2017-11-13 / Front Page

New boilers increase comfort, save dollars

By Steven Kovac
810-452-2684 • skovac@mihomepaper.com

Two new state-of- the-art high-efficiency heating boilers were installed last week at the junior/senior high school. Two new state-of- the-art high-efficiency heating boilers were installed last week at the junior/senior high school. BROWN CITY — Superintendent Neil Kohler is expecting students and staff at the junior/senior high school to work and learn in greater comfort this winter, while the district saves money on its heating bills.

Last week Kohler took The Brown City Banner deep into the building to show off two sleek, new, high-efficiency Camus boilers recently installed in the school’s reworked boiler room.

“We had three boilers that were approaching the end of their life expectancy,” said Kohler. “And when it comes to heat, we can’t afford to have anything go wrong.

“We replaced two and kept the newest of the three for backup. It will come on only when extremely low outdoor temperatures warrant it.”

The new computerized boilers each resemble a good-sized residential refrigerator.

Maintenance chief Ron Bennett was on hand to explain more about units, saying, “The new digitized models are smaller in size. They take up less floor space. This was crucial because we are now subject to more recent building codes which require so much distance be maintained between boilers.”

“Two new ones the same size and style as the older ones could not work in the available space,” said Kohler. “The footprint of these new taller models is small enough to meet code with much less alteration to the room. That saved the district quite a bit of money.”

Bennett said the two new boilers, though smaller than the older ones, are rated for 2 million BTUs each, while the others were rated at 1.6 million BTUs each.

“The new ones also use onethird the water,” said Bennett. “But the real savings will come because the new ones modulate. That means the capacity they run at moves higher when the weather is colder and runs lower when the temperature outside isn’t as cold.

“The old ones had one level of operation, 100 percent all the time. This would often make the classrooms uncomfortably hot while burning more gas,” he said.

Kohler said the total cost of the entire job, including some necessary plumbing reconfiguration, was about $140,000, which the district paid off from funds on hand.

The boilers were installed by Contrast Mechanical Construction of Macomb.

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