Joined on November 28, 2008
Last Post on July 19, 2009
@ July 19, 2009 11:03 PM in Grundfos UP15-38SPA Circulation Pump v. Taco 007Unbridled by the moral restraint of being honest, knowledgeable and truthful about what you are selling is a terrible thing. I have seen literally dozens of infloor jobs done with non barrier tubing in the last few years here. The common denominator in all of them was advice from Home Depot. If you are going to assume the task of selling something to a customer, you must also assume the responsibility of knwoing what you are doing for the sake of your fellow man. my $.02
@ July 17, 2009 7:29 AM in Grundfos UP15-38SPA Circulation Pump v. Taco 007That 007 has an iron body. Iron as not suitable for an open system like your friends spa. The chemical in the water will eat it. Your friend may experience staining in his tub and the circ will not "live long and prosper". Not a good choice.
@ July 13, 2009 1:14 PM in How do you calculate heating costs.......But I'm leaning toward a T-50 Munchkin. I've had good luck with them and nothing but great service from HTP.
@ July 13, 2009 1:12 PM in How do you calculate heating costs.......I come up with approx 710 gallons of LP gas annually. Makes a $10,000+ investment in a wood burner look not so good in my book.
@ July 13, 2009 9:53 AM in Munchkin - 8 flashesA 140 we installed in 02 IIRC. After troubleshooting everything, and I mean complete disassemble, cleaning, tuning,flame sensor, pressure switch we still had the lockout problem. Chuck told me that the cure would be a board update to the 926 and he was right. Installed it and the boiler runs fine. In fact better than it ever did. It lights off at a little higher fan speed/input and then modulates down to minimum which really makes a difference in reliable starting. Modulates better, steadier fan speed during operation, flame sense reading in the 12-14 UA range. Lights up and stays lit just like it should. It really wasn't all that expensive as boards go.
@ July 13, 2009 9:41 AM in How do you calculate heating costs.......Who makes a boiler suitable for that load that meets the tax credit criteria? 95% eff. I think
@ July 13, 2009 9:41 AM in How do you calculate heating costs.......Figuring up a system (underfloor heating) for a house with a design heat load of 28,000 btu. The customer is debating adding a wood burner to his system and I'm trying to figure out what his heating costs will be on LP alone vs payback of adding the wood burner to the system. How do I arrive at a rough annual cost for fuel? Our degree days run 7800-8000 in this area and I know there is a formula for putting these together somewhere.
@ July 13, 2009 9:40 AM in Wierd weather anywhere else?My Brother in law lives in Mission Viejo CA and Facebooked a picture to me of his OD thermometer yesterday. It read 100.6*. They live about 10 miles inland from the ocean so it's very unusual for them to be that warm. Who knows? It was 35* here this morning at a quarter to 6.
@ May 10, 2009 10:37 PM in Michiganders!We need something to cheer about in Michigan. Probably going to lose 20% of our population in the next 2-4 years due to no jobs here anymore.
@ May 7, 2009 4:12 PM in Michiganders!The Wings were robbed, egregiously, when that goal was called back. It was clearly a live puck and clearly in goal. May a herd of flea ridden camels take up residence in the living room of that ref's house. A pox on him.
@ May 7, 2009 4:03 PM in What's normal water use?We had replaced one of the boilers in this Slant Fin caravan system last fall along with installing a new condensate return tank. We installed a water meter in the feed line to monitor the water usage in the system and checked on the system today. Found that it blew through 1560 gallons of water which sounds a little excessive to me. What would a person look at as normal for a 1MMbtu system?
@ May 7, 2009 3:58 PM in How do you size a circulator pump?Are you sizing a zone pump or a system pump? In a nut shell. You have to know the btu load on the circuit or system. From that you can determine how many gpm you need to supply it. After finding the gpm you can look at the piping in the system or zone and determine the head loss. From there it's just a matter of selecting a circ that will do the gpm @ the developed head.
@ May 4, 2009 8:50 AM in American made productsIf there's any place in the world that is ground zero for this debate, it's the state of Michigan. This state has been owned by big business and big labor since the days of WWII, and now the love/hate relationship between those two entities is unraveling. The wages and concessions demanded by the unions in the big auto plants were egregious to say the least. I'm serious. As much as I value janitors and all they do to keep things running in their most basic of jobs, it's simply not worth $75/hr. I'm sorry, it's just not. Same thing with the "job pool" the unions demanded and got. How can a business afford to pay 95% of regular wage to workers who are not working? Simple answer, they can't and now they are paying the price. Management is definitely at fault here too. Not only for failing to stand firm in the face of these and other demands from the unions but also for their own practices of excess at the management level. Failing to invest sufficiently in R&D would be a big one. (Witness the percentage of overall budget that Viessmannn operates with as opposed to any US boiler manufacturer) The simple fact of the matter is that labor costs are far too high here in the US to allow this country to compete on a global scale. How can we remain a manufacturing economy when our competition is paying wages that haven't been seen here since the early 1900's. Who of us could work for $30 per hour, or $20 or that amount per day? Not a single one. The fixed cost overhead from insurances, utilities, work comp and all the rest amounts to double those per hour numbers. We can't go back to those wages without the complete break down of our economy and country. I sit on the board of Directors of the Michigan Township Association and get to hear some of the scuttlebutt floating around the capital of our state. Our legislative liaisons speak with reps, senators and the governors office on a daily basis and they hear comments from companies that are considering coming to our state. We have seen manufacturer after manufacturer choose other states and locations for new plants and facilities. Why? Michigan's labor costs are high. Plain and simple. We are told time and again that the combination of union scale wages and government induced/mandated overhead leave our state at a severe disadvantage when it comes to operating costs. Companies like Mercedes, BMW, Honda to name a few have come here looked around, done the math and went elsewhere. All the hype about trained skilled labor means next to nothing. (Does that sound familiar?) Workers can be trained in other states and places too. It's intriguing to me to see that under the current plan, the UAW is going to have a 55% interest in the reformatted Chrysler when it comes out of bankruptcy. One person made the comment to me last week that the Obama administration is paying back the unions for their support during his campaign. Could be, but I think rather that the unions are being forced to lie in the bed they helped create. Being an owner will force them to deal with decisions at both the management and labor levels. The simple fact is that labor costs have to come down, far down if the US is going to compete with China, Korea, Thailand and the rest. Their product quality is coming up just as Japan's did 30-40 years ago. Remember the jokes about stuff made by the J A Pan company? No one is joking any more and neither will we joke about products made in the other countries mentioned. They have a will to compete that we seem to have lost here for a myriad of reasons. One of the huge impediments to being cost effective here in this country is government regulation. Speaking with reps from our industry for example I have been told that emission and pollution laws are so much more stringent here than in many other places in the world that making a brass valve is nearly impossible. We won't see manufacturing of those types of products come back.
@ April 19, 2009 11:08 PM in nissan work vanFord invented a vehicle that's pretty much useless for it's target market, at least if it's targeted to HVAC, plumbing or electrical contractors.
@ April 19, 2009 11:00 PM in nissan work vanMy Sprinter get's great mileage but the body integrity is poor. Door problems, Paint problems, Rust spots showing up. Love the motor though. 20MPG is easy. I use F-250's but seems like each new motor (diesel) gets worse mileage. The last three were all purchased new. The 1997 with the 7.3 averaged just under 19mpg over it's life with me, about 138,000 miles. Next was an 01 that chugged out a tad above 17 over 165,000. My current one is an 06 with the 6.0 that is getting me right on 15 over 87,000. The guys that have purchased the 08-09's with the new 6.4 report really crappy mileage in the 9-13mpg range. That's not acceptable so my next work truck/van will not be a Ford, at least not with that motor.
@ April 19, 2009 10:48 PM in Pump to Maintain a fixed delta TI'd look at the OO Taco VS first although I don't know how low it will go. Wilo would be high on the list also.
@ April 18, 2009 11:30 PM in Pump to Maintain a fixed delta TWhat flow rates are you looking for. Are we talking a OO series Taco variable speed or something larger?
@ April 15, 2009 12:18 AM in Aluminum HX, Condensate and CorrosionWELL YAAAAAaaaaahh Had a service call this winter about 10PM one evening. The customer had another service company over to take care of air in the BB. He purged the air all right and left the fast fill lever on the B&G PRV open. The HO cam home to a basement full of steam and 3" of water on the floor. I do it the same as Mark. No chance for a flood.
@ April 6, 2009 5:02 PM in Should've known better....OTDang kids anyways......:) Here's to no long term effects and complete healing by next heating season. Going down hills on old car hoods is about as bad as we get here in Michigan. 2 people killed here this winter doing that.
@ April 6, 2009 4:56 PM in WHAT IS THE BEST MOD CON ON THE MARKET AS OF TODAY ??????I don't know if you were replying directly to me but if you were.........did you read the opening statement of my post? As far as units with AL heat exchangers go, I think the jury is still out at this point. That being the case I'm not installing or recommending anything with an aluminum block.
@ April 5, 2009 2:32 PM in design question for prosTrying to sell a low temp high efficiency system to a GC is impossible. They only have one thing in mind....especially right now. And that is "how can we keep first cost down." sure a lot of them talk the talk to their customers but they don't walk the walk. They are interested in how many sq ft they can sell to their client and what bells and whistles they can add on themselves. Like Der Heatmeister said, I will not even speak with a GC anymore about design and/or cost. I ask him, if given the opportunity, to speak directly with the customer. If he says no, I walk. Plain and simple. I usually remind him that I work for the customer, not him, regardless of what he thinks.....on the way out the door. Arrogant? No! I simply know a LOT more about HVAC than he ever will 99 times out of 100. I have to say that until the Great Depression II hit here in Michigan I had a lot of customers that sought me out and asked me to design a high efficiency system for them, bypassing the GC. Then they would go to Bob the Builder and tell him this was what they wanted and who was going to do it. That worked well. Alas, no one is calling anyone these days. Not a single new construction building permit in the entire county since February. Not one.
@ April 5, 2009 2:06 PM in WHAT IS THE BEST MOD CON ON THE MARKET AS OF TODAY ??????And here's why. While I prefer the Vitodens 200 series for most types of systems because of it's burner, the design of the HX, ease of service, the gauge of material used in the HX and rock solid factory support, it is not the only boiler out there that I use. I have run into more than a few systems that the Vito would not be the best choice for and in those cases I recommend and use something else. There is no one boiler that is the "best" for any and all jobs. That's the crux of the issue and Mark has already spoken to that point. the most critical piece of any boiler installation or replacement is not the boiler, it's the installer. If he can't recognize factors and circumstances present on any given install that would make one brand (operating system) better than the next the chances of a successful marriage of product and user are slim. In addition, if the installer is unfamiliar with the product, or doesn't possess the knowledge and/or equipment to set it up correctly both the boiler and the end user will suffer. Often with the blame laid on the product and not his incompetence or ignorance. AFA Munchkin goes, I have to say that probably 9 out of 10 failures I have encountered were installation related......and I have serviced/repiped/tuned up a bunch of them. Keep in mind that the Munchkin was probably the first moderately priced M/C boiler to hit the market. Lot's of installers put them in just like they did the last cast iron boiler they piped up. Guess what.......that doesn't work with a Munchkin. Nor does it work with any other M/C boiler. They are a different breed of cat than your fathers boiler and they all come with parameters that have to be followed. I have nothing but good to say about my interaction with HTP and the Munchkin boiler. HTP has stood behind their product every time I asked and sometimes even when the failure was not the fault of the product itself. They had some "teething" pains, some of their own making and some with vendor supplied components. I all cases that I have come across they honored what I would expect them to honor. I can't say it any more plainly than that.