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2 pipe Steam converted to weather responsive hydronic.
Ok, so I haven't been on the wall in a really long time, maybe many years. But the kids always come home.......
So here is the issue.
I have a customer who has an apartment building 18,500 sq ft., 2 pipe steam. The old boiler had a few leaking sections last fall. So we did what I usually do, convert it to condensing hot water/weather responsive control. Done this many times, works well & saves energy. Everyone is happy......
The other day I looked at the building behind this one, for a different owner, same size building, built at the same time
early 1920s, this building has been owned by the same family for 60 years, much better shape and well cared for.
However, someone at some point took out the steam traps and put air vents at each radiator(2 pipe steam). This building is heated by 800,000 btu Weil Mclain boiler with tankless coil. The supply mains are well insulated, the returns
are not. The boiler is controlled by a weather responsive control.
My assumption is I'm gonna save this owner a bunch of money by converting his system to hot water.
I request a copy of his utility gas bills for the last 4 months to compare them with the gas bills of the building behind
that has been converted to hot water. To my shock and dismay........ the steam system with a tankless coil and no steam
traps consumed 14% less fuel than the same size building, same size condensing boilers, with converted cast Iron rads,
on a 1.6 reset curve with separate atmospheric gas water heaters.
Please remember I am looking at the actual bills, both buildings have replacement windows.
Ok everyone, why is the steam building costing less to operate?
Looking for a good answer.
Thank you in advance for anyone willing to take the time and step up to the plate.