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  1. #1

    HVAC installer recommends Weil-McLain boilers

    Looking for opinions yay or nay on these boilers. He counted every radiator in the house and wrote it on a sheet of paper, then counted the tube things in the existing old burnham boiler. He comes highly recommended by a neighbor who owns many rental properties.

    The flyer he gave me was for the Ultra Series 3

    Gas fired water boiler with cast aluminum heat exchanger
    Venturi mixing body mixes air and gas providing higher efficiency
    Designed to operate in low temperature condensing applications
    Outdoor reset and domestic hot water priority standard
    Negative regulated gas valve precisely delivers gas to the boiler
    U-Control gives you the power for easy set-up and maintenance
    Modulates with 5 to 1 turn-down ratio
    Variable speed motor matches combustion output to heating needs
    High grade stainless steel burner features quiet operation, high efficiency, and cleaner combustion for low NOx applications
    Ultra 310 93.3% efficient rating is a gross output and combustion efficiency

    Thanks!

    Susan

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lancaster PA
    Posts
    68,171
    He's not doing you any favor by sizing to the radiators, he's over sizing the boiler. The boiler should be sized tho the home's heat loss.

    In many homes, the oil boiler and the amount of radiation in the home is twice as much as needed.

    If he can't do a load calc, you can do your own, http://hvaccomputer.com/talkref.asp it worth the 50 bucks to get the right sized boiler. The cost difference between a 310 and a 250 is a lot more then the above load calc license fee. And you may only need a 155.

    I've taken out 400,000 BTU oil and gas boilers and replaced them with Ultra 250's. And removed 350,000 BTU oil boilers and replaced them with 155's.


    The Ultra is a good boiler, but if its over sized you won't get the savings it should provide.
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Location
    Indianapolis, IN, USA
    Posts
    34,239
    Or the house we took out 550,000 BTUs 2 boilers for in floor radiation and went with properly piped 175K and the homeowners raved about the comfort.

  4. #4

    Thanks for the reply!

    In order for me to do the heat loss calc, what info will I need to know?

    I actually did a very extensive online survey for a company called Desco, where I input square feet of each floor, every window and their dimensions, doors, my exposure, ceiling height, walls (solid brick, plaster/lath) bay window size, and they came up with a recommendation for a Ti150.3 NTI Trinity series 95% + AFUE Modulating Gas Boiler - 25-150k btu. They also called to verify whether I had a 3 story house or was counting my basement by mistake (I call it 2.5 because the third floor is smaller due to the slope of the roof)

    If that is how heat/loss is calculated, I wonder if the rec on the size of the NTI Trinity is more in line with what I really need, not how many and size of my rads.

    I did notice that the trinity appears to save energy by monitoring the outside temp, I got the impression the Weil McLain measures the temp of the water returning from the rads & kicks on when it reaches a certain temp (inlet water temp sensor)


    PS old cast iron rads, the only thing kind of weird, is what was a sleeping porch hanging on the back of the house with 10 windows was extended as a heated room at one point when it was converted to 2 family for a kitchen. The piping that brings the water to and from that room is on the outside of the brick wall (but inside the room) We keep that room shut in the winter, and use an oiled filled rad space heater just to bring it up a few degrees for all the plants we have out there, as the rads can only do so much for such an exposed room.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lancaster PA
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    Thats the info a heat loss calc needs.

    The Ultra uses outdoor temp to determine how hot to make the water.

    Sounds like a 155 is more along the line of what you need,
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  6. #6

    Thanks

    By 155 do you mean a Weil-McLain UG-155?

    That is the third boiler on the Weil-McLain sheet he handed me. Did you pick 155 because the NTI Trinity recommended is a 25-150k btu

    I will report back on Tuesday when he tells me which boiler he picked. will be interesting to see if he comes up with the same one by doing a visual on my whole house.

    FYI he is definitely what you guys call a wet head, not a sales man

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lancaster PA
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    Yes, I picked the 155 because you posted about the trinity.
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  8. #8

    Radiator loops counting HVAC guy....

    He called to tell me he wants to put in a weil-maclain ultra 230

    I said what about a heat loss calculation?

    He said your house is big

    Called another guy who neighbors use and ask does he do a heat loss calculation. He said no I look to see what you currently have. I say how do you know if it's over sized? He says I ask about how often it comes on. I said, "how would we know. We can't hear it, it's in the basement"

    I put an ad on Craigslist saying I was looking for someone to install a NTI Trinity Ti150.3, but was open to other systems but I want a heat loss calculation

    The only call I got was from a subsidized cost Level 3 home energy audit company and I am going to do it, do remedial things before, use the info they give me to size the new boiler.

    Best of all they are going to climb a ladder 2.5 stories and inspect my gable via the gable vent to find out if I have any insulation

    Better them than me. I had been eying the distance from a metal roof and one of the vents, wondering whether I could crawl through the vent, but I'm afraid of heights

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
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    Lancaster PA
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    Improving you homes envelope first, is the right move.
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  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    Northeast Ohio
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    We find that most of the retrofits we do with boiler systems are grossly oversized to begin with, almost always at least 50%. The new mod con boilers are great and the Weil McLain units are good equipment. Sounds like you are doing the proper homework before pulling the trigger on this big ticket item. An energy audit is an excellant first step on the road to a properly sized and configured comfort system, the key word being comfort. Keep us up to date and ask any questions that come to mind. We have a dealer locator map on site now that might be an option for finding a contractor in your area.
    A good HVAC tech knows how, an educated HVAC tech knows why!

    DEM


  11. #11

    Had my energy audit. It was eye opening.

    The Energy alliance brought an HVAC guy with them

    This HVAC guy also went around the house counting and measuring every radiator. But he made note of the number of loops in addition, anywhere from 3 -5.

    I found out my huge coal boiler that sits beside, has water running through it, heating my basement.

    they could not do the blower test because I do have asbestos on my pipe and the old coal fired. the HVAC guy said it had to be removed because he would hit the pipe connected to the boiler to be replaced with a hammer to break it.

    An asbestos company came the next day and recommended a rewrap of disturbed areas, rather than remediation. I told him the HVAC guy said it had to do because he would hit the pipe with a hammer, I said why not saw it. Asbestos guy said "get a new HVAC guy."

    Looks like I may need to do the heat loss calc myself.

    What about this one?

    http://www.mrhvac.com/free-hvac-stuf...ss-calculator/

    Also what is Inside and Outside Design Temperatures

  12. #12

    I found a chart with cities that included mine

    Cincinnati, Ohio, dry bulb temperature in January is 0

    Normal relative humidity in January at 7:30 am 82%, 1:30pm is 70% and 7:30pm is 74%

    dry bulb temperature in July is 95

    Do I need to do anything with summer temps since boilers have nothing to do in the summer

  13. #13
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    Jan 2004
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    Lancaster PA
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    Not if your just doing a heat loss.
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