by Anura Guruge
Click to ENLARGE. Website: qhtinc.com.
9 days ago I walked into our downstairs utility room and discovered a huge puddle of water under the ‘Smith Cast Iron‘ boiler. The damn thing, just 12-years old, had sprung a leak. When we finally took it apart yesterday we discovered that there were indeed two leaks and that one was a slow leak that had been there for quite a long time. Suffice to say, I was not amused.
My oil company, noted for their duplicity, could not wait to give me two ‘just-for-you‘ quotes. The first was $10,000 (to the dot) for a System 2000. The other was for $8,800 for a Biasi B10/4.
At that juncture I knew more about the Moon than I knew about boilers. I had never had one fail on me, and as such never had to get one.
But, as some of you know I am a quick learner when I have to be. And this warranted some serious research. So, I got cracking.
The System 2000, which looks like a futuristic spacecraft, is indeed the Cadillacs of boilers (though there is also a Rolls Royce). The System 2000 can have a 93% efficiency. But, they are expensive. The Biasi is 87% efficient.
A lot of people swear (in a good way) by the Biasi. It is a proven solution and the local HVAC guy I called for competing quote said that he has a Biasi at his house.
I checked and checked.
Discovered that the Biasi B10/4 that my duplicitous oil company was trying to foist on me was TOO SMALL for my needs. I needed the B10/5 which was at least $200 more. So, the oil company price was in the $9,000 range.
But, the oil company (and have I mentioned that they are duplicitous) was going to rip off everything I had — including water tank and 5 circulators — and put ‘new’ stuff in. But, there was nothing wrong with any of this stuff. Not even any stains. I did, however, need a new expansion tank.
The local HVAC guy, who I found on the Interweb, quoted me $5,800, fully installed, for a Biasi B10/5 with Riello burner and a new expansion tank. And that included hauling the old boiler away.
That seemed a fair price.
It was a full $3,000 lower than the duplicitous oil company quote for the SMALLER Biasi (i.e., B10/4 rather than B10/5). But, to be fair, it was not apples to apples since the duplicitous oil company was replacing everything (though I would not have been surprised if they used old components they obtained from a previous job). But, the local guys quote was still probably $1400 cheaper. Plus, he was a one-man shop and seemed decent enough.
Well it was installed Monday without too much drama – though we lost power halfway through. But, since I had both my generators going he had all the power needed.
So, far so good. It is not quiet. About as loud as the old unit. I gather the S2000 is whisper quiet.
Well, right now, I am NOT going to tell you the name of the local HVAC guy. If you want to know contact me. I want to wait a month or so to see that everything is hunky-dory with the install.
So, that is my story.
Plus, now, if you are looking for a price you know what I paid. I know the wholesale price for the Biasi B10/5 is around $2,200. But there is lot more bits needed than just the furnace and then there is the labor. It is a big job. Just moving the 500 pound boiler is no small task. And then there was also the old boiler and I gave them a hand moving that.
So, overall I think I did ‘OK’.
Heat flow in a 3-pass Biasi B10. Heats more than with a single-pass boiler.
by Anura Guruge