AA boiler install -DIY ?

AA boiler install -DIY ?

PostBy: biggreen1 On: Tue Jun 03, 2008 11:39 pm

I decided to go with a Axman-Anderson boiler for next winter. It should be built in about 8-10 weeks from now, so now my research is turning to install issues. I don't know a lot about boilers/furnaces so I'm a little leary about attempting the install myself. I've been reading the install manual for the AA and reading lots of posts here and learning a great deal. I've been doing plumbing and electrical work (and everything else) on my own homes for the last 25 years so that part is do-able. The boiler is going in the basement and it's going to be plumbed in series with the oil boiler I have now. My house only has 1 zone even though it is rather large (and old). I'm going to try to use the heating coil in the coal boiler for hot water as I do in the oil boiler. The two boilers will share the same flue. The coal flue pipe will enter the main flue about 1 foot below the oil flue from the opposite side (a chimney guy told me that would work OK). But I know I have a lot to learn and I want to be sure things are done right.

So, should I attempt to install it myself or hire someone. I'm on the fence and still learning. If I do decide to hire someone, Does anyone know of a good person for the Mill Hall area.
Thank you for any help.
biggreen1
 

Re: AA boiler install -DIY ?

PostBy: billw On: Wed Jun 04, 2008 12:04 am

I'm in the same situation as you. I installed my oil unit 15 years ago but I had a friend, who was a plumber, lay it out and buy the material. I basically did the grunt work. I'm installing an EFM 520 in series with my oil unit. My plumber friend is gone so I'm relying on what I can find here and other sources to fill in the gaps. It's not an overwhelming task, actually I'm enjoying learning. (Just hope I don't launch the dining room when I light up the finished product.)

First thing is using the same chimney for both units. Check with your local codes and your insurance company. I'm currently in the process of putting up a new chimney for the coal unit. From what I understand the insurance company and the building codes prohibit a solid fuel appliance using the same flue as your oil unit. In the unlikely event you have a catastrophe you don't want your insurance company to tell you sorry, we're not paying because your work wasn't up to code.

A couple of things about building your own chimney 1) The dam chimney block is HEAVY. 2) Don't dig the footer in the rainy season. 3) The material so far has cost me about 500.00. The only thing left to buy is the mortar. So for less than 600 and some manual labor I'm making sure my installation is safe. My chimney will be 32 feet from footer to cap. Just giving you an idea of the extra expense involved. For me it's money well spent but everyone is different.

If you've done your own plumbing and electrical I don't see a problem for you doing it yourself. The people on this forum have a wealth of knowledge and share it freely.

Hope this helps. Good luck.
billw
 
Stove/Furnace Make: EFM 520
Stove/Furnace Model: GOODBYE OIL COMPANY

Re: AA boiler install -DIY ?

PostBy: LsFarm On: Wed Jun 04, 2008 12:06 am

If you have done plumbing and wiring, you will have no problems.. just follow the instalation directions.. level the base, do the measurements from the coal bin/doghouse location, and place the base, and boiler,, plumb and wire..

If you take each part one step at a time and are not in a hurry, you can do it yourself. I did mine with only a few issues. Mostly self induced, or caused by my instalation's requirements.

Greg L.
LsFarm
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Self-built 'Big Bertha' SS Boiler
Baseburners & Antiques: Keystone 11, Art Garland

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Re: AA boiler install -DIY ?

PostBy: Freddy On: Wed Jun 04, 2008 6:23 am

Give 'er a go! The one thing some people forget is a flow check. It keeps hot water from moving by gravity and over heating the house. It's not a back flow preventer, it's not a swing check. A low water cut off can be a trick to wire, but they come with good written instructions. Same with zone valves. Of course you can ask questions here.

Yes, on the chimney thing. Check local law. I wouldn't call the insurance company. As long as you follow local law the insurance can't deny anything. If you call them, sure as sunrise they'll suggest it be professionally installed.
Freddy
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 130 (pea)
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Reading piece o' junk in the barn (rice)
Coal Size/Type: Pea size, Superior, deep mined

Re: AA boiler install -DIY ?

PostBy: biggreen1 On: Wed Jun 04, 2008 10:42 pm

Well, I may have to try it myself. You guys are giving me a little more confidence. Thanks for the information and encouragement. I'll be here learning and hopefully sharing knowledge (in the future) for a long time to come. thanks
biggreen1
 

Re: AA boiler install -DIY ?

PostBy: Freddy On: Wed Jun 04, 2008 11:13 pm

I have ordred an AA. Should be here in another 2 or 3 weeks. Before snow flies I will be installing it myself. I'd be glad to take pics & share. I plan on leaving my oil boiler where it is, but will disconnect the chimney pipe. It'll be a 15-20 minute project to swap from coal to oil, Open & close ball valves, disconnect coal pipe and reconnect oil pipe. I will have two holes in the chimney, one or the other will be capped when the heating device of choice is on line.
Freddy
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 130 (pea)
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Reading piece o' junk in the barn (rice)
Coal Size/Type: Pea size, Superior, deep mined

Re: AA boiler install -DIY ?

PostBy: biggreen1 On: Fri Jun 06, 2008 12:46 pm

Freddy, pics and the story of your install would be great. Looking forward to it...
biggreen1
 

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