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steam boiler using too much gas

meh485
meh485 Member Posts: 1
So I have a super old steam boiler that used to run my radiators. within the past year I had a contractor remove the radiators and put in forced air. To help save money the contractor reconfigured my boiler to send hot water up to my air handler, and that's now how I have forced hot air in my house.
I've noticed extremely high gas usage on my gas meter compared to my second gas meter (i have 2 unit house with separate utilities) even when my heat is not on. So the question is does the boiler still consume gas when the thermostat turns the heat off? is there a way to configure it?

Comments

  • Fred
    Fred Member Posts: 8,518
    I have to assume the water is being maintained at a certain temperature using an aquastat or some other device? That would mean the boiler is probably running at times when there is no call for heat from the thermostat.
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 9,001
    Can you hear if the boiler is firing when your T-stat is off?
    What heats your household hot water?
    Turn the power switch on your boiler off and see if you run out of hot water in the shower. Or if the tenants run out.

    How is the other house heated?
  • JohnNY
    JohnNY Member Posts: 2,762
    The boiler can be configured (wired) to maintain a minimum temperature all the time or it can be made to fire up on demand only. I really dislike having a boiler maintain temperature for any reason, but it's usually the easier option and may very well be what you've got going on there.
    Contact John "JohnNY" Cataneo, Master Plumber
    in New York
    in New Jersey
    for Consulting Work
    or take his class.
  • You are probably stuck with a less efficient system, now that there are no sources of radiant heat, (radiators), which warm the objects in the room, instead of all the air, first, and then the people.
    In addition to that, the volume of water in your steam boiler, now used for hot water, is far greater than a correctly sized hot water boiler, and therefore needs more fuel to run.--NBC
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 17,177
    Shifting to forced air with hot water air handlers has almost certainly dropped your overall efficiency, causing you to use a good deal more fuel to maintain the same level of comfort. That type of system can work well in larger buildings, using hot water or, preferably, steam to heat remote air handlers, eliminating the need for big ductwork all over the place. In a residence, not so much.

    But it is what it is.

    You should also follow up the suggestions from the other folks, particularly on whether the boiler is being fired all the time to maintain a particular boiler temperature, or for domestic hot water use.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 14,863
    You've just discovered that forced air will never equal the comfort and efficiency of steam.
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting