Welcome! Here are the website rules, as well as some tips for using this forum.
Need to contact us? Visit https://heatinghelp.com/contact-us/.
Click here to Find a Contractor in your area.

Hybrid Water hear and Oil boiler setup

MDvan Member Posts: 3
I’m in need of direction. Very grateful for any input.

I am a new home owner in Queens NY and the current setup is just a Ford Product Oil Boiler (this unit/company is so antiquated that there is zero info anywhere on this unit!) for DHW and hydronic baseboard heating. 1650 sq ft home - 2 zones and 2 bathrooms.

  I purchased a Hybrid Rheem 50gal. to provide the DHW and just use the boiler for heating but the boiler isn’t going to last the winter. I have not yet added the Hybrid and need to purchase a new boiler. I am not looking at any other options, as money is tight. That being said I am going to take on this project myself (some help from my knowledgeable father in law).

can someone help me decide on the right boiler.

-steel vs cast iron
-Is a Quick start boiler the best option for running the boiler just for heating needs?
- single pass or triple pass?

I’m trying to keep a reasonable budget that gets the job done.

I appreciate all your input and would even love input on things I might be forgetting in the post

thank you 


  • Hot_water_fan
    Hot_water_fan Member Posts: 1,788
    No gas available?
  • MDvan
    MDvan Member Posts: 3
    The cost of that project would be too much for me at the moment. Old house with major repairs needed
  • EdTheHeaterMan
    EdTheHeaterMan Member Posts: 7,509
    Natural Gas Company may provide the gas pipe to your home for a minimal cost If it is on your street already. That is why @Hot_water_fan asked.
    Edward F Young. Retired HVAC ContractorSpecialized in Residential Oil Burner and Hydronics
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 22,891
    In that area you may find that gas in the street or not, new hookups are not permitted.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
  • MDvan
    MDvan Member Posts: 3
    Agreed and I  would like to keep this project to a minimum as well and getting it done faster then dealing with municipalities 
  • WMno57
    WMno57 Member Posts: 1,228
    edited November 2023
    MDvan said:

    steel vs cast iron?
    Quick start boiler the best option for running the boiler just for heating?
    single or triple pass?
    input on things I might be forgetting?

    Steel v Cast - doesn't matter
    Cold start v Warm start - For heating only, everybody does cold start (except me and my 75 year old boiler :) )
    Single v Triple - Triple is three times better :). In the whole scheme of things, probably not something to worry about.
    What Else:
    The chimney. Newer boilers don't burn as hot as your old Ford. Condensation in the chimney can cause problems. You may need a chimney liner. Oil boilers should always be set up and tuned with a combustion analyzer to minimize condensation, carbon monoxide, sooting up the new boiler, and wasting fuel. Tuning by flame color doesn't really work for Pros, and for DIYers like you and me, it would just be guessing. Expensive tool $$$, that requires periodic sensor replacement $$. Improper use of the CA can screw it up $$.
    Atmospheric Gas boiler installs should also be checked with a CA, but many are not.
    I DIY.
  • Grallert
    Grallert Member Posts: 635
    Steel used to be cheaper, not sure if it still is. It's lighter and easier to move around. In my experience it's not as long lived. If you get a boiler with a domestic hot water coil you can set that control to it's lowest setting making it a warm start and that will keep it dryer perhaps extending it's life.
    That said, a cast iron triple pass boiler with an indirect water heater is pretty unbeatable.
    Miss Hall's School service mechanic, greenhouse manager,teacher and dog walker
  • Intplm.
    Intplm. Member Posts: 1,790

    You are on the right track.

    But first! If you want to stay on the right track and do the best job possible?
    I would do what is called a "heat loss calculation" to properly size the new boiler to have it fit your home and system.
    Don't rely on the current size boiler plate info that you have now.
    Do a heat loss calculation. Doing so will put you in a properly sized boiler required for your home.
    This will save you from possibly getting the wrong-sized boiler. Doing this now should save you some $$$$.
    So. Start from the heat loss calculation and then follow the very good advice offered above.
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 15,299

    In my opinion I would use a Weil Mclain that @WMno57 pointed to. Decent boiler has been around a while holds up well proven to be a good runner and very few issues with them. Efficiency is pretty good if maintained (same as anything else)

    If you find a place that sells Williamson Boilers it is identical to and is made by Weil Mclain. Different color jacket ...green instead of gold. Williamson just buys Weil Mclain boilers and slaps their name on it and they are usually a few bucks cheaper.
  • ethicalpaul
    ethicalpaul Member Posts: 5,580
    In fact, Weil-McClain, AKA  Marley-Wylan owns Williamson

    NJ Steam Homeowner. See my sight glass boiler videos: https://bit.ly/3sZW1el
  • kcopp
    kcopp Member Posts: 4,386
    3 pass cast iron.

    Options include...
    Biasi , Buderus 115, Trio from FW Webb.
  • SuperTech
    SuperTech Member Posts: 2,119
    3 pass is better than the standard pin type cast iron boilers. Energy Kinetics makes my favorite boilers, I think they are the best option.  If you are on a tight budget Crown/Burnham, Weil McLain/Williamson or Peerless all make decent cast iron boilers. The quality of the installation and proper sizing are the most important thing to consider. 
  • JohnHachmann
    JohnHachmann Member Posts: 4
    Hello MDvan, my name is John Hachmann and I am the Territory Manager for Energy Kinetics covering the Queens area. Choosing the correct boiler is essential for low cost heating in your new home. Our line of high quality "Low mass / Thermal Purge" boilers will save you significant money for years to come. If you would like to discuss boiler types and design differences with me, please give me a call. My cell phone number is 516-459-1701.