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Coverting to gas - New boiler size question.

I am converting from oil to gas heat. I live on long island (New York) and im looking into the Burnham ES2 boiler. My home is a HiRanch. Two zones, one on each floor. The house is about 2,450 SF. Built in 1985. I would like to know which unit to go with. Not sure how many BTUs I need.



Thank you

Joe

Comments

  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 14,834
    Find out

    how many BTUs you need. We do this with a heat-loss calculation program which takes windows, insulation etc into account.



    There are plenty of contractors on Long Island who could do this for you. Try the Find a Contractor page of this site.
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
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  • Speedyjoey
    Speedyjoey Member Posts: 7
    Thank you.

    I had three people come in. One recommended a 130 BTU unit and two others recommend the Burnham ES2-5 140 BTU and the last guy say that the Burnham ES2-4 105 BTU would be good. I'm am just really confessed which unit will be best.
  • Tim McElwain
    Tim McElwain Member Posts: 4,480
    Ask each contractor

    how they determined the boiler sizing. Did they all actually do a heat loss and also  measure your lineal feet of baseboard.



    Find out who distributes the Burnham boiler in your area and give them the info on your house and see what they recommend.



    Ask the contractors for references as to other customers that they installed this same Burnham boiler for and see if they are satisfied
  • Speedyjoey
    Speedyjoey Member Posts: 7
    No

    Two measured the base board other 2 just looked at the old unit. If there a way I can calculate what I would need by using the homes square feet?
  • CMadatMe
    CMadatMe Member Posts: 3,085
    Budget sizing

    Rules of thumb for budget sizing based on a 0 degree climate and a 70 degree set point.



    R-19 Walls, R-30 Attic, Good Windows = 25 btu's a square

    R-11 Walls, R-21 Attic Decent Windows = 32 btu's a square

    Have no clue then 40 a square.



    A betting man would put his money on that boiler quoted is oversized. Why an ES2 and not a condensing boiler? By the time you line that chimney which is required for an ES2 your in a condensing boiler price point.
    "The bitter taste of a poor installation remains much longer than the sweet taste of the lowest price."
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 14,834
    edited September 2011
    Not always

    if there's no safe place to vent a mod-con thru the side wall of the house, you have two choices: Either use a chimney-vented boiler, or use the chimney as a chase (if that's possible) for the mod-con's air and exhaust pipes.



    The latter would preclude the use of a standard gas water heater in the same chimney, making it necessary to go with an indirect or some other type of water-heating device. This would make the job cost a lot more, possibly more than relining the chimney, so a chimney-vented unit like the ES-2 series looks a lot more attractive. And many times it's more efficient than whatever is coming out!
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
  • Speedyjoey
    Speedyjoey Member Posts: 7
    thank you for your help. Just thought it was weird how they all had recommened different units

    one recommended- 130K (Kenmore), two recommended the 140K (Burnham ES2-5) and the last guy said (96K Burnham P205) or the ES2-4 (105K)
  • Speedyjoey
    Speedyjoey Member Posts: 7
    edited September 2011
    Would it be bad to get a unit that was a little larger?

    I was thinking about getting the larger unit since it was only $150 more. Wouldnt the larger unit heat up the house faster?
  • Robert O'Brien
    Robert O'Brien Member Posts: 3,385
    NO!

    Unlike most things in life,bigger isn't better when it comes to boilers! Just did a heat loss on a 2900 sq/ft house in Shoreham,LI. Came out to 57K. A larger boiler short cycles and will use more fuel
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  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 14,834
    Bob's right

    a heat-loss is the only way to go- unless it's a steam system, then we size to the radiation.



    But in either case, oversizing is doubly wasteful. It costs more to buy and more to operate. The only ones who benefit from this are the oil and gas companies- is it any wonder they oversize so much?
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
  • Speedyjoey
    Speedyjoey Member Posts: 7
    Is the the input or output BTU?

    I'm still not sure with would be best: My home was build in 1984 so I assume I have some isolation. And I have two zones. and heated sf is 2410 

    Burnham ES2-4  105/77 (Btu in/out) or

    Burnham ES2-5 140/102
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 14,834
    You need much more info than that

    a heat-loss calculation considers much more than the square footage of the house. 
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
  • gennady
    gennady Member Posts: 830
    boiler sizing verification

    Another way of sizing the boiler is trough heating degree day.

    It actually gives you input for old boiler you actually used, and then  you do efficiency improvement correction factor and arrive to proper size. When i get boiler size 4 times smaller then existing boiler, i do this and usually a m spot on with less then 5% difference.. do not forget pickup factor, as HDD is reflecting more steady state operation.
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