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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm curious how many of you guys regularly install Boilers and/or Hydronic heating (radiant, or baseboard, etc.) systems?

Anyone in here do any Solar Hot water Heating applications or Geothermal systems?

If so - tell me a bit about your experience - what boilers you install/installed, what types of radiant pipe you use - your preferences in equipment, etc. - lets just have a BS about hydronics if that's fair to say?
 

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We are heavily involved with the heating side of the trade and we are gearing up for solar thermal as well. I personally design, engineer and install all of my own systems. I refuse to trust a supply house to do it for me. I've also trained extensively on residential steam systems.


We typically install all types of boilers. A lot of what we choose depends on the client.....for the 80%ers out there, we like Burnham, Utica, and Smith. For the mid 80s, I love the Burnham MPO as well as the Buderus G series. And for the high efficiency markets, I really like the Lochinvar Knight.

I've been getting into more Pex-Al-Pex for the high temperature stuff lately...it doesn't "scallop" or droop like pex does at higher temps. The low temp stuff is either Uponor or Zurn.

As far as oil burners, I have had great experiences with Riello, Beckett, and Carlin. We've trained on the new Buderus G125B burner too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
What about electric boilers? You know I'm really starting to pay more attention to small-ish electric boilers with outdoor resets (e.g. Slantfin Monitron) seeing as how they don't have very many high efficiency modulating/condensing boilers out there that are all that small. These little beauties are pretty inexpensive to buy, fairly simple to operate, and they're great for small radiant applications e.g. say a rancher home with a crawl space to retrofit radiant where you might only do one zone. In that case even more dirt cheap - usually only one pump required!
 

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the company i work for is strictly heavy commercial all we do is boilers for our systems but not much of a choice because of scale of projects. but not excactly in the same realm we have been doing some ``leed`certified buildings lately and finding alot to do with water re use.. ( grey water) and water conserve. and some solar pre heat for domestic hot water on heat exchanger. last project grey water holding container was literallly a tenth of the one floor parkade. about 30x20x 100
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
the company i work for is strictly heavy commercial all we do is boilers for our systems but not much of a choice because of scale of projects. but not excactly in the same realm we have been doing some ``leed`certified buildings lately and finding alot to do with water re use.. ( grey water) and water conserve. and some solar pre heat for domestic hot water on heat exchanger. last project grey water holding container was literallly a tenth of the one floor parkade. about 30x20x 100
Hey Kyle,

You're doing a leed certified project too eh?

I worked on the company I work for's first (supposed to Leed Platinum) building. I built the Mechanical room by myself, did most of the plumbing in the building and plant, etc. The buildilng is still in the certification/commissioning process. Basically it's the administration building of a large incinerator plant. Since and incinerator is basically like one big boiler, they have a bunch of hot water flowing around the plant, some of which creates power. Well we pulled some of this hot water through a heat exchanger and used it as a heat source for the plant. The boiler feed water also is pushed through a cooling exchanger for radiant cooling. Also tapped into a 6" rain water leader and had a custom rainwater tee made to divert water into a holding tank, which we use to flush the toilets with. There is a waterless urinal, as well as dual flush toilets, and a few other fancy gadgets inside (CO2 sensor, automatic window openers, etc.) - low VOC glues & paints, etc, etc.

We are currently working on a condo that should be Leed gold but might also be Platinum. It's got solar domestic HW heating, geothermal heating with boiler back up for radaint heating and radiant cooling, as well as a grey water system for the toilets and the laundry. The laundry in these condo's is only allowed to be cold water. A few other things, of which I can't recall them all but..you get the drift.
 

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as well as a grey water system for the toilets and the laundry.
Your allowed to do that? Wow....that's pretty cool. I am not a fan of solar heating, but am very interested in Geo Thermal practices. I just don't know enough about it. Got any pics or anything else you can share about all this?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Well when I talk about "grey" water, I mean rainwater or run off water, not recycled domestic water from drains. The Grey water also goes through filters as well, mainly to clear it up a bit.

Why are you not a fan of solar heating? People who are running solar heating systems are saving tremendous money in reduced hot water heating bills and it's something I aspire to become more knowledgeable about.

The company I work for does Geothermal but I usually just handle the Mechanical end of things. We have a few different "crews" in the company I work for. Plumbers/Hydronic techs who do the plumbing/gas/hydronic heating systems which involve installing water to water geothermal heat pumps, boilers, indirect fired hot water tanks, heating mains, radiant floors (inside mainly) etc. But then we have a crew that does the geothermal/ground end of it. They lay all the pipe underground and/or we contract a drilling crew to do vertical loops and they lay the pipe in the vertical loop for us and then we manifold it, test it and poke it into the mechanical room, all done with High Density Polyethylene (HDPE). No pics, but believe me it's been on the list of "things to do" for a long time now, but I never get around to it for some reason.
 
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