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mod-con

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Boilerpro_5
Boilerpro_5 Member Posts: 407
and Lochinvar must be rebuilding its market in the area.....I've dropped them a few years ago due to very poor factory support. My wholesaler also dropped them about the same time. Things sound like they're getting better.

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  • STEVEN MARKS
    STEVEN MARKS Member Posts: 154
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    mod-con

    I am finally looking to replace my boiler and have narrowed my choices between the Munchkin or the Trinity. I deal mostly with installing oil boilers but I happen to have gas at home. My experience with mod/cons is limited. I could install either the Munchkin or the Trinity with an indirect water heater.
    I also have the option of installing the Trinity Ti150 Combi and forego the indirect.
    I have checked with my suppliers and neither reports any problems with the Trinity or Munchkin.
    Whay are your thoughts? Which would you prefer from the 3 options?
    Thanks for any input Steven
  • Brad White
    Brad White Member Posts: 2,398
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    What is your heat loss?

    The ratio of heat loss to boiler output is critical; the closer you can get to a 1:1 the better.

    There are more choices as I am sure you are aware. Whichever you choose, is there excellent local support. My first choice, not that you asked :) is the Viessmann Vitodens with the Triangle Tube Prestige Solo as a second choice, both for reasons of reliability.

    I would install an indirect. A combi model would be OK if it serves an in-law apartment or vacation home with low occupancy. Sometimes you need volume. If you have a bathtub regardless, I would use an indirect regardless.
    "If you do not know the answer, say, "I do not know the answer", and you will be correct!"



    -Ernie White, my Dad
  • Andrew Hagen_2
    Andrew Hagen_2 Member Posts: 236
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    Prestige

    I will second Brad's choices of the Vitodens and the Prestige. The Vitodens 200 is in a higher price category, but the Vitodens 100 is very competitive. Noteworthy is that the Vitodens 100 does not come with an outdoor reset control built-in, though one can be added.

    I assume price is one of the primary considerations based on the choice of the Munchkin or Trinity. The Prestige is close to the Trinity and Munchkin in price, and in my opinion the Prestige heat exchanger design is superior.

    An indirect is almost always preferrable to an on-demand of any sort, particularly in a residential situation where intermittent, short-duration, and dump loads are common. The heat loss off a well designed indirect tank is very small. The Triangle Tube Phase 3 or Crown Megastor tank are a good match for any mod/con.

    Does it frustrate anyone else to hear the Rinnai ads that insinuate that tank-type water heaters heat more water than you use?

  • STEVEN MARKS
    STEVEN MARKS Member Posts: 154
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    Thanks for the reply's. I will look into the Prestige. The viessman is out of my price range. I will install an indirect vs the on demand per your advice. The Megastor is my preferred indirect. I have installed quite a few without any problems.
  • Ken_40
    Ken_40 Member Posts: 1,320
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    Dollar for dollar

    I think the Munchkin is the best bang for the buck out there.

    Were I in a NG area, it would be what I put in my own home. But I live in LP and oil country now. # 2 oil and the MPI-FCX was what we chose, with no regrets.

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  • Unknown
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    Yes, bad science in ads ticks me off too andrew. standby loss is real, but it never rings well with me to have to make misleading arguements in the name of marketing.
  • STEVEN MARKS
    STEVEN MARKS Member Posts: 154
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    The Munchkin and the Trinity are 2 boilers that are stocked locally. Along with pricing that is why I was considering them 1st. The Viessman and Buderus are also stocked locally but was not sure if the extra expense was worth it. I have noticed some boilers are stainless steel and some are aluminum. Any opinions between the metals.
    Steven
  • Brad White
    Brad White Member Posts: 2,398
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    I was going to mention the metals but

    did not want to open a less focussed discussion than you originally had asked. Now that you have....

    Stainless steel of the appropriate alloy is the metal of choice. 316L ("L" for low carbon) is a widely used standard. Viessmann uses 316Ti ("Ti" for titanium stabilized) and is, unless I am mistaken, exclusive to them. Other alloys are in the 400 category, 409 being one I have seen, 430 being another. These make up, just a guess, less than 10 percent of the market. I believe the 400 series is of less cost as it shows up in gas-fired duct furnaces and the like. There is a lot I do not know about these alloys.

    Aluminum: My last choice and the reason is pH, acidity.

    The water treatment folks say to keep the water-side at a pH of 8.0 to 9.0 for example, more alkaline than neutral and certainly not acidic. But what about the other side? The combustion side condensation is at a pH of 3.0 to 4.5, maybe a little more, but also at higher temperature. Why protect one side but ignore the more aggressive side?

    Several Aluminum exchangers have seen pitting, perforations, essential loss and others can weigh in as well.

    Until I can be convinced that aluminum is as durable as SS, I will not specify it.

    My $0.02

    Brad
    "If you do not know the answer, say, "I do not know the answer", and you will be correct!"



    -Ernie White, my Dad
  • Paul Pollets
    Paul Pollets Member Posts: 3,656
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    The extra expense...

    is worth it, if you understand the difference between the machines. I'm nervous about aluminum heat exchangers and install Viessmann Vitodens mod-cons. Viessmann use to manufacture an aluminum HX. They don't anymore. Too many problems with pH.


    I trust their engineering... and have good reasons for doing so... I advise all homeowners to be somewhat skeptical of a glossy brochure. All that's in print, may not be all that real.

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  • Mike T., Swampeast MO
    Mike T., Swampeast MO Member Posts: 6,928
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    It's been said many times, but still worth repeating that any mod-con must be installed according to manufacturer's instructions into suitable systems. "Suitable" is a bit hard to define, but if all emiters are of the same general type and there are no significant balance problems at present, there shouldn't be any problem.

    I'm nearly positive that the HTP Munchkin and the NYT Trinity use the same (French made) stainless steel heat exchanger.

    I daresay that the Munchkin is the most widely used mod-con in the U.S. It was available rather early (mid to late 1990s--can someone give the actual year?) at a price that was significantly lower than its (few) competitors. Even though some speculated that the O-ring construction in the HX would be problematic, I've yet to hear of a HX failure here. The Trinity appeared shortly after the Munchkin, and again, I've not heard of any HX failure.

    Problems widely reported with the Munchkin include:

    1) Early and sometimes repeated failures of the combustion inducing fan--particularly in the earlier models. All say that HTP has been "kind" and "helpful" and that the issue has been addressed in later models.

    2) "Nuisance" burner lockouts due to clogged condensate drains. I believe that a "design issue" was addressed and corrected, but most of such problems were likely due to a lack of ROUTINE cleaning/inspection required for ALL mod-cons.

    3) A cheaply constructed plastic cabinet that tends to distort over time resulting in VERY iffy sealed combustion and "difficult" routine service--in other words it may well be drawing a significant portion of its' combustion air from the indoors instead of from the outdoors.

    ----------------

    The NYT Trinity does not appear to be as widely used as the Munchkin, the only problem I [think] I've heard here is the "nuisance burner lockouts" due to condensate backup.

    ---------------

    Both the Munchkin and the Trinity could not originally operate with both reset of supply temperature and modulation of the burner.

    Munchkin addressed this fairly rapidly with their "Vision" control system that not only allows reset but control for multiple temperatures. The "Vision" system (2nd or 3rd generation now) remains an accessory. Trinity took a bit longer and used a slightly different approach. Connect an outdoor temp sensor to the Trinity and you get outdoor reset--no accessory required--but it does not control a multiple temperature system. It [appears] that outboard control is required for a Trinity driving a multi-temp system.

    BOTH of these boilers do offer the potential for high turndown ratio. How much turndown you actually get will however depend on your system and how it is controlled and operated. Some homeowners who pay close attention to their boiler say that the actual modulation rate is significantly lower than the possible, but I can only say such has more to do with the control and nature of the system than with any problem in the boilers themselves.

    This leads me back to the beginning. Mod-cons offer the possibility of EXCEPTIONAL energy savings. Install them properly in an appropriately designed and controlled system and you can tap that possibility.

    If you can deal with the initial cost of a Vitodens 200, have a nicely suitable system and an installer who follows the instructions and somewhat adapt your "thermostat lifestyle" you will achieve energy efficiency that approaches perfection.
  • Glenn Sossin_2
    Glenn Sossin_2 Member Posts: 592
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    Trinity

    I have a very good customer who use to install the Trinity boilers. He was a factory authorized repair agent. He became very dis-heartened because of parts availability.

    He has dropped them and now installs the Prestige for the past 11/2 years . It's US mfg in Blackhawk NJ, he hasn't needed to get parts yet (realiable), nothing to clean as far as the exchanger goes- it's sealed shut, made of- 439 s/s. He bought the parts attache case so if he ever needed a part, he is probably carrying it around in his truck.

    Muchkin I think is much better than Trinity on parts availability, but from what I have seen/heard, even from my local rep, you may need them.
  • Ted_9
    Ted_9 Member Posts: 1,718
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    HTP

    All of the new Munchkins come with the Vision 1(outdoor reset) installed now. Vision one also allows you to control and prioritize and indirect water heater. You must, however, follow the Vision 1 piping arrangement.

    The newer Contender is wall hung and does not have the out door reset, but can easily be added.

    As with all heating equipment, you must set up with a combustion analyzer upon start-up.

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  • Tom Hopkins
    Tom Hopkins Member Posts: 554
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    As usual!

    I agree with Brad,a couple times I thoughtI disagreed with him and then realized I was wrong.The Vitodens HX is just a superior product in every way.If $$ is an issue consider a Vitodens 100 and Tekmar or Honeywell AQ2000 ODR

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  • hr
    hr Member Posts: 6,106
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    for an entry level mod con

    that HTP Contender is hard to beat. 2" PVC venting up to 110K model. Fairly simple to install and operate.

    Of all the brands I have installed the Lochinvar Knight has the nicest features in the mid price range. The best and most feature laden controller, nice metal jacket, excellent support.

    hot rod

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  • Justin Gavin_5
    Justin Gavin_5 Member Posts: 26
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    Munchkin

    I have been involved in many of installations of Munchkins since 2001. I agree that they did have problems (mostly due to misapplication) and also a few parts failures due to short cycling again misapplication. I agree with Mike that you have to look at your heat loss and system requirements. If your boiler can't maximize the turndown because your oversized than you aren't doing yourself any favors because you are going to short cycle.

    1st. Do a heat loss on your house based on your design temp.

    2nd. look at the design temp of your area does it look high? If you are only hitting that temp 2 to 3 days out of the year at night (when you are normally in setback) maybe consider a smaller boiler.

    3rd. Look at realistic hot water output. Count the GPMS's per water fixture and see what size indirect you need.

    4th. Look at adding a buffer tank to give your system more volume to get a longer burn cycle or consider using the coil in your indirect for your domestic hot water output and the tank itself as a buffer tank. If you don't have too great a demand on you domestic side this is a very viable option.

    I have installed several of the R2 Munchkins (Latest improvements) and they have fixed several problems.

    The biggest improvements I have recognized are the gasket on the cover, and the condensate trap, easy latches on the cover instead of those long screws on the bottom, they added leveling legs, added the vision 1 out of the box (which gives you outdoor reset and indirect priority) and now they are welding their heat exchanger coils to the header.

    While I admit that the casing is quite cheesy, you don't have to worry about dents in transport.

    Also the controller (you must all admit) is easy to use and work with compared to Viessmann Vitodens 200.

    I think that the Vitodens looks like one of the best out there but how many Vitodens are out there vs. Munchkin? I know in where I live there are very few. I'd like to see how the Vitodens 100 fairs in the next 5 years vs the rest of the Modcons.

    The only think I don't like about the Vitodens is the gas connection the copper to stainless connection. Maybe I am just old school but I wonder how many guys that put Vitodens use copper for their gas connections???

    I have put in Vitodens, Baxi, Buderus, NTI, Smit GT and all and all I like Munchkin the best all around.

    Good Luck with your decision.

    Justin
  • jimdean
    jimdean Member Posts: 1
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    mod

    No votes for the Weil Mclain Ultra? I considered a Trinity but was told supply house did not carry any parts. That must be nice when its cold out and you have to wait 2-3 days for parts. I was leaning toward the Ultra beacuse i figured it would be easy to get parts.
  • Boilerpro_5
    Boilerpro_5 Member Posts: 407
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    I understand the Prestige is also using non standard stainless

    that is why it took so long to get the ASME approval....both the metal and design needed to be certified. I also think it is a far superior design to the other modcons on the market....higher water content, less finicky about dirt, smoother control operation, much less suspectible to flow problems, and just plain sturdier(fully welded heat exchanger rather than banded together and gasketed). I also have the attache case, only used a part once so far, to replace a sensor I broke during installation when strightening out the piping (my only beef with the units except the threaded system supply and return connections).


    Boilerpro

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  • Ted_9
    Ted_9 Member Posts: 1,718
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    Munchkins

    I believe that all of the new Munchkins have welded heat exchangers except for the T wall hung models.

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  • Ted_9
    Ted_9 Member Posts: 1,718
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    Steven

    I have installed Munchkins, GB142's and one Knight. They all have their place in these projects.

    I personally have a Munchkin T80 and a GB142. Both are heating domestic water via indirects and steel panel radiators.

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  • Tom Hopkins
    Tom Hopkins Member Posts: 554
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    Lochinvar Knight

    Just wondering why no one is mentioning the Knight -- any comments on how it compares to the Prestige? Not to malign the Prestige, but Lochinvar seems to have a good following here in Chicago and an installer I spoke with last week told me an $800 board on his Prestige went out (his home) and the manufacturer wouldn't cover it even though just over 1 year old.
  • Paul Rohrs_7
    Paul Rohrs_7 Member Posts: 173
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    I'll mention it

    I think it's an excellent boiler. Well thought out for design, function, and an outstanding pricepoint for all of the integral controls. Tech support and the Lochinvar Family are 2nd to none....and it's American Made and Family Owned. Top shelf people that listen, and frequent the wall as well.

    The Knight IS my boiler of choice. The 100 equivalent feet for BOTH intake AND exhaust is HUGE. It has saved me from worry on several occasions.

    I don't think you'll have to wait to long from the fine folks at Lochinvar to see other new and innovative products come off of their 5-star production line.

    Regards,

    PR
  • Greg_40
    Greg_40 Member Posts: 43
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    If Munchkin & Trinity are your two options...

    both are good machines, but I'd go with Trinity of the two. Comes with outdoor reset & lower price, from our supplier anyway. However, if the Knight is available locally, go with it, period. Competitive price point, well thought out design, outdoor reset included, good looks, smaller primary circ, therefore uses less watts to deliver heat. Yes, you can get outdoor reset and DHW priority with the Vision, but I don't like having to purchase what should be basic standard equipment. Again, both are excellent machines and as Mike T. said- follow instructions to the letter, no exceptions, no unauthorized deviations from install instructions.
  • Ted_9
    Ted_9 Member Posts: 1,718
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    vision 1

    The Vision one is included with the Munchkins now.

    The GB142 also includes the outdoor reset now as well.




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  • Uni R_2
    Uni R_2 Member Posts: 589
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    Prestige Warranty

    Triangle Tube has a pretty big out clause if you've read the warranty. Even if it happened within the 1 year period they could have ducked on it.

    "This warranty shall not apply if:

    6. The failure or malfunction occurs on a component, control, air vent or component part not solely manufactured by Triangle Tube/Phase III."
  • Plumdog_2
    Plumdog_2 Member Posts: 873
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    Bad Science

    A good indirect is like a savings account, banking your btu's so you can use them later. So maybe you get charged a tiny service fee (1/2 degree per hour). But do you really wanna fire up a burner every time you wash your hands? And then get a shot of cold every time you turn off and on?
  • Kal Row
    Kal Row Member Posts: 1,520
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    because i've been sleeping ;) ...

    the knight is best, but, if you are on so tight a budget that you must chose between the trinity and the munchkin - go with the munchkin

    – the phase 3 indirect from triangle tube has the most heat transfer surface – best price for it you get from weil mclain – need’s a serious pump though – lots of resistance – I use 0013’s – but if your boiler puts out over 200kbtu, then at least you can actually move enough btus from boiler to water to run two showers nonstop

    Of course, “storage” is more efficient over time - so if you have time and space, a 120gal indirect with a coil that can only move 120kbtu to the tank, would be more economical to run
  • Greg_40
    Greg_40 Member Posts: 43
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    > The Vision one is included with the Munchkins

    > now.

    >

    > The GB142 also includes the outdoor reset

    > now as well.

    >

    >

    >

    > _A

    > HREF="http://www.heatinghelp.com/getListed.cfm?id=

    > 373&Step=30"_To Learn More About This

    > Professional, Click Here to Visit Their Ad in

    > "Find A Professional"_/A_



    Ted,
    That's good to know. One of the reasons I stopped Munchie installs was the add ons- for less $$ I could get the whole package from virtually any other maker. Haven't looked back since. Albeit I do like some of the speciality controls from Techmar and others for many needs that propritary boiler controllers just don't meet.

    Thanks for bringing me up to speed. Doesn't change my opinion on the Knight - still my choice over the other two. Even with the newly acquired knowledge. We all have opinions. Viessman and many other fine models I see mentioned on The Wall aren't even available in our area, so I can't say anything good, bad or indifferent about them.

    Mike T is still correct- installing to the letter is the most vital component of any installation proving my old motto "It's not the brands... it's the hands".
  • Greg_40
    Greg_40 Member Posts: 43
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    Ted,

    Thanks for the update. Once I studied the options available on Munchie vs. other locally available brands, I chose otherwise, mainly due to no add-ons needed. I never looked back, nor kept on top of new developments. I dislike having to by add-ons with anything unless there are special needs that must be met and proprietary controllers can't do the trick.

    Still doesn't change how I feel on the Knight. Nothing wrong with Munchies, but...
  • Unknown
    Options


    I"m not saying standby loss is so bad that people shouldn't use indirects. I'm just saying it exists. But since the tankless mfgs have to exagerrate and use misleading language, it just shows they don't have a real leg to stand on most of the time.

    Of course, 1/2 a degree an hour on a good size tank can be a noticeable bleed... a therm a week is $10/month these days, right? not huge, but $120/year? probably offset by the mod/con's efficiency, but still, it's real, even if it's not amazing or anything.
  • Unknown
    Options


    makes me sad. the lack of vision one actually made the munchkin a better choice for tekmar systems, since you didn't have to waste the money attached for the onboard reset control you didn't need.

    I understand why they did it, but it should be nice to have a "no reset control please" option with these boilers. If you want to do anything better than outdoor reset, now there is this unnecessary cost....
  • Kal Row
    Kal Row Member Posts: 1,520
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    put you hand on a phase III (or ultra-plus same thing)...

    with the boiler water (the outer water no less!) being 160f, yet it feels cool to the touch, i have installed a bunch - if it feels cool - it has to be below 90 on the surface - thats a hell of a deltaT across the insulation - if that dosnt sell a homeowner on the value of blown insulation, dont know what will
  • pete_32
    pete_32 Member Posts: 1
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    vision one questions

    I had a HVAC company install a munchkin.
    I paid for a vision one controller w/outdoor sensor.
    A year later, I determined the vision one software was not not installed. (although the sensor was installed, its not being read)

    The HVAC company confirmed it, but is going out of business. (bankrupt) and I'm doubting they will be able to deliver. My new HVAC company is looking into doing the work. (activating it), but it seems like this is an issue.

    It seems like the first company wasn't able to get an activation code, and they are dancing around the issue.

    Questions:

    - Can any HVAC company obtain and activate the SW? or is it strictly through a special set of HTP vendors/installers?

    - For the purpose of filing a bankrupcy claim, can someone tell me an approximate price of upgrading ? (sensor is already installed)?

    If anyone is near Lehigh Valley, PA that can do this, can you please contact me.

  • jalcoplumb_7
    jalcoplumb_7 Member Posts: 62
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    Vision 1

    Was a big secret.

    The software is built into the control. The code is needed to program the control. The contractor should have been Vision 1 certified in order to obtain the Vision 1 sensor and kit. Not sure how it was determined that the Vision 1 was not active.

    One other note is that there was a bad run of outdoor sensors.

    Try downloading the current install guide off the website. It will have all the information in it on page 55. www.htproducts.com


    Listed below is the Distributor information:
    Harry Eklof & Associates
    1272 North Church Street
    Moorestown, NJ 08057
    Phone: 888-279-9801
    POC: Dennis Stinson
    E-mail: DStinson@harryeklof.com



    Not sure what happened to HTP's Vision 1 certification.

    Good luck,
    Joe
  • andy_21
    andy_21 Member Posts: 42
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    Knight

    been looking at the Knight & Triangle tube, but after finding out about warranty issues w/ the prestige, Knight would be my top choice. Now to find out about local parts supplier anyone in LI NY area have any input?
  • scott markle_2
    scott markle_2 Member Posts: 611
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    11 years?

    Glen are you sure about that? I thought the prestige was a relitive newcomer to the mod-con market.
  • Brad White
    Brad White Member Posts: 2,398
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    One and a half

    I think he meant. Unless he meant 11/2 as written which would be 5.5 years ;)
    "If you do not know the answer, say, "I do not know the answer", and you will be correct!"



    -Ernie White, my Dad
  • Boilerpro_5
    Boilerpro_5 Member Posts: 407
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    Years

    Relative newcomer to US Market, but I believe has been around Europe for 12 years or more. Has been an excellent seller, I understand, in the Chicago market with my wholesaler.

    Boilerpro

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  • Kal Row
    Kal Row Member Posts: 1,520
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    cute, This nonsense, is precisely why…

    I gave up fractional markings on my piping diagrams, I now use the decimal 1.25 instead of the fraction 11/4” as 1-1/4" takes up too much space and can clutter up a busy diagram
  • Jim_139
    Jim_139 Member Posts: 61
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    Life expectancy

    Does anyone have a guesstimate of the expected useful life of any of these mod cons? Maybe it's been posted here somewhere and I missed it.
  • Uni R_2
    Uni R_2 Member Posts: 589
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    Nobody knows...

    The North American tests of useful life are in their early stages.
This discussion has been closed.