Converting Oil Furnace to Propane

Closed Thread

  #1  
Old 09-19-06, 11:14 PM
Q
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 9
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Converting Oil Furnace to Propane

I want to convert my 84,000btu oil furnace to propane. Yes, keep the furnace, but convert it. I am short on money, but am a pretty good engineer.

Where is the best place to get a propane controller, pilot, interlock, regulator, and what is the most efficient type of burner? eBay?

Anyone else done this?
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 09-20-06, 05:50 AM
mattison's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Cinti, OH
Posts: 5,548
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Just curious... Why change it ?? You normally get more bang for your buck using oil vs propane.
 
  #3  
Old 09-20-06, 07:06 AM
Jay11J's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Rochester, Minnesota
Posts: 18,427
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
I agree with matt, you get more heat for you buck out of oil.

Go here and see what you get most of your moeny.
http://warmair.com/html/fuel_cost_comparisons.htm
 
  #4  
Old 09-20-06, 01:27 PM
Q
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 9
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
I know. I've already looked around here.

But first of all, I can get propane cheaper, as my car runs on it. ($1.79.gal)

Second, I hate the nasty, egregious pollution that oil-burners belch out. Ever cleaned the yellow caked sulfur out of your manifold? Unconscionable for the environment.

So please, has anyone converted a furnace to propane, or have experience with propane burners?
 
  #5  
Old 09-20-06, 01:40 PM
Ed Imeduc's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Mountain Williams Missouri
Posts: 18,386
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Wink

They did have some. They use a inshot lp burner. It was made so the oil gun or the gas burner would bolt to the furnace.
Now have you looked at http://warmair.net
to compare fuel where you are?? How would a heatpump work for you.
Also if you did put a Lp burner in this old oil furnace Its AFUE would be so low not worth it. It would pay you back in $$$ to put in a new gas furnace that has a AFUE of 80% or 90%.

ED
 
  #6  
Old 09-20-06, 03:21 PM
Q
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 9
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Hm, inshot lp burner. I'll bet I could make one of those boogers.

I'm renting, so there'll be no replacing the furnace or buying a heat-pump. Although electricity is quite cheep here. (Seattle, hydropower and a socialized power network)
 
  #7  
Old 09-20-06, 03:25 PM
Ed Imeduc's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Mountain Williams Missouri
Posts: 18,386
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Wink

If you just rent then its rig a inshot burner for it
is all i guess.

ED
 
  #8  
Old 09-20-06, 03:47 PM
Jay11J's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Rochester, Minnesota
Posts: 18,427
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
A well tuned oil furnace will burn just as clean as gas.

You get FAR more BTU from oil than LP. Gallon of oil burns 140,000 BTU vs LP burns 91,000 BTU.

The landlord ok with you messing with this?? And, I agree with Ed, that you are going to waste MUCH more enegry switching it over LP.
 
  #9  
Old 09-20-06, 04:59 PM
Grady's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Delaware, The First State
Posts: 14,251
Received 23 Votes on 21 Posts
Oil to LP

With this being a rental, unless you have the landlord's concent to do it, you should not be working on HIS equipment. You could be endangering your life & his property. Most oil fired furnaces are not approved for use with propane. If you think you are going to be saving money, I'm afraid you are sadly mistaken. With LP at $1.79/gallon, 1,000,000 btu (input) would cost $19.76. Using oil at $2.50/gallon, the same 1,000,000 btu input would cost $17.86. This nearly $2/million btu does not even take into account the efficiency reduction you would get with LP.
 
  #10  
Old 09-20-06, 05:38 PM
Q
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 9
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Ah, everybody worries too much.

I'm a pretty good engineer, and I have absolutely no interest in notifying the landlord. The conversion will be completely reversible. Done such projects as convert my car to propane, and another to all-electric. Made my own motorcycle out of watermelon rinds, too! :j

This hoary old furnace will never burn 1/10th as clean as propane. Not to even mention all the sulfur that's in that smelly oily sh!t that makes alot of smoke.
(sulfur becomes sulfuric acid in the atmosphere -- acid rain)

Another great thing about propane is I can buy it 10 gallons at a time. Oil would be $500 at a whack. And propane is a waste byproduct... it's what you see burning off in those flares over oil derricks. They blow off whatever they can't sell, so might as well use it.

All these are reasons I want to convert to LPG. Even with the most pessimistic projection (above), there's hardly any difference in cost, and all the difference in the world in pollution.


Now, to fabricate an upshot burner. Seems like there's an orificed jet, blowing into the upshot pipe (venturied?) with an air valve at the back to control mixture. There has to be either a pilot with thermocouple, or striker with infrared sensor, and a control. I'll bet I can get most of this from a junk furnace (I can hear peoples' hair standing on end), and modify it.

Now, propane has a higher BTU content than natural gas, right? So the orifice should be smaller. Silver-solder the old orifice and drill a new one.

Have a beer, relax, and help us out, peoples.
 
  #11  
Old 09-20-06, 09:15 PM
Ed Imeduc's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Mountain Williams Missouri
Posts: 18,386
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Wink

Ok if you must.
Orifice size #13
drill Dia .1850
=== 84,878 Btu W/C at manifold 10"

ED dont forget LP wll pocket on you
 
  #12  
Old 09-21-06, 05:42 AM
mattison's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Cinti, OH
Posts: 5,548
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Sorry Quantum, but this is dangerous work for the DIY'r and we don't want others that may be unqualified following this thread and killing their family. That old boiler is more than likely not listed for propane and therfore we can not give info on re-engineering it.
 
Closed Thread
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: