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heating change

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I have a cast iron coal boiler for main heat with oil boiler backup plumbed in with it. The oil boiler gets used when away from home or when fire gets low. I want to change oil boiler out to a propane boiler either Lochinvar or htp to do the same thing. Suggestions? Planning on a separator and one circulating pump like oil boiler before loops. What about a heat exchanger?

Comments

  • leonz
    leonz Member Posts: 1,180
    edited June 2023
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    Is your coal boiler a hand fed boiler or coal stoker making steam?

    Why do you want to change to a propane fired boiler, is the oil boiler leaking?

    The price of oil is dropping that last time I checked.

    Are you burning Anthracite or Bituminous coal?

    Have you given any thought to investing in a small coal stoker
    and selling the hand fed coal boiler?

    Do you have a coal bin/coal room in your basement?

    A coal stoker is less work and you can have an oil burner in
    the Alternate Heating Systems Coal Gun coal stoker boiler.

    You can purchase a propane burner head to convert your oil
    burner to propane if you want to.


  • classicburner
    classicburner Member Posts: 3
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    My coal boiler is manual fed and a good cheap heat . I dont mind feeding it , also burn wood in it. I'm removing the oil boiler for reason that its not as efficient as the new propane boilers, also has age on it. I'm just asking for suggestion from reliable installers if anything is necessary as I plumb it in the propane boiler in series with my coal boiler.
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 4,955
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    My coal boiler is manual fed and a good cheap heat . I dont mind feeding it , also burn wood in it. I'm removing the oil boiler for reason that its not as efficient as the new propane boilers, also has age on it. I'm just asking for suggestion from reliable installers if anything is necessary as I plumb it in the propane boiler in series with my coal boiler.
    You’d better run the #’s before making that decision!
    mattmia2
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 22,472
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    Parallel piping may be a better option, some ideas here
    This issue is about wood boiler piping, but same concepts apply for coal fired

    https://www.caleffi.com/sites/default/files/coll_attach_file/idronics_10_0.pdf
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
    mattmia2
  • classicburner
    classicburner Member Posts: 3
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    Thanks I'll check it out. Deciding on series or parallel, which is best
  • leonz
    leonz Member Posts: 1,180
    edited June 2023
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    The only real time you should replace a boiler is when the boiler is leaking due to metal fatigue and it is leaking.

    Did you plan on buy a 1,000+ gallons of propane storage to have a less costly fuel purchase by purchasing propane in bulk quantities?


    If your oil burner is as old as the boiler you can always install a smaller oil nozzle or replace the existing burner with a more modern one to have a modern burner that is easier to maintain.

    When I used my hand fed boiler wood and coal boiler for 33 years it was piped in parallel where one of the two circulators was used to balance the temperature between the 2 boilers to keep the water temperature the same until the fire went out.

    MikeAmann