Total boiler system revamp - have questions


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Old 01-22-19, 08:49 AM
Z
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Total boiler system revamp - have questions

Hi, guys. Well, of course it's dead middle of winter, and my boiler decides to finally have major issues. Ugh.
Recirculator sprung a flange leak, firebox powdered, efficiency dropped huge.
I'm limping along for the next few weeks, then will have to revamp the system. I can replace the circulator and related piping. I can rebuild the firebox. (Using a couple of wet blankets, there is no kit for my boiler).
But that also leaves me wondering about other upgrades/improvements.
Such as, currently the boiler feeds my 2nd floor apartment. It is a convector system. Single loop around basement, with individual branches w/1-way valves up and down to each convector.
All feed and return lines to the original loop are copper, and run open air right through the first floor apartment. As in, up through their floor, right up into their ceiling, and through my floor into my convectors.
these lines do as much to heat THEIR apartment as they do mine haha.
My questions are:
1. Can I replace these lines with pex. Minimizing heat loss. Also, I'd be able to reposition them in wall instead of being out in the open. Although that is a minor concern. The heat lost is #1
2. Convert to a through system. As in, eliminate the one way valves and convection setup, and go standard chain out from one into the next etc until return. Like a standard baseboard loop.
3. Remove huge old fin-type connectors in casing and replace with hot water baseboard.

Do you guys think any combination or all of the above can help improve efficiency and cut down on costs?
 
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Old 01-22-19, 10:03 AM
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Rather than replacing the pipes with PEX, why not just insulate & box them in?
You could replace the convectors with baseboard IF there is enough wall length. I wish my decorator (wife) would have allowed me to put in convectors when I installed the hot water heat.
 
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Old 01-22-19, 04:06 PM
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I could do that. Was a thought. But figured if I was going to change the setup, why not go all the way. You know?
Also, I have PLENTY of wall available for baseboards. The convectors themselves are in sub prime spots, such as in the living room, the couches need to be out a foot or 2, and in the winter, out ANOTHER foot or 2 to clear space to let the heat happen.
It's almost like we're sitting in the middle of the room to watch tv.
Would love to regain some space, and save money while I'm at it. Hence the ideas on design change.
My setup is old. Was installed in the 40's. Was coal burning before that lol.
Yes, my boiler is that old. (And needs to be rebuilt, including the burners, last done in the early 80's)
I dont have 10k+ to replace the system, so trying to see what 1k will do me.
 
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Old 01-22-19, 04:34 PM
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Were you planning on doing this yourself or having it done.

This is just a thought but if you are capable of doing a0ll this proposed work yourself in my opinion you could probably replace your boiler which would be less work that ripping our convectors and replacing and repiping baseboards and pipes.

With a new boiler which would include your new pump and firebox and not to over simplify but basicall cut your supply and return and boiler feed lines and disconnect electrical feed and slide one and then slide one in and reconnect lines.

As I said, that's the short version but it's all done in the basement with 3 water connections and 1 electrical connection.

That's were the savings would come in. By changing your emitters you gain nothing as far as efficiency goes because you're still heating that same old relic, unless you just don't want the convectors there is nothing wrong with them and they work very well.

Below is a sight where you can see your options for boilers and prices.

https://www.supplyhouse.com/Boilers-449000

Just my opinion.
 
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Old 01-22-19, 08:50 PM
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That's a very good point. And yes, I can do it. Just was trying to avoid one large purchase, and spread the 1k out over the summer. But may as well bite the bullet. Its something to mull over.
 
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Old 01-25-19, 02:42 AM
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@Spott is "right on" but a better explanation of your system is needed. You used a lot of terms that I am not familiar with and may indicate that you are not sure of how heating systems need to be piped.Your item #2, "Convert to a through system. As in, eliminate the one way valves and convection setup, and go standard chain out from one into the next etc until return. Like a standard baseboard loop", does not make a lot of sense to me. I am not trying to insult you, just understand what your ideas of piping are. As for the wall convectors they were a great source of heat and furniture only has to be about 6" to a foot from the front of the convector to get good heat circulation. If you install baseboard heating, you would still have to have the furniture moved away from the baseboards also. . You also said that there is a single loop around the basement, with individual branches w/1 way valvesup and down for each convector. From this statement, I am guessing that this is a monoflo system. If I am correct, you could add thermostats to each convector. Replacing this monoflo system would be a "sin". Just trying to understand your system.
 
 

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