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Adding a small amount of heat storage to a traditional boiler? Any Benefits???

Post in 'The Boiler Room - Wood Boilers and Furnaces' started by shawntitan, Aug 17, 2008.

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  1. shawntitan

    shawntitan Member

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    What's up guys? After a ton of research on this site over the last year, I recently picked up a New Yorker boiler (planning on burning mostly coal) I read in a recent post on the topic of heat storage, Eric noted that adding even a small amount of extra water to a traditional boiler can have some benefits evening out the burning cycle, and acting as a sort of buffer. My new boiler holds just over 20 gallons, and I've thought of adding a water heater tank and circulator, upping the total amount of water in my set-up, maybe to 60 gallons or so. Just wondered what everyone thought, or if anyne had any advice on this. Thanks in advance.

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  2. BrownianHeatingTech

    BrownianHeatingTech Minister of Fire

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    Storage is almost never a bad idea.

    Other than certain commercial-type applications and very specialized things like that, I won't even install wood boilers without storage.

    Joe
  3. steam man

    steam man Minister of Fire

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    I am working on something similiar. The idea behind a buffer tank is to reduce short cycling of a traditional fired boiler. I guess some of the newer types need this more. Most manufacturers burners have a minimum runtime for best efficiency purposes, say 10 minutes minimum. It sounds the same as using storage with any solid fuel device to me-heating up a calculated amount of water per burn cycle for best efficiency and being able to fully utilize it. Lochinvar's site at http://www.lochinvar.com/ has a sizing calculator for there boilers and buffer tank combos. Its interesting reading. Bigger is better seems to be the saying around here-larger storage capacities are needed with solid fuels since they are not shut down easily.

    Mike
  4. Eric Johnson

    Eric Johnson Mod Emeritus

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    I think the same logic applies to coal as to wood. The point is that you can extend your burn times overnight with a little extra capacity like you'll get with a 40- or 50-gallon water heater.
  5. Sting

    Sting Feeling the Heat

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    EFM is in the last stages of making a nice BIT coal appliance available.
  6. trailhound68

    trailhound68 New Member

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    I'm down with storage concept. My system has very little water volume. I can get it back to temp quick though.
    But mine needs an ass like the owb's. They have the stored energy to go the distance.
    I'll start with 80 gals and add more later.
  7. Sting

    Sting Feeling the Heat

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    WHY????

    Your boiler doesn't burn in the same wide ranges that the Chunk wood Boilers do? You have no need to store otherwise wasted energy? Its just another somewhat unnecessary "thing" to add to your system.
  8. muncybob

    muncybob Minister of Fire

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    I was hoping to put a 500 gal. propane tank in my basement but after measuring it does not seem likely...but I may be able to fit a pair of 250 gal. tanks. Will I get the same benefit as 1 500 gal. tank of storage?
  9. trailhound68

    trailhound68 New Member

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    "WHY" would you consider it wasted energy? I realize my demand will be the same, it will take more wood and time to heat the extra volume. But won't it also take more time to consume that surplus energy and add to my burn times?
  10. Sting

    Sting Feeling the Heat

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    Thats the point.... Your appliance doesn't run in wide ranges of Hi burn with energy that cannot be immediately used - therefore needs to be stored - like a good chunk wood boiler does. Unless you over firing - using too much fuel - and that needs to be addressed as a separate issue.

    So thermal storage will only ADD to you burn time -- and again use more fuel.
  11. BrownianHeatingTech

    BrownianHeatingTech Minister of Fire

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    A gallon of water is a gallon of water. The ability to stratify the heat may change, depending upon how you actually install the tanks.

    More fuel per burn, but fewer burns.

    Joe
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