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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Philadelphia PA
    Posts
    3,177

    Default Boiler advice needed

    I have a 30+ year old Weil Mclain boiler. This morning I noticed no heat, so took a look and found a couple pieces of insulation had fallen onto the standing pilot which was out. I removed the insulation and fired the boiler back up no problem.
    The insulation pieces are about 3/8 inch thick and together are about 40 square inches or so. Clearly I'm going to be in the market for a new boiler, but we're still paralyzed by snow so I don't think that's going to happen anytime real soon.
    My question regards the purpose of the insulation. Is it mainly to reduce heat loss, or does it prevent the boiler cabinet from melting down? In other words, can I limp along for a bit with reduced efficiency, or would I be inviting a catastrophe?
    Thanks!

    Last edited by John Arnold; 02-14-2014 at 08:18 AM. Reason: spelling
    Inspection Referral SOC
    "There is no exception to the rule that every rule has an exception." -James Thurber, writer and cartoonist (1894-1961)
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Caledon, Ontario
    Posts
    5,005

    Default Re: Boiler advice needed

    3/8" thick is likely not doing much to insulate. Likely okay without it given its thickness.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Philadelphia PA
    Posts
    3,177

    Default Re: Boiler advice needed

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymond Wand View Post
    3/8" thick is likely not doing much to insulate. Likely okay without it given its thickness.
    I was thinking the same thing. Thanks.

    "There is no exception to the rule that every rule has an exception." -James Thurber, writer and cartoonist (1894-1961)
    www.ArnoldHomeInspections.com

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Lansdale, PA
    Posts
    876

    Default Re: Boiler advice needed

    Quote Originally Posted by John Arnold View Post
    I have a 30+ year old Weil Mclain boiler. This morning I noticed no heat, so took a look and found a couple pieces of insulation had fallen onto the standing pilot which was out. I removed the insulation and fired the boiler back up no problem.
    The insulation pieces are about 3/8 inch thick and together are about 40 square inches or so. Clearly I'm going to be in the market for a new boiler, but we're still paralyzed by snow so I don't think that's going to happen anytime real soon.
    My question regards the purpose of the insulation. Is it mainly to reduce heat loss, or does it prevent the boiler cabinet from melting down? In other words, can I limp along for a bit with reduced efficiency, or would I be inviting a catastrophe?
    Thanks!
    That insulation is adjacent to the burners and protects the housing. Short term you may be ok without it, but I would try to put it back in place.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Southern Vancouver Island
    Posts
    4,546

    Default Re: Boiler advice needed

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Reinmiller View Post
    That insulation is adjacent to the burners and protects the housing. Short term you may be ok without it, but I would try to put it back in place.
    Would you use a bit of fireclay? With a couple of bent sticks to hold it till dry?

    John Kogel, RHI, BC HI Lic #47455
    www.allsafehome.ca

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    South-West Michigan
    Posts
    469

    Smile Re: Boiler advice needed

    A picture would be helpful. In the end, if there is a critical function for the insulation, you have probably found out by now, or will soon enough.

    Randall Aldering GHI BAOM MSM
    Housesmithe Inspection
    www.housesmithe.com

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    2,776

    Default Re: Boiler advice needed

    If the insulation is from the plate that covers the access to the burners, then not an issue not to replace. Just remember the metal plate may be hot when you go to remove it to access burners.


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