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Leaking residential boiler: suggestions?

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Posted by Dan on January 07, 2002 at 11:32:28:

My 40-year-old York/Shipley oil-fired steam boiler apparently is leaking into the firebox. Water runs out a couple of times a day, lots of steam coming out the chimney but no leaks anywhere else.

I tried to dope it with Silver King (silicon formula) but it only stopped the leak for a few minutes. Is it worth trying a different stop-leak product? Can the dope damage the boiler?

What's the feasibility of trying to repair a boiler this old? If it could work long enough to get me through this winter, what might it cost to tear apart and weld the boiler? Were the old York/Shipleys cast iron or steel?

I'm trying (without much success) to get quotes on a new boiler. Any suggestions about what features/types/brands to consider for a big, drafty house w/ apartment and domestic hot water off the boiler? Current boiler is rated 144 lbs./hr, with a single pipe system, no Hartford loop, low-water shut-off but no automatic feed.

What do I measure to get square feet of radiation (to calculate BTUs needed)? The frontal area of all the radiators in the house? Or the square footage of the heated space?


Dan (watching his paycheck go up the chimney)

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