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Oil-fired water boiler Effeciency

Have a Burnham V15 oil-fired boiler for baseboard hot water heating system. Several years ago, the service technician replaced the fuel nozzle on the gun with a smaller version claiming that the system would be more efficient. Haven't noticed any increased efficiency - seems just the opposite. The furnace runs longer to heat the water albeit it probably uses less fuel for a given period of time. Besides obviously using more electricity to run longer, does the smaller nozzle really save on fuel over the larger factory installed nozzle?

Re: Oil-fired water boiler Effeciency


I spent some time searching the Burnham site, but they don't have any specs on the V-15.

could you post any info you have on the output rating (usually on a plate attached to the boiler (ex: 100,000 btu/hr)---also the firing rate (ex: 1.35 gph).

If you have the original installation manual, the # of gallons of water the boiler holds and the boiler's age.

Also the total square footage of the house.

It's really a balancing act to try & get the best efficiency---installing a smaller nozzle often works wonders for newer boilers, especially if the boiler is over-fired (too large for the amount of house it has to heat).

Many larger boilers that are short-cycling due to oversize will do well with a smaller nozzle.

I wonder if the tech also did a combustion analysis of the burner flame & adjusted for a good flame with adequate co2, air & minimum co, soot, smoke.

A $2k combustion analyzer has to be used to adjust the flame for the most efficient burn---an "eyeball" adjustment (which many techs do) won't cut it.

Also the burner pump fuel pressure has to be adjusted to maximize flame efficiency.

Would you say the house has good insulation in the exterior walls & attic & tight windows???

jim hankinson
Re: Oil-fired water boiler Effeciency

If you have automatic oil delivery you could ask the oil company if your k factor has changed. A higher number means less oil used for a set number of degree days. Lower number means more oil used.

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