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Tankless heating system for home in New England

steve123_2
steve123_2 Member Posts: 13
Hello all,
I stumbled on this site while doing some research on a heating system that’s been installed in a house that I may buy and I was hoping to get some advice.

The house is in New England and the system, a tankless water system, was touted as a State-of-The-Art Gas Heating System.

I’m familiar with tankless systems for kitchen and bathroom water. But how practical is it to have a tankless system to heat a two story, 1200 SF house in New England ? They say it’s a single zone system.

I’ll attach a copy of the heating system.

Thanks in advance for any advice!

Comments

  • Paul S_3
    Paul S_3 Member Posts: 1,257
    its a condensing 90 plus combination boiler.....it heats both your domestic hot water and your heating system. its most definitely oversized for your heat load requirements.....and is more than likely not running at the stated efficiency.....is the system copper fin tube baseboard cast iron rads or in floor heating.? to me its really nothing state of art about it....have a professional look over it for you.....should work fine
    ASM Mechanical Company
    Located in Staten Island NY
    Servicing all 5 boroughs of NYC.
    347-692-4777
    [email protected]
    ASMHVACNYC.COM
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/asm-mechanical-company
  • steve123_2
    steve123_2 Member Posts: 13
    Paul S said:

    .....is the system copper fin tube baseboard cast iron rads or in floor heating.? to me its really nothing state of art about it....

    Hi Paul,
    Thanks for the reply. All the radiators were pulled out and replaced with copper fin. It was a complete rehab in 2009 according to the listing agent.
    I guess it’s a good thing that you consider it oversized. But why would you think that it wouldn’t be running at the stated efficiency?

    Thanks again for your input.
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 21,880
    It's possible they added enough fin tube to hear the home with low temperatures, maybe even 120 at design. So when it runs it could be in condensing mode. that could be the state of the art thinking?

    To supply adequate DHW the burner is probably oversized to the heating load even at design. This will lead to short inefficient cycling. What size combo is it?

    Unless the boiler has a very low turndown in the heating mode?

    The workmanship looks nice, if cycling is an issue a buffer tank could be added.

    That is the biggest challenge with combo units in a small home, the lopsided load profiles.
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
    Paul S_3
  • Gordy
    Gordy Member Posts: 9,546
    If it's not producing condensate it is not getting anywhere near its rated efficiency. Maybe mid to upper 80%. As @hot rod said maybe the emitters were over sized, or made over sized to get that return temp down below 130*.
  • kcopp
    kcopp Member Posts: 4,396
    I love the color of the exhaust piping.... That needs to be checked/ replaced.
    If the RE said its state of the art...good chance they are just talking it up. After all they are "selling".
    That boiler company is out of business. Parts may be hard to come by.
    You best bet is when /if you get a home inspection that you bring in a Qualified Hot water heating contractor to look at the system
  • steve123_2
    steve123_2 Member Posts: 13
    edited September 2016
    hot rod said:

    It's possible they added enough fin tube to hear the home with low temperatures, maybe even 120 at design...

    ... What size combo is it?...

    ...The workmanship looks nice, if cycling is an issue a buffer tank could be added...

    Thank you all for your input I sincerely appreciate you guys taking the time.

    Hot Rod, It looks like the baseboards go the entire length of one wall in each room (from photos). So it doesn't appear that there is “additional” fin tube in this situation.

    - I’m not sure what the size is. I tried to find it online by matching the photo to pictures on websites but as kcopp pointed out the the boiler company is out of business. (probably not a good sign)

    - Can you let me know if the tank in the picture below could be the buffer tank? Thanks Again

  • Paul48
    Paul48 Member Posts: 4,469
    Rubble stone and brick foundation 1920's ? That's an expansion tank....probably potable water, but can't be sure.
    kcoppZman
  • steve123_2
    steve123_2 Member Posts: 13
    edited September 2016
    kcopp said:


    I love the color of the exhaust piping....

    ...That boiler company is out of business. Parts may be hard to come by.

    Thanks kcopp. That’s an interesting observation about the color of the exhaust. The PVC on the right hand side of that photo which looks like a toilet drain has the same discoloration so hopefully it’s not caused by anything to do directly with operation. But it will be on the top of my list if I decide to move forward with an inspection.

    The fact that you think the boiler company is out of business is the most unsettling bit of news. Do you know what company?
    It appears that replacing a unit like this would cost as much as $2400 just for the boiler. I’m afraid to ask what labor cost would be. On the other hand the unit is supposedly only 7 years old.

    I want to thank everyone again for taking the time to contribute to this post.
    steve
  • Larry Weingarten
    Larry Weingarten Member Posts: 3,250
    Hello: Somewhat off topic, but have a look at that floor insulation. Vapor barrier seems to be on the wrong side and it's installed loosely so air can find ways around it. I'd remove it, air seal the flooring and reinstall the insulation if it can be made to fit snugly. Guess I'm a nitpicker! :p

    Yours, Larry

    ps. A blower door test will show you where air leaks in the shell of the house need to be addressed.
  • steve123_2
    steve123_2 Member Posts: 13
    Paul48 said:

    Rubble stone and brick foundation 1920's ? That's an expansion tank....probably potable water, but can't be sure.

    Hi Paul. it's actually 1905 according the listing.

    Thanks
  • kcopp
    kcopp Member Posts: 4,396
    The boiler is a Quietside. Got bought out by Samsung then dropped.
    LH pipe is the exhaust... that is yellow. It has seen high temps and has the chlorine leached out of it thus the yellow color. The RH side looks normal and is the intake.
    The drainge is yellow just because its very old PVC.

    We don't talk pricing here...that's why you need to ask a local pro.
  • steve123_2
    steve123_2 Member Posts: 13
    I just wanted to let you guys know that thanks to the feedback I got from the thread I did additional research and found out that those Quietside (and Coaire) Tankless systems were recalled due to overheating and fire hazard.

    A special thanks to kcopp for spotting the discolored exhaust pipe.

    Affected units sold between July 2008 and August 2014.
    https://www.consumeraffairs.com/news/coaire-and-quietside-brand-tankless-water-heaters-recalled-111414.html

    Supposedly there is a “fix” that the current distributor is sending out which i read about on this thread:
    http://www.dslreports.com/forum/r29685182-Plumbing-Fire-Hazard-Recall-Coaire-Quietside-Tankless-Gas-Water-Heaters

    But a company in Rhode island is recommending replacing the entire unit:
    http://www.theplumbercompany.com/coaire-and-quietside-water-heaters-recalled-for-fire-hazard.html

    Thanks again
  • Tim McElwain
    Tim McElwain Member Posts: 4,608
    Steve, I am in RI and I was just going to post when I read your last posting about the recall due to over heating. That is what caused discolorization and damage to the PVC/CPVC plastic pipe exhaust.

    When replacing insist of Polypropylene venting pipe.
  • steve123_2
    steve123_2 Member Posts: 13
    Thank you Tim !
  • Aaron_in_Maine
    Aaron_in_Maine Member Posts: 315
    I was told quiet side went out of business. And you couldn't get parts anymore. There is contractor up here who took a bath on those units ended up replacing a lot of them.
    Aaron Hamilton Heating
    ahheating@ yahoo.com
    (207)229-7717