Boiler and radiator systems might not be the most common heating solutions for your house nowadays, but they have been utilized effectively for more than one hundred years. Radiator systems put in over half a century ago have kept going strong in numerous buildings. In fact, many San Francisco homes or buildings currently have radiator systems because of the city’s age. These systems produce an efficient, safe and dependable supply of heat. Many people actually prefer radiators over forced air or various other heating systems as the warm air that is produced from the radiator isn’t drying; moreover, it is fairly quiet and requires minor maintenance.
Boilers and radiator systems use heating from steam which is quite different than other heating systems. They’ve got oil or gas propelled burners which heat water and turns it into steam. The steam passes through a combination of pipes, constructed of either aluminum or cast iron, which at some point escapes through a radiator. At this point, a room is warmed up from the heat coming from the steam. Once the steam cools down, it condenses and goes back to the boiler to become reheated once again. It’s really an efficient method.
A boiler and radiator system can heat an area quicker than conventional heating systems. Plus, a lot of people like the idea that you can heat rooms independently since each room has its own radiator. Conversely, forced air or other furnace systems are designed to use ductwork, which blows heated air into all vented rooms simultaneously, thus wasting energy. Overall, radiators are less costly and simple to install.
You have the option of choosing either cast iron or aluminum pipes for your radiator. Cast iron is a heavy metal and is designed to last. Due to the weight of this type of radiator, it can’t be installed on the wall, as opposed to aluminum designs. The aluminum radiator is fairly new compared to cast iron alternatives. It is light in weight, can be installed on a wall and other locations where cast iron cannot. Some downsides of the radiator system are that they take up space, can be unsightly, and the fact that it is essential that they stay uncovered in order to operate efficiently. If you are the type that doesn’t like unnecessary clutter or a radiator’s appearance, this system may not be the right choice for you.
Boiler and radiator systems do call for some HVAC maintenance, but not like some other heating systems. It is best to check the water level indicators, pressure valves and safety valves to make sure they are in good working order. Since boilers can generate steam that can result in extreme burns on the skin, it is well-advised that you have a San Francisco HVAC company inspect your boiler and radiator heating system.
Though reconditioned cast iron radiators from the late 1800s and early 1900s can perform quite nicely for your needs, you should look into aluminum or new cast iron alternatives for your boiler and radiator system. With newer technology, the radiators constructed now are more efficient and safer than they were previously. You can also buy new radiators that appear like reproductions of vintage designs should you want to fit this heating component within a specific home design!
The experts at Ortiz Heating & Air Conditioning can help you with your boiler/radiator heating system. For more information, please contact your local San Francisco HVAC Company, Ortiz Heating & AC at 650.758.4900.
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