Peerless WBV boiler gas conversion

Old 11-04-13, 07:51 AM
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Question Peerless WBV boiler gas conversion

Can the Peerless WBV oil/steam boiler be converted to gas with a conversion burner?

Has anyone here done this with either the steam or the water version?
Old 11-05-13, 06:07 AM
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I emailed this question to Peerless. To their credit they did respond quickly. This was their response:

"Hello -
We have not tested that boiler for gas operation; you will need to consult with your heating professional.
Thank you."

I wonder if they expect my heating professional to know their boilers better than they do?

This is a popular boiler that has been around for a while with a good track record. With all the oil to gas conversions taking place these days, you would think that someone would have converted this model, and that Peerless would know about it.
Old 11-05-13, 06:40 AM
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You would think...

I suspect that their 'non-commital' has to do with liability and regulations... everything these days seems to. I worry about it from time to time here on DIY... what if we give wrong advice, and something bad happens?

In theory at least, if a gas gun is installed that has similar BTU rating, nothing should be different, right?

One of our members recently had a conversion done... but I haven't seen him post for a while... but his thread was something like "Will I really save $2000 a year..." see if you can find that thread and read through, might give you some useful information.
Old 11-05-13, 07:07 AM
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Thanks for your response, NJTrooper.

From the megasteam manual "warnings page":
"This boiler is designed to burn No. 2 fuel oil only. Do not use gasoline, crankcase drainings, or any oil containing gasoline. Never burn garbage or paper in this boiler. Do not convert to any solid fuel (i.e. wood, coal). Do not convert to any gaseous fuel (i.e. natural gas, LP). All flammable debris, rags, paper, wood scraps, etc., should be kept clear of the boiler at all times. Keep the boiler area clean and free of fire hazards."

Maybe that line ("Do not convert to any gaseous fuel (i.e. natural gas, LP).") is merely to limit liability, or maybe there is a functional reason for this particular boiler.

The Peerless manual as well as my old weil-mclain and the new SGO weil-mclain manual don't say one way or the other.

I have heard that people have converted oil to gas by swapping burners. Would love for a pro or homeowner who has done this to weigh in here.
Old 11-05-13, 06:53 PM
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Much of it is indeed product liability warnings and CYA by the manufacturer. HOWEVER, the Megasteam is a three-pass boiler and as such it has a higher than average draft loss across the entire heat exchange area. While I do not know for certain, I suspect it has a pressurized furnace, meaning the area where the initial flame is operates at a pressure higher than atmospheric. Most gas conversion burners require a negative pressure furnace for proper operation. That would require the Megasteam to have an induced draft fan for proper operation of a negative-pressure conversion burner. All these modifications would cause other changes in the operation of the boiler and for this reason the company refuses to endorse the use of a gas conversion burner.

All that said, if I remember the thread correctly, Lucky Driver also has a positive pressure furnace in his boiler and it took several tries with one conversion burner to convince the installer to go with a different conversion burner, one that HAD been endorsed by the manufacturer.

Installing a burner that has not been tested by the boiler manufacturer or the burner manufacturer will void the NRTL listing and that little fact may void any insurance on the boiler. Do you want to take that chance?

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