Does anyone have an inexpensive method to "clock" a combustion furnace to estimate BTU output similar to Natural gas, but for propane, kerosene, or oil? I work in the Weatherization Assistance Program and often the nameplates are missing from existing furnaces. Without BTU output it is tough to do an accurate computer model of the home. Thanks!

Views: 346

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

For natural gas, run only the furnace for a given time, mark the dial difference on the meter and multiply the gas used by the heat multiplier for your gas supplier. This will give you a ball park estimate.

For propane, you can look at the burner orfice size.  there are charts that give the btu rating for the orfice size. then multiply by the numbers of burners.  will give approx output.  LP orfices are usually slightly smaller btu than Nat. ones.

Follow the link

http://www.joppaglass.com/burner/lowp_chrt.html

Thanks for all the comments plus the link. I think based on them I have enough information forfollks in the field to get close enough to the correct size furnaces for modeling the houses thanks all.

Ernst,

You mentioned oil, but the replies seem to all be for gas, unless I didn't read correctly.  For oil you can look for the nozzle size.  Sometimes it is notes on the service tag or in the manual, if still around.  In some cases you might be able to call the service company as they may have that noted for their HDD fuel calculations or service work. 

Bud

Thanks, I did find that out. In weatherization we deal with some really old furnaces, so sometimes getting a ballpark furnace size is the best we can do but the nozzle sizes for oil seem to be pretty specific.

For the oil burning furnaces, you should check the pump pressure. Older furnaces run at 100psi, and newer ones run at 140psi. When the pressure is higher, you need to cross reference the nozzle size to get proper Btu ratings. Plenty of reference materials are located on the Beckett website.

For propane figure about 20-25k per burner rated input. Varies some form unit to unit but 22k is typical.

Thanks Bob, we'll go woithout. It should be close enough without having to factor in pressures and temps, etc and  complicate the process too much.

I'll apologies in advance for drifting here a bit, but your "close enough" comment threw me back to my beginning in this business (05) when I questioned every number we use.  The idea of pinning down the performance of a home to the last tiny detail is laughable when we consider just how many of our inputs are "close enough" numbers.  From insulation values, HDD, window performance, and air leakage (to name a few), we guess and we guess and then carry our calculations out to two decimal places (or the computer does).  I think my tape measure is the only real source of accurate information :).

I enjoyed the comment

Bud

RSS

Home Energy Pros

Home Energy Pros was founded by the developers of Home Energy Saver Pro (sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy,) and brought to you in partnership with Home Energy magazine.

Latest Activity

Craig Foley posted an event
Thumbnail

NESEA BuildingEnergy '15 at Seaport World Trade Center, Boston

March 4, 2015 from 10:30am to 12:30pm
High-Performance, Green Homes in Residential Real EstateInstructor Craig Foley will present three…See More
8 hours ago
Casey Gesell posted a video

ThermalDry® Insulated Floor Decking!

Larry Janesky, owner and founder of Dr. Energy Saver is once again On the Job insulating and finishing a basement in the northeast – and introducing a brand new insulation product: ThermalDry Insulated Floor Decking. ThermalDry Floor Decking was…
9 hours ago
Profile IconBergen Heat, Travis Thom and Amita Singh joined Home Energy Pros
12 hours ago
Tom White's video was featured

U.S. Department of Education Webinar for HVACR Educators

Rebroadcast from On April 30, 2013 Sharon Miller and Robin Utz of the U.S. Department of Education conducted a one hour webinar for HVACR educators to provide them firsthand information from Washington. Highlights include: * A blueprint to revise…
12 hours ago
Tom White posted a video

U.S. Department of Education Addresses HVACR Educators 4-30-2013

Rebroadcast from On April 30, 2013 Sharon Miller and Robin Utz of the U.S. Department of Education conducted a one hour webinar for HVACR educators to provid...
12 hours ago
Nate Adams's discussion was featured
23 hours ago
Bud Poll replied to Bud Poll's discussion CO poisoning in Yarmouth Maine
"Hi Chad, I sure would like to hear the follow-up on what caused the CO issue down there.  As…"
yesterday
Chad Mcaulife replied to Bud Poll's discussion CO poisoning in Yarmouth Maine
"I got a call yesterday from a homeowner who had a direct vent furnace installed a year ago and she…"
yesterday

© 2015   Created by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service