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burnham boiler install cost

Ja_3 Member Posts: 7
I just had a Burnham Megasteam boiler installed, and am happy with the installation. I do, however need to add 1 or 2 radiators to a room that I'd previously taken the radiators out of for a renovation, and I had a couple of questions regarding their installation.. The existing pipe system is blackpipe (this is a 1 pipe system), but I'd like to use copper steam pipes instead to tie in the two new radiators to the blackpipe main. When I removed the two radiators, I also removed their piping all the way back to where they tap into the main, and used plugs and pipe dope to close off the two tappings. Now... I've purchased two new radiators with 1" NTP tappings (from steamradiators.com). Should I use 1" copper piping to go from the radiators to the main? Should I use a larger diameter? What grade/type of copper pipe should I ask for when picking up the pipe, elbows,couplers, etc.? Do I use the same type of solder to sweat the pipes as would be used for copper/hot water systems? (I planned to go to Home Depot to get the materials, but am not confident that a Home Depot employee will know enough to answer these questions). From the main, most of the pipes feeding the existing radiators look to me to be about 2, maybe 2.5 inches in diameter, but some seem to reduce down to 1 inch a few feet from the radiator. Does this reduction in diameter have an effect on the way the steam/heat is transferred? Thanks very much for any advice you might be able to provide.. -- Chris


  • chris_68
    chris_68 Member Posts: 18
    Steam boiler install cost Maine - seems high

    Just got a quote to replace my old old steam boiler with a Burnham KV845B oil fired steam boiler, including removal of old boiler (2 people 1/2 day for that which seemed reasonable). It is a single pipe system, will need to have a hartford loop added. Total quote was $7000, which is quite a bit higher than I was anticipating. It's a residential house

    House is located in central Maine. Does that seem like a fair ballpark price? Anyone an installer on here from central Maine area?
  • Bob_113
    Bob_113 Member Posts: 2
    How much do you think it should cost?

    Did you get several estimates? Were they itemized? Did you check references? Are you sure it's the correct sized boiler? Did anyone perform a heat loss on home? An oversized boiler will waste energy and you will pay for it.

    If you do your homework, get several estimates, check references and compare boiler size with heat loss you will be able to answer your question: "Does that seem like a fair ballpark price?"

    If not the only correct answer is "depends"

  • Derheatmeister
    Derheatmeister Member Posts: 1,543


    That be one of the Rules!
  • Leo_16
    Leo_16 Member Posts: 37
    A steam boiler and things

    A steam boiler doesn't require a heat loss but it has to be sized to the connected load. That being said did the person assessing your home walk around and measure and count radiaters? The extra day for removal adds to the cost. Questions to ask, will they come back and skim and flush the boiler until it isn't necessary anymore? Is there any asbestos removal required on this job or any insulation to be added to the piping? Do you feel comfortable with this company and will they be servicing the system after installation? If you have problems with the answers to any of the above you may want to get two more estimates. It is always good to wonder or ask if you have three estimates why there is a large variation if in fact there is one. If they are with in a few hundred dollars of each other that says something. If one is a lot more why is that, are you getting more? If one is alot less what are you not getting? Lastly have they ever heard of the book "The Lost Art of Steam Heating"?


  • Chris-
    Since Maine has no professional standards,the home owner needs to know enough about steam systems to be able to separate the good installers "Steam men" from the incompetent. What happened to my mother is she had a good Maine "handyman" do the work. He followed the installation instructions to the letter yet from the result, it is quite obvious that he knew zero about steam. I suggest you buy Dan Holohan's books listed on this page at the bottom. They will give you enough knowledge to understand your system and to be able to ask the right questions to qualify the person doing your installation. From what I've seen, the manufacturer's installation instructions result in a minimal(and cheapest)system which can be much further optimized. I would suggest you read up on swing joints, drop-header installations, equalizers, and vents. Especially pay attention to pipes sizes. A "cheap" job will use the minimum size pipes and can result in an unsatisfactory system both from comfort and economical running standpoint. Take a close look at the pictures on this site of jobs some of the steam guys have done. From an engineering standpoint they are works of art! If you spend a little bit of time reading and researching it will payoff bigtime.
  • Norm Harvey
    Norm Harvey Member Posts: 684

    I would highly recommend a Burnham Megasteam boiler.
    "We see the world as WE are, not as IT is, because it is the "I" behind the EYE that does the seeing"
  • Maine Ken
    Maine Ken Member Posts: 531

    Rod, Maine has some of the most comprehensive codes out there. Just some people ignore them, as they do everywhere.

    2 men 1/2 day??? Not a chance...

    You usually get what you pay for, however you never get what you don't pay for.

    Where in "Central" Maine???

    To Learn More About This Professional, Click Here to Visit Their Ad in "Find A Professional"
  • chris_68
    chris_68 Member Posts: 18
    thanks for the input

    Why do you reccomend the megasteam over the model I indicated. I'll ask my boiler guy about some of the items you guys mentioned. Also, what does a backflow preventer do? He had spec'd that on the quote.
  • burnerman_2
    burnerman_2 Member Posts: 297

    As you have been told you get what you pay for. This being said be sure the company you choose will be back for follow up service. There are a few guys that do not back up thier work then you will pay someone else to do service. I would ask a friend or co-worker for a good choice. (not saying the one you got is bad just be sure) This is a big investment do your homework. then keep warm royboy
  • Jim Pompetti
    Jim Pompetti Member Posts: 552

    What are you getting . Most of our boiler replacements include, Drilling & tapping mains for vents, Vaporstat,Dropping or replacing wet returns , Insulation piping ,new t'stat And cost $000000 range . Know what you need and if the installed is capable of doing it .
  • Keith_8
    Keith_8 Member Posts: 399
    never use copper

    Copper steam piping is a cardinal sin.

    The sodder joints do not have the ability to expand and contract. In a couple years the joints will be leaking.

    Pipe sizing is a result of the length of the horizontal run and the size of the radiator. Remember the pipe is carrying steam and condensate.


  • Ja_3
    Ja_3 Member Posts: 7

    Thanks for that, Keith, but I have to ask.... Why then, have I seen pictures on websites of heating companies with copper headers atop newly installed residential steam boilers?
  • Keith_8
    Keith_8 Member Posts: 399

    I'm not saying you haven't seen pictures of copper steam headers but I doubt it.

    Are you sure they aren't hot water systems?

    Obviuosly the piping will carry the steam to the radiator, it just won't look so great in a few years when it starts to leak.

    Good Luck,
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