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New Gas Boiler

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mshenn
mshenn Member Posts: 4
edited May 10 in THE MAIN WALL

I am converting from oil to natural gas. I'm looking at 3 different boilers. Williamson GWA Series, Utica and Peerless. The home is approximately 2900 square. ft. With an indirect water heater and 5 zones. I measured out 195 linear ft. of baseboard. Home is located in North Jersey, well insulated. Out of everyone's experience what would be the better/ most reliable boiler of these 3? Also based on the info given approximately how many BTUs is recommended. I am aware from the great info here that the proper way to assess the BTUs is through a heat loss analysis. But a ballpark figure would be appreciated.

Thank you.

sunlikerad

Comments

  • Big Ed_4
    Big Ed_4 Member Posts: 2,806
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    With hydronic heating you calculate what the building looses in BTU's per hour , per 10* out side drop . The envelope of the building , doors , windows , walls floors and ceilings multiplied by listed factors to find out what sized boiler needed … Sizing the boiler will save you across the board …

    A good installer is the next key .. All those boilers are good

    There was an error rendering this rich post.

    mshennEdTheHeaterManMad Dog_2STEAM DOCTOR
  • EdTheHeaterMan
    EdTheHeaterMan Member Posts: 8,099
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    Find a reliable contractor that understands what you have. Go with the boiler that the installer recommends.

    You can have a Cadillac piece of equipment installed by a hack, and you will have nothing but problems. You can get a really qualified professional to install the El-Cheapo brand and you will be happy with the job for years.

    If you can find someone that installs Energy Kinetics equipment, that will be a plus. The manufacturer deals directly with the installer. and the installers have go to factory training to be able to install them. So you have a better chance of getting someone that understands your system. EK also have some energy saving control designs that will save you in operating costs for years.

    Edward Young Retired

    After you make that expensive repair and you still have the same problem, What will you check next?

    Mad Dog_2STEAM DOCTORJaceC
  • Mad Dog_2
    Mad Dog_2 Member Posts: 7,110
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    As the guys say, focus in on your installing contractor. North Jersey?? It gets no better than Clammy in Mahwah...Mad Dog

    STEAM DOCTOR
  • Mustangman
    Mustangman Member Posts: 113
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    Of the 3 you listed, Utica. Years ago I inherited a nightmare install of a Utica wall hung. We re-piped it and was still having flow issues which led to lock outs. I called tec support and he walked me thru re-programing the control. Problem solved. There tech support is really good.

    I personally like Weil McLain EcoTec. Its one of their newer offerings. I know we have put in 10 or so EcoTecs over the last few years and have had no problems what so ever. Utica is a good company… I wouldn't hesitate to put one in my house… if I only had a boiler

    Steve

  • mshenn
    mshenn Member Posts: 4
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    Thank you for all of your help. I got a few quotes. And the boiler sizing seems to be all over the place. The last quote said I needed a 205k BTU unit. Which is the same size as what I have now. I always felt it was oversized...but what do i know. Nobody seems to want to do a heat loss calculation. Edtheheaterman...I got a quote for EK unit and I would need to sell both my kidneys to afford that unit based on the quote i got. Mustangman I wasn't thinking thinking a combi because of reliability and cost. MadDog I will try and reach out to clammy.

    jimna01
  • ethicalpaul
    ethicalpaul Member Posts: 5,735
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    As a fellow North Jersey homeowner, get a heat loss, or do one yourself if you have to. If it were me I'd pick a Peerless atmospheric. It will last a very long time with a minimum of care. With natural gas, your maintenance cost will be tiny and infrequent compared to oil.

    Also get rid of the indirect and get a standalone water heater, it will save you a ton of installation cost and a lot less complicated than an indirect setup where you will have to fire your whole boiler all summer, heating your house in order to pay more to cool it.

    If you hate electricity and distrust refrigerator technology, then get a standalone gas water heater. Otherwise get a heat pump water heater with a nice NJ energy credit. I got a Rheem.

    NJ Steam Homeowner. See my sight glass boiler videos: https://bit.ly/3sZW1el
    GroundUpPRR
  • mshenn
    mshenn Member Posts: 4
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    EthicalPaul the indirect WH is less then 18 months old...I agree with what you are saying but to get rid of it at this point is not an option. Plus it does almost give constant hot water. I would love to do the heat loss calculation on my own but not sure where to start with that. I will look into the peerless. Thank you. 😊

    ethicalpaul
  • ethicalpaul
    ethicalpaul Member Posts: 5,735
    edited May 9
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    You can probably buy a new standalone water heater and get it installed for less than just the installation cost of your old indirect onto the new boiler, maybe not if they are able to re-use everything.

    But you are going to be paying a lot for all the upcoming years to be heating up that whole boiler, 500 pounds of iron plus gallons of water inside it just to transfer that heat to your indirect tank, with more complexity and stuff to worry about leaking and stuff breaking like the circulator. It is insanity when you have natural gas and heat pump technology at your disposal.

    You can probably sell the indirect tank and pump too. But regardless, look up how to do heat loss online. There are spreadsheets, apps, etc out there if you can't find an HVAC professional to do their job that they got trained to do. I wish you the best in your search!

    PS: this post is in the Strictly Steam forum but I think we all understand you have a hot water boiler, right?

    PPS: Google "sunk cost fallacy"

    NJ Steam Homeowner. See my sight glass boiler videos: https://bit.ly/3sZW1el
    PRR
  • JayMcCay
    JayMcCay Member Posts: 33
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    Thank you for your post and for considering Energy Kinetics equipment.

    Please reach out to me (908) 328-7154 or call our NJ Territory Manager, Tom Raulinavich at (908) 752-2306 so we can coordinate with you – our equipment should be competitively priced and offer you greater savings and exceptional hot water production.

    Regards

    Jay

    Jay McCay
    National Sales Manager
    Energy Kinetics
    908 328-7154 cell
    jringel
  • STEAM DOCTOR
    STEAM DOCTOR Member Posts: 2,010
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    Obviously proper heat loss is the way to go. But let's use some rules of thumb just for laughs. Uninsulated house, let's figure 40 BTU per square foot. That gives you 116,000 BTU. Well insulated house, let's figure 30 BTU per square foot. That gives you 87,000 BTU. These are the output numbers not the input numbers. Maybe you want to add a little pick up factor, maybe not. And of course, boiler has to meet the needs of the indirect. You didn't mention what size indirect you have, but 200,000 BTU sounds ludicrous.

    bburd
  • mshenn
    mshenn Member Posts: 4
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    I'm sorry I did not realize that I am in the steam section. The home is well insulated. Newer construction(within the past 12 years). Good amount of windows, but very good quality Andersen, no drafts coming from the windows. The indirect is 50 gallons.

  • STEAM DOCTOR
    STEAM DOCTOR Member Posts: 2,010
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    You should be to check the indirect input BTU requirements. If unsure, you can post the make and model and someone here should be able to help you. My uneducated guess, is that the indirect BTU requirement, is the max BTU requirements that you will need. Meaning that the indirect load is probably larger than the heating load. Just a guess

  • Erin Holohan Haskell
    Erin Holohan Haskell Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 2,326
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    @mshenn, I've moved your post out of the steam section. Welcome to Heating Help!

    President
    HeatingHelp.com

  • EdTheHeaterMan
    EdTheHeaterMan Member Posts: 8,099
    edited May 10
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    The Slant fin boiler company has since gone out of business and the Baseboard division has been picked up bu another company but I believe this is still available. Easier on a tablet than on a phone, but I believe you can do your own heat loss with the app

    Nevermind, The link no longer works. But there are other Apps that can do the same thing.

    Edward Young Retired

    After you make that expensive repair and you still have the same problem, What will you check next?

  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 22,260
    edited May 10
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    195' of fin tube? X 500 btu/ft= 97,500.

    If the home stays warm with the current system, you really don't need more than a 125,000 boiler, that is all you fin tube can move into the home.

    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
    Hot_water_fanGroundUpPeteA
  • Mad Dog_2
    Mad Dog_2 Member Posts: 7,110
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    A Heatloss takes several hours. Are you willing to pay a professional to do one so you know for sure? Mad Dog

  • Hot_water_fan
    Hot_water_fan Member Posts: 1,884
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    https://www.greenbuildingadvisor.com/article/replacing-a-furnace-or-boiler


    you use this method, it’s quick and reliable. Agreed with hot rod, no need to install more than your baseboard can emit m.

    ethicalpaul
  • ethicalpaul
    ethicalpaul Member Posts: 5,735
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    How does a professional know what size to install if they don't know the heat loss of the building? Honestly curious. Do they just throw a guess out there?

    NJ Steam Homeowner. See my sight glass boiler videos: https://bit.ly/3sZW1el
    Mad Dog_2
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 23,442
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    Pretty much — or at least it looks like it. A really good professional — I can think of at least a dozen who are here on the Wall — can probably get within 20 percent by a fairly quick look around and asking a few questions. A not so quality professional will look at the existing boiler, ask if the client is warm enough, and put in the same size — or a little bigger, "just in case".

    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
    ethicalpaul
  • Mad Dog_2
    Mad Dog_2 Member Posts: 7,110
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    Yes..Paul..The only guys I know who ever do one are At HH.COM

    ethicalpaul
  • Mad Dog_2
    Mad Dog_2 Member Posts: 7,110
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    It's rare if anyone measures up BB or EDR

    ethicalpaul
  • tim smith
    tim smith Member Posts: 2,765
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    Doing a simplified equipment sizing form, I can do a heat loss in less than an hour. measure and all. A manual J couple hrs. Equipment sizing form gets you quite close to J. Just sizing off baseboard is a little short sided, if you have heat loss then you can figure what water temp you can run based on the baseboards output at different water temps. Just a thought. Most 50 gals indirects can usually take 150000 + input to get their rated recovery. Lochinvar 50 indirect minimum coil load is 133,000 btu. I know most of you already know this but thought I would state it for OP.

    Tim

    ethicalpaul