Hot water radiator heat
I own a home that has 80 year old radiators and a forty year old hot water boiler. Last week during a cold snap, some radiators in unused rooms on the second floor froze and the radiator in the living room burst and shot a piece of radiator accross the room. Now I am faced with repair or replace. The heating contractor states that radiators are expensive to replace and it would be major work to tear open walls to get to the pipes on the second floor. Replace options that have been presented to me are an electric heat pump system in the attic which would also provide air conditioning. A UNICO system in the attic which would also provide air conditioning or a forced air furnance located in the basement with trunk lines to the second floor.
Are there other options? All of these come with a price tag of 11,000 to 14,000. The house is located in PA.
2nRe: Hot water radiator heat
I would definitely get a 2nd & 3rd opinion on this---it's a lot easier these days to replace broken & burst pipes to the 2nd floor in a hot water system with the use of PEX plastic piping, which can be routed thru wall cavities.
It's always much less expensive to work with & repair the system you have now, rather than put in a whole new system.
Besides, hot water heat is the best system you can have---there's no need to replace with radiators---you can transition into baseboard, convectors & kickspace heaters for a modern hot water heating system.