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# Baseboard: How Much Is Too Much?

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edited July 2018

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edited July 2018
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Bob Boan
You can choose to do what you want, but you cannot choose the consequences.
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Love it! Just replaced the baseboard on the first floor with WarmBoard (after doing a heat calculation). Replacing the cast-iron with a Weil-Mclain WM97-XPB. That is a WM97 boiler heating a 85 gallon in-direct then using a Taco XPB to supply heat to the under floor radiant heat. Replaced the over-sized slant-fin with low temp radiant (125-145). Slow and Steady wins the race!
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"The Long Island Heat Loss Calculation
Where I live, we have what we call The Long Island Heat Loss Calculation.
It works like this: If you have a 10-foot-long wall, it gets 10 feet of baseboard. If you have a 15-foot wall, it gets 15 feet of baseboard. If a 10-foot wall should meet a 15-foot wall in a corner (lots of corners around here), that room will get 25 feet of baseboard, regardless of the room's actual heat loss. We put baseboard everywhere except where there are doors because baseboard manufacturers don't make them with hinges. Physics has nothing to do with any of this. It's all about His Majesty, The Baseboard. Just can't get enough of it
."

Funny but true!

The best part is... that formula works out really well for mod-cons delivering 125F supply water at freezing outdoor temps.
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The Levittown Ranch , The down stairs front bed room with original radiant was the coldest room in the house . Once it switched to baseboard it ended with 22' of baseboard in an 10"x10" room ...

There was an error rendering this rich post.

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I swear I got a call once in the fall for not enough heat, a 1800's home in Madison, Ct, they had another contractor come in and convert the system to hot water from steam, I swear, they used the same pipes and put baseboard in the spaces that the radiators used to occupy so a grand living room had 3ft of baseboard, etc etc.

They fell a little short on btu output.
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My house had baseboard upstairs. Downstairs was radiant slab at grade. One zone, with no temperature mixing valves. To make matters worse, each of the two baseboard rooms had three feet of baseboard. Maybe that would have done it if they put in 185 degree water. But they did not dare to put that into the slab. So it was always cold up there.

When I replaced the boiler with a mod-con, I had the installers convert it to two zones, and replaced the 3-foot baseboards with 14 foot ones. Because the side with the windows was 14 feet wide. (Long Island Heat Loss calculation?) I put from 120F to 150F into those baseboards and in warm seasons, even 120F is too much.

The radiant zone gets 80F to 130F.

Design temperature around here is 14F, but the high supply temperatures are for when it gets down to 0F, which it does here sometimes.
• Member Posts: 1,184
edited August 2018
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GBart said:

I swear I got a call once in the fall for not enough heat, a 1800's home in Madison, Ct, they had another contractor come in and convert the system to hot water from steam, I swear, they used the same pipes and put baseboard in the spaces that the radiators used to occupy so a grand living room had 3ft of baseboard, etc etc.

They fell a little short on btu output.

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Reminds me of a supervisor I had 20 years ago if you could call him that. He was bound and determined to change out a radiator that developed a leak.

He was told more than once the mining shovel that had developed a coolant leak had a "MESABI" radiator that had individual cores that could be replaced one at a time with a simple tool and the the core replacement kit. His statement was "that may be but its being pulled anyway".
The repair kit which consisted of the individual finned core tube with 2 replacement gaskets and the tube removal tool was all that was needed.
Instead of listening he had the radiator removed and sent the radiator to a repair shop to be "repaired". The owner of the radiator shop told this "supervisor" that he has never seen a radiator like this after he ripped it out an replaced it with a standard radiator core that did not last very long after it was installed from what I remember. They had to replace it with a new MESABI radiator eventually.
SO they removed and discarded a \$10,000.00 radiator for the sake of expediency to get a new one from the local radiator repair shop in Elmira, New York. I just laughed to myself after this they spent almost \$40,000.00 that they did not have to spend and because a "supervisor" was not willing to listen to why they did not have to do this.
OH, they had replacement cores and gaskets on hand after that because they had two of these mining shovels that were purchased as used equipment from copper mine that closed.
This same supervisor was promoted to the head of the maintenance department after the previous one was transferred to another mine.

MESABI radiators are used world wide for many applications in cooling.
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Mumble mumble promote to a position where they can't cause any more harm mumble mumble
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Yup, a dear friend of mine in Holland that over saw cement transfer shipments from freighters to canal barges mentioned that every every time we promoted an engineer internally we always lost a good engineer in the process. Our mine managers were a bunch of beauties(all mining engineers by training) with no experience in business management or holders of bachelors of accounting or bachelors in business administration degrees.
It always reminds me of the time our big chief mining engineer was doing survey work using a box end wrench as a plumb bob; I got away quick before I had the chance to fall over from laughing so hard.
His boss told me that things would go a lot better for me around here if I joined the church too.