Welcome! Here are the website rules, as well as some tips for using this forum.
Need to contact us? Visit https://heatinghelp.com/contact-us/.
Click here to Find a Contractor in your area.

Siegenthaler's Modern Hydronic Heating ??

theprentice Member Posts: 26
i finally saved some money and bought modern hydronic heating by john siegenthaler. i've only been in this trade about 15 months but am very passionate about learning all that i can. i'm concerned that alot of the information contained will be way over my head. i'm just wondering how this book would rate for individuals relatively new to the industry. i am by no means a beginner but there are many aspects of hydronic heating i haven't touched upon. want to make sure i can understand a good majority of it. any input would be great.

thanks guys


  • Steve Gates_3
    Steve Gates_3 Member Posts: 27

    If it's not the best then it certainly ranks in the top 1.
  • Brad White
    Brad White Member Posts: 2,398
    Best money I ever spent in one place.

    I wish I had that book 30 years ago. (Of course the technology was not even close back then!)

    I still refer to it often.

    Best single book for both theory and practice all in one place, IMHO.

    Nothing against Dan's books, I have them too. But Siggy's is a Viessmann.
    "If you do not know the answer, say, "I do not know the answer", and you will be correct!"

    -Ernie White, my Dad
  • Paul Rohrs_8
    Paul Rohrs_8 Member Posts: 9
    Cup O'Joe

    Nothing like a cup of coffee and a book by Siggy.

    The book is very well written and somewhat technhical at times. John also wrote "Radiant Basics" and "Radiant Precision" for the RPA. They might be good primers before tackling "Modern Hydronic Heating".

    Break the book down like a primary/secondary loop. Each secondary loop, (Chapter) is a plug-n-play addition to the primary loop (book). If you don't understand, take some time and reread it. No pressure. The Wall is a great source to ask questions, especially about Siggy's and Dan's books.


  • I use Siggys book in both of my courses...

    And I tell the students not to get too overburdened by the math. There is a LOT of easy to understand information on the book without the need for a scientific calcuulator, but if you really want to do the math, then go for it.

    The software that came with the book is REALLY the cats meow. You can do many "what if" scenarios with it and get the system optomized to the Nth degree.

    Also, John is very approachable. If you have any questions or issues with any of his publications, drop him an email and he will explain it to you.

    Keep learning. I still am...

  • ALH_4
    ALH_4 Member Posts: 1,790
    Siggy's Book

    It's the best book on hydronic heating I have seen. It is perfect for someone learning for the first time, or as a reference for someone who has been in the field a while. Concepts are explained in plain english, and Siggy does not get too deep into the theory. He gets right to the heart of the matter and tells you what you need to know. In contrast, the McGraw-Hill Radiant Heating & Cooling Handbook gets lost in theory and calculation in my opinion. At least it lost me. ;-)
  • Mad Dog_2
    Mad Dog_2 Member Posts: 6,920
    Read all Dan's books first and anything else you can get your

    paws on. Dan's forte is taking hard-to-grasp and understand concepts and explaining them to dummies like me....making you laugh all the way. Siggy's books and articles are on the Highly-advanced side and very math-laden (for a dummy like me). Master the basics and intermediate concepts and when, and if, you are ready, buy Modern Hydronic heating. In the meantime, you can start reading siggy every month in P & M. Surprisingly, Siggy's Seminar was very funny and NOT too Math-Heavy - learned alot. If you want to learn The Steam, which ANY modern-day student should learn, start with We Got Steam Heat (Holohan), Pocket Full of Stean Solutions (Holohan), Truobleshooters Guide (Linhardt), and Then........The Steam Heating BIBLE: Lost Art of Steam Heat (Holohan). Mad Dog
  • It's a book

    you read over and over again; each time you learn something new.
  • theprentice
    theprentice Member Posts: 26

    thanks for all your responses, i own dan's "Pumping Away" and Carol Fey's "Quick and Easy;Hydornic Controls" and have read them both several times. i understand the concept of primary/secondary and many other aspects. i build a good majority of our boiler builds by myself but my employer more or less simply tells me what he wants to see instead of telling me why. i want to learn WHY. i'm young and motivated i'm just afraid of being overwhelmed by all the information. thank god for dan and this website, i know that i can bring any questions i have here and receive some of the most educated and patient responses available. i guess i'm more apprehensive about the math involved. i didn't apply myself as much as i should have in high school or college in regards to math (i'm kicking myself in the A*& for that now). Once again thank you all for your input.

  • Weezbo
    Weezbo Member Posts: 6,232
    i like to read..*~/:)

    something that i can say for sure is that no matter who you are you can always get something out of a book.

    The one thing that comes across in most reading is that there is possibly more than one way to read ,Something :)

    most of the response you have is coloured by our basic idea of we like what we do and that is evident by the time we have burned doing it :)) There is a lot of experience dialed into Siggy's book. to me this is from communication...nothing somewhere else or something different everything makes sense and it is basically in one place. You certainly would be investing in your self to make up your mind to read it with an open mind.:) Siggy has made the math as clear and straightforward as possible.

    If you feel intimidated by what seems like super fancy math , just look at it..do not try ....to See....just look.

    once you have looked at the work enough times ,soon it appears easy to recognise...the more you recognise some thing ,the easier it becomes to understand what you are looking at ,at the time. The one tool you have in front of you can do plenty math:) you can be frog fingers and have fun with the computer programs...Which by the way Siggy has also put together...these programs do some very good math and way quicker than a college student :)

    You made a very fine choice in the books you chose...
  • Glen
    Glen Member Posts: 855
    yes to all the above posts - AND

    Smith's "Electricity for Refrigeration, Heating and AC", the British Gas anthology "Combustion Engineering and Gas Utilization". Any of the books by John Dutton (Centennial College Press). Start haunting old book stores - if not interested in the historical aspect of our trade - there is still a wealth of info in a 1940's book. (There was a Home Study course for the servicemen coming home after WW2 - great info on heating and Steam) Each manufacturer publishes a "basic" radiant text, the RPA "Radiant Basics" is a superb starter, both in theory and installation discussions - and finally go to one of Siggy's seminars. I attended last year in Seattle - humorous, to the point, with all that math stripped away (although I like the math too). It was full value + for the cash. And once you start breezing through all the extra info provided via CD and text - you could be reading for the next couple of years and just scratch the surface.
  • Brad White_9
    Brad White_9 Member Posts: 2,440
    Geez, Glen- Get out much?

    LOL :D

    Scary, you remind me of.... me.

    Nothing like a good home library, is there?
  • Glen
    Glen Member Posts: 855
    Get Out????

    Why would I want to do that????? With all these books kicking around! (drives my lady nuts - there's always at least two text books and one on Ben Hogan of course in the suitcase when we travel!I would be able to travel "light" if I didn't read);)

  • George Zebrowski
    George Zebrowski Member Posts: 7

    An early heads up to you fans of Dan & Siggy. On July 27th in Marlborough, MA, we'll be running a one-day hydronic heating conference we're calling PM LIVE. (Both Dan and John, unbeknownst to one another suggested the PM LIVE title; great minds think alike.) Siggy's topic will be Modern Hydronics and Dan will talk about How to Sell Hydronics. There will be a Q&A at the end of the day. It's the first time we'll have our two hydronic superstar columnists on the same bill. You can find details at www.pmmag.com/pmlive.
  • hr
    hr Member Posts: 6,106
    Another nice feature of Modern Hydronics

    is how the HDS (Hydronic Design Software) works along with it.

    It's best to understand the concepts behind the technology. Read and re-read the book.

    The HDS makes the number crunching much, much easier. May as well buy the complete package and get the HydroniCAD for great presentations and documentation :)

    I also clip and save Siggy's monthly articles from PM and PM Engineer.

    hot rod

    To Learn More About This Professional, Click Here to Visit Their Ad in "Find A Professional"
  • Stirling Boston
    Stirling Boston Member Posts: 33
    ...and it was a great day of training!

    If you missed today's show, all I can say is you missed a good one. Dan and Siggy brought their A game.

    Thanks for such an insightful day of system design and sales coaching.

  • Kal Row
    Kal Row Member Posts: 1,520
    ditto, it was informative and fun...

    wouldnt mind hearing the same thing again - pity i had to haul out of here 5pm, - would have loved to stay and network, maybe next time we can do it on a Sunday
  • Kal Row
    Kal Row Member Posts: 1,520
    dan, can you move this to it's own \"PM LIVE\" thread?

    so that those who were there, can make those who were not, green with envy ;)
  • DanHolohan
    DanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 16,525
    There is

    a PM Live thread going already, Kal. Thanks for being there. Always great to see you!
    Retired and loving it.
This discussion has been closed.