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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    1

    Post Gas Baseboard Heating

    Hi everyone,

    My wife and I moved to Michigan from Arizona 3 years ago and purchased a 3000 sq. ft. home that has a gas boiler with baseboard heating throughout. Never having this type of heating we absolutely love it. The house, however, is just over 20 years old and our gas bills are rather high. I called a contractor to see what our options were and he threw us a curve ball that sounds great in theory, but I have never heard of anyone else doing. He explained that we could do away with our gas boiler and water heater, and go with a tankless water heater for everything including heating our home. Now, I have thought of using a tankless water heater (renai, actually) to help reduce our gas costs, however, using this system to run my heat? I don't even know if it has ever been done before. If it does work this could be an even more energy efficient way to go than getting a new boiler and tankless unit combination.

    I just don't want to be stuck with the bill of having to install another boiler if and/or when this "idea" doesn't work.

    I just needed to bounce this thought off of others to see what you think.

    Thanks
    Rodney

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    556

    Default Re: Gas Baseboard Heating

    Rodney:

    I've always strongly favored a boiler to do the job of heating a house, especially in a northern state---it's no mistake that you enjoy and feel comfortable with a hydronic boiler---they're made to last and combine advanced engineering technology along with precision foundary materials usually of cast iron or stainless steel heat exchanger & combustion chambers.

    Despite returning heating efficiencies of 85 to 96%, most boilers today have shrunk to the size of a large suitcase--I also recommend an indirect hot water heater that relies on the hot boiler water to provide all the domestic tap water needed.

    But before deciding on any equipment replacement, you should take a close look at your exterior wall & attic insulation, and also make sure you have tight storm windows or dual pane windows---investment in these 2 areas often cost less than a new boiler, yet realize the highest return over a 5-10 year period in heating and cooling savings---blown-in insulation costs only hundreds of dollars & should be R19 in all exterior walls and R40 in the attic.

    There are several links below that describe the different types and classes of boilers---surprisingly, even a basic cast-iron gas-fired boiler by a quality company like Crown, Slant/Fin, Peerless or Biasi costs only $1500, yet delivers 85% heating efficiency, and lasts for decades--you won't find that in any tankless unit.

    Get several other estimates & if you can post the model # and make, I'll try to determine the age of your present boiler---check the metal tag attached to the boiler.

    http://www.aceee.org/consumerguide/heating.htm
    http://advice.thisoldhouse.com/showthread.php?t=3820
    http://advice.thisoldhouse.com/showthread.php?t=1639
    http://energystar.gpv/ia/products/pr..._prod_list.pdf
    Last edited by NashuaTech; 01-09-2009 at 12:07 AM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    1

    Smile Re: Gas Baseboard Heating

    I have a tankless system,coming from the Uk we have had water filled radiators for many years,they are extremly warm and very cost efficient.
    our new tankless boiler that we have here in canda is 95% efficient,does all we need and more,we have 3000 sq ft and run14 cast iron rads(we kept them because of the age of house),currently we are adding underfloor heatinf=g as well all to run off the boiler.

    our boiler is a Trinity 200,made by NTI Thermal,its ok,but at the time all that was available.if possible I would suggest A european brand much better and neater in design like Bosch or Worcester.I can always supply pictures of my set up if it helps
    Chris

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Fayette County, Ohio
    Posts
    5,836

    Default Re: Gas Baseboard Heating

    One has to ask. You have rather high gas bills compared to what? What you had in Arizona or to your neighbors? What temperature do you have your thermostat set? Do you have a set back thermostat or do you turn your heat down at night?

    Nashua gave some very good advice about insulation and sealing first. But habits can also have a large affect on costs.
    Jack
    Be sure you live your life, because you are a long time dead.-Scottish Proverb

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