Debating replacing my oil boiler

Debating replacing my oil boiler

PostBy: Scottsman On: Fri Mar 17, 2017 1:02 pm

I have a chance to get a boiler which is only 1.5 years old at a great price (maybe $700) and am seriously debating it. I have a 1-pipe steam system. And my current Weil-McLain boiler is at least 40 years old. It has a Riello F5 burner on it. I get my domestic hot water from it and use it as backup heat if we go away for Christmas. The existing boiler works, but due to some water issues we had in the basement (since corrected) it looks very rusty at its base, drains very slowly and the water is pretty rusty when I let a couple gallons of water off every other month. I'm wondering if I should just wait till this old beast dies (and leaves me w/o any hot water and a mess till I replace it) or be proactive and get this newer boiler now.

Also, I sized all my radiators and come up with 436 sq. ft. The boiler I'm looking at is a Thermaflo OSB-4, which puts out 450 sq. ft. and 144k btu. Before I got my coal stoker, I only ever used about 200 gallons of oil/month. So I don't think I'm under-sizing. But you guys are smarter than me.

I'd love to have a duel-fuel steam boiler in the basement, but my 6" chimney liner prevents getting a big boiler, since they have bigger flues. Even though my existing boiler has a 8" outlet, the installer reduced it to fit the 6" chimney liner.

I've also thought about getting a hot water heater, but my wife and I have 7 kids, and do mountains of laundry. We would need a huge hot water heater, and I only have 100 amp service, so don't really want to rev up my electric load. Which makes me want to keep using my boiler for hot water and backup heat, unless there is a better way. We can't get natural gas where we live so there are a lot of constraints to what we do.

What do you think?
Scottsman
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Leisure Line Pioneer
Other Heating: Weil McLain steam oil boiler


Re: Debating replacing my oil boiler

PostBy: McGiever On: Fri Mar 17, 2017 9:54 pm

Buy that boiler now! A Bird in the hand is way better than 2 in the bush. ;)

The rest of the pieces of info will trickle in eventually. ;)
McGiever
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: AXEMAN-ANDERSON 130 "1959"
Coal Size/Type: PEA / ANTHRACITE
Other Heating: Ground Source Heat Pump
Stove/Furnace Make: Hydro Heat /Mega Tek

Re: Debating replacing my oil boiler

PostBy: Scottsman On: Fri Mar 17, 2017 10:29 pm

I also got a ballpark quote today from the HVAC guy who originally installed it. He said it would take 3 guys a day to remove it from the old house and install it in my house if everything went well. I think he said $400 to remove and another $1,200 to install. :shock: But he emphasized it was a ballpark, because he has only seen the setup in the current house, not mine. I'm thinking that might be able to get it out myself, if I carefully disassembled it myself, rolled it across the floor with pipes and then used a an appliance truck and come-along, to bring it up the 9 steps from his basement to the outside. But it is 750 pounds, and I have only ever moved 450 pound items before. Won't be an easy job. I have a 14 year old and 16 year old who are both 6'2" to help. But they are not experienced boiler movers. Think I should attempt it?
Scottsman
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Leisure Line Pioneer
Other Heating: Weil McLain steam oil boiler

Re: Debating replacing my oil boiler

PostBy: davidmcbeth3 On: Fri Mar 17, 2017 11:00 pm

I know about removal of boilers ... I replaced mine ~10yrs ago. Most folks do this as a process of replacing and old with new, like mine.

I tried moving the boiler in 1 pc ... was unable to, ended up breaking it down into 4 or 5 pcs to remove.

750 lbs ... that can kill or seriously injure oneself if something goes wrong.

Even broken down, I used a hoist attached to my truck to move the largest (~200 lb) pc. Very awkward shape...

I'll move up to about 500 lbs ... anything heavier than that, I would need some manly help who are experienced, not teenagers.
davidmcbeth3
 
Coal Size/Type: nut/pea/anthra
Stove/Furnace Make: Hitzer
Stove/Furnace Model: 503

Re: Debating replacing my oil boiler

PostBy: coaledsweat On: Sat Mar 18, 2017 1:10 am

A backhoe comes in hady to move a boiler up or down the stairs if you have access to one.
coaledsweat
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260M
Coal Size/Type: Pea

Re: Debating replacing my oil boiler

PostBy: David... On: Sat Mar 18, 2017 7:25 am

Yes, replace your boiler.
Unless you have a huge house the new one will be big enough.
I assume you are using a tankless coil in the boiler for hot water. An indirect water heater connected to your boiler would make more hot water and use less oil.
If your old boiler is cast iron, it is made up of individual sections. Cut the tie rods that hold the sections together and use a wedge to separate the sections. The middle sections aren't too bad to move. The end sections will require two people to move. Replace all of the air vents, main and those on radiators. Good luck.

David
David...
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Chubby clone
Coal Size/Type: Nut
Stove/Furnace Make: Penn

Re: Debating replacing my oil boiler

PostBy: Scottsman On: Sat Mar 18, 2017 4:30 pm

I guess that's the advantage of moving the old boiler--I don't have to keep it in tact.
Scottsman
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Leisure Line Pioneer
Other Heating: Weil McLain steam oil boiler

Re: Debating replacing my oil boiler

PostBy: Rob R. On: Sat Mar 18, 2017 4:57 pm

I'd love to have a duel-fuel steam boiler in the basement, but my 6" chimney liner prevents getting a big boiler, since they have bigger flues. Even though my existing boiler has a 8" outlet, the installer reduced it to fit the 6" chimney liner.


Are you referring to the clay tile liner? Or a stainless steel liner?
Rob R.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM DF520
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 50-93
Coal Size/Type: Lehigh Rice
Other Heating: Dad's 1953 EFM Highboy


Re: Debating replacing my oil boiler

PostBy: Scottsman On: Sat Mar 18, 2017 7:37 pm

Stainless steel liner. The boiler in the basement is hooked up to this. Really tall chimney. First floor is 12 foot ceilings, 2nd floor is 8 ft, and it goes well beyond that. So I never have problems getting enough draft.

Anyhow, I made a great offer on the 1.5 yr old boiler and it was accepted by the seller. So a buddy and I will be moving it next weekend. He's moved boilers before, which is a little comforting. It's a little scary for me, thinking about how to move this beast without hurting anyone or damaging the boiler. But I'll be reading up on how to do this, and taking it real slow.
Scottsman
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Leisure Line Pioneer
Other Heating: Weil McLain steam oil boiler

Re: Debating replacing my oil boiler

PostBy: Rob R. On: Sat Mar 18, 2017 8:05 pm

I asked about the liner because many of the stainless ones are installed unnecessarily. If the chimney is in good shape it may be possible to remove the stainless liner and install a DF coal boiler.

In the mean time, your new oil boiler should be a nice upgrade. Does it have a tankless coil?
Rob R.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM DF520
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 50-93
Coal Size/Type: Lehigh Rice
Other Heating: Dad's 1953 EFM Highboy

Re: Debating replacing my oil boiler

PostBy: Scottscoaled On: Sat Mar 18, 2017 9:00 pm

Take all the jackets off first so you don't bung up your prize! A movers hand truck will be your best friend on this one. ;)
Scottscoaled
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM 520, 700, Van Wert 800 GJ 61,53
Baseburners & Antiques: Magic Stewart 16, times 2!
Coal Size/Type: Lots of buck
Other Heating: Slant Fin electric boiler backup

Re: Debating replacing my oil boiler

PostBy: rberq On: Sat Mar 18, 2017 9:25 pm

Scottsman wrote:I guess that's the advantage of moving the old boiler--I don't have to keep it in tact.

My old boiler was 1940s vintage. I started removing the jacket and found it was insulated with asbestos. You might or might not want to tear down something like that, and expose yourself and your family. Just depends how you feel about asbestos, whether the danger is real or hyped or some of both. I hired a licensed abatement contractor, about $1,200 as I recall. They had done a lot of boilers, had it done in a few hours, and I didn't have to try to sneak the asbestos into the town dump without getting caught. :o
rberq
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: DS Machine 1300 with hopper
Coal Size/Type: Blaschak Anthracite Nut
Other Heating: Oil hot water radiators, propane

Re: Debating replacing my oil boiler

PostBy: coaledsweat On: Sat Mar 18, 2017 11:28 pm

If it's asbestos, get a roll of pallet strech wrap and wrap it before you play with it. Do not remove it, there is nothing on the planet that can replace it.
coaledsweat
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260M
Coal Size/Type: Pea

Re: Debating replacing my oil boiler

PostBy: windyhill4.2 On: Sun Mar 19, 2017 6:10 am

Instead of destroying your current boiler or even tearing it apart,why not put pictures of it on here,maybe someone would be interested in it,either to use or for parts.
windyhill4.2
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: 1960 EFM520 installed in truck box
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Crane 404 with variable blower
Coal Size/Type: 404-nut, 520 rice ,anthracite for both

Re: Debating replacing my oil boiler

PostBy: Scottsman On: Mon Mar 20, 2017 7:27 pm

I thought about removing the liner. Right now I've got a really nice stoker on the first floor though. Love this Leisure Line. But it does take up some space in the biggest room in the house.

Asbestos. Yeah, I've got some of that on the steam pipes in the basement. A couple years ago I wrapped them in garbage bags and duct-taped it securely. Some day I'll tackle that project with the proper gear, but that's a headache to think about right now.
Scottsman
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Leisure Line Pioneer
Other Heating: Weil McLain steam oil boiler