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  1. #1
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    Mar 2007
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    Default Fire Shield Above Boilers

    What are the requirements for fire shields or sprinkler heads above oil fired boilers??
    Does anyone have a code reference?

    Thanks

    Member Benefits1
    Ken Amelin
    Cape Cod's Best Inspection Services
    www.midcapehomeinspection.com

  2. #2
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    Mar 2007
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    Succasunna NJ
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    Default Re: Fire Shield Above Boilers

    Most fuel fired appliances have clearance to combustibles stamped on them.

    Darren www.aboutthehouseinspections.com
    'Whizzing & pasting & pooting through the day (Ronnie helping Kenny helping burn his poots away!) (FZ)

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Fire Shield Above Boilers

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Abram View Post
    In MA - 527 CMR 4.04 5. f

    Most boilers do not require a fireshield or sprinkler.
    Jim,

    Thanks - I see the exception to MA - CMR 4.04 5.f

    Exception: 527 CMR 4.04(5)(f)1. and 2. shall not apply to new installations or
    replacement of existing boilers or furnaces that have an A.F.U.E. (Annual Fuel
    Utilization Efficiency) rating or domestic hot water heaters that have an EF (Energy
    Factor) rating in accordance with standards of the United States Department of Energy
    (D.O.E.).

    So what the heck does an A.F.U.E. have to do with allowing an exception to the fire shield?? Seems strange they would allow this exception because of a fuel efficiency rating. Any thoughts??

    Ken Amelin
    Cape Cod's Best Inspection Services
    www.midcapehomeinspection.com

  4. #4
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    Ormond Beach, Florida
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    Default Re: Fire Shield Above Boilers

    Quote Originally Posted by Ken Amelin View Post
    So what the heck does an A.F.U.E. have to do with allowing an exception to the fire shield?? Seems strange they would allow this exception because of a fuel efficiency rating. Any thoughts??
    The higher the A.F.U.E. rating the more of the heat produced goes into the heat transfer media (water in the case of a boiler) and the less of the heat produced is wasted (heats up the furnace and/or or surrounding area).

    The old cast iron furnaces heated up the entire furnace and everything around it; the newer and more efficient furnaces may even allow you to place your hand on the furnace cabinet (I don't live in the area where such furnaces are required so I have not tried that - but that is for illustrative purposes anyway).

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Fire Shield Above Boilers

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Abram View Post
    Ken - Nothing.
    I think all equipment has a AFUE.

    Except when they eliminated the requirement,it was at the same time they determined that fires are a very rare occurrence with oil fired burners and the required firematic performed adequately if there was a fire .
    It's not that it has a A.F.U.E rating, it is what the rating is: (underlining and bold are mine)
    - Exception: 527 CMR 4.04(5)(f)1. and 2. shall not apply to new installations or replacement of existing boilers or furnaces that have an A.F.U.E. (Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency) rating or domestic hot water heaters that have an EF (Energy Factor) rating in accordance with standards of the United States Department of Energy (D.O.E.).

    Install an illegal gas hog (fuel oil hog in this case) which is from the 1970s and its A.F.U.E. rating would not be in accordance with the D.O.E. minimum standards of today when it was being installed. (Okay, maybe using a 1970s one is not a good example, but I think it points out what the exception is stating).

    Just HAVING an A.F.U.E. rating is not the excepting kick-in threshold ... having an A.F.U.E. rating which meets the current D.O.E. standards is the exception kick-in threshold.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Fire Shield Above Boilers

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Abram View Post
    Sorry Jerry - You are wrong again. You added the word "current" to the regulation. I do not believe that you are authorized to change regulations.

    I was involved in this code change and it was a deal to require AFUE rated equipment in exchange for eliminating the ceiling protection.
    Sorry Jim - You are wrong again. You need to learn to read words and codes, and what is really written.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Fire Shield Above Boilers

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Abram View Post
    Jerry - This has already been decided by the courts to mean any AFUE rating.
    Again ... care to share those court decisions which go against MA law?

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  8. #8
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    Mar 2007
    Location
    Near Philly, Pa.
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    Default Re: Fire Shield Above Boilers

    This is a great example of the stupidity of the code writers in Mass. This was horribly written. For starters, when you have a national standard that applies to what you need, just refer to it instead of copying their verbiage and drawings (illegally and without credits shown). In this case, NFPA 211.

    The thing about these so called "fire shields", which btw are not called that in this code, is that the method described is ludicrous and would do nothing to stop the spread of an unfriendly fire. Very amateurish wording. It does NOTHING to protect nearby combustible construction but rather might tend to spread fire to a corner or wall. This is comparable to placing a steel umbrella over a fire thinking it will stop the spread of fire. Dopey. If the entire room is not enclosed and of the same fire resistive construction, it is a waste and utterly ineffective at its intent. The sprinkler sounds good at first but there's a problem: oil is a Class B fire and water is the LAST thing you would want to use on it. Duh. An automatic type B chemical fire extinguisher over and around the appliance would be more appropriate.

    As for the AFUE thing: using Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency as some modicum of safety reference is ridiculous. They should be looking to a listing to a safety standard(s).

    Keep the fire in the fireplace.

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