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Seeking ideas for hydronic baseboard system

Cvrobe Member Posts: 1
I bought a two flat in Chicago last month, living in the top unit and renting out below. The first floor unit is still on the original radiator system with boiler in the basement. The second floor had a 1980s forced air system. Well, the forced air furnace conked out over New Years and I’m looking at 6k to replace. I figure this is a great time to jump ship away from the hated forced air and back to something hydronic. I’m a cabinet maker/a good DIYer but *totally* naive about heating systems and having trouble knowing where to start. I would love any thoughts.

A couple things:
-The unit is maybe 1400 square feet.
-I’m super amenable to ordering and installing hydronic baseboard units and then hiring someone to plumb them but unsure where to begin
-i have the aforementioned basement boiler running the first floor i could maybe connect to
- I’m very interested in a more modern in unit boiler/hot water on demand system, and have a weird closet in my bathroom that would be perfect for it, right over the main plumbing stack. Something that fits in here and services the hot water needs for bathing/cooking and heating would be amazing. It could easily run off natural gas, lines all over the place here.
- I’m having a really hard time finding people in chicago knowledgeable about hydronic systems other than radiant floor (not for me, I have original floors and they are staying) and radiator, I would love any connections.
- I’m having a hard time understanding the workflow on this. Is specing out a system of in unit boiler and baseboard heaters and hiring someone to plumb it reasonable?

Thanks so much for any input.


    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 15,827

    I would check "find a contractor" on this site, there a a few in Chicago. Unfortunately most good contractors are busy in the winter but the hacks may be looking for work.

    Proceed with caution.

    Maybe one of these contractors can refer you to someone good if they are too busy

    Good luck

  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 22,467
    The wholesalers and reps in the area usually know the "players" Michael at Able Distributing, Darek at Lyall Thresher & associates, Piotr at Porter pipe are a few names.

    Expect to pay someone to do a good look over, load calc and design.
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
  • 1887House
    1887House Member Posts: 3
    I have cast iron baseboards. I love them. Don't get fined tube.