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  1. #1

    Portland, OR area contractors who do hydronic systems?

    I'm looking for reputable contractors for sale/installation/service of a hot water baseboard or similar system in the Portland, Oregon area. It is time to replace the furnace for the main house and so I need to look at what my options are. The later portions of my house have electric baseboard heat that I want to replace. The main house has ductwork. I've had forced air contractors in but the forced air guys don't recommend trying to add ductwork to the additional areas and have recommended some combination of electric baseboard, gas fireplace, or mini-split ductless.

    It occurs to me that some sort of hot water baseboard might also be an option. But in Portland, OR, the local gas provider (NW Natural) seems to recommend contractors who do furnaces not boilers. Can anyone speak to why the Pacific NW doesn't typically use boilers and/or offer up the name of a good contractor who installs them?

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    7,758
    "The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers it can bribe the public with the public's own money.
    - Alexis de Toqueville, 1835

  3. #3
    Thanks for the link. There are two companies listed for the Portland area. Unfortunately one of them is out of business...

  4. #4
    nobody in the Portland area on here?

    In the northeast US, it seems like boilers/radiators own the market. People in the NE say it is warmer feeling/more comfortable heat than hot air. So why is the NW so tied to hot air?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    7,758
    Quote Originally Posted by PDX97267 View Post
    nobody in the Portland area on here?

    In the northeast US, it seems like boilers/radiators own the market. People in the NE say it is warmer feeling/more comfortable heat than hot air. So why is the NW so tied to hot air?
    The PNW is perfect for radiant heat and is used a lot. But retrofitting to an existing house is not easy and it is expensive so most do not do it simply because of the work involved and the price.

    On the other end most new high price houses have radiant heat included simply because it is easy to install when building and the customers typically are in the higher income range and they can afford the extra costs.

    Seattle has/had a booming economy for years and people had more money then they knew what to do with so all the big house had radiant. The Portland area never had that boom to my knowledge so it's more a case by case basis there.

    I have home that have tons of zone systems with radiant heat simply because the home is so large and so many of them have been built in the last 15 to 20 years or so.

    Contact a few radiant contractors in the Seattle area for a referral in your area. They all tend to know each other.
    "The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers it can bribe the public with the public's own money.
    - Alexis de Toqueville, 1835

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Massachusetts
    Posts
    81
    Wirsbro is a manufactor of radiant tubing there parent company uponor has a list of certied contractor might help your search

  7. #7
    deltaT--I will look up Seattle area contractors for leads.

    I know installation difficulty will vary depending upon the house. I think mine should be easier than most based on layout/access from below/more or less single story. Not as easy as one that is completely open of course.

    Robert Norton--I'll check out the wirsbo site.

    thanks to both of you for the info.
    Last edited by PDX97267; 05-08-2011 at 10:54 PM. Reason: To say thank you.

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