Help- Installing Boiler

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  #1  
Old 10-11-05, 06:51 PM
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Help- Installing Boiler

My boiler is shot. I was going to put in a hot water heater 1st and then worry about the boiler later, but now I have switched gears and will focus on the boiler and use the coil to heat the hot water like before. I used to work for my uncle (a plumber) so I have experience with copper. I was also an electrician for 12 years so the controls will not be a problem. However, I have NEVER taken out and replaced an oil fired hot water boiler. Am I crazy to takle this job, or will I get through it OK? I know a plumber in the area who can check the install when I am done. Please give me any advice - what to be aware of - common mistakes. I will have 2 zones. Is there anything I can use over from the 1st boiler? - (like the expansion tank or relief valves)??
Oh yeah - my local supplier sells Columbia steel boilers so that is what I am thinking of using. Please tell me that this boiler choice is OK. It does not have to be the best, I just don't want a junk to begin with . Other choice is a Utica cast iron but money is an issue. Thanks in advance!
 
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Old 10-11-05, 07:27 PM
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You don't want to hear this

Scrap the steel, sorry, but for my money, steel boilers are just that, scrap. While I'm telling you things you don't want to hear, I should add that cast iron, dry base boilers are not a lot better.
Look around & try to find a Crown Tobago series or a Peerless WBV series. Generally these are pretty decent boilers for little more than steel. They are not Cadillac class but neither are they Yugo class boilers. If you have cast iron radiators or any other large water volume system, you should install a thermostatic by-pass valve. Don't reuse parts off the old boiler except for maybe a circulator & then only if it is fairly new.
Check with your plumber buddy & maybe for a few extra coins, he'll serve as a consultant.
 
  #3  
Old 10-12-05, 04:32 AM
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Are the Utica boilers dry base?? I only have 2 choices if I want to return the hot water tank for credit.
 
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Old 10-12-05, 04:08 PM
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they had one more choice and that is what I bought - I hope you like it because I already have it home and in the basement - not about to take it back now. It is a Biasi cast iron B10 series. I will have some install questions later. Thanks for the advice so far
 
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Old 10-12-05, 04:40 PM
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Basi

I personally have never installed one but from what I read, they are a very good piece of equipment. Good choice. Read & study the install manual. If you have questions, I be glad to try to help.
BTW, some Utica boilers are pretty good stuff but others ain't so hot (no pun intended). Like most companies, they make some good stuff & some not so good. I did not mean to imply that Utica was not much good, sorry if you got that impression.
 
  #6  
Old 10-12-05, 05:26 PM
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WHEW , Thanks Grady - I started a new thread that is probably way too overwhelming but that speaks for myself at this point in time - overwhelmed!!
Any help will be way far appreciated.
 
  #7  
Old 10-13-05, 06:13 AM
swong
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Do it yourself is a possibility

Reminds me of the time we replaced a very old gas fired steam boiler for my brother-in-law after he moved in. Don't remember what the old make/model boiler was when he got the house but he was very careful researching all the various manufacturers prior to selecting a Weil-McClain wet based gas fired steam boiler with add-on circulator to heat a finished basement using the heated water coming off the boiler. The 3 of us started right in the spring right after the heating season...cost from a wholesaler was around $1500 just for the boiler. Hardest part was not in physically removing the old boiler but it does bring back memories. Hardest part was chasing down each measured threaded section of pipe running back and forth to the plumbing supply place to custom cut/thread each section. This was going back 12 years ago and I believe total cost including parts, various pieces of pipe, top hats, pipe dope, ball valves, etc came out around $2200-2400. Definitely do not skimp on plate steel boilers instead go for cast iron with the thickest castings. Technology continually changes...now, instead of float type blow-off clean-outs they have low voltage probe type solid state sensors, self closing damper exhaust damper valves, soleiod operated water fills, etc. Wiring I remember is a no brainer in that the controls are all wired in series making it very easy to troubleshoot when you have a no start condition. When you have a "no start condition" you go right down the line individually jumpering each control out until she fires. I'm now over 55 years of age and have no desire to run around hence when I recently had to upgrade from oil fired to gas fired steam (perfectly good Peerless boiler but the in-ground fuel line ruptured...worse smell ever with #2 oil) my wife threatened to leave me unless we converted to gas. Got ripped off by Keyspan and was at their mercy at the time as I just had hernia surgery. Paid $4500 (removed perfectly good Peerless, 275 gal oil tank, install along with Home Depot 12-year warrantied 50 gall hot water heater). Using the Burnham boiler on year 2 now and haven't looked back...way quieter and did I mention cleaner? But boy is it more expensive over oil. Only complaint about the Burnham is it only has 2 drain-outs while my Peerless had 3 making it real easy to reverse flush each season. Any questions email me: [email protected]
 

Last edited by swong; 10-13-05 at 01:36 PM.
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