efficiency of +20 year old Weil-Mclain oil boiler P366(HE)?


The boiler with Beckett AF burner was here when I moved in. I assume the HE stands for high efficiency, but what was that 20 years ago? I could keep this boiler going for a long time, but wanted to check if it's worth it to replace with new. The Weil-McLain website has a calculator but doesn't have the info I need. It shows a 78% default efficiency; going from this to 86% or so saves me a little over $200/ year (at $2.40/gallon). Seems like that'll take quite a while to recoup at a boiler equipment only cost of over 2 grand.
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There are a few considerations to help make the right decision. At 20 years, it could go tomorrow, or it could last another 10 or 20 years. I replaced mine last year at 30 years and it is paying for itself so far. It was getting ready for big repair bills at that age.
That 78% is probably wrong and is in reality closer to 70% or less.
How do you make hot water? If it is the typical tankless coil, it is very inefficient for that use. Do you hear the boiler kicking on to keep the water hot? Terrible waste of energy. Indirect fired water is far more economical and a good tank can keep water hot for a couple of days if not used. It used to bug me to be laying in bed on a hot night and hear the boiler kick on just to maintain temperature. No more. My basement is much cooler now that heat is not wasted.
In past years I've used about 850 gallons of oil a year. Based on degree days, my use this past winter was a savings of 32%. That is equal to $650 a year. With the summer hot water use, I think it is going to be even better savings. Past years, I'd have a fill in April and again in October just from hot water use. My February fill is only down to about 1/2 so far.
It may be possible to get 0% financing through your state and get rebates on top of that, not to mention a $1500 tax credit. What I have is the System 2000 from Energy Kinetics. So far, it is working well and saving a bundle. After a full year I can tell you better.
Dollar for dollar, it is questionable payback, but if you are heading for any big repair bills, this is a good time to take advantage of the tax credit.
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I'm in northeast CT, a bit cooler than you. Gas tends to be cheaper than oil and a separate HW heater helps keep the operating cost down. At 45 years, it may be worth replacing though. As I said, look into the various programs for rebates, no interest financing, and tax credits. I replaced mine for no up front costs that way. The savings makes the payments. YMMV, of course, but you can probably gain 40% in efficiency.
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Yes, I have a tankless coil that dumps into an electric hot water heater for temperature avergaing, in which the electric elements never kick on. I assume that I'm saving money vs using the elctricity. Even though electricity is close to 100% efficient in heating (no flue gases), it's expensive.
I'll look into indirect if I change out my boiler, though I bought the electric water heater only 4 or 5 years ago. Right now the only oil- fired boiler good for the 30% tax credit in my size 100,000 BTU/h is the Buderus condensing boiler. I'm looking for prices, but I'm guessing these are very pricey. I can get a Weil-McLain at 86% or so for about $2300, including a tankless coil (which I may not want now, after reading your comment) and burner.
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.p.jm.@see_my_sig_for_address.com wrote:

Now that is cold!

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Thanks for clearing that up Tony
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