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Gas or Oil?

Cherby Member Posts: 1
I am preparing to replace my oil-fueled steam boiler. It's the building's original coal-converted unit, 75% efficient, with a cracked chamber and covered in asbestos frosting, so I'm looking forward to getting rid of it and improved efficiency.  I have one-pipe steam radiators, live in a 2nd floor condo in a 3 story building in Boston, and will also be installing wall insulation.

I'm wondering if it's worth converting to natural gas, or should I stick with oil?

I'd also appreciate any other advice about things I should be asking, looking for, or watching out for, as I shop around.

Thanks very much.


  • Rod
    Rod Posts: 2,067
    Steam Pros

    Hi-  There are pro and cons with both oil and gas and what to go with depends a lot on the individual situation.  You're lucky in there are a lot of good steam professionals in the Boston area. (Charlie Garrity is one that comes to mind) I'd talk to them and see what they recommend for your situation. Look under "Find a Professional" at the top of this page and scroll down the page to the States listing and select your state.

    - Rod
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 16,842
    There are good steamers

    for either fuel. Burnham Megasteam is my favorite but it's only offered in oil so far.

    The Smith 8 series and Slant/Fin intrepid can be fired with either oil or gas. When used on gas they offer better thermal efficiency than the usual atmospheric gas boiler can.
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Towson, MD, USA
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
  • Charlie from wmass
    Charlie from wmass Member Posts: 4,322
    Depending on the unit required

    you can go dual fuel with the flip[ of the switch you can have gas or oil depending on which is cheaper. Also if the oil is not delivered on time the unit can be fired on natural gas so there is not loss of heat.
    Cost is what you spend , value is what you get.

    cell # 413-841-6726
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