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Thoughts on Pellet Boilers

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by Chris04626, Jan 31, 2013.

  1. wil lanfear

    wil lanfear Feeling the Heat

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    After finding the owners manual I now understand how the boiler controls function, keeping a fire burning all the time unless the boiler is shut down (fuel stops being fed) do to a high limit overheat situation.

    /r/_ylt=A0oG7hg.HxBRlgYA2iBXNyoA;_ylu=X3oDMTE0cW0zOGx2BHNlYwNzcgRwb3MDNQRjb2xvA2FjMgR2dGlkA01TWTAwMl83OA--/SIG=12np9dli7/EXP=1360039870/**http%3a//www.pinnaclestove.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/pb150mn.pdf

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  2. harttj

    harttj Member

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    3 bags a day is 40k input and 4 bags is 53k input. Is your stove heating your house now?

    Unless there is an issue I don't see how a house could require 100k.

    Maybe worthwhile to determine your true heat load.

    Tim
  3. iceguy4

    iceguy4 Minister of Fire

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    It absolutely does go right out the basement wall and terminates 18" above the ground. This was one of the main reasons I chose this boiler.
  4. heaterman

    heaterman Minister of Fire

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    Become the dealer!! :)
  5. SmokeEater

    SmokeEater Feeling the Heat

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    Chris, I have had my PB-105 for nearly a full year now and have similar experiences as all the other owners of the Harman. Solidly built, very easy to clean once every week or two. This will only take five minutes with a vacuun handy. Clean the burnpot, vacuun around, wash the sight window off with a little windex, close it all up, put in 3 or 4 bags of pellets and you're good to go. I connected a 100 gallon Triangle Tube IWH to the Harman along with my oil boiler. The Triangle's water is potable so that's also my DHW and all I want. I have the Harman's aquastat turned to it's max 185-190* and the oil boiler only runs if the Harman runs out of pellets and the Triangle's water temp drops to 145*. I've maybe burned 5 gallons of oil this winter and my home's heated area is about 3000 sq. ft. In the year I've burned 9 tons of pellets, but don't use the Triangle in the summer, so neither the oil boiler nor the Harman run in the off season to provide DHW. I use an electric tank for that time.
  6. Chris04626

    Chris04626 Minister of Fire

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    The stove heats the room its in well, but out in the kitchen is a good 5 degree different. I have had old windows put in when the house was built in 1978 i am in the process of having them replaced so i am hoping this will help out on the heating/
  7. smwilliamson

    smwilliamson Minister of Fire

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    Unless you coined the phrase "bells and whistles" the comment was not about you. What I'm saying...things that cost more are often disregarded with such comments pointing toward, "more options=more to fail" which isn't really true but is propagated throughout society and generally taken as gospel.

    I truly do appreciate simplicity in design. Glad you like your Pinnacle and thanks for sharing. Yeah...you got me figured out....I like the units that have very few service techs...both are dealer supported and somewhat exclude me yet I still give hem props...

    My my, don't be so emotional and by the way, it's Williamson, Scott Williamson....da, da da-da, da (queue music from James Bond)
  8. Chris04626

    Chris04626 Minister of Fire

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    how much btu boiler does one need? How would you figure that our
  9. harttj

    harttj Member

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    Heat loss calc at design temperature. There are some online ones that will get you in the ballpark if your honest about the insulation. Having an energy audit and or air loss test would help also.

    If your currently heating the house with the stove with some temperature gradients you can use that as a starting point. Also need to understand how much you'll loose in the distribution system.

    Tim
  10. PassionForFire&Water

    PassionForFire&Water Minister of Fire

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    Hi Chris,

    I second "harttj" post.
    That is the only correct way to do it.

    To give you some first ball park number on heat loss, you can use these guidelines for "moderate" New England conditions:

    - old house not insulated or poorly insulated: SF of house x 37 BTU/sf

    - house in 2x4 stick construction fairly well insulated: SF of house x 30 BTU/sf

    - house in 2x6 stick construction very well insulated and tight: SF of house x 25 BTU/sf

    - house in 2x6 stick construction super insulated and very tight: SF of house x 15 BTU/sf

    - Passive House: SF of house x 8 BTU/sf

    Example:
    a 2x6 stick build house in 2012 of 2,500 SF should have a max heat loss of 2,500 x 25 = 62,500 BTU/hr
    The same square footage for an old house would result in 2,500SF x 37 = 92,500 BTU/hr

    The above guidelines include for DHW for 2 adults and 2 kids.

    These guidelines are up for lots of discussions and other trade professionals will have their say on them, but it gives you a ballpark.
    If you apply them you will not end up with a boiler that is way over-sized.
  11. ScotL

    ScotL Feeling the Heat

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    Now that the Kedel is working and I've had some experience with it, I thought I'd update this.
    I've had less problems with the Kedel than I did with the PB105 right after installation - even though the Kedel is much more complex. The setup issues were resolved quickly and it's been working well. This is one of the smaller Kedels and has an output rating lower than my PB105 but it still cranks out all the heat I'll ever need. It's rated at 54,000 BTU/hr which, with 8250 BTU/lb pellets, would be about 4 bags per day when it's operating at 100%. They make several different sizes if you somehow need more than that - but very few houses should.

    I think my favorite feature is the self cleaning. The heat exchanger has some metal scrapers that occasionally cycle up and down to automatically clean the surfaces off and it has a little air compressor attached to 4 tubes on the front of the burn pot that cleans it off when it shuts down. After getting the compressor installed, I've never had to clean the burn pot again. I really like that. I've attached a little picture of the burn pot. This is after burning over a ton of pellets without me touching the burn pot in any way. There's also a picture of the installation. Also, it's online and can be seen at stokercloud.dk/dev/217.html but it's turned off right now so there's not much to see.

    Overall, I wouldn't hesitate to buy one of these if I was looking for a boiler for my house. If I was planning to use it for DHW too (which I already do with my PB105) I would definitely prefer one of these Kedels because it has the ability to scale down to heat domestic hot water and remain efficient.

    Attached Files:

    UMainah and sinnian like this.
  12. sinnian

    sinnian Minister of Fire

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    Scott how many bags were you burning? Not all of us have access to a pellet mill ==c Four bags a day seems like an awful lot pellets. I burn at worst during the coldest times 2-3 bags with my boiler. Like the features of the Kedel though ~ too bad reVision are a bunch of backstabbers.
  13. heaterman

    heaterman Minister of Fire

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    Start with your heat loss. Marc has a pretty decent set of guidelines listed in his post as far as btu/sq ft goes.

    The thing I would really like to stress if you are buying a pellet boiler is to look for one that is able to turn the firing rate up/down automatically to match the load in the building. The issue with heat loss is that it's always changing so your boiler should be able to change its output along with it. This is going to be far more efficient than a single output boiler even thought they may both be rated at 85% at full fire for example. The less start and stop cycles the better.
  14. ScotL

    ScotL Feeling the Heat

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    When it was cold out I burnt 2 bags a day at the most.
    What I meant was, even though the rating of 54k BTU is lower than my Harman, that 54k BTU would be 4 bags of pellets per day at it's maximum heat output. So I'm not close to utilizing it's full capacity.
  15. Chris04626

    Chris04626 Minister of Fire

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    What is the price difference in a Kedel to the Harman?
  16. ScotL

    ScotL Feeling the Heat

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    I'm not sure what the current pricing is. The only way to tell for sure would be to contact Revision Heat and a Harman dealer.
  17. sinnian

    sinnian Minister of Fire

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    Not worth getting your toe wet with a Harman, if you're going to do it ~ jump right in :)

    Wish the Kedel was around back in 2008, I wouldn't have hesitated one bit.

    http://kedelboilers.com/meet-kedel/our-pellet-boiler/

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