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Selling / Removing steam boiler and radiators

DswigfieldDswigfield Member Posts: 4
I've got an oil two-pipe steam system which works fine, but cost too much to operate. I've had ductless HVAC installed, and no longer need the radiators, boiler, or oil tank.

What's the best way to dispose of these? I've called local HVAC places, but nobody knows anyone in the area who restores / re-sells these components.

The only option I've found so far is to take them to the scrap metal recycler for $0.06/lb, but that seems like a waste.

I'm located in Frederick, MD. Thanks!

Comments

  • HVACNUTHVACNUT Member Posts: 2,113
    edited May 30
    Oh, for shame. Prepare to get bombarded by the steam pros here.
    That being said, ductless systems are fine but chances are they won't provide sufficient heat during the colder days. Its always a good idea to have a supplemental back up for when the ductless cant keep up.
    Dont say I didn't warm you.
    What models burner and boiler?
    As for dismantling and hauling away. Try the pennysaver. But you'll be paying them. And removing a cast iron oil fired boiler, oil tank (legally) wont be easy and will be messy if not done by pros who do it daily when replacing with a new system.
  • SteamheadSteamhead Member Posts: 12,923
    Keep the steam. When those ductless heat pumps break down- which they will- you will still need heat.

    Some of our customers have saved 1/3 of their fuel consumption after we've worked on their systems.

    And we do come to Frederick.
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    "Reducing our country's energy consumption, one system at a time"
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Baltimore, MD (USA) and consulting anywhere.
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/all-steamed-up-inc
  • SeanBeansSeanBeans Member Posts: 301
    I told my wife if I hit the lotto and was filthy rich; I would just repair and replace steam systems for free.
  • Jamie HallJamie Hall Member Posts: 10,377
    Well, as others have said -- and doubtless will say -- removing the steam system is/was a mistake. You won't save any energy -- a BTU is a BTU, no matter where it comes from -- and you probably won't save enough money to pay for the new system. And you won't be as comfortable.

    However, it's your call.

    There are, in some areas, people who will accept old radiators. Once in a while you will find people who will pay over scrap value for them, if you remove them and deliver them yourself. Mostly it's scrap value, if you can get them to the scrap yard.

    The piping will be scrap value. Again, you have to remove it yourself and get it to the yard. If there is asbestos insulation on it, you'll have to get that professionally remediated before you do the tear out.

    If the boiler is newish -- say five years old -- you might be able to find someone to buy it. Again, there's the cost of removing it, which will be your puppy.

    The oil tank... you must get a licensed professional to remove that and provide you with certification that it has been removed and any contamination remediated, and that the tank was disposed of correctly. That is not a do it yourself job.
    Jamie



    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England.



    Hoffman Equipped System (all original except boiler), Weil-Mclain 580, 2.75 gph Carlin, Vapourstat 0.5 -- 6.0 ounces per square inch
  • SteamheadSteamhead Member Posts: 12,923
    All in all, a huge expense @Dswigfield

    We replaced a steam boiler a couple winters ago that failed during a serious cold spell- highs in the low 20s, lows in single digits. The house also had ductless A/C- heat pump units, and they could not keep the place above 55° on their own. I would not count on your units doing any better. Keep the steam.
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    "Reducing our country's energy consumption, one system at a time"
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Baltimore, MD (USA) and consulting anywhere.
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/all-steamed-up-inc
  • Intplm.Intplm. Member Posts: 732
    @Dswigfield try the find a contractor section on this sight.
    The ECORAD company
    They are in Rocky Hill Ct. 855-632-6723
    They might be interested.
  • GrallertGrallert Member Posts: 320
    Post some pictures of the radiators. Some radiators are quite beautiful and of some value. If they can be converted to hot water than even more desirable. Best of luck.
  • mikeg2015mikeg2015 Member Posts: 785
    ALL of our Mini splits require backup heat under 0-10F unless it’s a commercial space, upstairs only system, or Massively oversized.

    Most of these installations still have an electric radiant ceilings, or baseboard installed as a backup.
  • pecmsgpecmsg Member Posts: 718
    Any heat pump. Mini or central needs a back up source of heat. Straight elec, hydronic or Steam.
    On day that mini will fail, hope its not in the middle of a winter storm.
  • DswigfieldDswigfield Member Posts: 4
    edited June 1
    Thanks everyone, I knew that was the feedback I'd get.

    We had the ductless installed last fall and used them all winter to make sure they would keep up. They're two multi-zone units rated at 21.5 SEER. They had no problem keeping up in the winter. The electricity cost us about 1/4 of what we were paying for oil. I did tons of research. If natural gas were available, I'd have gone with that.

    Besides, we needed AC anyway. I've got a fireplace and space heater for backup, plus the ductless it two separate systems, which provides some redundancy.

    There's nothing decorative about these radiators, so it sounds like they're not worth trying to sell, or even give away. I'll probably just take them to the scrap yard.

    @Intplm. I'll look up ECORAD. Thanks for the tip.
    IMG_20190601_133346.jpg
    3024 x 4032 - 3M
    IMG_20190529_161520.jpg
    3024 x 4032 - 4M
  • KC_JonesKC_Jones Member Posts: 4,108
    And you have 2 pipe...I’m jealous.

    Of course someone threw vents on it incorrectly.
    2014 Weil Mclain EG-40
    EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Boiler Control
    Boiler pictures updated 2/21/15
    https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10202744301871904.1073741828.1330391881&type=1&l=c34ad6ee78
  • SteamheadSteamhead Member Posts: 12,923
    Aha- a tankless coil. That's the least efficient way of making hot faucet water there ever was. No wonder you're using a lot of oil.

    And if you've been getting the typical oil company "service", that boiler is probably quite dirty inside, further reducing efficiency.
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    "Reducing our country's energy consumption, one system at a time"
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Baltimore, MD (USA) and consulting anywhere.
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/all-steamed-up-inc
  • DswigfieldDswigfield Member Posts: 4
    edited June 1
    > @Steamhead said:
    > Aha- a tankless coil. That's the least efficient way of making hot faucet water there ever was. No wonder you're using a lot of oil.
    >
    > And if you've been getting the typical oil company "service", that boiler is probably quite dirty inside, further reducing efficiency.

    I'm sure you're right on both counts.

    I always assumed that coil just pre-heats water on it's way into the electric water heater, and doesn't trigger the boiler to run. So I thought it wasn't impacting oil consumption much, and was intended to reduce electric costs a bit. (Plus we never ran out of hot water in the winter). But if that were the case, would it have a thermostat?
  • GordoGordo Member Posts: 665
    Is the barometric draft regulator on your boiler closed off for a good reason?
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    "Reducing our country's energy consumption, one system at a time"
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Baltimore, MD (USA) and consulting anywhere.
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/all-steamed-up-inc
  • DswigfieldDswigfield Member Posts: 4
    edited June 1
    > @Gordo said:
    > Is the barometric draft regulator on your boiler closed off for a good reason?

    I did that when I turned the system off. It was flapping on windy days, and we were doing an air sealing/insulation energy audit.

    If I were keeping the system, I'd probably duct it and the burner to draw air from the outside rather than from my basement.
  • HVACNUTHVACNUT Member Posts: 2,113
    edited June 2
    It's a shame you're going to lose the comfort of steam heat. With the energy audit, did they measure EDR for what's actually needed? Because that looks like a pretty big boiler. And is that an F15 Riello burner? A boiler sized too large and using the tankless coil (the thermostat/aquastat is mounted to the coil plate) will greatly increase your fuel consumption.
    It gets pretty dry in the winter with forced air heat. Any plans on installing a whole house humidifier? I love rubbing my feet on carpet and shocking my wife as much as the next guy, but it gets old real quick. And a bloody nose from 20% RH just isn't fun for anybody.
  • GrallertGrallert Member Posts: 320
    The good thing about those radiators, the thing that would make them desirable to a larger group of people is they can be converted to use circulating water as a heating medium. If you were in western mass I'd come get'em
  • SlamDunkSlamDunk Member Posts: 526
    edited June 3
    Before you rip it out, consider that a properly restored and maintained steam system is an awesome thing to have during cold snaps. Even if you only run it for two to three weeks per winter, the heat is unsurpassed by any other heating system.

    I needed AC so I put in central air with a furnace. And I use both regularly but when temps fall below 32, I turn on the boiler. Steam is the only way to go.

    My wife didn't like the "ugly" radiators. They took up space. the system was noisy but I restored the system any way. It doesn't cost anymore than the furnace to operate, is quieter than forced air and my wife is grateful we kept it.

    My neighbors wish they kept theirs once they saw what ours can do. To put one back in would cost several tens of thousands of dollars.

    Plus, you're lucky...You have @Steamhead in your back yard. You should give him a call.
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