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  1. #1

    Switching from gas forced air to hot water ( my house came with both)

    I bought a house that has a gas, forced air unit in the attic. It's over 20 years old and not very efficient. It is loud, the vents are located in a cold attic, and even with insulation over them, they suffer because of it. My house has baseboards, and in the basement appears to be an old, disconnected boiler.

    Can you please look at these pictures:


    Exactly what type of system do I currently have? I want to know the proper terms when shopping around. Also something about 1 pipe/2 pipe systems?

    What is my outlook for getting a unit to replace what I currently have in terms of ease of upgrade, fit, cost, ? My house is 1300 sq foot, single story, stone ranch, with newly laid r30 in the attic.

    I am thinking about switching because I like the idea of steady, warm heat from this type of system, and living in a very cold state (IN), it might make winters more comfortable.

    With the forced air, our old windows and doors don't help with keeping the warm air in. I know we should be upgrading those, but that's a $15k expense for the future. I did insulate as much as I could.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Lake Ronkonkoma, New York
    Posts
    570
    Your piping appears to be a monoflow system; each convector has a bleeder and shut off. If all pipes are intact you should be able to go back to hot water heating without too much trouble.

    You should check and see if your state is offering any kind of deal on home energy audits. These are performed by either BPI or RESNET certified professionals. You may find that there is financial help in making upgrades to your home. At the least you will get a report at the end of the audit that shows what your list of repairs should be based on return on investment.

    You may be surprised to find that all your windows need are to be properly sealed. Return on investment from well maintained single pane glass with storm windows to the most efficient windows is about 25 years.
    If the women don't find you handsome, they should at least find you handy.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Upstate Central NY
    Posts
    590
    Ditto - what Earl Said.

    Make sure a heat loss is done so new unit is not oversized. Consider a modulating boiler like the Bosch Greenstar. You have Cast Iron baseboard that works very nice with outdoor reset. The boiler with monitor the outdoor temp and reduce the boiler water temperature when it is warmer out - resulting in huge energy savings.

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