I have a 1400 square foot (above grade) ranch on a windy hill in NY. It has a walkout basement, where my current oil boiler is. I moved in to my house in September, and since then have burned 350 gallons of oil. However, I have been keeping the house at 64-65 degrees while I am home, and 60 when I'm not home and when I'm asleep (I like sleeping in the cold, it's not some form of punishment
). The house is zoned as one large single zone, with two loops that the water makes. I am doing a bunch of plumbing work come late spring as I would like to add zones, as well as moving the copper runs away from the exterior walls of the basement to make room for walls. I plan on walling up the basement strictly for insulation value, and have no intention of placing living space down here. For DHW, I have an electric hot water heater currently. As there are only 2 people living in the house right now, my electric bills are very reasonable.
My house has less than ideal insulation currently, but I have just finished the rim joists with 2" thermax and foam and am moving to the attic next. I performed a heat loss calculation using one of the tools I saw posted here from builditsolar.com. Am I reading this correctly that I only "need" 38876 BUT/hr for heating? My current oil boiler his a 90k and has no problem keeping up, but it doesn't provide DHW. I have also just had a blower door test done and my house was found to be very tight. The contractor was recommending that I provide means for mechanical ventilation if I intend to do more air sealing and insulation, as I may get the house "too tight". I have attached my Heating Loss Results.
My goals for next heating season are to keep the basement between 65 and 75 degrees (it is currently about 53 no matter the weather outside it seems), and keep the house between 65 and 72 degrees. However, as you may have guessed by my joining this forum, I would like to look into heating with coal next season.
I am wondering if a VanWert VA400 would be enough for my heating needs, as well as DHW. I was thinking of adding a zone off the boiler for DHW, instead of buying the separate coil, and pre-heating the water that goes into my electric hot water heater using a heat exchanger. This would allow me to shut down in the summer if I wanted too (not sure yet) and still have my electric hot water. Also, in the future, I may be getting a hot tub. Is it practical to heat the hot tub water using a heat exchanger and a zone off the boiler? Would this move me out of a VA400 and into something bigger?
Thanks for your time,