05 November, 2014

Example of success: changing oil boiler with wood boiler

If you have boiler heating oil, do as Gregoria and Manolo; consider installing wood boiler

The wood boilers and inserts are increasingly popular and successful, the possibility of getting free firewood (cleaning mountains of fallen trees and dry branches) is an advantage.
Today I will discuss the case of Gregoria and Manolo, from La Rioja (Spain), this winter asked me for placing an insert stove with pan for heating and hot water, they were complaining of bills for diesel fuel (3,000 euros annual) due to poor insulation of their house, the doors and windows are made of iron (discouraging thieves), and while they are thinking to better isolate 150 m2 over two floors, because it requires a very high energy expenditure.

They were Not decided between several models, and models from Baxi Roca, the cheapest they found was Albizia model (70% yield, € 1,200 approx.) unregulated auto shot, and Serval (80% yield of 1,900 €), Portuguese manufacturing.
Update 02/11/14: Gregoria tells us this winter "around here we continue with our hydroboiler running, although at least in our case, has not been as great as expected, due to poor insulation we think of our house (that have not yet been undertaken.) The truth is that when the temperature drops below 5 °, we are still with a bit poor temperature, unless we burn more than 100 kilos of firewood a day ... When the temperature is not so cool if we got a lot more pleasant when we warmed up first with diesel. Lately, we have implemented a mix that works pretty well. As we still have operating the oil boiler when we turn on the stove, once the day we launch the diesel, about 20 or 30 minutes, this causes less firewood needed to heat the entire circuit and we heat faster. The fuel consumption is minimal, we took 70 euros all winter so far . Furthermore, for reasons of lack of time ... we stopped fetching firewood us, so we bought it at a fairly reasonable price 11 cents a kilo, beech and oak. "
Finally, although the choice of pellets is the most convenient, they decided on putting a wood, having the chimney suitable for stove measures, and have free fuel themselves like to enjoy nature and take advantage of clean mountains respectfully with their maintenance, removing broken branches and dead trees, so opted to put the model Albizia Baxi Roca.

And they can not be more pleased with the result: With 50 kg. daily dry firewood, collected directly from the mountain, they get put at 20 all day, your house look new, Gregoria told me enthusiastically.

Installation on low heat
Plumbers installers have placed in the hollow of the expansion tank fireplace, chimney, piping tubes hot / cold water, barometer, etc. with fiberglass panels to isolate these elements from the heat of the oven and avoid damage :

Detail of items placed in the hollow of the chimney
Expansion vessel detail fiberglass protecting
Water temperature: 60 ° C
Automatic air vent, barometer, safety valve and sensors that the power pack

The set and arranged masonry and covered with a grid (bottom right. Thermometer)

Power packs and regulation 
The hydraulic kit mounted to control himself Baxi boiler-rock for these models; have a programmable thermostat with the temperature of boiler operation, a motor for heating and one with a stainless steel plate heat exchanger along with a three-way valve (for DHW) is marked: 

Top of the hydraulic unit
Detail of hydraulic kit

The DHWC Termoblu (punch) plus a 1500W electric heater (for when you turn on the stove), carries an internal coil to heat with wood;

This coil is connected as a radiator more, so that the buffer tank acts, and hot water are also free:
Detail and storage group ACS
This deposit, purchased very economical "Your economic heater" , the function of buffer tank stove operation, acting as a buffer in the temperature changes softens; 100 liters of hot water to absorb or deliver power to the heating, so that when the boiler is turned on, the flow through the coil of the tank, if the radiators are cold, you "steal" some of the heat to the reservoir until equal temperatures, and then to go higher temperature, again stored in the tank, and the tank temp does not go down until we shower or when there is not enough heat to keep the grades we ask. 
That's good for convenience and not take so long to start heating radiators, it is immediate (the deposit is like a coil), and if you have too much fire (wood fire can not be controlled as easily as other systems), the excess is absorbed. 

This oil boiler no longer lit
The final cost, if it is somewhat high, but they will pay for itself in a few winters, plus greater comfort (and accoutrements gym), have they been € 5,300, including VAT, of which € 1,200 are labor installers, the truth is that they have carefully worked, dedicating lots of hours, also tried cleaning the old accumulator ACS, as was giving problems, we put the new (that Gregoria purchased). 
The mason cost € 700 (included in total), a wild beast has also worked very hard (last year had over 400 installed wood stoves); were 2 hours to get put the cassette without pulling the gear beam that has the fireplace, and drew more than 1,000 kgs. debris that came from inside the old fireplace. It is with including materials, insulation, trims (iron plate and grill) clearance and subsequent removal to approved landfill. 
The remaining amount is the materials, fittings, PB pipes, etc. 

Security system 
The issue that remains outstanding is the water supply for the thermal relief valve work. As a remote home, the catch water from a well, with an engine that maintains pressure at 5 bar. 
But if the light fails, no water, no security system is activated. To avoid this situation, they have two options: 
  1. Install a UPS as you commented in other posts (maintenance free, usually last about 5/10 years, and are not cheap).
  2. Or the logical choice; a deposit at some point, only to connect to the auto-fill valve. This would have to try it, maybe the valve requires a minimum pressure to operate.
However, although the system does not work, says the plumber that has two safety valves that should generate a lot of pressure, remove the steam into the street. 

More info: Spanish wood boiler Manufacturers: 
Hydroboilers or wood boilers Catalog from Baxi-Roca 
Lacunza Inserts Wood boilers
Insert wood boiler Herg√≥m H-03/80 

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