Viking Junior boiler question

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Old 10-29-13, 09:17 PM
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Viking Junior boiler question

I am about to turn on the furnace for the first time since buying this home.
It is a hydronic system with an old Viking Junior boiler.

I have attached a picture of the combustion chamber in the furnace.
Would say this combustion chamber still has some life in her, or is shot and needs to be changed before the thick of winter sets in?
 
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Old 10-29-13, 10:21 PM
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While far from perfect it looks okay to me for continued use.
 
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Old 10-30-13, 06:55 AM
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Thank you Furd,

I ask because the oil supplier will not provide service on my furnace unless I do about 500 dollars worth of repairs. I have never seen the guts of these units before, but nothing he wants to change looks awful to my untrained eye. I purchased the home about 3 months ago.

I would like to switch to an electric boiler and scrap the oil unit in the next year or 2 max.
 
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Old 10-30-13, 04:42 PM
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supplier will not provide service on my furnace unless I do about 500 dollars worth of repairs.
Sounds like mild extortion to me.

Why not tell us everything he wants to do, and show us some more pictures?

Take a few wider angle shots as well so we can see the 'big picture'.


I would like to switch to an electric boiler
You're getting the ultra-cheap Hydro up there?

If it's an economically sound idea to replace with electric, I can't see spending $500 on a boiler that will be replaced in the next year or two, unless it's absolutely NECESSARY.
 
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Old 10-30-13, 08:42 PM
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NJ Trooper wrote:
Take a few wider angle shots as well so we can see the 'big picture'.
You're getting the ultra-cheap Hydro up there?
Thank you!
I have the furnace off now, in the morning it should be nice and cool and I will open it up and take more pictures.

I guess the attraction is the combination of lower hydro and higher fuel costs.

Heating oil is about $1.00 per liter or almost 4 dollars a US gallon.

Hydro costs:

First 30 kWh/day 5.41 /kWh
Remaining energy consumption 7.78 /kWh


I am just starting to look at this and see how it would best play out.
 
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Old 10-31-13, 07:10 AM
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Hello NJ Trooper,

I hope I have the views you need to see.

He said the blast tube needed to be changed, a small repair, the part is 80 dollars.
And the end of the tube is a little rough.

Then he dropped the estimate and the combustion chamber was added, with taxes, it is now at $550.00.

He may be giving good advice, but it just felt like I was being held over a barrel the way it was done and I would really appreciate any advice. I have never owned a home with a furnace until this summer.

He also took out the high efficiency bricks.
But I was told they help heat the water faster and use less fuel.
I put the bricks back in pending further advice. They have been in the system for years from what I gather. The old owner of the home had a service contract and the furnace was cleaned and inspected every summer, no one else objected to, or removed the bricks.

Any thoughts are greatly appreciated.
 

Last edited by Kiton; 10-31-13 at 07:25 AM.
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Old 10-31-13, 11:09 PM
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He also took out the high efficiency bricks.
The bricks are to slow the combustion gases and to cause them to "scrub" the heating surfaces in order to transfer more heat to the water through the metal. They may or may not actually increase efficiency but they probably do increase the efficacy of the boiler.

The blast tube has definitely seem better times but it is probably serviceable for another winter as is true of the combustion chamber.

An electric boiler may be a viable option in your case. Remember that the electric boiler will operate at near 100% efficiency and require almost zero maintenance when comparing it to a fuel-fired replacement boiler or continued maintenance on your current boiler. The downside is that installing the electric may require a whole new electrical service in the house and THAT could easily be $2,000 or more.
 
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Old 11-02-13, 07:47 PM
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Thank you Furd.

Your estimate is spot on, I got a few quotes this week.
$1850 to change my main panel (plus 15% sales tax)
$385 for the state utility to change the wire from the pole to the meter
$4000 for the electric boiler installed and wired.

The install price is based on me removing the old boiler myself.

This project will move to the back burner (pardon the pun) for the winter as I have enough on my plate since taking on an older house.
 
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Old 11-13-13, 05:45 AM
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Furd wrote:

The bricks are to slow the combustion gases and to cause them to "scrub" the heating surfaces in order to transfer more heat to the water through the metal. They may or may not actually increase efficiency but they probably do increase the efficacy of the boiler.
Thank for explaining the scrubbing effect.

Now that the furnace may stay in place longer than I had originally thought, I wonder if it would benefit from a circulation pump?

It works by gravity and it takes a rather long while before hot water starts to flow. Now that the days are getting colder we are finding that it does heat very well and it is a nice heat.

But I wonder if slight nudge from the circulation pump (which was removed when they cut the second floor out of the heating system and switched it to electric baseboard heaters) would help it along?
 
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