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Understanding converting from steam to hot water
Currently my understanding is that the house is a two pipe steam system. I would like to entertain the thought of changing the system to hot water to get access to a cheaper source of fuel. In the article here at heatinghelp.com it says to make sure that you have enough EDR to switch from steam to hot water. I've also read that steam is typically over sized, but you should run the numbers.
I ran my heat loss numbers using the Slant/Fin app. I ran them two ways. 1. as the house is today (not a stitch of insulation) and 2. what it would be after insulation is added in the attic and the crawlspace. I also plan to do air infiltration remediation, but that didn't figure into the numbers at all.
The heat loss numbers are 128MBH and 95MBH respectively. This was much easier to use than the spreadsheet floating about. I liked the options of picking 8" brick, fur, 1/2" plaster. Instead of just 8" brick. Seemed more accurate, but is this app OK to use?
I added up the radiator EDR (as best I can), I only have the height and pictures of them. They are 4 column 26" tall and appear to be connected across the top. I was able to count the number of sections from the pictures. My total EDR is 300.5 on the first floor, and 247.27 on the second floor.
If I take the total EDR and multiply by 1.33 ( can't even remember where I read to multiply by that factor, but it is supposed to account for the volume of the pipes I think) I get ~728.5. This matches the size of the boiler in the basement a Smith bb14-*-5 for capacity. That made me think I may have done something right, or maybe I just over sized as well.
Now to figure out how much heat the radiators can radiate you multiply the EDR by 240 for steam or 180 for hat water. Is this EDR the one before multiplying by 1.33 or after? I was thinking before so I got 131MBH and 98.5MBH respectively. Yes the pipes are in heated space and will provide heat, but it didn't seem right to count them.
So it looks like for steam in the uninsulated house the system was pretty closely matched between capacity and heat loss and after I do some insulation work I should be pretty closely match with a hot water system as well.
Does any of this make sense? If the other factors of converting steam to hot water hold out does it sound like I could make this work?
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