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Basics & Theory

Energy Vanguard: Do Boilers For Heating Actually Boil Water?
Energy Vanguard says residential boilers take a fuel like natural gas or fuel oil, burn it to create heat, and then put that heat into water circulating through the distribution system.

JLC: Condensing vs. Non-Condensing Boilers
Journal of Light Construction describers key differences between condensing and non-condensing boilers.
Information Sources

NRCan: Types Of Heating Equipment & Controls
Natural Resource Canada describes various types of residential heating systems and controls.
Issues & Performance

CARB: In-Field Performance Of Condensing Boilers In Cold Climate Region
Consortium for Advanced REsidential Buildings says the combination of a gas-fired condensing boiler with baseboard convectors is a low-cost, energy efficient solution for high-efficiency residential space heating in cold climates. But in many instances, condensing boilers are not achieving consistent condensing performance levels due to high return water temperatures. (PDF)

Healthy Heating: Issues With Using Water Heaters As Boilers
Healthy Heating describes issues, and provides links to more information, on using hot water heaters as boilers and open direct systems used for space heating.

HPAC Magazine: Prevention Of Boiler Corrosion
HPAC magazine describes how to keep boilers more efficient and corrosion free.

HPAC Magazine: Protecting Boilers Against Flue Gas Condensation
Heating Plumbing & Air Conditioning magazine describes myths and methods for protecting boilers against flue gas condensation.

PM Engineer: Water Quality In Hydronic Systems
PM Engineer provides some examples of conditions where water chemistry affects the boiler operation and life.

Mechanical Business: Diagnosing A Boiler System By Ear
Mechanical Business describes some of the sounds you might hear from heating equipment, and how the noise may relate to specific problems.

P&M: Outdoor Reset Is Smart Choice
Plumbing and Mechanical magazine says we at a point where we should be controlling boilers, even those installed a couple of decades ago, using smart aquastats.

PHCP Pros: Boiler & DHW Maintenance Matters
PHCP Pros says there is a strong need to address water heater and boiler maintenance issues for improved efficiency.

PM Engineer: Be Wary Of How A Boiler Is Maintained
PM Engineer says boilers fail, and whenever they do, someone usually blames the manufacturer. Manufacturers are easy to blame because they’re large and very visible. But often it’s someone small and almost camouflaged doing the murder, someone you don’t notice because they’re always there in the building, like the furniture.

US DOE: Controls For Optimizing Performance & Comfort In Residential Condensing Boilers
US Department of Energy Measure Guideline: Condensing Boilers, Control Strategies for Optimizing Performance and Comfort in Residential Applications is intended for designers and installers of hydronic heating systems interested in maximizing the overall system efficiency of condensing boilers when coupled with baseboard convectors. (PDF)

US DOE: Field Test Of Boiler Primary Loop Temperature Controller
US Department of Energy report Field Test of Boiler Primary Loop Temperature Controller studied an emerging class of Advanced Load Monitoring aftermarket controllers that dynamically respond to the boiler load, with claims of 10% to 30% of fuel savings over a heating season. (PDF)
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