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Supervisor
02-28-2012, 01:53 PM
Hi Guys, Gals,

Not sure if this is the right place to ask this...(Frickin newbie)-I am a carpenter/construction super that has worked just enough with HVAC pro's to be dangerous, I am looking for some feedback about my latest idea, that is I have just finished installing all of the pex in my basement slab, 36X48, now I am starting to think about the zoning of my first floor and how I am going to run my circuits and I start looking at my hearth where my wood stove is going and I thought....instead of running around the hearth maybe I could run some 3/4" copper tubing through the mud slab of the hearth and help the boiler with the heat load, that being said I do understand that the floor temps that are needed are about 90 degree's for the basement slab and 120 degree's )for the first floor(pex in Extruded plates attached to sub floor with 3/4" hardwood on top), I am not sure of the water temps that I could get back through this "copper loop of radiant" if I assembled it, that being said I also understand that after about 200 degree's things get downright dangerous,=steam Pressure) so obviously safety measures have to be used, but I thought I might ask for thoughts on this project.....anyone......anyone....Bueller.

Lastly I am working with a Licensed tech for my boiler install, I just hoped to have a better handle on my scope before getting him to price this out. I don't like wasting his time so I can figure things out.



Thanks Chris

jadnashua
02-28-2012, 02:46 PM
Not sure trying to engineer a way to add heat to the water from a wood stove is worth the engineering costs to make it safe. I'm sure you'll get some other opinions.

Hackney plumbing
02-28-2012, 03:00 PM
I love this kinda thread. I live in a hot climate but we need heat a few times a year. Anyway I was reading a few nights ago about a kit you can buy that installs inside a woodstove I believe used to heat the water for potable domestic or whatever. cant remembr the name but will try to find it for you.

I considered building a wood fired boiler and installing a water to air heat exchanger in my duct work. With a gazillion controls to operate it all. LOL

Hackney plumbing
02-28-2012, 03:07 PM
Here is the link. I'm not sure if they work or not or if their worth it? Seems like it would be easy enough to build it yourself. Looks like its just bent stainless tube.

http://www.hilkoil.com/

Dana
02-28-2012, 03:20 PM
He's talking about using the heat from the hearth, not direct from the wood stove. (SFAIK there are no wood-stove boiler hacks kit or otherwise that meet MA code.)

Simply running PEX in the hearth has no safety consequences. (If the hearth is above 220F it means your house is already on fire, eh?;-) ) But the heat transfer rates won't be ultra-high.

If you want to run your radiant with wood, there ARE code-compliant high efficiency wood boilers out there. (A buddy of mine just a few miles down the road from you in Ashby is running his radiant heated house off a wood boiler.)

Hackney plumbing
02-28-2012, 03:25 PM
He's talking about using the heat from the hearth, not direct from the wood stove. (SFAIK there are no wood-stove boiler hacks kit or otherwise that meet MA code.)

Simply running PEX in the hearth has no safety consequences. (If the hearth is above 220F it means your house is already on fire, eh?;-) ) But the heat transfer rates won't be ultra-high.

If you want to run your radiant with wood, there ARE code-compliant high efficiency wood boilers out there. (A buddy of mine just a few miles down the road from you in Ashby is running his radiant heated house off a wood boiler.)

Yeah I think taking it from the stove would be better. Maybe they could make it legal. For me personally at my house I can do anything I want,so I may buy one just to play around with.

Hackney plumbing
02-28-2012, 03:32 PM
He's talking about using the heat from the hearth, not direct from the wood stove. (SFAIK there are no wood-stove boiler hacks kit or otherwise that meet MA code.)

Simply running PEX in the hearth has no safety consequences. (If the hearth is above 220F it means your house is already on fire, eh?;-) ) But the heat transfer rates won't be ultra-high.

If you want to run your radiant with wood, there ARE code-compliant high efficiency wood boilers out there. (A buddy of mine just a few miles down the road from you in Ashby is running his radiant heated house off a wood boiler.)

Yeah I think taking it from the stove would be better. Maybe they could make it legal. For me personally at my house I can do anything I want,so I may buy one just to play around with.

Its listed by the "Energy Testing Laboratory of Maine" Southern Maine Vocational technical institute.

Dana
02-29-2012, 07:02 AM
If Hilkoil will cover the cost of what the insurance company refused to when your house burns down or floods after the steam explosion, GREAT! ;-)

Seriously, to later sell your house in MA you'd probably have to yank the thing out (as well as your hacked-up woodstove) first.

To do wood-fired hydronic systems legally in MA you need to use an outdoor wood boiler, that appears on the approved list (http://www.mass.gov/dep/air/community/certohh.htm). I'm not sure if Lunenburg has any further restrictions (probably not), but many higher-density towns restrict wood burning appliances for local outdoor air quality reasons.

But this is beyond the scope of the initial question. Bottom line, yes you can give a modest boost to the hydronic systems embedding a PEX loop in the hearth to utilize the wood-stove heat in it's thermal mass, but it's probably not worth the effort.

Hackney plumbing
02-29-2012, 07:11 AM
If Hilkoil will cover the cost of what the insurance company refused to when your house burns down or floods after the steam explosion, GREAT! ;-)

Seriously, to later sell your house in MA you'd probably have to yank the thing out (as well as your hacked-up woodstove) first.

To do wood-fired hydronic systems legally in MA you need to use an outdoor wood boiler, that appears on the approved list (http://www.mass.gov/dep/air/community/certohh.htm). I'm not sure if Lunenburg has any further restrictions (probably not), but many higher-density towns restrict wood burning appliances for local outdoor air quality reasons.

But this is beyond the scope of the initial question. Bottom line, yes you can give a modest boost to the hydronic systems embedding a PEX loop in the hearth to utilize the wood-stove heat in it's thermal mass, but it's probably not worth the effort.

So is the Hilkoil approved in Maine or not? I'm about to call Hilkoil and ask. I'd hate for you to run them through the mud because you dont like Hilkoil. Its either approved or not........no probably.

Ok I called Hilkoil. The guy was really nice and said the tubes are tested by UL and to check with ALL local code departments before installation. He said they are schedule 40 stainless pipe. You can add as many safety devices as you want.

Supervisor
02-29-2012, 07:18 AM
Hey Guys,

Thanks for the input, I am simply thinking to use some of the heat that gets driven into the concrete/brick mass that is my hearth, and circulate water through it and back to the manifold that is connected to my slab in the basement, It did not seem to me as if it would be something that would be "against code", as I am not actually interfacing the two combustion systems, but simply using the hearth as an air to water heat exchanger, I was thinking using copper instead of Pex because of the unknown(to me) at this point of the actual temp that the hearth will get to, But I will be checking that link you sent Hack, I would like to understand more....especially the controls side which seems to have no end.

Thanks again, Chris

Hackney plumbing
02-29-2012, 07:25 AM
Hey Guys,

Thanks for the input, I am simply thinking to use some of the heat that gets driven into the concrete/brick mass that is my hearth, and circulate water through it and back to the manifold that is connected to my slab in the basement, It did not seem to me as if it would be something that would be "against code", as I am not actually interfacing the two combustion systems, but simply using the hearth as an air to water heat exchanger, I was thinking using copper instead of Pex because of the unknown(to me) at this point of the actual temp that the hearth will get to, But I will be checking that link you sent Hack, I would like to understand more....especially the controls side which seems to have no end.

Thanks again, Chris

Thanks for posting. I understand your not looking for the coil I posted a link to but thought it could be a consideration of yours if you had not seen it. I was thinking of going solar for water heating and some space heating but during long periods of no sun I could fire an outside stove off with one of those Hilkoil tubes in it to make hot water.

It seems the hearth floor wouldn't get hot enough if you put the pipes in the floor because the heat would mostly be rising.

Supervisor
02-29-2012, 07:51 AM
Thanks for the input Hackney, Dana, I think that Hilkoil coil is rather interesting, I think if set up properly could be very useful, but also a coil inside the firebox has a potential to create steam.

I am going to send something through the hearth to attempt to capture some heat, I may set it up with a temp sensor on the supply and return to see what I can get out of it.

I spoke with my balancer (air/water) and he stated I should get the primary hydronic system up and running for at least a year before I start "screwing with supplemental stuff" as I might be opening Pandora's box if there are any issues with the new boiler/radiant/controls etc, even reputable qualified contractors run into situations where they have issue's with getting a system to function in the manor that is expected, adding this wild card could complicate the troubleshooting process and actually cost extra.

Thanks again guys, I will let you know how the temp reading go.

Chris

jadnashua
02-29-2012, 11:14 AM
MA is VERY particular about anything plumbing, and first, if caught, you'll get in trouble if you do any plumbing if you don't have a license, even in your own home. So, doesn't really matter what approvals things may have on a national basis, local control trumps that. Things that don't have a national approval are unlikely to make the MA approved list, but it is definately not certain to be approved for use in MA, even with a national approval. Not sure if they separate HVAC/hydonic from potable and waste plumbing...you'd have to check.

Dana
02-29-2012, 01:55 PM
The heat in the hearth is already inside of conditioned space, so the only thing you're achieving with the coil is the ability to move that heat to another room/zone. I'm not sure it's worth the trouble- the heat tranfer rate between the woodstove and the hearth is only about 2 BTU/hour per square foot per degree of temperature difference.

Say the bottom of the woodstove is 4 square feet, the surface of the hearth directly beneath the stove is a pretty-warm 120F, and the wood stove is a way-too-hot-to-touch 300F. That's a delta-T of 180F, times 4 feet = 720 BTU/hr. If the hearth is warmer than that, the transfer rate drops, if the wood stove is hotter than that you have to put on an asbestos suit to get near it. Considering your whole house heat load at a modest 30F outdoors is probably 15,000BTU/hr, how much of a boost is 720BT/hr? A 300F wood stove in 70F room is already pouring more than 5,000 BTU/hour into just that room. (Say it's ~4 square feet per side, 6 sides, the side facing the warm hearth is putting out 720BTU/hr, but the other 5x4 =20 square feet times a delta-T of 230F for 4600BTU/hr, giving a total of ~5320 BTU/hr, enough to heat a substantial sized room/zone. Ideally what you'd want is to be able to pump away a larger fraction of it's total output to remote zones, but with primarily just the bottom of the stove facing the hearth it's just not in the cards.

The Hilkoil folks claim "Exceeds ASME, ASTM and US boiler codes", but they don't have any of those certifications. They also claim, "You're covered by product liability insurance", but offer no details. I couldn't find any test report listings other evidence of ETLM testing & labeling in online searches either (where did you find that?), so I'm not sure what that means relative to legal installation in Maine, but it's doubtful.

Even if the components might meet some sort of spec, the manner in which you hack up the stove is unlikely to meet any sort of safety agency spec, and any user-modified system would likely absolve the manufacturer of liability. At the end of their installation instructions (http://www.meyermfg.com/domesticcoil-install.pdf) is the disclaimer:

"We make no warranty covering consequential damages, incidental
damages, or incidental expenses, including injury to persons or
property, which may occur during the use of this product."

I'll believe that part, eh? ;-)

If the fuel source for your radiant is oil or propane, you might want to consider putting the "supplemental stuff" money into a mini-split air source heat pump, the output of which costs about half that of oil or propane at current Nat'l Grid electricity pricing (a bit more than natural gas heating, but not a LOT more), and it'll air-condition at high efficiency too. It's not a cushy as warm floors, but you can raise the temp to make up for it on comfort-factor and still save big on the heating bills. Even if it's only covering half your space heating energy it's a measurable dent. (During the spring/fall shoulder seasons it's more efficient than geothermal, and CHEAPER than natural gas at current MA gas pricing, and more likely to cover the entire heat load then.)

Hackney plumbing
02-29-2012, 03:57 PM
The bottom of this page.

http://www.hilkoil.com/contact.htm

Dana
03-01-2012, 09:06 AM
http://www.hilkoil.com/Underwriters_Label.JPG

Couldn't find an online access to the ETLM listing for 80-08-109 to know what level of UL testing was performed to know what it really covers.

Hackney plumbing
03-01-2012, 11:43 AM
http://www.hilkoil.com/Underwriters_Label.JPG

Couldn't find an online access to the ETLM listing for 80-08-109 to know what level of UL testing was performed to know what it really covers.

So what did they do...listed it and give it the stamp but then in the fine print say it cant be used? LOL

Until you can find somthing that says it cant be used.......I'd drop it.

I cant prove everything.......lol

ballvalve
03-01-2012, 12:20 PM
Before anyone buys a hilcoil - PM me, I have govt surplus SS rigs with about 3 or 4 loops, looks like submarine quality. Also a pile of palleted heat exchangers, also gov surplus, about 4x4 feet with a beautiful 120v long and quiet fan included. Top quality brass and copper coils. had so many, scrapped a few - but they are new. Think I got 450$ for one rig. We - our govt. paid over 12,000$ for each. I'll try and post a pic soon of these - really useful for utilizing wood heat with water.

A great system would be a section of stovepipe wrapped with that sewer water flat copper pipe that Dana has posted for shower drains.

I'll carve a potato "UL" stamp and mark my rigs for you. Like the chinese do.

Hackney plumbing
03-01-2012, 01:35 PM
Before anyone buys a hilcoil - PM me, I have govt surplus SS rigs with about 3 or 4 loops, looks like submarine quality. Also a pile of palleted heat exchangers, also gov surplus, about 4x4 feet with a beautiful 120v long and quiet fan included. Top quality brass and copper coils. had so many, scrapped a few - but they are new. Think I got 450$ for one rig. We - our govt. paid over 12,000$ for each. I'll try and post a pic soon of these - really useful for utilizing wood heat with water.

A great system would be a section of stovepipe wrapped with that sewer water flat copper pipe that Dana has posted for shower drains.

I'll carve a potato "UL" stamp and mark my rigs for you. Like the chinese do.

I would love to see some pics of those exchangers when you get a chance. Very cool.

jadnashua
03-01-2012, 01:35 PM
As I said earlier, MA is very particular about what gets used and approved in their state... http://license.reg.state.ma.us/pubLic/pl_products/pb_pre_form.asp

If it's not on their approved list, you'll have troubles. Not to say you can't try to get it approved, but if not already done, it can be a pain. Hilcoil gets no hits for approved products.

Hackney plumbing
03-01-2012, 01:52 PM
As I said earlier, MA is very particular about what gets used and approved in their state... http://license.reg.state.ma.us/pubLic/pl_products/pb_pre_form.asp

If it's not on their approved list, you'll have troubles. Not to say you can't try to get it approved, but if not already done, it can be a pain. Hilcoil gets no hits for approved products.

Those are plumbing approvals. Not sure if they would consider it plumbing. Anyway its made by Thermo-Bilt Inc. not Hilkoil.

How much water do you think 20' of 3/4" stainless sch 40 would hold?

Are pressure cookers legal in Maine? The biggest pressure cooker will hold how much water? You know some people actually cook on woodstoves.

You know I think you guys are onto somthing big here.......you dont think they photoshopped that approval and just slapped it on their website? Lordy I hope not.

ADD>.................................................. .................................................. .................................................V

I was looking over the Maine website. Those people are flippin crazy with all their crazy rules and laws.

Read this. Pay very close attention to the last paragraph. Read what they consider a "meal" and how you must eat it. LOL CRAZY
.................................................. .................................................. .................................................. ...........................................

2.18: Resealing of Partially Consumed Bottles of Wine
(1)
No holder of a restaurant type license issued pursuant to the provisions of M.G.L. c. 138, 12 and no holder of a hotel type license issued pursuant to the provisions of M.G.L. c. 138, 12 shall permit a patron to retain and take off the licensed premises so much of a bottle of wine purchased by that patron with a meal and not totally consumed by that patron during the meal, except when the bottle of wine is re-sealed in compliance with 204 CMR 2.18.
(2)
Only one partially consumed bottle of wine per patron may be resealed and removed from the restaurant or hotel licensed premises pursuant to 204 CMR 2.18.
(3)
A receipt that prominently displays the date of the purchase of the meal must be furnished to the patron. The receipt must show both the purchase of the meal and the purchase of the bottle of wine.
(4)
Before permitting the carry out of a bottle of wine pursuant to 204 CMR 2.18, the holder of a restaurant type license or its employees or the holder of a hotel type license or its employees must:
(a)
securely reseal the bottle of wine;
(b)
place the resealed bottle in a one-time-use tamper-proof transparent bag that insures that the patron cannot gain access to the bottle while in transit after the bag is sealed;
(c)
securely seal the bag; and
(d)
affix the receipt to the sealed bag.
(5)
For the purpose of 204 CMR 2.18, the word “meal” shall mean the purchase by one person of a diversified selection of food which ordinarily is classified as an "entree" or "main course" which ordinarily cannot be consumed without the use of tableware and which cannot be conveniently consumed while standing or walking or the purchase by two or more persons of a diversified selection of food which is priced at more than $20.00 and ordinarily cannot be consumed without the use of tableware and which cannot be conveniently consumed while standing or walking.

jadnashua
03-01-2012, 02:50 PM
Doesn't really matter whether you like it or not...

My sister moved to England for awhile. They require ALL gas burning appliances to be inspected and recertified multiple times per year. Now, how'd you like to pay someone to do that on a regular basis or they shut your gas off.

She had some appliances delivered, but federal safety rules prohibit them from carrying anything up more than two steps. They are required to use a stair climbing machine for things exceeding a certain weight, and that requires at least a 4' landing so it can maneuver and remain stable. Their old house didn't have large enough landings, and they ended up carrying the things up themselves. Rules are the rules...if you don't like them, either move, or petition to have them changed.

It's not necessarily whether something would work or not, but MA laws have made it illegal to use something in certain classes of products that they haven't already approved for use. Just like CA has certain rules on cars, MA does to, and the list goes on.

Hackney plumbing
03-01-2012, 03:16 PM
Doesn't really matter whether you like it or not...

My sister moved to England for awhile. They require ALL gas burning appliances to be inspected and recertified multiple times per year. Now, how'd you like to pay someone to do that on a regular basis or they shut your gas off.

She had some appliances delivered, but federal safety rules prohibit them from carrying anything up more than two steps. They are required to use a stair climbing machine for things exceeding a certain weight, and that requires at least a 4' landing so it can maneuver and remain stable. Their old house didn't have large enough landings, and they ended up carrying the things up themselves. Rules are the rules...if you don't like them, either move, or petition to have them changed.

It's not necessarily whether something would work or not, but MA laws have made it illegal to use something in certain classes of products that they haven't already approved for use. Just like CA has certain rules on cars, MA does to, and the list goes on.

It doesn't matter if I like it or not? No kidding,thats kind of stating the obvious. I dont live there. Thank Jesus.

I still say the Hikoil is allowed for use in Maine,they bought and paid for their approval of their bent stainless sch 40 pipe. Thats what that approval is for,not so a guy can buy it and mount it on his wall over his fireplace. Its not art....lol

Dana
03-02-2012, 11:17 AM
The "approval" may be very application specific- without the document in hand I wouldn't put much stock in the letters U and L in a circle on a 12 cent label. Modifying a wood stove in any significant way (like cutting holes in it) is also of dubious code compliance and insuarablity (even in Maine), even if the bent pipe you jam in there has valid safety agency labeling. Building something out of all UL-approved parts does not mean the result would pass a relevant UL safety test for the application.

Pressure cookers are legal in MA, but the burner under it is a fraction of the output of a wood stove, and the water supply is a fixed amount, so it's not really the best analogy.

No Thermo-Bilt products appear on the MA approvals list, so for at least this case it can be used as art over the fireplace, but not IN the fireplace (or anywhere else) if connected to potable or heating system plumbing.

Jim- thanks for the link to the MA list! (It's handy for convincing some skeptics that drainwater heat recovery heat exchangers (http://license.reg.state.ma.us/pubLic/pl_products/pb_search.asp?type=P&manufacturer=Renewability+Energy+Inc.&model=&product=&description=&psize=50) are in fact code-legal here.)

Hackney plumbing
03-02-2012, 11:54 AM
So now that you've spent what...3 days now trying to convince everyone how its not approved even tho it has the label.

Try spending 3 minutes explaining to everyone how dangerous this loop is and why.

After that try to find ONE that has actually blown up and post a link to the discussion.

Goodluck with that.

Have you ever considered the loop would be for experimental use? You know its very difficult to stop people from experimenting within their own home.......I dont care where ya live. I have no idea but they are sold and I'm buying one. I know how to install relief valves.

jadnashua
03-02-2012, 02:16 PM
If you really want one, then that time might be better spent convincing the agency that approves things for MA. Until then, your argument is pointless. Not saying I agree with MA and the way they do things (I purposly live over the border in NH), but they have their own way of doing things...don't like it, leave or vote! Water, when it expands into steam, gets 1600x larger. If it does that explosively, even a small amount can create lots of schrapnel. A simple coil, with no safety controls in an uncontrolled fire box is simply asking for trouble. A coil in and of itself is only one component, and while it may pass tests under some controlled circumstances, an open fire box is not one of them.

Dana
03-02-2012, 03:06 PM
The biggest safety & sanity question marks are about the DIY hack to the wood stove more so than the heat exchanger itself, and in places that care more about stack emissions, whether the hack changes the validity of the EPA tests. I can believe that some hacks will change the stove sufficiently to affect emissions, most won't, but that's an opinion, whereas agency labeling requires testing.

While they allege that it exceeds ASME & ASTM standards, it carries no ASME & ASTM labels, and it's fair to ask "Why not?".

I'm not saying it isn't labeled at all, only that we have no idea the testing for what it's labeled for, and whether that's sufficient protection from liability for a DIY installation. There is an entire Bible of UL tests that are only relevant to particular applications- the label they use is cryptic about which UL standard it met. (I've designed many grid connected electronic items that bear a UL label, but some with a UL label for one application would fail miserably in a similar related application.) The UL labeling may begin and end with the pressure testing of the unit itself, independently of the real world potable and heating systems it might realistically be attached to might handler, or it could be more application-specific relative to pumped or convective loops for heating the water in a hot water tank, we simply can't tell. I DO know that some inspectors in my town would have a hissy-fit and condemn the heating system were it discovered, and require that it be removed and re-inspected before signing off on the system. YMMV. (This type of inspector is by no means a MA-only phenomenon- I've dealt with similar in WA and IL.)

It's a lot simpler from a code & labeling point of view if the wood stove was manufactured tested & EPA/other certified with the integral coil rather than as a retrofit hack.

quarry
03-02-2012, 06:00 PM
use as many transfer plates as you can !!!. Trust me.

Hackney plumbing
03-02-2012, 09:30 PM
The biggest safety & sanity question marks are about the DIY hack to the wood stove more so than the heat exchanger itself, and in places that care more about stack emissions, whether the hack changes the validity of the EPA tests. I can believe that some hacks will change the stove sufficiently to affect emissions, most won't, but that's an opinion, whereas agency labeling requires testing.

While they allege that it exceeds ASME & ASTM standards, it carries no ASME & ASTM labels, and it's fair to ask "Why not?".

I'm not saying it isn't labeled at all, only that we have no idea the testing for what it's labeled for, and whether that's sufficient protection from liability for a DIY installation. There is an entire Bible of UL tests that are only relevant to particular applications- the label they use is cryptic about which UL standard it met. (I've designed many grid connected electronic items that bear a UL label, but some with a UL label for one application would fail miserably in a similar related application.) The UL labeling may begin and end with the pressure testing of the unit itself, independently of the real world potable and heating systems it might realistically be attached to might handler, or it could be more application-specific relative to pumped or convective loops for heating the water in a hot water tank, we simply can't tell. I DO know that some inspectors in my town would have a hissy-fit and condemn the heating system were it discovered, and require that it be removed and re-inspected before signing off on the system. YMMV. (This type of inspector is by no means a MA-only phenomenon- I've dealt with similar in WA and IL.)

It's a lot simpler from a code & labeling point of view if the wood stove was manufactured tested & EPA/other certified with the integral coil rather than as a retrofit hack.

So your saying everything must be purchased as a complete unit,yeah ok uh huh. LOL

You dont think when they gave the approval and the label you posted above it wasn't tested AS ITS INTENDED USE? Sure it was.

Hey its easy enough to present the Hilkoil to an inspector,explain your plan and work together. Your alittle too wrapped up into proving somthing that you cant........everythings not online and you dont know everything......so your giving your opinion. Fine with me your entitled to your opinion,no one is saying your not.

If you dont like the Hilkoils then dont use it,its ok with me. But dont try to state that they are not approved period and anyone who uses it is a hack.....thats kinda arrogant and ignorant at the same time.

jadnashua
03-03-2012, 06:40 PM
And when have you practiced your trade in MA? Have a license there? Know how they work? Without knowing what the test was for, what conditions it was used for, you're blowing smoke. MA is a different world...they do things their own way. The only way to know for sure is to ask the inspector in the locality.

Hackney plumbing
03-03-2012, 07:01 PM
And when have you practiced your trade in MA? Have a license there? Know how they work? Without knowing what the test was for, what conditions it was used for, you're blowing smoke. MA is a different world...they do things their own way. The only way to know for sure is to ask the inspector in the locality.

I never told the guy to break any laws....now did I? Sure everyone agrees to get it approved by the local inspector. I stated that 20 posts ago.. Go back and find it,take the time to read what your complaining about at least.

The approval sticker is good enough for me until a local inspector says I cant use it and then if I felt like it I may take it to court and make a big deal out of it. I usually get my way if I'm willing to pay enough money. Grown men get what they want,I know I do.

Now to answer your sacastic questions for you.

No I have never been to Maine and I have no plans to ever go. I like it warm to hot weather.

No I do not have a license in Maine,and never will.

I hope they work just like everyone else. Everyone needs a job at some point in their life,if not for the money then for the experience.

No ones blowing smoke. I'm going to buy a Hilkoil and a stove and butcher it in my garage and use it to heat my house and my water in the winter.......when I want to. Whats a $1,000.00 for a fun project like that? Thats cheap fun.

Whats the problem?

Dana
03-05-2012, 09:00 AM
"Hey its easy enough to present the Hilkoil to an inspector,explain your plan and work together."

Easier said than done in most of the states where I've worked. YMMV. In MA I can pretty much guarantee you that explaining any part of it to the inspector would get the project nixed completely, even if you had third party engineering test data to prove it was safe when installed precisely as you planned.

"But dont try to state that they are not approved period and anyone who uses it is a hack.....thats kinda arrogant and ignorant at the same time. "

Installing a Hilkoil is by definition a "hack", from an enginerd's definition of the term- an untested and not fully characterized modification to a system (and that isn't universally a bad thing.) I can understand how my use of that term may have been misconstrued to mean that "anyone who uses it is a hack", (an incompetent practitioner), which is a very different meaning that what I intended.

Hackney plumbing
03-05-2012, 09:09 AM
"Hey its easy enough to present the Hilkoil to an inspector,explain your plan and work together."

Easier said than done in most of the states where I've worked. YMMV. In MA I can pretty much guarantee you that explaining any part of it to the inspector would get the project nixed completely, even if you had third party engineering test data to prove it was safe when installed precisely as you planned.

"But dont try to state that they are not approved period and anyone who uses it is a hack.....thats kinda arrogant and ignorant at the same time. "

Installing a Hilkoil is by definition a "hack", from an enginerd's definition of the term- an untested and not fully characterized modification to a system (and that isn't universally a bad thing.) I can understand how my use of that term may have been misconstrued to mean that "anyone who uses it is a hack", (an incompetent practitioner), which is a very different meaning that what I intended.

It has been tested and it has the label. You just cant read all about it online.....big deal.

I've said it about 4 or 5 times now and I'm going to say it again. Simply talk to a local inspector and get it approved. It happens everyday all over the country with all types of mechanical installs.

What if I've already called Maine and a inspector said he has one in his hunting camp stove???? What would you say then? Think about that before you answer.

Dana
03-05-2012, 12:39 PM
Think? Why start now!?!

I'd say: Good for him, and I hope it's all working out for him!

jadnashua
03-05-2012, 03:32 PM
As has been said several times, when it comes to plumbing issues, MA is a different world from most of the rest of the country. Same thing with cars and a lot of other things. MA follows CA in a lot of things, and they're pretty stringent on how they do things there as well. In working with people from MA for over 30-years, I've heard lots of first-hand issues people have had with approvals and inspectors.

Hackney plumbing
03-05-2012, 04:22 PM
As has been said several times, when it comes to plumbing issues, MA is a different world from most of the rest of the country. Same thing with cars and a lot of other things. MA follows CA in a lot of things, and they're pretty stringent on how they do things there as well. In working with people from MA for over 30-years, I've heard lots of first-hand issues people have had with approvals and inspectors.

So what??? That doesn't mean they will not allow a Hilkoil.

I have an idea.....let everyone ask their local inspection department. For the 6th time. If they say no.......Its not like I'ma gonna care anyway. Thats too bad for them...at least they tried.

jadnashua
03-05-2012, 08:48 PM
The only way to know for sure is to ask the inspector in the locality.

Think I already said to check...

Dana
03-06-2012, 10:57 AM
In my direct MA experience I have yet to meet the inspector willing to put their neck out by explicitly allowing something that isn't enshrined in code or on the approved products list for the application. One inspector even made me swap out my circa 1923 toilet for an approved low-volume version before signing off on a drainwater heat recovery heat exchanger- a model that IS on the approved list, since the drain used by said toilet was touched. The fact that indoors wood boilers are explicitly disallowed for heating systems in MA doesn't make me hopeful on the HilKoil, but sure, if you REALLY want that thing, give it a shot. Personally I'd only play "ask the inspector" if I knew them and had a 100% positive experience with them. YMMV.

I've read of someone in MI who was required to REMOVE the very same drainwater heat exchanger model installed in my house over the fact that a brazed copper manifold on the potable side was made from a material thicker than the range specified by the relevant ASTM B88 (http://www.astm.org/Standards/B88.htm) testing for potable piping and thus wasn't allowed to have the marking stripe, despite having met even tougher ASTM B75 (http://www.astm.org/Standards/B75.htm) standards not referenced in plumbing code. And this was even after evidence of the testing and the explanation for use of the (superior) thicker material was supplied by the manufacturer! They're out there, and they don't all live in MA.

ballvalve
03-06-2012, 12:09 PM
Only a masochist would pull a permit to add a coil to your stove. If you make it a OPEN system, the worst that can happen is you boil off your water. From the open, raised storage [convection circ] tank you pull your heat through a second larger coil.

Supervisor
03-08-2012, 11:13 AM
The "approval" may be very application specific- without the document in hand I wouldn't put much stock in the letters U and L in a circle on a 12 cent label. Modifying a wood stove in any significant way (like cutting holes in it) is also of dubious code compliance and insuarablity (even in Maine), even if the bent pipe you jam in there has valid safety agency labeling. Building something out of all UL-approved parts does not mean the result would pass a relevant UL safety test for the application.

Pressure cookers are legal in MA, but the burner under it is a fraction of the output of a wood stove, and the water supply is a fixed amount, so it's not really the best analogy.

No Thermo-Bilt products appear on the MA approvals list, so for at least this case it can be used as art over the fireplace, but not IN the fireplace (or anywhere else) if connected to potable or heating system plumbing.

Jim- thanks for the link to the MA list! (It's handy for convincing some skeptics that drainwater heat recovery heat exchangers (http://license.reg.state.ma.us/pubLic/pl_products/pb_search.asp?type=P&manufacturer=Renewability+Energy+Inc.&model=&product=&description=&psize=50) are in fact code-legal here.)
Dana, sorry I have been away for a few days trying to get the rest of the house framed, and just went through that drainwater heat recovery thread... great info, I only have one problem I dont have any vertical drain...or very small amounts, will this work in a horizontal application??

Thanks Chris

Dana
03-08-2012, 12:10 PM
Drainwater heat recovery units of this type rely on the surface tension of the water inside the drain to spread it out into a thin film covering the interior surface of the drain, maximizing surface contact for better heat transfer. That surface tension doesn't cut it against the forces of gravity if you lay the thing on it's side. They make some pretty stubby versions (as short as 18" from some manufacturers), but the total surface area of the center-bore drain counts- fatter & longer ==> higher return efficiency. To get ~50% heat returned at 2.5gpm flow you need about 48" potable wrap built onto 4" copper drain drain, or 60" wrap on 3" drain. Natural Resources Canada maintains a list of models that are third-party tested (http://oee.nrcan.gc.ca/residential/personal/retrofit/13302) for efficiency under standardized conditions for apples-to-apples comparisons, and for different levels of government subsidy.

EFI in Westborough (http://oee.nrcan.gc.ca/residential/personal/retrofit/13302) is a US distributor for Renewability ( PowerPipe), but the shortest one they list as standard product is 36" long. (They'll open an account and sell them onesie-twosie quantities over the phone if you have a credit card number, and they don't hose you bad with handling charges on the shipping either.) If that's too long, Renewability has a 4 x 30" that you can order off their website (http://www.renewability.com/order_powerpipe_online.html) (at a full retail type price, so as not to compete with their distributors).

There is one vendor (http://www.ecodrain.ca/en/where-buy) with a plate-type HX designed for horizontal apps, but I'd be inclined to think that the clog risk and loss of performance to sludge would be considerable with any plate type system. They don't have any NRCAN-third-party tested units that qualify for Canadian subsidy (yet), and the design seems to be evolving from an expensive all-stainless version from a couple of years ago to something else:

was: http://www.sabmagazine.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2009/02/14_prod_ecodrain.jpg

now:
http://www.ecohomemagazine.com/Images/EcoDrain-Horizontal-Exchang_tcm14-388606.jpg

From a cost/benefit point of view, the payback on any of them is dead-slow for 1-2 person families heating hot water with natural gas, but for a showering family of 4 heating hot water with propane, oil, or electricity it's a pretty good investment. Since the drain has to flow while the hot water is running to get any heat return, it works great for showers, but not at all for baths.

jimbo
04-17-2013, 11:41 AM
quote" Originally Posted by Danahttp://www.terrylove.com/forums/images/buttons/viewpost-right.png (http://www.terrylove.com/forums/showthread.php?p=335992#post335992)
Pressure cookers are legal in MA, "



They might be legal today, but by tomorrow, I suspect they may NOT be!!!!!!!!!!!!

Dana
04-17-2013, 02:08 PM
quote" Originally Posted by Danahttp://www.terrylove.com/forums/images/buttons/viewpost-right.png (http://www.terrylove.com/forums/showthread.php?p=335992#post335992)
Pressure cookers are legal in MA, "



They might be legal today, but by tomorrow, I suspect they may NOT be!!!!!!!!!!!!

Not even at yard sales... :-(

I personally know at two people who were close enough to feel the heat of the first blast. Fortunately their bodies are intact, but the pschological bits are still TBD. (One is the mother of a 3 year old, who was gladly at home with her dad.)

I'm sorry to report that the other drainwater heat exchanger manufacturers don't seem to be listed on the MA Accepted Plumbing Products (http://license.reg.state.ma.us/pubLic/pl_products/pb_pre_form.asp) online listings (not that it would let that stop me from installing a GFX, Retherm or Watercycles or Thermodrain or EcoDrain product- even if it took a variance or a heart-to-heart with the inspector & a note from my mom.)

It probably doesn't take a huge effort to get on that list though, if the manufacturing & materials are up to code for other locations, but it probably WOULD take a variance to get it approved by many inspectors, who are on the hook if for some reason it becomes a hazard after they sign off on it without higher approval. I'd be pretty happy to see more competition in this market- it's not as if there's rocket science behind the designs. At some point I'd think the price of copper would drive the retail numbers as much as anything, but it's a tiny market with but a handful of players, and they all seem to be sniping at one another.

It's good to know I have no credibility on this forum though, I was worried that I might actually start making sense or that people might take me seriously. :cool:

I've never bothered counting my drainwater heat exchanger discussions, does this one count as 201?