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Condensing Oil burners... good or not so good, Kerr versus Adams and others......

Taz1956 Member Posts: 9
Hello, new to here and rebuilding a lake house in Lake Hopatcong, NJ. I am researching efficient oil burners for our proposed add a level 1600 sq. ft. home. Some of my HVAC contractors are trying to steer me away from condensing oil fired forced air furnaces. Some say 85-86% efficiency is max for oil. I read 92-95%. Where do I go from here? I am trying to google my life away about this subject and I'm getting mixed answers. One thing I do know is contractors who have NOT installed, or have not DIRECT experience with what I want should not comment on the subject. I feel the ones I talked to are just trying to sell me what units they have agreement with, or what ones they just like to install... Sorta like a die hard Chevy man not going to drive a Ford....you know what I mean??


  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 18,958
    A side comment: if you are planning on a condensing oil burner, you should either be planning on using ultra low sulfur diesel, and not common garden variety #2 as the fuel or should be sure that the condensate is treated and neutralized as rapidly as possible. Both gas and oil fired units will produce a condensate which is very acid, but that from an oil fired unit (unless it is ULSD) contains sulphuric acid as well as nitrous. Nitrous isn't nice, granted. But sulphuirc is downright nasty...
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
  • Aaron_in_Maine
    Aaron_in_Maine Member Posts: 315
    If you are doing warm air and want high efficiency I would go propane myself. I have been doing gas and oil for 12+ years and I have only read about condensing oil never seen one. High efficiency gas furnaces are more common. Find the contractor you like and see what he has for options.
    Aaron Hamilton Heating
    [email protected] yahoo.com
  • Bob Bona_4
    Bob Bona_4 Member Posts: 2,083
    I've dealt with condensing oil in the past, will never touch another one. The residue in the secondary heat exchanger is unholy.
    Taz1956rick in Alaska
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 15,343
    If you're looking for the best efficiency and comfort, why not go to a water-based heating system?
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Towson, MD, USA
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
  • billtwocase
    billtwocase Member Posts: 2,385
    Ditto what Frank said.
  • Taz1956
    Taz1956 Member Posts: 9
    That is what I told my wife. The duct work is bad, and I redesigned the downstairs to be open concept, few walls to run trunk up to second floor. Pipes can go anywhere. I installed a VHE Weil Mclain furnace in the house i built in 84, and it saved tons of money in gas bills.
  • Robert O'Brien
    Robert O'Brien Member Posts: 3,451
    edited January 2016
    Steamhead said:

    If you're looking for the best efficiency and comfort, why not go to a water-based heating system?

    Steamhead said:

    If you're looking for the best efficiency and comfort, why not go to a water-based heating system?

    To learn more about this professional, click here to visit their ad in Find A Contractor.