Kennebunkport homeowner Dana Morton (right) and mechanical contractor Jerry Guertin pose with the Baxi wall-hung boiler, installed in the cellar right underneath the master bedroom.
BIDDEFORD, Maine - Dana Morton says the only time he is ever likely to see another oil furnace or hot water tank in his house is in a nightmare.

For years, Morton said he put up with a groaning oil furnace in the cellar beneath his bedroom. Today, he has a high-efficiency, wall-hung boiler heating system that he said "is so quiet and small that I would have no objection to installing it in the master bedroom closet of my new Kennebunkport, Maine, home."

Morton is among the growing number of delighted homeowners in Maine and New Hampshire who are heating their homes and domestic hot water with a gas or propane-fired wall-hung boiler. A professional engineer, Morton did plenty of homework before choosing the Baxi Luna boiler as an alternative to oil heating and a separate hot water tank.

"I couldn't believe how small my boiler is," said Morton. "It's no bigger than a breadbox. I put it to the test throughout this past winter, and there's no looking back. It far exceeded my expectations, and so I installed it."

Morton said he has experienced every type of home heating system.

"Before the wall-hung boiler, I had everything from a combination oil-hot water baseboard, a steam system, and even a wood-burning furnace," he said. "In my previous home, I could hardly wait for that moment in spring when I would finally get to turn off the groaning oil furnace in my cellar.

"This is by far the best heating system I've ever had. For starters, it is combination heating and hot water system, saving me money on my hot water bill. With the Baxi, natural gas or propane is as efficient as oil heating in this market.

"The unit makes absolutely no noise. It takes up such little space. Plus, the only exhaust is vapor, so it is not polluting the atmosphere."

Andy Holmes of Coastal Winair and mechanical contractor Jerry Guertin discuss boiler installation blueprints for the Highland Green project.

Baxi Luna

Coastal Winair, located in Biddeford, Maine, began distributing the boilers in Maine and New Hampshire in 2002.

"Our breakthrough project was the Highland Green project, a 600-unit gated retirement community with 2,000- to 2,500-square-foot single detached homes, located in Topsham, Maine," said Andy Holmes, Coastal Winair's president. "At our first meeting with the project coordinator, it was clear that Highland Green is an environmentally friendly project.

"We were able to demonstrate energy efficiency, green feeling, and low installation cost, which makes this gas or propane-fired combination system very affordable and very desirable for the new development. This is certainly a home heating system that appeals to a fixed-income budget, and it is right for any home."

Mike Thomas, president of Marathon International, the exclusive North American distributor of Baxi products, noted that Baxi is fully approved by the American Gas Association (AGA) and the Canadian Gas Association (CGA). Its manufacturer is ISO 9001-certified for quality management, and ISO 14001-certified for environmental management, he said.

"It is gratifying to see how our Baxi distributors like Coastal Winair are earning the trust and confidence of contractors, builders, architects, designers, and homeowners throughout North America," Thomas said. "It is profitable for everyone, saving enormous installation time for mechanical contractors and enormous energy and cost savings for homeowners."

Building Confidence

"Most of our builders are initially skeptical, but once they get to know and appreciate the tangible benefits of a small unit like this, the demand for this product soars," said Guy Poirier of Guy Poirier Corp., Scarborough, Maine, a Coastal Winair dealer. "I can install this wall-hung boiler in half the time that other boilers are installed. Plus, it takes up a space of just nine square feet, as opposed to a normal 100-square-foot heating allowance."

Jerry Guertin is especially pleased with the enthusiasm that his customer Dana Morton has for the small boiler. "Mr. Morton brings family and friends over to showcase the product and what it means to him," said Guertin.

"I get calls from family members and friends who want to come over and check out my combination heating-hot water boiler system," said Morton. "Frankly, I never thought seeing a home comfort system would be a primary reason for visiting someone."

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Publication date: 11/10/2003