Boilers & Hydro Air
We started out over ten years ago installing a lot of boilers and “hydro air” heating systems. “Hydro air” refers to a heating system with ductwork and a fan coil (an air handler with a blower) with a hot water coil connected to a boiler. The boiler provides hot water which heats up the hot water coil, in turn heating the air in the home. If cooling was desired, a separate cooling coil would be added to the fan coil or air handler with an outside condenser. Recently, new home construction has reduced winter heat losses so much and air conditioning has become so popular that we are now installing heat pumps to do both the cooling and heating of the home and boilers are dedicated to domestic hot water production and backup heat on the coldest days.
We have had a lot of success with the Buderus GB142 condensing boiler. It is easy to service, is robust, and is energy efficient (up to 96%!)
A boiler is a device that heats non-potable water for use in space heating and making domestic hot water. These boilers are propane fired and are ideal if there are high domestic hot water loads or many bathrooms in a home.
How boilers work:
A boiler is by definition a device that uses combustion of a fuel to heat water (similar to a furnace which uses combustion to heat and move air). These boilers are able to modulate or adjust their capacity based on the requirements of the house – they do this via a modulating fan inside the boiler. This permits the use of PVC for vent which greatly simplifies installation.
Because these boilers burn propane, they are much cleaner to operate that oil boilers. Therefore there is very little service or maintenance required on the propane burner (we do not install or service oil burning equipment).
Because these boilers are condensing, which means they squeeze almost all of the energy out of the propane that they burn, there is maintenance required in cleaning out the heat exchanger regularly.
Hydro Air (fan coil or air handling unit):
A Hydro Air unit is a steel cabinet that houses a blower (or fan), a hydronic heating coil, and sometimes an air conditioning coil. A very popular model is the First Company series (https://www.firstco.com/getattachment/Products/Multi-Family-Residential-Products/Wall-Closet/HBXB-HW-(High-Efficiency)/hbxb-hw-mbxb-hw-11-02-l2472g.pdf)
Our goal is to be Martha’s Vineyard’s premier plumbing and HVAC shop – we appreciate the opportunity to service, install, and rescue your boiler and hydro-air system!