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Joined on March 11, 2004

Last Post on April 21, 2014

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How much is the radiant load

@ April 21, 2014 10:37 AM in Main air valves

is it bigger than a coil could handle?

I'd use

@ April 20, 2014 10:11 PM in Main air valves

one Gorton #1 or Hoffman #75 on the shorter main and two of either model on the longer one. This will not only speed up the steam flow (assuming the present vents are undersized) but also balance it. 

That would depend

@ April 20, 2014 9:21 PM in Main air valves

on how much air was in the mains. Measure their length and diameter and post the info here. We can tell you what you need. 

The main vent is leaking too

@ April 19, 2014 1:29 AM in Peerless WBV03 Steam Boiler Warranty

that and the other leak are probably what killed this boiler.

How long is the main, and what pipe size? Is there more than one main?

Nice work as always

@ April 17, 2014 9:37 PM in Twin Steam Boilers - 4 Stages of Firing Rates

looking forward to fuel-consumption figures if you can get them. What was in there before, and what condition was it in? 

What part of Maryland

@ April 15, 2014 11:34 PM in Need advice/ help for new heating system

are you in? We're located in Baltimore. 

It would give you some flexibility

@ April 15, 2014 12:26 AM in Is my steam boiler way oversized?

but switching fuels on such a burner might take more than opening/closing valves and throwing a switch. We'll have to look at this more closely.

That's what I'm thinking

@ April 15, 2014 12:23 AM in Is my steam boiler way oversized?

the combustion test will determine how low we can go. We don't want to get the stack temp so low that the flue gases condense inside the chimney.

One-inch pipe won't cut it

@ April 14, 2014 11:24 PM in Is my steam boiler way oversized?

unless they figure on the entire gas distribution in the house running at 2 PSI, and even then I'm not sure. Have to look it up but I'm not at the office.

Burnham offers Beckett and PowerFlame burners for the V9A series boilers. PowerFlame would be the better bet, since they offer lo-hi-lo firing in smaller burner capcities than Beckett.

In those sizes

@ April 12, 2014 4:13 PM in recommended NG Burner?

Burnham sells Beckett and PowerFlame gas burners. The PowerFlame line offers smaller units with low-high-low than the Beckett line does.

Carlin and Midco make very good gas burners too.

Not sure what brand of gas burner is popular out your way, but around here we see a lot of PowerFlame, with Carlin in second place.

We did

@ April 10, 2014 11:49 AM in Is my steam boiler way oversized?

and the OP says it's running better after some repairs we made (vents and crossover traps), but still using a lot of oil. This is a Hoffman Vapor system.

One thing to be determined is whether enough gas is available from the street main to fire that boiler. Then we'll know if converting is even possible.

We did not open the boiler when we were there to see how dirty the fire side is, but given what we usually see, I expect it would take several soot-vac bags to get it clean. We just ran out of time that day.

But there's nothing about this system that can't be fixed.

If memory serves

@ April 9, 2014 12:37 AM in FST-200 Boiler Breeching Rumble after conversion to gas

the Federal FST boilers run with a slight positive pressure in the firing zone. Check to see that the breech damper is properly set.

What were your combustion test readings?

Post a picture of the boiler

@ April 6, 2014 11:55 PM in American Standard boiler

and we can probably ID it.

Our business volume

@ April 5, 2014 3:53 PM in Value of converting oil/steam to modcon gas?

is something like 70% steam, on average. As others will attest, there is more than enough work for a steam-oriented contractor who knows what he or she is doing.

Every so often we get someone who wants to know why we even deal with steam at all on this site. Here's one where Dan gives a real good answer. This came from the previous version of the Wall, so the postings are scrambled and some of the names didn't line up properly. The OP called himself "Legend of the Past", and unless he is now posting under a different name, I believe he only participated in this thread:

Oversizing will waste a lot of fuel

@ April 5, 2014 3:42 PM in Value of converting oil/steam to modcon gas?

which would explain at least another part of the savings. Also the indirect tank is one of the more efficient ways to handle DHW- if the old boiler had a tankless coil, it was wasting a lot. 

I'd suggest our Find a Contractor page

@ April 2, 2014 10:55 PM in To convert or not

but there aren't any listings for RI. Any contractor in this area who's reading this- get listed! We did and it's one of the best moves we ever made.

With no insulation

@ April 2, 2014 10:39 PM in Value of converting oil/steam to modcon gas?

it's still going to cost a lot to heat that house. That's where you can get the best bang for your buck.

Add to that the service and reliability issues on mod-cons mentioned further down the thread. I've heard of a few mod-cons (using Gianonni heat exchangers) that only lasted five years. I've read that in Europe if a mod-con over five years old or so breaks down, they replace it. Where's the savings in that?

Was it this thread?

@ April 2, 2014 10:32 PM in Value of converting oil/steam to modcon gas?

If so, that was in September of last year. What probably happened is we actually had a real winter this time, and any heating contractor who is any good was swamped with no-heat calls, dead boilers etc. etc. etc. just like we were. If you had had a no-heat situation, you would not have been happy if you had to wait for service. Most people are like that.

There are plenty of younger guys who know steam, several of whom are on this board. I'm sure they'll keep it going, especially when we get some efficiency improvements for these systems, beyond what we already have.


@ April 2, 2014 10:23 PM in Value of converting oil/steam to modcon gas?

we will always have people who will use alleged fuel savings to justify a lot of unnecessary work. Sure, sometimes all that work does result in savings, but there are often less complicated, less expensive ways to do the same thing.

Here's one example, which speaks for itself:

double post

@ April 2, 2014 10:16 PM in Value of converting oil/steam to modcon gas?

how'd that happen?

That oil boiler must have been in bad shape

@ April 2, 2014 10:16 PM in Value of converting oil/steam to modcon gas?

when I use this online calculator:

and plug in your costs per gallon and use 85% efficiency for the oil-fired unit and 90% for the mod-con (since there have been issues with some mod-con's ratings) the operating costs come out as $33.93 per million BTU for the oil unit and $33.46 for the mod-con.

I'm not questioning your figures, just saying there was probably more to this story than just switching fuels.

I don't make the rules here

@ April 2, 2014 12:45 PM in Value of converting oil/steam to modcon gas?

and neither does anyone else in this thread. That's Dan's job. But for those who say they don't want to start another argument or debate, it might be better if they simply avoid posting in threads where that is likely to happen.

Of course if this thread gets too nasty, Dan will likely just pull it like he did last time. That, again, is up to him.

Just sayin'.
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