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Looking for new LP gas boiler recommendations to replace my Buderus GB142/30

Paul WolfPaul Wolf Member Posts: 28
Well, you've probably seen my other posts regarding my issue with my LP fired 2007 Buderus GB142. Short story is, ongoing issues with initial ignition. Usually 1-6 attempts to initially light (6A, 6L), usually when boiler is cold.  In the last 3 years it will occasionally go out (6L) mid cycle and then relight. I reached the end of my abilities and equipment and called a tech in.  Actually 7 of them before the 7th one found the issue (with the mid cycle (6L).  He did more Dxing than any of the others.  Cracked Hx. I did one under warranty 5 years ago. I'm not going through that again. 

Now to the real question. I am seeking quotes for a new boiler installation from local HVAC firms.  As you can imagine I'm pretty soured on Buderus (Bosch) at this point. For MANY reasons not just the above. Not that I can't be convinced, but it would have to be compelling.

I expect each company will (they should) do a heat loss analysis of their own. Right now my GB-142/30 suffices for my house and indirectly fired hot water Superstore.  I am not interested in exact models but more interested in brands/company reputations and why I should buy THIS brand or THAT brand.  

What am I looking for ? (Probably in this order)

1. Reliability/dependability.
2. Longevity.
3. Ease of maintenance and service.
4. Ease of availability and cost of replacement parts.
5. To some degree efficiency


I know each vendor will have their "go to" brand and I will certainly consider them (with good rationale).  What would YOU choose? 

Thanks...

Comments

  • EdTheHeaterManEdTheHeaterMan Member Posts: 630
    edited July 23
    see if this is available in your area
    https://www.velocityboilerworks.com/product/phantom/
    company is based in Philadelphia Pa
    They have great support and I have had great success with the product over the last 20+ years. BUT you should use what the installing contractor is more comfortable installing and maintaining.
  • Paul WolfPaul Wolf Member Posts: 28
    Ed, Thanks for the reply. I'll check them out.

    After sleeping on it for a night, I am really not sure WHAT I am looking for. I am torn. I am a bit soured on over engineered, super high technology based on my GB142 experience over the past 13 years. I'm not afraid of it, I'm quite technically savvy. I'm just soured on it because of reliability, parts availability and cost and quite frankly, (until this most recent tech) even the several folks I've hired to work on it didn't know the unit as well as I did.

    We don't use THAT much energy to begin with. Heat and hot water for the GB142 is around $1200-$1500 per year. I am leaning toward "simple" (which should indicate reliable, dependable, easy to service & maintain, find and replace parts) like a basic, floor standing, chimney vented model with little or no frills and not necessarily condensing or high efficiency. I standard "chunk of cast iron" is the image I conjure up in my mind at this time.

    Or perhaps something else with compelling characteristics and features to sway me and ease my mind.

    With my GB 142, for a couple of winters we couldn't take trips for fear of the boiler locking out. In the last two years I have added a video camera and remote reboot device, so that when it DOES lock out, I get a text message, and I can look at the video AND reboot the boiler. This is no way to live. I need something that I can have installed and forget about.

    <<<BUT you should use what the installing contractor is more comfortable installing and maintaining.>>>

    With my DIY boiler days now behind me, this is great advice and I plan to heed it.

    Thanks Ed.
  • IronmanIronman Member Posts: 5,680
    We’ve had very good success with the HTP UFT fire tube.

    Again, the installer is 95% of the equation.

    Where are you located?
    Bob Boan


    You can choose to do what you want, but you cannot choose the consequences.
  • Paul WolfPaul Wolf Member Posts: 28
    Thanks Bob. I am in NH. And yes, Re: installer. We agree !!
  • kcoppkcopp Member Posts: 3,513
    Where in NH? Seacoast? Central? Up North?
  • ZmanZman Member Posts: 5,870
    How will this new boiler be vented? Combustion air? It may be easier to go with high efficiency because of existing venting.
    Don't let your experience with the GB sour you on high efficiency, the Buderus is one of the more high maintenance, trouble prone models.

    Kcopp is in you general area and will have good pulse on which brands are well supported in NH.
    "If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough"
    Albert Einstein
  • Paul WolfPaul Wolf Member Posts: 28
    ZMann, thank you for taking the tine to reply. I appreciate your comment on the GB vs high efficiency. I am keeping an open mind at this point. I have my choice of venting. The existing PVC from the GB, or three feet to the right and 4 feet above the floor, the previously used 6" thimble to my lined chimney from my old oil fired Burnham.

    One of the things I thought about was (as you can probably get from above) that we don't use a lot of LP. $1200-$1500 (give or take) a year for both heat and DHW. My thinking is if the difference in my annual fuel bill between 86% and 95% AFUE is $200-$300, I think I am better off with a simple(r) boiler, and for a few dollars a month, have the peace of mind of a very simple, reliable system. Thoughts?

    I'll tag another question on here if I may. Is venting a boiler using outside combustion air, but a standard chimney vent done? My house is pretty tight draft wise. Is this acceptable, practical, unwise etc?

    Thanks again for the reply.
  • IronmanIronman Member Posts: 5,680
    edited July 24
    A gas atmosepheric will be about 82% at best. If you go that route, you will still need a stainless chimney liner to prevent flue gas condensation. Buderus makes the best cast iron boilers of any (unlike the aluminum gb142).

    Also, newer atmosepheric boilers have just about as many controls as mod/cons and my experience is these fail as often, or more, than those on mod/cons: vent dampers, electronic pilot assemblies, control modules, etc. The only advantage that I see is that a CI boiler generally has a longer life expectancy.

    I realize that the common wisdom is that CI boilers are more reliable and cost less to repair, but I believe that's out-dated thinking and it's not been my experience.
    Bob Boan


    You can choose to do what you want, but you cannot choose the consequences.
    Zman
  • Paul WolfPaul Wolf Member Posts: 28
    Bob, Great info. Thanks for taking the time to write. Good to have your thoughts on the Buderus line.

    Regarding the venting, are you saying if I go with a condensing boiler, I can't use my old oil-fired boiler's (tile lined) chimney? That I would have to re-line it with stainless? Thanks.
  • IronmanIronman Member Posts: 5,680
    No, it would have to be lined to use an 80%+ atmosepheric boiler because the flue gases are much cooler than what the old or fired boiler produced. The chimney is also probably over-sized for a new atmosepheric.

    A condensing boiler (mod/con) is what you have in the gb142 that vents with PVC or PPL plastic pipe. A new mod/con would vent the same and could likely use the existing venting.
    Bob Boan


    You can choose to do what you want, but you cannot choose the consequences.
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