EFM520 DIY Install?

Stoker Coal Boilers automatically feed the coal and have controls and pumps just like any conventions boiler. They are intended to be used as a primary heat and often have domestic hot water coils as an added bonus. They can be set up independently or in dual sytem with your existing oil/gas boiler. They can accommodate both hot water base board or steam plumbing.
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Posts: 117
Joined: Mon. Sep. 17, 2012 9:34 pm
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM 520
Coal Size/Type: rice
Stove/Furnace Make: Herman DVC 500 & EFM 520

Post Sun. Nov. 03, 2013 10:48 pm

We are looking to install an EFM520 in our house. Coal boilers are not very common on Long Island and so installers don't exist. I'm thinking of a possible self install or DIY if I can't secure someone to do the job for me. I have the knowledge of pipe welding and electrical work, but have not done any work on a boiler before. Would this project be a large learning curve? Most of my projects involved bathroom renovations, including rerouting of most pipes. I was hoping to connect the unit to my current boiler or use the oil gun kit for those few weeks of vacation during the year. Looking for guidance so I don't get too over my head on this project? Dan

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Rob R.
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Posts: 11341
Joined: Fri. Dec. 28, 2007 4:26 pm
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM DF520
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 50-93
Coal Size/Type: Lehigh Rice
Other Heating: Dad's 1953 EFM Highboy
Location: Chazy, NY

Post Mon. Nov. 04, 2013 5:10 am

I tackled my first EFM install with very little experience. I knew how to sweat copper (not very well), and do basic wiring. If you have plumbing experience already, I think you will be fine.

Can you post some pictures of your current installation? That way we can get an idea of how tough it would be to tie in a second boiler.

Posts: 117
Joined: Mon. Sep. 17, 2012 9:34 pm
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM 520
Coal Size/Type: rice
Stove/Furnace Make: Herman DVC 500 & EFM 520

Post Mon. Nov. 04, 2013 11:47 pm

I attached a few pics of the current set up. The system has three zones, a water heater and my boiler. Per my conversation with a local plumber the codes doesn't allow two furnaces set up into the chimney, but my water heater is setup into the chimney too? I wasn't sure of I should make the EFM a multi fuel or just install the EFM in line with my current boiler? The current oil burner is about 23 years old and most likely doesn't have much life left.

Per my previous post, I can weld and do electrical work, but don't know boilers. I installed my Harman DVC500, but that's a different setup compared to the EFM.Any advice would be great! Dan

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Posts: 5997
Joined: Sun. May. 02, 2010 11:26 pm
Stoker Coal Boiler: AXEMAN-ANDERSON 130 "1959"
Coal Size/Type: PEA / ANTHRACITE
Other Heating: Ground Source Heat Pump
Stove/Furnace Make: Hydro Heat /Mega Tek
Location: Junction of PA-OH-WV

Post Tue. Nov. 05, 2013 8:00 am

As for code, I only see you replaceing a water heater...wink wink. ;)

Visit Alternate Heating Sytems

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Posts: 11915
Joined: Sun. Dec. 11, 2005 12:43 pm
Stoker Coal Boiler: Patriot Coal - (custom built by Jim Dorsey, Taunton MA - RIP 4/18/13)
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harman Mark III (SOLD!)
Coal Size/Type: Rice / Blaschak anthracite
Other Heating: Oil fired Burnham boiler
Location: West-Central Mass

Post Tue. Nov. 05, 2013 9:28 am

Rule #1 - don't listen to ANYONE who tells you that you "can't do it" . You CAN .. anybody can - they just need the motivation.

Living on LI I can only imagine the rules/regs you have to deal with over there, just miles from that communist enclave of NYC. What happens in YOUR house, stays in YOUR house. Just apply a little common sense to keep the CO in the CHIMNEY where it's supposed to be, and keep the smoke IN all the electrical wires (all wires contain smoke, don'tcha know ;) ) and you'll be warm and happy .. and THOUSANDS richer. :cheers:
The laws that forbid the carrying of arms...disarm only those who are
neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes. ...Such laws make things worse
for the assaulted and better for the assailants, they serve rather to
encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with
greater confidence than an armed man."

- Thomas Jefferson, quoting 18th century criminologist Cesare Beccaria in "On
Crimes and Punishment."

Mark (PA)
Posts: 383
Joined: Thu. Feb. 28, 2008 9:40 am
Stove/Furnace Make: 1953 EFM SF-520 High Boy
Stove/Furnace Model: Fitzgibbon Boiler
Location: South Central, PA

Post Tue. Nov. 05, 2013 8:57 pm

Hi Dan. Here is my advice.

To learn more about hydronic Heating please look up and purchase a few books from Dan Holohan.
(Probably find them on EBAY or Amazon cheaper but... Your choice)

http://shop.serviceroundtable.com/store/c/29-Book ... lohan.aspx

That is EXACTLY how I started my EFM install project and I did it 100% myself...

Obviously if you go with a multi Fuel EFM then piping in Series does not matter etc. But... If you do not buy a multi Fuel...

Plumb your EFM in series at the VERY least with your existing. (There are plenty of other piping options here that I might suggest all day but at the very least I am saying!) It is the easiest way and just because your Oil unit is old now doesn't mean you won't want a new one someday. It never hurts to have options... Some folks might take vacations in the winter and if you don't have someone watching your boiler... well. you'll need to shut it off right! that is a good time to kick on the old Oil heat for a few weeks right? Just trying to suggest some things you may not think of I guess.

You can do it... Read up and do your homework.

ASK questions! Lots of guys on here will help. Now maybe they aren't going to draw up your piping diagram for you but if you ask a specific question you'll get an answer....

Ask away!

Posts: 63
Joined: Sun. Dec. 21, 2008 8:48 pm
Stove/Furnace Make: Stratford, Chappee
Stove/Furnace Model: SC-75
Location: Riverhead NY

Post Thu. Nov. 07, 2013 7:23 pm

Just sent you a pm
if you need help call me , ps I have same boiler
Thanks Ken

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