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Energy Kinetics System 2000 new cost question

magisimomagisimo Posts: 4Member
edited October 28 in Oil Heating
Hi All,

I've been getting ready to replace my boiler and after spending WAY too much time researching have decided to go for the EK1 system to replace my 20 year old Weil-McLain WGO-3 unit. The Weil-McLain is still running, but probably nearing end-of-life and my oil bills are absolutely too high.

I reached out the to local installer here (who I believe is a Premier Dealer for EK) and was quoted almost $ for the system with a 60 gallon hot water heater. This seems....... high.

I do not need the 60 gallon heater and have asked for a quote with a 40 gallon and specified I want the matching EK water heater. My current system is a 6 zone circulator system (4 heat zones, 1 radiant, plus additional hot water zone). I moved into this house last year and it was way overbuilt (4 individual condensers and associated air handlers for 3 bedrooms and living room ~2,400 sq. ft., but that's another story).

Is this the going rate for the system now? There aren't too many other dealers in my area (Shelter Island, NY), so I may be stuck. I just wanted to know if this is in line or if i'm being gouged. The installer is a highly rated company, but I cannot believe the price on this.

Also, is worth it to upgrade to the Resolute? What should the price increase be roughly?

Thanks!

Comments

  • HVACNUTHVACNUT Posts: 1,519Member
    We do not discuss pricing here, ever.
  • magisimomagisimo Posts: 4Member
    Ok, sorry, I did not realize. I'm not looking for specifics, I just didn't think it was THAT expensive. I can't seem to find anyone mention pricing with the exception of posts on other forums from 8+ years ago so there is just no info to help give guidance on this.

    Can I ask if people on the eastern end of LI have dealers that they've used that they are happy with?

  • HVACNUTHVACNUT Posts: 1,519Member
    edited October 27
    The Energy Manager will accept 4 heat zones + the water heater so you'll need an add on board which is of course more $.
    You were quoted the 60 gallon tank because with the radiant, the tank will transfer through a separate plate HX for the radiant zone so that's additional $ for parts and labor.
    Plus round trip south tickets aren't exactly cheap.
    And if they miss the last ferry...
  • STEVEusaPASTEVEusaPA Posts: 2,224Member
    It's hard to say, unless you have a comparing quotes detailing the job.
    For starters, the logistics (access) play a big part. Things like:
    -Does the old boiler have to be broken apart, taken out in sections (probably not for a GO-3).
    -Walk out basement, or shore up the steps, protect everything and take it thru the house.
    -How much of the boiler piping/and components have to be replaced and/or all they all getting replaced/updated.
    Ask the contractor to explain the cost. You probably won't get a full breakdown, but at least you should get some answers about any special circumstances.

    Keep in mind if your original boiler shows no signs of impending doom, and is getting probably around 80+% efficiency, there's not a gigantic fuel savings in your future.

    More important would be to evaluate the entire system, make sure your delivering all the btu's to where they are needed/suppose to go.

    Tightening your building envelope will give you a better payback.
    steve
  • magisimomagisimo Posts: 4Member
    edited October 27
    Yes, I realize that unfortunately due to the over-design of my system, there may be additional costs. I'm not in a giant house, but for some reason the previous owner decided that every room should have its own completely separate system. I don't use the radiant (it was done for the bathroom floors only), and myself and wife only occupy one bedroom. The other two are used occasionally. A simpler setup would be much better-suited...

    It has made the maintenance and replacement of the HVAC system much more expensive than it really needs to be.

    I've been presented with the expensive of replacing four 20-year old condensers, four air handlers, and this boiler coming up at roughly the same time so I trying to keep things as honest as possible as it is quickly becoming unaffordable. I'll be doing it piece by piece, so any chance for reducing unnecessary costs is important. I realize my location adds costs, etc.. Also, no stairs or other impediments. Direct access through the garage. I just thought the quote was quite high.

    The house has cedar shingle roof that leaks like a sieve. There's very little insulation for it. My next project will be replacing that with a traditional asphalt roof and adding spray foam to the underside. Maybe I should prioritize that over the boiler replacement. My guess is the roof has 3-5 years left, but I'm sure the money I'd save on oil would dictate replacing ASAP.

    Last winter was my first winter in this house and the oil bill was just ridiculous. I'm looking into every way to increase the efficiency and reduce heat loss to try and improve the situation.

    As you said, my current boiler is not having any problems. I just replaced the controller with a HydroStat 3250 which I believe will reduce consumption vs. the original on/off unit. I had a local HVAC technician here today to check my wiring, and all seemed good. I had asked about wiring an outdoor reset for it, but he indicated that it wasn't necessary since the built-in logic of the HydroStat was already doing the job by with its Economy settings. From what I've read I'm not sure that's true... I'm planning on wiring the outdoor reset sensor myself next week to see how that adjusts the high-limit switch.
  • HVACNUTHVACNUT Posts: 1,519Member
    edited October 27
    A lot of the homes out there are doing spray foam, especially on new construction.
    I would normally agree with @STEVEusaPA but not when it comes to the EK. I never stop being wowed by their efficiency and cleanliness.

    The Resolute is awesome as well, but dont know if its cost effective vs. the Frontier as far as payback.
  • EBEBRATT-Ed_9EBEBRATT-Ed_9 Posts: 4,364Member
    Have you had the old boiler serviced and tuned? If it's not leaking and the efficiency is decent I would upgrade windows, doors and insulation first. That could possibly push you into a smaller boiler. Find out why your oil bill is so high. Boiler eneficient, poor insulation and windows, leaking oil tank controls not properly set, cold basement and no pipe insulation etc etc
  • Robert O'BrienRobert O'Brien Posts: 3,036Member
    How big is radiant zone?
    To learn more about this professional, click here to visit their ad in Find A Contractor.
  • magisimomagisimo Posts: 4Member
    Hi All. Thanks for the questions and suggestions. My questions in italics below.

    - So the old boiler has been serviced regularly. I do not know if it has been tuned. All maintenance tags indicate normal servicing of filters, replacement of occasional valves/expansion tank. I am having the winter service done this weekend. Is there something I should specifically ask my HVAC contractor to do?
    - Windows and doors are all Anderson 400 double-pane.
    - Attic and roof space is definitely bad. Gets almost as cold as the outside during the winter. I know this needs to be addressed ASAP.
    - The basement space is on the colder side, but there are vents on some of the ducts allowing hot air to heat some of the basement space. I closed off most of these last year and the basement remains in the 40-50 range during the winter.
    - The radiant zone consists of the three bathrooms totaling roughly 250 sq. ft. I have kept this turned off as the bathrooms also have heating vents that have hot air coming through when the bedrooms call for heat.
    - The hot water heater is MASSIVELY oversized a t 100 gallons. I was holding off on replacing to match the EK system with their 40 gallon tank.
    - I was told this past Saturday that using the Outdoor Reset function of my HydroLevel was not necessary. Was that information incorrect? I can't see how it would hurt hooking it up to control the high limit of the boiler. From everything I've read, the Economy settings on the controller only really deal with the internal temperature differential on the unit and not the high-limit itself.

    FYI, the heating system itself is boiler created hot water feeding to the four air handlers scattered throughout the basement (plus indirect hot water heater) which then force air up through the ductwork. Ductwork and pipes seem insulated, but a majority is in finished basement drywall and cannot be inspected easily.
  • GBartGBart Posts: 591Member
    You have to understand something, the Weil McLain WGO is a pretty good boiler that could go 40 years. Some parts will no doubt need to be replaced over time.

    The System 2000 will probably save 20-30% of the fuel currently used. So take your yearly fuel cost, divide by .25 and that will be your annual savings. If you have been using outdoor reset you may be actually closer to 20% because that made your WM that much more efficient.

    Payback is not going to be overnight. You have to factor the cost of installation and divide that by annual savings to find out how many years it will take to break even. THEN you start saving.
  • BennyVBennyV Posts: 29Member
    If your existing boiler is functional, I'd keep it, and look at spending the dough on envelope upgrades first, heat pumps second, and solar third. Heat pumps are tied to the price of regulated electricity, not the global oil market, and over time as the power grid diversifies, the price gets more stable, not less. Oil could get less stable over time depending on global geopolitics and markets. Energy Kinetics burns oil more efficiently, but at the end of the day, you're still burning oil.

    Carrier Greenspeed is amazingly efficient, and can be configured in a hydro air configuration so that it runs on heat pump 90% of the time or more, and can tap the boiler as aux heat a handful of days a year when it's near design conditions. In Connecticut, the Carrier Greenspeed is roughly the equivalent of buying oil at $1.50-$1.75/gallon average over the course of the season, and that's with relatively very high electricity prices.

    With some solar and net metering, now you're generating electric credits for heat pumps that can be used months later (usually up to a year- check with your local utility) that are fixed in cost for the 20- to 30-year life of the solar panels. If you have the right space for it, a heat pump water heater could also be a good investment, although then you have to shut down the boiler in the summer which can be problematic.
  • tankguytankguy Posts: 1Member
    An Energy Kinetics boiler and water heater will give lots of hot water, quiet operation, and a very good payback on this kind of upgrade. Make sure you use zone valves with end switches (4-wire zone valves) with air handlers so the system will be properly controlled and run the thermal purge or energy recovery for great fuel savings.

    If you decide to improve the building insulation and envelope, Energy Kinetics boilers are an especially good fit as there is no oversizing penalty so you’ll maintain high efficiency and performance (other boilers run less efficiently with smaller loads).

    For reference, recent average electric rates in NY are $0.19/kWh, which is the equivalent of about $7.71 per gallon of fuel oil, making whole house heat pumps and heat pump water heaters a potentially expensive option. Some comparisons are drawn with national electric prices of about $0.13/kWh, New York costs 46% more in this example.
  • JayMcCayJayMcCay Posts: 2Member
    It’s good to see this discussion, please let me know if I can help with any specifics and feel free to call me. Here are some general guidelines for our boiler applications:

    System 2000 Frontier: A great value boiler, with very high efficiency, whisper quiet operation, and nearly endless hot water.
    90+ Resolute: Same as System 2000, the best choice for sidewall vent and cost effective chimney relining applications with polypropylene (plastic venting). About 4% more efficient than System 2000.
    Ascent Combi: An ideal upgrade from tankless coil boilers, with a competitive cost. Not as efficient as System 2000, but more hot water and higher efficiency than tankless coil boilers. Also recommended where there is no hot water tank and fewer than 2 heating zones.

    The Ascent Combi is not a good match as you have many zone and will really see the savings with the Energy Manager control; there is not an Energy Manager on the Ascent Combi. I did mention the Accel CS as it is for natural gas and propane applications; it has our Condensing Energy Manager and is up to 10% more efficient than System 2000.

    Jay McCay
    Energy Kinetics
    National Sales Manager
    (908) 328-7154
  • BennyVBennyV Posts: 29Member
    tankguy said:

    If you decide to improve the building insulation and envelope, Energy Kinetics boilers are an especially good fit as there is no oversizing penalty so you’ll maintain high efficiency and performance (other boilers run less efficiently with smaller loads).

    For reference, recent average electric rates in NY are $0.19/kWh, which is the equivalent of about $7.71 per gallon of fuel oil, making whole house heat pumps and heat pump water heaters a potentially expensive option. Some comparisons are drawn with national electric prices of about $0.13/kWh, New York costs 46% more in this example.

    No oversizing? That's a pretty big claim for a low-mass non-modulating boiler....

    WHOA... that's very misleading to just post the per BTU cost of electricity without the COP of the heat pumps involved. Carrier Greenspeed has a COP of 3.81, while most current oil boilers have a maximum theoretical efficiency of 87% or 0.87, and that doesn't even include the cost of all the electricity required to run the burner, pumps, and air handlers, versus the COP for the heat pump that includes everything. The OP's oil boiler is probably averaging 70% overall efficiency burning oil at $2.71 a gallon.

    To compare apples to apples, let's compare an 85% oil boiler to Carrier Greenspeed with oil at $2.71/gallon and electricity at $0.19/kwh. These numbers don't include the extra electricity that oil requires, nor does it account for lower overall oil system efficiency, and it's using a very good price for oil, so oil is getting an unfair advantage. Given that, oil costs $23.02 to deliver a million BTU while the heat pump does it for $14.62. Factor in everything else plus the price volatility of oil, and it's pretty obvious that oil is not economically viable as a heating fuel.

    Heat pump water heaters typically average a COP of about 3, or $18.56 per million BTU minus the cost to run a dehumidifier in the summer, since the HPWH will do that essentially for free plus a bit of extra heat if your basement is finished/heated to make up for heat removed during the coldest part of the year.
  • GBartGBart Posts: 591Member
    edited November 7
    System 2000 is well over 90% efficient, you are using AFUE for your 87%

    see here -- https://energykinetics.com/afue/
  • GBartGBart Posts: 591Member
    edited November 7
    from their site--- The U.S. Department of Energy’s Brookhaven National Laboratory confirms: Energy Guide (AFUE) ratings miss significant areas of energy loss.
    Savings with System 2000 are much greater than with comparably rated heat and hot water systems. System 2000 had the highest annual efficiency in the study – even better than the 95% AFUE boiler tested.

    https://energykinetics.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/afueSummaryReport.pdf

    and regarding heat pumps you have to factor in the High cost of electricity, in some areas like most of Ct it is extremely high, highest in the nation I believe, so without solar PV heat pumps may equal cost
  • HVACNUTHVACNUT Posts: 1,519Member
    The OP was asking about an EK. Where did this Carrier heat pump stuff come from?
    The apples to apples is applesauce.
  • BennyVBennyV Posts: 29Member
    GBart said:

    System 2000 is well over 90% efficient, you are using AFUE for your 87%

    see here -- https://energykinetics.com/afue/

    They claim the EK1F is about 85% real efficiency, the EK1R is about 89% real efficiency, and Buderus (which they call "3-Pass") is about 77% real efficiency, while traditional CI oil boilers are between 48% and 68% depending on configuration. FWIW.

    https://energykinetics.com/system2000-quietest-most-efficient-boiler/
    GBart said:

    and regarding heat pumps you have to factor in the High cost of electricity, in some areas like most of Ct it is extremely high, highest in the nation I believe, so without solar PV heat pumps may equal cost

    With Carrier Greenspeed, oil would have to be below $1.75 per gallon to be competitive, even without factoring in the electricity use of the oil system. Right now it's $2.71 in CT on cashheatingoil.com.
  • tankguy1tankguy1 Posts: 3Member
    The rated efficiency does not appear to align closely with field performance in cold climate heat pumps. Here’s a study (similar to many others) that shows for high efficiency cold climate heat pumps, the winter (temperatures below 35F) heating coefficient of performance (COP) ranges from 1.0 to 2.5, with lower efficiency at lower temperatures. This study references several minisplits where duct losses are not part of the equation, so possibly better performance than ducted systems with all else being equal.

    https://www.nrel.gov/docs/fy15osti/63913.pdf

    Even with an exceptional COP of 2.5, $7.71 electric translates to $3.08/gallon equivalent, and COP of 1 is of course $7.71 per gallon equivalent.
  • HVACNUTHVACNUT Posts: 1,519Member
    @BennyV
    Sounds a lot like a sales pitch.
  • BennyVBennyV Posts: 29Member
    HVACNUT said:

    @BennyV

    Sounds a lot like a sales pitch.

    For which system? :smiley:
    tankguy1 said:

    Even with an exceptional COP of 2.5, $7.71 electric translates to $3.08/gallon equivalent, and COP of 1 is of course $7.71 per gallon equivalent.

    Exceptional? Is that along with the exceptional efficiency of 60% for an oil boiler? Those numbers are ridiculous. Carrier Greenspeed is rated at a COP of 3.81, the Mitsubishi H2i Hyper heat minisplits are rated at 3.22, and of course they have no duct loss in most configurations, as well as better zone control and efficiency. Further, oil boilers don't modulate, whereas heat pumps do, so they can achieve much higher efficiencies when running at partial load during shoulder season.

    The OP is in Long Island. It's between the mid-20's and the 50's a LOT there, and that's where Greenspeed's peak efficiency is. It does drop off below the mid-20's, and really drops off in the teens. With a hybrid system, you can optimize based on the price of oil. If it's $2/gallon, switch over at 20 degrees, if it's $4/gallon, run those heat pumps until they can't meet the load, and then let them cycle between heat pump and oil.
  • HVACNUTHVACNUT Posts: 1,519Member
    You'll never catch me on Long Island (yes, we're ON Long Island, not IN. See Seinfelds new stand up) with a heat pump as my sole heat source.
    Especially if I'm near the water.
    I'm sure the Carrier is a fine product but theres some applications where it's not feasible. And with L.I. electric rates, I dont want those electric coils coming on unless its in defrost.
  • tankguy1tankguy1 Posts: 3Member
    I should have made that more clear. Those COPs are actual field performance. The rated heating COP was much higher at 4.11.
  • BennyVBennyV Posts: 29Member
    HVACNUT said:

    You'll never catch me on Long Island (yes, we're ON Long Island, not IN. See Seinfelds new stand up) with a heat pump as my sole heat source.

    Especially if I'm near the water.

    I'm sure the Carrier is a fine product but theres some applications where it's not feasible. And with L.I. electric rates, I dont want those electric coils coming on unless its in defrost.

    I wouldn't want electric strip heat backup on LI either. That's why I suggested Carrier Greenspeed with hydronic backup, with the hydronic backup connected to the oil boiler. The heat pump is not the sole source in that setup, so if oil is $2/gallon, you can set a crossover point, if it's $3/gallon or higher, you can run the heat pumps until they won't run anymore, and then cycle oil to make up the difference. They do lose capacity and quite a bit of efficiency when it gets colder. They are more efficient than the Mitsubishi heat pumps, but the Mitsubishis drop down to a COP of 1.7 either at freezing or -13F, even though their seasonal average COP is 3.22, versus 3.81 for the Carrier Greenspeed.
    tankguy1 said:

    I should have made that more clear. Those COPs are actual field performance. The rated heating COP was much higher at 4.11.

    1. Those are Mitsubishi and Fujitsu units, not Carrier Greenspeed.
    2. Those numbers are ridiculous. What did they do to those poor things to drive their performance down so much? They should be hitting a COP of 4-5 at higher outdoor temperatures, and have been proven to be extremely efficient over and over again in real world performance. The Site 4 numbers were more realistic, but still suspicious, as they should bottom out at 1.7, and the average should be a bit higher, unless those older models are dramatically less efficient than the models they are selling today.
  • SuperTechSuperTech Posts: 419Member
    edited November 14
    > @HVACNUT said:
    > You'll never catch me on Long Island (yes, we're ON Long Island, not IN. See Seinfelds new stand up) with a heat pump as my sole heat source.
    > Especially if I'm near the water.
    > I'm sure the Carrier is a fine product but theres some applications where it's not feasible. And with L.I. electric rates, I dont want those electric coils coming on unless its in defrost.

    I'm in NY and I would love a greenspeed, it's the best heat pump I've seen, but give me an EK-1 and some cast iron radiatiors or radiant flooring on L.I near the water.

    And that's considering the fact that the electric strip heaters almost never come on on those heat pumps.

    I can say with certainty that a good boiler is more reliable than a Greenspeed and probably has double the lifespan

    Good hydronic boiler plus high water mass and outdoor reset delivers a level of comfort that is unmatched by forced air, it's the science behind the technology of hydronics that makes it superior.
  • GBartGBart Posts: 591Member
    I've seen a few "cottages" on the shore in Ct that had warm air and boiler heat, they had the warm air to bring the temp up fast when coming in from NY and the boiler to maintain.......like the man said " speed is just a question of money...how fast do you want to go?"


    and it's all 6 of one half a dozen of the other, if you're on the gas line go gas, if you're out in the boonies go oil, if electric is really cheap where you are go ground source or heat pump
  • tankguy1tankguy1 Posts: 3Member
    For reference, there are many Department of Energy national lab studies on cold climate heat pumps that show the field heating COP numbers and performance is much lower than the published numbers. Maybe that’s why the Department of Energy is revising the standard rating method for heat pumps and mini-splits?
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