Central Boiler forced air tired of my high electric bills.

Jeepman99 Posted By Jeepman99, Sep 1, 2018 at 4:49 PM

  1. Jeepman99

    Jeepman99
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    Sep 1, 2018
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    Breakdown of what I have and what I am thinking of doing. In 2010 we installed a 5036 Central Boiler Classic outdoor wood stove to heat our (1992 DIY built) house and hot water. I currently use the 1" Thermopex from the boiler to the garage (about 30') and run 1" pex from the garage to the house in a covered hallway with closed cell 3/4" thick pipe insulation. I run through a side arm provided by Central boiler to heat the water on my new in 09/2017 50 gal electric water heater. It then runs across the basement in 1" pex to a heat exchanger via my current forced air furnace (propane). It works but my electric bill has yet to go down ever. I burn about 10-12 pulp cord of oak a year from October to May. I am in Northern Wisconsin by the Michigan border. I have thought about putting baseboard heat in my 1 1/2 story 1550 sq ft home. I have access to do in-floor heat in the lower level but half is carpet and the other is laminate floors. The upstairs would need to be 100% baseboard heat. My temp loss is currently 2 degrees from boiler to the water heater. It is 19 degrees from boiler to the the return of the boiler.

    Would adding baseboard radiators or in-floor and baseboard combination to the boiler system make better use of the boiler and reduce my electric bill by not running the forced air furnace?

    My duct system in this house works but is not very good thanks to poor planning on the previous owner. A quote of $2900 to just change the duct work was given and I was told to start over as only 3 cold air returns is not enough for the whole house.

    Ideas on how to do this with zoning valves?

    Do I add thermostats for each room or by each level (floor)?

    Please help I am quite handy but just can't get a straight answer from anyone. I have extensive knowledge in electronic, electrical, automotive, and hydraulic systems but HVAC setup is not one of them.
     
  2. E Yoder

    E Yoder
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    Jan 27, 2017
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    If your heat was from propane, switching to heating from the OWB will still use approx the same amount of electricity to run the blower.
    A single ECM pump with zone valves for each zone would use less electricity I would think.
    Each zone would have it's own thermostat and could open a zone valve, the right delta p ECM pump could sense that and ramp up.
    There's guys here with more experience than I tho.
     
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  3. maple1

    maple1
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    So...how much electricity do you use?
     
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  4. Jeepman99

    Jeepman99
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    Sep 1, 2018
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    We are averaging 960kwh. In August. November to April is 960 kwh for each month.
    Hot summers is 1000kwh.
     
  5. Jeepman99

    Jeepman99
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    Sep 1, 2018
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    ECM pump? What does the ECM acronym stand for?

    I thought being able to shut off my electric water heater would have resulted in a lower electric bill.

    How do I setup zones? By each room or floor?
     
  6. E Yoder

    E Yoder
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    Jan 27, 2017
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    ECM stands for Electronically Commutated Motor. Uses about half the amp draw of a PSC motor. Grundfos, Taco and others make them.
    How to zone would depend on how the house is laid out/heat loss of different rooms. At minimum I would think each floor should be it's own zone. Each room probably is overkill.
    I work mostly with forced air systems tied into OWB's, I was hoping for someone with more experience with zoning an all hydronic system to chime in.
     
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  7. brenndatomu

    brenndatomu
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    Running the forced air blower on the wood furnace almost all winter long costs me about $20 mo...hard to justify making a bunch of changes for $20 mo...
     
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  8. E Yoder

    E Yoder
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    Jan 27, 2017
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    From what it sounds like the duct system needs work too. So there's money to be spent either way, just what is the best investment?
     
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