What Stoker Boilers Are Insulated? (and What Ones Are Not)

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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beatle78
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Post Thu. Apr. 03, 2008 7:23 am

Hi guys,

I was wondering what stoker boilers are insulated and which ones are not.

Also, does an insulated boiler just mean it has insulation between the sheet metal and the water jacket or is there actually an insulation layer inside the jacket?

From another post, I gathered that the Harman VF 3000 is not insulated.

Thanks,
Jeremy

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Richard S.
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Post Thu. Apr. 03, 2008 8:21 am

The EFM's and larger Keystokers are, not sure exactly of the design but I'd imagine it would be similar to mine. The sheet metal on the outside has about 1 inch layer of insulation inside. This is Van-Wert but this company has long been out of business. Most likely nay boiler with a sheet metal jacket is going to be insulated but I could be wrong, don't see any other reason to have it except to make it "purrty". If you take one of these panals off the insulation comes off with it.
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LoschStoker
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Post Thu. Apr. 03, 2008 9:04 am

The Losch boiler has about 1" of fiberglass.
On the Axeman-Anderson they sale a cabinet as an option I don't know if it's insulated, but then
I've never seen or heard of one installed with the cabinet.

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beatle78
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Post Thu. Apr. 03, 2008 9:43 am

ok, so if I boiler does not have any insulation, you could just buy some of that 1" pink stuff and put it under the sheet metal, right?

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Sting
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Post Thu. Apr. 03, 2008 10:07 am

I insulated the old Kewanee in the for sale pictures I posted this week

I had striped off the metal jacket to weld new mud legs and wash out ports - I told my supplier what I was up to and he sold me 2 inch thick panels of hi density spun fiberglass panels with reflective backing- some were rigid for flat surface installation - some were kerfed to bend over the vessel dome. These were attached by spot welding "nails" to the vessel that pinned the material on. Then I taped the joints like drywall and smeared a coating of mastic on and the boiler room ran cooler - but I also insulated ever distribution pipe I could get at. That insulation helped the boiler to carry the load better as I was now sending the energy where it was needed.

If you look carefully in the fore sale pictures -there are shreds of that "jacket" insulation laying on the floor - These days that boiler room is far less tidy than it used to be!!!

About 8 years ago I did the same thing to the boiler in my church basement - That also ran better after insulating the vessel and the distribution pipes.

The insulation under the metal jacket of my Treager pellet boiler is woeful at best - but I only run it when degree days are above 30 so the house gets the heat anyway. I wouldn't want to run it without further insulation during warmer weather - too much loss to maintain 140 vessel idle fire temp.
When you turn your boiler on -Does it return the favor?
I have finally lost my mind. Don't bother to return it. It wasn't working properly anyway!

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LsFarm
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Post Thu. Apr. 03, 2008 10:16 am

Yes, you could probably add insulation board under the sheet metal cover to improve the factory insulation.

For your installation, do you have enough room to build a room around the boiler ?? this would provide the very best insulation, noise reduction and segregation of dust, fly ash and possible smells.. Another BIG plus a room enclosing the boiler would provide is you could provide outside air into this room so the boiler would not be pulling a draft on your whole house all winter long.

The combustion air, and the air going up the chimney has to come from the inside of your house. So all the windows, doors, sills, and every gap in the structure is pulling cold outside air into the house to make up for the air going up the chimney.. Eliminating this cold air infiltration make the house much more comfortable and draft free.

If you can insulate a room around the boiler you could insulate the ceiling as well, and keep all the dust and ash contained in the room... the rest of the basement will be clean.

Just an idea.

Axeman Anderson says they have sold only a few enclosures for their boilers over the years.. The small amount of heat given off usually just keeps a damp basement dry.. But with today's homes, any heat source would be an issue in the summer because of our use of A/C to cool our homes.

Greg L
Burning Pea/Buckwheat through an antique stoker [semi retired SSboiler],
Running an Axeman-Anderson 260M boiler burning Pea, About 150-250#per day
Farming, Fixing, Fabricating and Flying: 'spare time' what's that?

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Post Thu. Apr. 03, 2008 11:19 am

LsFarm wrote: Another BIG plus a room enclosing the boiler would provide is you could provide outside air into this room so the boiler would not be pulling a draft on your whole house all winter long.
In PA, L&I requires 1 sq. inch of outside ventilation per 4000BTU of output. One local code that I heard about recently required a vent at the floor area and one at the top of any sealed room. As stated above, this is a good idea to reduce house drafts.
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Highlander
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Post Thu. Apr. 03, 2008 9:21 pm

Harman VF3K's are not insulated, but its quite easy to add about an inch of fiberglass under the covers. It Definitely makes a difference in how much heat the unit throws off into the room.

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beatle78
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Post Mon. Apr. 07, 2008 4:09 pm

LsFarm wrote:Yes, you could probably add insulation board under the sheet metal cover to improve the factory insulation.

For your installation, do you have enough room to build a room around the boiler ?? this would provide the very best insulation, noise reduction and segregation of dust, fly ash and possible smells.. Another BIG plus a room enclosing the boiler would provide is you could provide outside air into this room so the boiler would not be pulling a draft on your whole house all winter long.

The combustion air, and the air going up the chimney has to come from the inside of your house. So all the windows, doors, sills, and every gap in the structure is pulling cold outside air into the house to make up for the air going up the chimney.. Eliminating this cold air infiltration make the house much more comfortable and draft free.

If you can insulate a room around the boiler you could insulate the ceiling as well, and keep all the dust and ash contained in the room... the rest of the basement will be clean.

Just an idea.

Axeman Anderson says they have sold only a few enclosures for their boilers over the years.. The small amount of heat given off usually just keeps a damp basement dry.. But with today's homes, any heat source would be an issue in the summer because of our use of A/C to cool our homes.

Greg L


You know, I never gave a room any thought.

I'm pretty strapped for space due to some poor layout choices in my basement, but I will put that on my brainstorming list.

What kind of clearance do I need for oil and coal boilers from walls? This is a probably a local code question, but I figure some guys on here could probably provide some good info on this.

Thanks,
Jeremy

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LsFarm
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Post Mon. Apr. 07, 2008 4:39 pm

I'd check the company websites for clearance to combustables.. I'd say 16-24" just to make working around them less difficult..

Greg L

.
Burning Pea/Buckwheat through an antique stoker [semi retired SSboiler],
Running an Axeman-Anderson 260M boiler burning Pea, About 150-250#per day
Farming, Fixing, Fabricating and Flying: 'spare time' what's that?

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e.alleg
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Post Wed. Apr. 09, 2008 6:52 pm

I agree with LSFarm; put the boiler so that you can walk around it easily, and while your at it put a light fixture above the thing. Most people shove the boiler in a dark corner and it sucks when you have to do anything to it, you may as well give yourself some extra room now because I guarantee once it's installed and filled up with water you won't be moving it ;)
Burning coal is definitely worth the extra work involved.
"Good enough" is not good enough.

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beatle78
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Post Wed. Apr. 09, 2008 7:16 pm

e.alleg wrote:I agree with LSFarm; put the boiler so that you can walk around it easily, and while your at it put a light fixture above the thing. Most people shove the boiler in a dark corner and it sucks when you have to do anything to it, you may as well give yourself some extra room now because I guarantee once it's installed and filled up with water you won't be moving it ;)
hehe, yah I have to figure out if a room is even feasible. I may have to make the "room" bigger to encompass both boilers, the laundry, and the bath. This way the rest of the living space can be cooled in the summer without the boiler trying to warm it for me.

The rest of the downstairs will become a kitchen and living room when we're done. (the downstairs is a walkout)

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