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Oil to Gas Conversion of HBSmith Boiler

Have a 30 year old HB Smith steam boiler in very good condition/ 5 sections BB14. Gas is coming to town and thinking of putting in a Carlin EZ Gas Pro conversion burner (replacing an oil fired Carlin). A competent local tech priced it out (and knows steam). Wondering if this is smart, it's a low cost option for conversion. Have a one-pipe steam system which I LOVE, plus pellet stove, Lopi and Rinnai for area heating. (I'm a multiple redundancy guy.)

Other option is a new Weil-Mclain steam boiler for about five times the price, whole new system, but keep steam and radiators. (I admire steam as a lost art form and think Dan Holohan's books are terrific!)


  • BobC
    BobC Member Posts: 5,407

    You won't get the efficiency that can be had with some of the best wet based boilers but you'll save enough dough to pay for a new boiler in fuel savings. As long as the old girl is in good shape I would do it. You can use the EZ-Gas in a new boiler if the old girl passes on.

    The cost of natural gas is just to low to ignore. Just be aware you will need a stalnless steel chimney liner and the old girl will have to be cleaned real well before the install and after one season of use.

    Smith G8-3 with EZ Gas @ 90,000 BTU, Single pipe steam
    Vaporstat with a 12oz cut-out and 4oz cut-in
    3PSI gauge
  • Smithy
    Smithy Member Posts: 7

    Thanks for your reply. I do have a stainless steel liner in my chimney and that's a great approach - to use the venerable old HB Smith until it dies, and the Carlin (also a workhorse) survives to fire a new boiler.
  • Smithy
    Smithy Member Posts: 7

    I know lots of you steamguys like pix. Here is HB.
  • SWEI
    SWEI Member Posts: 7,356
    That is one FAT system riser

    was this a vapor system?
  • Smithy
    Smithy Member Posts: 7

    I'm sorry to say I can't answer that question. But my 9 radiators all heat evenly and I have no water hammer.....