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help deciding boiler brands

lpranger467lpranger467 Posts: 9Member
edited March 2018 in Gas Heating
Hello, I currently have an 18 yr old Utica MGB 100 (hot water) boiler and want to replace it. I've gotten quotes for Crown & Weil Mclain but I heard Crowns have been having some failures. How are the new Utica MGB's and what else should I consider. Thanks very much

Comments

  • bob eckbob eck Posts: 892Member
    The boiler you now have in is it an Gas cast iron boiler?
    Is the boiler leaking?
    Is the boiler venting into an chimney?
    What makes you want to change out an 18 year old boiler if it is not leaking?
  • lpranger467lpranger467 Posts: 9Member
    It is cast iron and is vented into the chimney and isnt leaking as far as I can tell. Its 18 yrs old and I travel a lot and recently the pilot started going out even though I had replaced the thermocouple 6 months ago. The last time it went out my wife vacuumed out the burner area and its been lit ever since. I'm more so worried that at 18 yrs old that its at (or near) the end of its service life and I dont want my wife dealing with it if I'm out of town.
  • ZmanZman Posts: 5,247Member
    I would recommend having the unit cleaned and inspected. A properly maintained cast iron boiler should last at least another 10 years. You could have the wearable control parts replaced if concerned about reliability.
    "If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough"
    Albert Einstein
  • lpranger467lpranger467 Posts: 9Member
    Thanks guys, I know that most reliability will come from a good install, I've had contractors suggest anywhere from 70,000-100,000 btu which is a bit confusing to me (variation). My house is a well insulated 1800 sq foot ranch near Philly. The house was previously a rental (I bought it 8 months ago) and I can tell you I know this unit was never serviced. It had 2 pumps on it (one was for a radiant heated bathroom which has since been demolished) so I would go to just 1 circulator. .
  • Paul PolletsPaul Pollets Posts: 3,210Member
    I'd change the standing pilot to spark ignition using a Y86 kit, clean the appliance thoroughly, charge the expansion tank and get a few more years out of it.
  • ZmanZman Posts: 5,247Member
    I would recommend checking the find a contractor section on this site. There should be some knowledgeable folks in your area.
    The boiler should be sized based on the heat loss of your house. With all the software available today, there is no excuse for guessing. Both the sizes suggested are likely too big for an 1,800 ' home.
    "If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough"
    Albert Einstein
  • lpranger467lpranger467 Posts: 9Member
    I had thought the 100,000 btu was a bit large. Its what I have now but I have insulated the house since I moved in. If I went with 70,000 do I run the risk of it not being big enough ?
  • ZmanZman Posts: 5,247Member
    Assuming your home has at least 4 walls, a roof and windows or doors on all openings, 70,000 is plenty.
    One way to weed out potential hacks is to ask them how they determine boiler size.
    "If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough"
    Albert Einstein
  • newagedawnnewagedawn Posts: 549Member
    i like peerless or buderus
    "The bitter taste of a poor install lasts far longer than the JOY of the lowest price"
  • nicholas bonham-carternicholas bonham-carter Posts: 7,919Member
    Is the present boiler making hot water for the showers, etc?
    If so, that may account for their oversizing, which is not necessary in most cases.
    Look at the Slantfin heatloss app, which is simple to use, and will enable you to double check the contractor, as far as sizing the boiler.—NBC
  • lpranger467lpranger467 Posts: 9Member
    My sub ended up recommending a 2 stage Lochinvar, I had never heard of them but he says theyre good units
  • ZmanZman Posts: 5,247Member
    Post the model if you like.
    My guess is that it a copper tube. Folks like them because they are lightweight and inexpensive.
    I wouldn't trade an 18 year old cast iron for one. Cast iron boilers are hard to break. Have a real pro evaluate it.
    "If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough"
    Albert Einstein
  • SuperTechSuperTech Posts: 938Member
    > @Zman said:
    > Post the model if you like.
    > My guess is that it a copper tube. Folks like them because they are lightweight and inexpensive.
    > I wouldn't trade an 18 year old cast iron for one. Cast iron boilers are hard to break. Have a real pro evaluate it.

    I agree 100%. A cast iron gas boiler will last forever if properly serviced. They are very reliable. A modulating condensing boiler will give you higher efficiency, but needs much more maintenance. They also contain model specific parts which are usually not stocked on service trucks. That sucks when you have no heat in the dead of winter. Most cast iron boilers can be repaired with universal parts.

    In my opinion reliability is superior to efficiency.
  • EBEBRATT-EdEBEBRATT-Ed Posts: 6,035Member
    @lpranger467 ,Fix what you have. You won't like the amount of service issues you may have with a new install.

    Nobody would recommend throwing out a n 18 year old CI boiler that's not leaking.

    What you have is likely more reliable than it's replacement
  • lpranger467lpranger467 Posts: 9Member
    Its a LCBN-90.
  • ZmanZman Posts: 5,247Member

    Its a LCBN-90.

    Yup, garden variety atmospheric fin tube. There is nothing wrong with it, just generally considered inferior to cast iron.
    "If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough"
    Albert Einstein
  • lpranger467lpranger467 Posts: 9Member
    Ok thanks, well its in now so I'll make the best of it. He said it would be more efficient.
  • lpranger467lpranger467 Posts: 9Member
    What sort of maintenance will be needed, unfortunately the comments on here about the cast iron unit came after I committed to them ordering my new one. I have plans to do yearly check ups regardless but just wonder if theres other things I need to watch for.
    SuperTech said:

    > @Zman said:

    > Post the model if you like.

    > My guess is that it a copper tube. Folks like them because they are lightweight and inexpensive.

    > I wouldn't trade an 18 year old cast iron for one. Cast iron boilers are hard to break. Have a real pro evaluate it.



    I agree 100%. A cast iron gas boiler will last forever if properly serviced. They are very reliable. A modulating condensing boiler will give you higher efficiency, but needs much more maintenance. They also contain model specific parts which are usually not stocked on service trucks. That sucks when you have no heat in the dead of winter. Most cast iron boilers can be repaired with universal parts.



    In my opinion reliability is superior to efficiency.

  • nicholas bonham-carternicholas bonham-carter Posts: 7,919Member
    The Lochinvar does have an outdoor reset capability, which is a plus, but needs annual maintenance to keep the heat exchanger clean.—NBC
  • lpranger467lpranger467 Posts: 9Member
    Thanks very much
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