FACS classroom, and the cafeteria. Mrs. Jerome’s kindergarten room experienced a “slight” impact, but Superintendent Jerome reported that “at no time” did that classroom experience any negative impact.
The district has brought in three portable electrical furnaces to provide a temporary heat source in the impacted areas. Staff members can set a temperature with these furnaces.
“It is the best I can do. It is the best we can do at this point,” Superintendent Jerome said. “We got Lunseths in immediately. They began work on the system right now to ensure that when the heat exchanger is manufactured and delivered, they can begin that install without any additional delay.”
To see the full GMR School Board story, read the January 31 issue of The Tribune in print or online.

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