Michael Bartholomay-Berreth owns a 2,700-square-foot, two-story Craftsman house, built in 1914 in Fargo, North Dakota. Heat and hot water are provided by a boiler. And the 107-year-old house was ready for a new one. The existing boiler had been having issues for quite some time. Plus, the family also had decided to convert their unfinished basement into a warm, livable space consisting of a living room and bedroom with radiant heated floors.

“We live in Fargo, so obviously a house is only as good as its heating system,” said Bartholomay-Berreth.

Heating the basement was a major concern because it got very cold down there in the winter – sometimes dipping below 50 degrees. On top of that, the existing boiler was really inefficient. And that boiler was the only heat source for the first- and second-floor radiators.

To handle the upgrade, Bartholomay-Berreth contacted John Robinson at Esser Aire Serv Plumbing & Heating, a commercial and residential contractor serving the Lakes Area in Minnesota and the Fargo-Moorhead area.

The old heating system consisted of a very old boiler and an old gravity system with pipes hanging below the ceiling and 2½-inch lines connected to the boiler. With limited space for the boiler replacement, Robinson recommended a single boiler solution to heat the basement’s new radiant floors and provide multizone capability for the main floor and second-floor radiators.

Robinson recommended installing a Weil-McLain brand high-efficiency Eco Tec 150 MBH gas boiler with intuitive controls and built-in zone control, designed to provide targeted, abundant heat for all levels of the home.

The Weil-McLain Eco Tec boiler features heat only and combined versions for all residential space and domestic hot water heating. It has a durable stainless steel fire tube heat exchanger with sound dampening air silencer, corrosion resistant condensate collector base, easy-to-use setup wizards, and touch screen display.

As part of the basement remodeling project, the contracting team broke up and removed all the concrete floor from the basement. Then they dug out the ground to lower the floor level a foot to make room for the installation of radiant floor heat.

With the radiant heat and the new concrete flooring installed, the team connected the radiant flooring and all the existing cast iron hot water radiators on the upper levels of the home to the new ECO Tec boiler. They then installed an indirect tank for hot water, also powered by the ECO Tec boiler.

The boiler is located in a cramped space the size of a small closet. But it fits, because this boiler is designed for easy access and installation into tight areas.

The new unit now provides highly-efficient heat and hot water for the entire home. Its intelligent control function is able to supply higher temperatures to the radiators and water heater, so they can operate as designed; and a lower temperature to the radiant floor system for a warm, even heat underfoot.