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Installing a boiler in a shed?

Post in 'The Boiler Room - Wood Boilers and Furnaces' started by mtaccone, Jan 22, 2008.

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  1. Eric Johnson

    Eric Johnson Mod Emeritus

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    Cinderblock boiler room in the barn.

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  2. mtaccone

    mtaccone New Member

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    thats tight. where can I get a plumbing diagram for this type setup? I also want to see pics of that when possible.....
  3. Eric Johnson

    Eric Johnson Mod Emeritus

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  4. Tony H

    Tony H New Member

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    For what it's worth boiler antifreeze is about 60.00 per 5 gallon bucket and I think they suggest a 50% solution. With my system the dealer reccomended 15 gal if I use it although the idea if running the pump as long as the valve can be bypassed sounds good to me because like you I have a gas forced air system with a heat exchanger and that system will run if the wood runs out and the temp goes down. As Eric said mice and squirrels love plastic pipe so wrap some screen for the mice some wire wesh for the squirrels and stuff steel wool in the open end of the pipe to stop them from crawling in. Since you will only have a little pex exposed in the shed it should not take much.
    You may want to check out some options for the buried pipe and insulation as they make some premade stuff and some make there own, the common idea is PEX or PEX with AL are the best for burial due to flexability for ground movement and no buried joints you will need a hot and a return pipe and it's very important to keep them sealed from groundwater so you don't get water running into the basement. With most sealed systems you do not need a water connection to fill the system is the tarm an open system ?
  5. mtaccone

    mtaccone New Member

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    I have to move this boiler about 30 feet to the cellar door in my parents house, once there the front end load will do the lifting. Any words of wisdom on how to do this? and how to get 1400 pound of tarm off my truck at my house?

    Also on a side note I have found a new fuel too bad I cant get it in any quantity. Nut shells! I got the idea to save my peanut and walnut shells and then put em in the fire. I might as well have put gasoline in my fireplace! I wonder what happens to the shells when factories that shell nuts and bag them..
  6. sled_mack

    sled_mack New Member

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    Might consider renting or borrowing car dollies.
  7. Nofossil

    Nofossil Moderator Emeritus

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    I rented a guy and a flatbed (tilt-bed?) wrecker. The wrecker has a winch and can easily slide the boiler on and off. It's a bit scary when the bed is tilted down and the boiler is at an angle, but the winch cable does it's thing and it worked fine.
  8. leaddog

    leaddog Minister of Fire

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    Jack it up and put it on some planks, Put a couple pipes under it and push it ahead and keep putting pipes under it. by angleing the pipe you can turn corners or what ever you want to do. I've watched millwrights move 100ton machines that way. One person can move it but take it slow, think out each move, and NEVER get where you could get pinned if it slips. You can do almost anything with a jack, blocks,pipes (rollers), pry bars, and careful thought. Think how they built the pyamids. I moved a 6 person hot-tub from my truck, onto my deck, over a hole and sunk it into the deck by my self with only a jack, planks, blocks, and pipes. JUST BE CAREFUL, THINK OUT EACH MOVE.
    leaddog
  9. Eric Johnson

    Eric Johnson Mod Emeritus

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    They sell them for boiler fuel. It's a big source of fuel in places where they grow and process lots of nuts, etc. In Michigan you can buy dried cherry pits to burn in a gasifier or other boiler designed for that kind of fuel.

    I'll second leaddog's moving ideas. You might consider renting or borrowing a pallet jack. They cost about $30 a day and most will hold at least 4,000 pounds. That's how we moved my EKO last summer. Or find somebody with a forklift or tractor with a front-end loader.
  10. Tony H

    Tony H New Member

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    Like Leaddog suggested I moved mine with a few pipes and a floor jack, works great on a hard flat surface and another person also helps alot. To move it from the end of the driveway where the semi with a liftgate set it down we used my neighbors skid steer to bring it around to the backyard. If you have a flat surface the pallet jack will work great and you can even cheat a little going over grass by putting down some plywood and rolling on that. You can also check the rental tool places , the one I use rents skid steers with forks for about 200.00 a day and also pickups with a liftgate for ? For that matter the local Menards and Home Depot rent trucks some with liftgates for a reasonable price.
  11. ISeeDeadBTUs

    ISeeDeadBTUs Guest

    I can't compete with that . . . but I did rent a woman by the hour once :coolhmm:
  12. Tony H

    Tony H New Member

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    Did she have the (tilt-bed) option ?
  13. ISeeDeadBTUs

    ISeeDeadBTUs Guest

    Have mattress, will travel . . . .How DO these threads get so off-track???
  14. mtaccone

    mtaccone New Member

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    How much efficency do you loose when installing a boiler outside the house rather than in the basement?
  15. Eric Johnson

    Eric Johnson Mod Emeritus

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    That's an excellent question, mtaccone. I'm sure there are at least two numbers--a theoretical one and an actual one for each setup. I'd be interested in knowing the theoretical one.
  16. wdc1160

    wdc1160 New Member

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    I look at it like this. If you put a shed with nothing but a boiler in it. All heat going to that shed is considered waste.
    If you have a workshop / barn / new building with a boiler heating it you have a new play area and a jump in efficiency. Moral of the this story is you don't have to make the boiler a shed. Make yourself a shed, let the boiler live in it.

    In another forum room a guy said something like the reason people don't have heated garages is because they can't afford it and because they don't know what they are missing. I believe him.
  17. Eric Johnson

    Eric Johnson Mod Emeritus

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    A logger in northern Minnesota explained it to me this way one time: "You know why people say you shouldn't have a heated garage? 'Cause they ain't got one!"
  18. wdc1160

    wdc1160 New Member

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    thank you Eric, that is the quote I couldn't remember.
  19. Eric Johnson

    Eric Johnson Mod Emeritus

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    You're right about standby losses not really being losses if you're trying to heat the space anyway. In light of that, about the only actual "loss" would be any heat from the chimney not absorbed in the living space. And that's pretty minimal.
  20. sled_mack

    sled_mack New Member

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    As a test, I switched to oil for 24 hours last winter. No fire in the boiler. The tank temp didn't drop enough for me to see the change on the thermometer in it.

    Properly insulated tank and shed, losses should be pretty low. The ground liines are another factor. Insulate them several times what you think you need, and you'll be fine there, too.

    From a purely efficiency standpoint, there is no way a remote boiler can complete with a boiler in the basement. But, if I do solar to heat my tank in the summer for DHW, I won't be storing that hot water in the basement of my house that is being cooled with central air. So there is some theoretical offset there.

    I think this qualifies as a situation where you can't make your decision based on numbers alone. What is it worth to not have to drag wood into your basement? No smoke getting into the house. No risk of chimney fire in the house. No ash dirt in the basement. Or, in my case, the basement was built so small that I would have no storage space if I had to put a wood boiler in it, and I'd be looking at having to bring in wood every other day. No chance at a storage tank at all.
  21. Eric Johnson

    Eric Johnson Mod Emeritus

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    Those are all excellent points.

    I'd have to say, having done it both ways, that not having to worry about your house burning down some cold winter night is definitely a major benefit to a remote setup. It's really not a big issue with a gasifier, since you have low stack temps and no creosote, but I sleep a lot better now, anyway.
  22. sled_mack

    sled_mack New Member

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    We previously used a woodstove in the house to offset the oil heat. What pushed me over the edge was when I had to travel for work and my wife was going to be operating it.

    First step for me was a Taylor OWB, and she loved that the dirt, wood, and smell were outside. And, it was easy for her to operate when I was away. She was a little intimidated by the EKO at first, but once I got the timer setup working and all she has to do is open the door, add wood, close the door, reset the timer, she's comfortable with it.

    I'll take that huge piece of mind over the inefficiency loss any day.

    In fact, if I were going to replace the oil with propane, I'd consider putting the propane boiler in the shed. I'm not crazy about having things that can go "boom" in the night in my basement.... I know it's rare that it happens, but still.
  23. mtaccone

    mtaccone New Member

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    The reason I ask is I am toying with the idea of adding a small oil boiler next to the wood for #1 the option of backup and #2 heat dhw in the summer using a indirect tank . Its just a thought and probably not the best way of doing things. Would it be any worse to operate the Tarm with a burner in summer? Since I bought this house in june My electric bill is double what it was at the old place (usage) the only difference is the water heater here is electric. In fact we use less lights, same laundry, all new appliances and so on. Im paying damn near $300 a month on electric alone! 1500sf 2 people most the time cept when the kids are here on weekends. I am also tired of gas and national grid with their complicated surcharges, suprise bills and $20 a month in the summer with no usage for the meter fee or whatever.
  24. Eric Johnson

    Eric Johnson Mod Emeritus

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    Having an oil backup is a good idea, but I don't think using an indirect with an oil boiler is the best way to heat your water in the summer, especially if you have a wood gasifier. I think putting that money into a good storage tank makes more sense. Then you can fire up the wood boiler once a week, say, and store enough DHW to get you through the week.

    And I thought my electric bill was high at $160.
  25. mtaccone

    mtaccone New Member

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    Don't have a gasaifier that I know of..Was thinking of the indirect in place of a side arm. $160 electric bill? I guess my home is a freak of nature when it comes to KWH usage as I am higher than anyone I know. Was wondering how much efficiency I would loose with oil with underground pipe se In the winter with wood and oil the shed can have heat so its not wasted.
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