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Indirect Heating/Tankless/or stick with a standard HWH

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majikmatt
majikmatt Member Posts: 4
edited March 2019 in Domestic Hot Water
Looking for some expertise/advice on my current situation. 10yo HWH is going out, 40Gal NG, I think it's a GE.
I'm debating about this: 125K BTU Weil-Mclain boiler from the 80's currently heats 3 zones of Radiant Baseboard heat. I want to add a zone and have it work the Indirect Heater as well. Am I wasting my time putting a lot of faith in a 40yo boiler or should I just look to replace the standard HWH with another. Family of 4, kids are getting older, could probably use a 50 or larger tank.

Just got a bid for $ to Navien tankless that would do both. I'm looking for efficiency but can't afford to break the bank... Any advice is appreciated.

Comments

  • Alan (California Radiant) Forbes
    Alan (California Radiant) Forbes Member Posts: 4,034
    edited March 2019
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    If it were me, I'd replace the 40 with a 50 and put the extra cash away in the college or retirement fund.

    The Weil-McLain has served you well and may just last another 40 years.

    I do a lot of repair work and see many homeowners disgruntled and angry with their new equipment when a blower goes out after 2 years or needs a new circuit board that's not covered under warranty. We are in a high tech era and I don't think the materials and methods are reliable yet.

    The old cast iron boilers (Hydrotherm, Crane, Weil-McLain, A.O. Smith, American Radiator, etc.) are still going strong.
    8.33 lbs./gal. x 60 min./hr. x 20°ΔT = 10,000 BTU's/hour

    Two btu per sq ft for degree difference for a slab
    SuperTech
  • HVACNUT
    HVACNUT Member Posts: 5,858
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    First, edit your post please. Theres no pricing discussed here.
    What model WM is there now?
    If it's running strong I think an indirect is the way to go.
    Even if you change out the boiler later you can pipe it into the new manifold. Unless of course it's a combi, which I'm not a fan of if they can be avoided.
    You could clean it all up with a 4 zone control board and put the water heater on priority if needed.
    delta TErin Holohan Haskell
  • mikeg2015
    mikeg2015 Member Posts: 1,194
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    Regular tank water heaters are junk now. 5-7 years and you toss them. Newer code and emission requirements are causing most of the issues and a race to the bottom for price and quality.

    Tankless will give probably 10 years reliably, then another 5-7 with a few parts being replaced assuming you descale them every 2-3 years at least, more with harder water.

    Indirect will cost the most, but be the most reliable. 15-20 years or more on a good stainless steel stank and coil. Boiler runs year round, which is usually better for them.
  • EBEBRATT-Ed
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 15,607
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    @majikmatt
    Just replace the HW tank with a 40 or 50. Get the 8 or 10 year tank. I usually get at least 10 years out of mine. They don't need much service and not many parts to go bad
  • Larry Weingarten
    Larry Weingarten Member Posts: 3,324
    edited March 2019
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    Hello, I'll add that even though tanks are not built like they used to be, you can still get many more years from them by doing maintenance, which at it's most basic, is replacing the anode periodically and checking the relief valve so the tank can't blow up. :o

    Yours, Larry
    Canucker
  • CrawlerHero
    CrawlerHero Member Posts: 6
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    Replace the boiler and water heater at the same time. When you change out the old boiler add an indirect then.
  • STEVEusaPA
    STEVEusaPA Member Posts: 6,505
    edited March 2019
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    Hello, I'll add that even though tanks are not built like they used to be, you can still get many more years from them by doing maintenance, which at it's most basic, is replacing the anode periodically and checking the relief valve so the tank can't blow up. :o

    Yours, Larry

    And he wrote an excellent book about it...
    http://www.waterheaterrescue.com/OrderPages/sales-through-XCart.html

    There was an error rendering this rich post.

    SuperTechLarry Weingarten