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Thread: ?'s about new proposed system to replace arcoliner

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  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member dana123's Avatar
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    Oct 2011

    Default ?'s about new proposed system to replace arcoliner

    I have an old arcoliner. gas fired tankless boiler and water heater. it was originally oil fired and i was told maybe coal before that. it has been well maintained, has a new burner, and low water cutoff. The aquastat needs replacing but isnt affecting anything the way it is now. I currently have endless hot water on demand(and it is really on demand, immediately hot except in the summer when it takes about a minute to heat up.) It heats the house very well despite there being no wall insulation(old stucco house), heats the basement, and two extra rooms that dont have radiators in them.

    Ive had a bid to replace it and am concerned that what is proposed is not sufficient, and have read bad reviews about the proposed boiler. Any info/suggestions/comments would be greatly appreciated.

    I was told that what would be installed is a Dunkirk 124/4steam boiler with an 82% effeciency rating with a burner and an indirect fired Burnham 30 gallon water tank. I was told the water tank supplied 6 gallons per minute of 125 degree water and had a recovery rate of 100 per hour and that i would have endless 125 degree water.

    My concerns are these, I have read horrible reviews about the Dunkirk boilers, and cannot find any info about the burnham indirect fire water heater. i also have a 120 gallon bath tub(to the overflow), and we are tub people and sometimes take back to back baths while other appliances are running in the house(washer, dishwasher, sink, etc). Im also thinking the basement will no longer be heated with a new boiler which would mean cold floors as they are not insulated either, and i was told that a vent would need to be cut into the side of the house to vent it instead of using the chimney which would increase the effeciency.

    Any thoughts?

    Thank you!

  2. #2
    In the Trades Tom Sawyer's Avatar
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    Nov 2010


    The reason you read bad reviews is because Dunkirk boilers are not particularly efficient when used for forced how water systems, however the needs of a steam boiler are somewhat different than for hydronic heating. Steam boilers need to be larger and have enough space over the water line to produce a good head of steam. Low mass boilers tend to surge and short cycle excessively. In your case the Dunkirk or a large Burnham or Peerless or HB Smith 8 series will produce the desired results. Try here www.heatinghelp.com and find the section called "the wall" There are a lot of old wet head's like me on there to give you advice. If I was installing for you I would be pushing Peerless but that may be a regional thing.
    [B]No, plumbing ain't rocket science. Unlike rocket science, plumbing requires a license[B]

  3. #3
    DIY Junior Member dana123's Avatar
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    Oct 2011


    thank you for the reply. i dont think it is the effeciency i was concerned about. my concern is that i might be trading a functional boiler which admittedly is not effecient-but functions well for the house- for one which could potentially bankrupt me in repair and replacement costs. here is the link to the reviews i read: http://www.furnacecompare.com/boiler...irk/reviews/5/ Im also concerned that it wont even fill my tub once and potentially cause me to need to do other repairs or updates that i am not able to do right now... i looked at the link you sent but only found one post and one comment so im not sure i was in the right place.

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