Oil burner replacement-size/brand recommendation


  #1  
Old 12-13-09, 08:36 AM
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Oil burner replacement-size/brand recommendation

My other half has a house in Wantagh, NY. That's on Long Island. She needs to replace the oil burner. The house is approx. 1700 sq ft, +or- ~150sq ft, 1200 ft downstairs w/radiant heat in the floors. The house has no basement and is on a concrete slab. Upstairs is baseboard hot water. The unit will also provide domestic hot water.

How large a unit would you recommend? Any particular brand? The house will be for sale shortly, we don't want to spend more than necessary.

Any idea as to a ball park figure as to how much it should/may cost including install?

Thanks guys.

Gary
 
  #2  
Old 12-13-09, 12:55 PM
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Replace just the oil burner or replace the boiler along with the burner? Either way there is no quick and simple answer.
 
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Old 12-13-09, 01:54 PM
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The whole thing. There was a freeze-up last winter and the unit began to leak. Its about 50 years old. Insurance paying $4700 for replacement. I'm asking this because when we start getting estimates from local oil burner purveyors I want to know if I'm having smoke blown up where the sun don't shine.

What other information would be of help in answering the question?

Nothing's simple any more, is it?

Thanks
 
  #4  
Old 12-13-09, 03:46 PM
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Here is why it is difficult. Most boilers, especially one installed fifty years ago are vastly oversized, sometimes as much as four times larger than necessary. To properly size a boiler the first thing needed is a heat loss calculation and this entails measuring all the doors, windows, outside wall dimensions along with determining the level of insulation in the walls and ceiling and the amount air leakage through the structure. As you can see this can take a couple of hours just to get this data. After the data is gathered it is entered into a computer program that also takes into consideration if the windows are single or double pane and/or have storm windows along with the general construction of the house.

Few contractors will do this unless they first get the job to replace the system and some never do the heat loss. Some will give a preliminary bid and if accepted will then do the complete heat loss calculation and adjust the size of the boiler accordingly. Unfortunately far too many contractors will simply look at the nameplate of the existing boiler and quote on replacement with a similar sized boiler. Another method used is to measure the heat emitters (baseboard convectors or cast iron radiators) and size the boiler to supply all the heat that could be emitted. This is also wrong.

The fact that the house has a radiant floor complicates the matter immensely. Depending on what kind of piping was used in the slab it could be on the verge of failure. It is possible that it has already developed at least one leak and it is possible that it was never properly engineered in the first place and had some, or several deficiencies when it was in service. If the water was left in the piping with no heat during freezing temperatures it is possible the water has frozen and split the piping which would, of course, render the system unusable.

Then the fact that you want to sell the place makes everything even more difficult in that do you just want to be able to say it has a new boiler but the rest of the system is of unknown reliability or do you want to put in a system that has a reasonable fuel cost for the new owner or what.

I think you need to first get several contractors to bid on putting the system into operation and then come back with what has been proposed.

It would also be better to post in the Boilers-Steam and Hot Water Systems forum right above this forum.
 
  #5  
Old 12-14-09, 12:36 PM
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Will do. Thank you. You have given me a good start.
 
 

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