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oil fired steam to hot air heat exchangers

AFLLC Member Posts: 1
In a big turn of the century house we have a fairly new Burnham Commercial boiler fired by Carlin gun, supplying a two zone steam to hot air heat exchanger system. Heat exchangers and air handlers are at least 60 years old, (maybe even mid 30s). Boiler is not more than 15 years old. Heat Exchangers are made by General Electric (Schenectady NY). Hard water supplies system. What maintenance should be provided to heat exchangers? How efficient is this sort of system?


  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 22,952
    It can be very efficient -- depending almost entirely on the duct work for the heat exchangers.

    The heat exchangers will have to have their air sides cleaned -- if they aren't provided with filters, cleaned often (if there are filters on the intake side, the filters need to be cleaned or replaced often). Your losses will be in the ductwork -- leaks, runs in uninsulated spaces, that sort of thing -- like any hot air system.

    As to the water, you should not be using much in the boiler, if any, so unless the water is extremely hard that is not a factor. If you are using a significant amount of makeup water (more than a gallon a week, I'd say), you have a leak somewhere -- and you have to find it and fix it.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England