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Boiler for commercial application?

Post in 'The Boiler Room - Wood Boilers and Furnaces' started by Andy S., Jun 5, 2014.

  1. Andy S.

    Andy S. Feeling the Heat

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    I have 21K square feet of manufacturing space heated by oil and 5K of office space heated by a heat pump. The costs are extreme. I'm meeting this afternoon with a tree service about dropping logs behind my building rather than hauling them to the dump or waiting for his firewood guy to come buy them. He wants to free-up space.I want free wood. My original purpose was to use an occasional drop to feed my insert at home. Now I'm thinking bigger.

    I envision a supplemental application that would minimize - not replace - my oil consumption. I'm brand new to the concept. Is there an application that will work with my existing conventional set up? I'm basically looking to be pointed in the right direction. Thanks in advance!

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  2. NE WOOD BURNER

    NE WOOD BURNER Minister of Fire

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    I would start with heat loss calculation and quantify previous oil bills for evaluation. IMHO
  3. flyingcow

    flyingcow Minister of Fire

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    I have to keep it simple. Oil boiler? this delivers the heat to the building how? Modines? basically a rad with a fan behind it? Just curious, how many gallons of oil in a heating season?
  4. Andy S.

    Andy S. Feeling the Heat

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    It is oil hot air now - a furnace. The use is in the 1500-2000 gallon/year range.
  5. NE WOOD BURNER

    NE WOOD BURNER Minister of Fire

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    Ok, If you can get your actual oil usage(maybe from supplier) this will give you good baseline. And others here may jump in with a degree day comparison. For boiler sizing. This will also be used so you can determine the approximate amount of wood you will need.

    FHA is not the desire heat emitter for a gasser and thermal storage but will work. thought should be put to the installation of low temp emitters, so you can use the thermal storage at lower temps.

    I would suggest contacting any of the professionals on this site for an evaluation of your situation. With free wood you will be paying back boiler costs quickly. I would anticipate the possibility of the free source drying up in your pay back time though. I would also check for bulk suppliers of pellets in your area so you can explore that possibility also. or maybe a combination of a wood boiler and pellet boiler for both convenience and situational economics. Not knowing what your business is. Sometimes its best to put time into work and buy pellets rather than take time to process the wood. wood needs to be dry so storage of large quantities of wood for drying time will need to be considered also.
  6. Chris Hoskin

    Chris Hoskin TarmSalesGuy

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    Sounds like a great application for a large Garn. I think I would install the woodburning system completely independently of the existing oil furnace and heat pump systems. Just put Modine-type heaters in the warehouse space and some panel radiators in the office space. Each system would be on its own set of room thermostats and you could set the back-up system's thermostats five degrees lower than the wood boiler system's. That way if the wood boiler is not keeping up, or has run out of wood, the back-up furnace and/or heat pump kicks in when the room temp drops. No need to go to the trouble of tying the two systems together.

    That is a lot of space to heat with cord wood, so you may want to consider an automated pellet boiler instead. That being said, if you have the space and time to receive, cut, split, stack and DRY your free wood it is certainly worth considering. Let's say you are going to burn 20 cords of wood per year - do you have the space to store 40 cords? (one year's current supply and a second year's worth that would be drying for a year). If you have a forklift and/or front end loader and can build some pallets or bins to hold and handle the wood, the amount of handling can be kept to a minimum, but 20 cords is a lot of wood compared to a typical homeowner who might burn five or six.

    Keep us posted on your project.

    Chris
    flyingcow and NE WOOD BURNER like this.
  7. Andy S.

    Andy S. Feeling the Heat

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    Thanks, guys. I had an eye-opening meeting with my wood source last evening. He showed up with the expectation of dropping loads of 36"+ diameter x 8-10' long trunks of Oak, Ash and Maple in my parking lot and the comment that he could fill it for free. It would be 10's of cords of wood. It is simply out of my league right now. Instead, I'm going to take a truck load of small stuff he still wants to get rid of and stick with my supplemental wood heating with my little insert at home.

    If any of you are in the Bucks/Mont area of PA and are able to process wood on this scale, I will happily pass along your contact information if you send me a message. Thanks for the replies!
  8. NE WOOD BURNER

    NE WOOD BURNER Minister of Fire

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    Well in that case. Find a pellet company or biomass plant nearby and make some money. No handling. buyers are everywhere right now. for low grade hard wood.
  9. flyingcow

    flyingcow Minister of Fire

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    Handling 12 to 16 diameter wood is one thing, but 2 to 3ft diameter is a ball buster. But if you have teenager that's not afraid to work, full PPE gear, nice saw, and a timberjack splitter he can make some decent money with free wood. Need to plan on 3 or 4 yes of work for that kind of investment but it'd be worth it. Just sell wood for cash to the public.
  10. NE WOOD BURNER

    NE WOOD BURNER Minister of Fire

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    They are priceless!
  11. maple1

    maple1 Minister of Fire

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    10's of cords of wood has the potential to turn into 1000's of $$'s. I would try very hard to run with that one - not knowing much about your situation though.
  12. Andy S.

    Andy S. Feeling the Heat

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    Yeah... it is just way too much for me. It would take up way too much space. My hope is that someone local to me sees this, is able to help out the source by taking delivery and let's me swing by for a pickup truck full of splits every so often. What can I say... I'm a dreamer!
    flyingcow likes this.

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