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Need Steam furnace recommendation

My 30-year old 4-section Weil McClain steam furnace has a crack in a seam and is leaking steam. On very cold days I need to add water 2x a day (once every couple of days when the weather gets above freezing). So I am looking for recommendations. The current furnace includes an Amitrol  boiler mate for hot water. The furnace was originally oil fired, but it now has a natural gas conversion burner on it. (Seemed to be a good idea at the time as I needed to remove an in ground tank and the gas company installed gas in the house and gave me the conversion burner  and chimney liner for free -- but it costs 25 percent more to heat my house since, perhaps tied to the seam issue?). One contractor recommended a Peerless furnace rather than another Weil McClain but did not have a recommendation on the most efficient way to heat hot water (the boiler mate is 12 years old). Also, the first person who serviced this furnace for me said the manual feed was the way to go, but the contractor who recommended the Peerless said the auto feeds are good now. Suggestions for a furnace and how to heat hot water would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!


  • which boiler to buy

    you have had a reasonable life span from your old boiler.

    for the replacement, choose the installer more carefully than the boiler. most boilers are manufactured to the same high standards, and it is the steam expert who installs it who makes all the difference.

    if the distributor for the boiler is in your area, that is a plus.

    make sure the capacity [edr] of the new boiler matches the total of your radiators-not your heat loss, or the capacity of the old one!!!

    ask the installer to give you a vaporstat on the new one, so you can start saving money right off the bat. make sure he does not forget about the need for main  steam line [not radiator] air vents.--nbc
  • Charlie from wmass
    Charlie from wmass Member Posts: 4,314
    all that Nicholas said and this

    What is most available in the local area. The boiler also varies due to the specs of the job. The boiler is sized by the radiators, any other way and they are not aware of what it takes to install steam properly. Here is a link to what you need to know. http://www.heatinghelp.com/article/236/Homeowners/1490/How-to-have-a-boiler-replaced-without-getting-steamed
    Cost is what you spend , value is what you get.

    cell # 413-841-6726
  • go with manual feed

    forgot to add that i am in favor of having no auto-fill. i am on site, as you are too, and as i blow down the low water cut off, every week or so, i can check the water level at rest, and add if needed.--nbc
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