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Does a hydronic heating system have to be a combi system?

My gas inspector told me they do not allow standalone hydronic heating systems. It must be a combination boiler that supplies domestic potable water as well as the circulating water/glycol for space heating. It can be just for potable water or a combi, but not hydronic alone. My boiler is just for hydronic with an option to add extra components for dual operation. The utility is threatening to shut off my gas. Does this sound right? Is anyone in this forum familiar with my situation? I have a Hydrosmart 120 boiler, has worked fine for 2 years. Am I really going to have to add all the extra components to make my system combi? The boiler is located at the back of my garage 100'+ away from my potable water. I only want the hydronic heat, not the domestic hot water. Thank you for any help.

Comments

  • ratio
    ratio Member Posts: 3,178
    Huh‽

    I don't even...

    Where do you live? Is it a government official you're talking to, or a utility worker?

    If there's any way to convince me to convert to a different fuel, that'd be it and cost be damned.

    1Matthias
  • GroundUp
    GroundUp Member Posts: 1,403
    Also curious on location... I think there was either a miscommunication, or this clown was on his first day. I'd love to hear his explanation. I wonder if maybe because the HydroSmart 120 is simply a rebadged Takagi water heater, maybe they require it to be heating DHW seeing as it's not a boiler? Thinking out loud...
  • Gordy
    Gordy Member Posts: 9,514
    edited June 2018
    Your inspector is misinformed from the way it sounds, or you may be misunderstanding the inspector, and or giving an improper description of your system to the board.

    Since the utility is threatening to shut off the gas supply I have to assume the latter. Depending on who initiated the utilities actions. Inspector? Or a separate incident by utility?

  • Gordy
    Gordy Member Posts: 9,514
    edited June 2018
    What is frowned upon is using a tank style water heater for dual purpose with out a heat exchanger. It's not healthy to mix heating system water with potable water, especially if the heating side has glycol. Plus a normal tank style water heater does not have the ASME rating for such. However there are many tank water heater manufacturers that have in their manuals a piping schematic for a hydro coil unit.
    SuperJ
  • Tim McElwain
    Tim McElwain Member Posts: 4,506
    It is probably the lack of a ASME rating that is the problem more than likely.
  • DanielFranklinHO
    DanielFranklinHO Member Posts: 10
    They do allow standalone hydronic boilers but the boilers must be CSA certified as boilers not water heaters. It appears my problem is that I bought an appliance which according to the sales brochure and the user manual is a dedicated hydronic space heating boiler but its CSA certification is only as a water heater. The inspector says that since the CSA approval is as a water heater, therefore it must be a combi to do hydronic. My problem is this appliance only does hydronic - the installation manual is strictly space heating. To make it a combi you have to add a whole additional panel with a heat exchanger for the potable water.
  • DanielFranklinHO
    DanielFranklinHO Member Posts: 10
    edited June 2018
    You can see the installation manual here.
    http://www.hydro-smart.com/assets/hs120-manual.pdf
    I am in Saskatchewan. I might have to buy a different boiler, but I bet if I replace it with a Trinity 57000 BTU which has the CSA boiler certification and compare the units there will be no significant difference internally. Might cost me $$$ because of a technicality.
  • ratio
    ratio Member Posts: 3,178
    Might be worth a call to the factory. If they're working on getting that model blessed by CSA you might be able to work backwards to your unit from that.
  • RomanP
    RomanP Member Posts: 102
    What type of heating system do you have? What’s your design supply temperature?
  • Gordy
    Gordy Member Posts: 9,514
    edited June 2018
    Interesting a CSA cert for domestic on a boiler that's setup to do space heating only.........with out an external HX it can't do domestic also. This is not a combi.

  • Gordy
    Gordy Member Posts: 9,514
    Buyer beware comes to mind for this model. The inspector is hanging his hat on certs. I hope he understands the animal.
  • GroundUp
    GroundUp Member Posts: 1,403
    I will reiterate that this unit is nothing more than a Takagi tankless water heater. I've been to HydroSmart's HQ twice (I drive by it every day) to discuss their falsely marketing these as a boiler when they are not, and they care not about certifying them as a boiler. HS is basically a company that takes other MFG's items and puts their own sticker on them in order to mark them up and turn a profit at Menards. If what your inspector wants is a CSA stamp, you will not get it on that unit. I have a whole lot of customers that wish to save a buck and buy all their parts from Menards, then expect me to install it. Most are very disappointed when I explain the money they just wasted. Don't get me wrong, those units do work but anywhere with a competent inspector is going to nix the idea real fast and for good reason. I'll put them in only as a backup for an outdoor wood burner if the HO absolutely insists, but nowhere else. Even with an external exchanger to make it perform as a combi, you still won't get the cert unfortunately.

    I must ask though, why is your inspector there now after this has been running for 2 years?
  • DanielFranklinHO
    DanielFranklinHO Member Posts: 10
    I see that the Trinity has an ASME stamp and the HS120 does not. I might have to put in a different boiler. Looks Like Hydrosmart is selling a boiler that does not have the ASME U stamp so technically its not a boiler. (but can you blame me for making the mistake when you see their literature?) Its been 2 years because the Inspector has been after me for over a year and I have been trying to resolve it with CSA and the vendor which is what took all the time. It has a CSA approval after all and I was hoping that would be the fix...guess not.