Articles by John Siegenthaler, P.E.

Some ways to simplify hydronic systems

Less is best when it comes to hydronic heating systems.
By John Siegenthaler, P.E.
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After completing a hydronic installation, especially one that’s taken you a few days longer than expected, do you ever ponder that there is just too much “stuff” in some of these systems?


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T and ∆T pumping when it comes to wood-gasification boilers

One application that leverages both control capabilities.
By John Siegenthaler, P.E.
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The market for wood-gasification boilers is growing in North America. Most are used in rural areas where natural gas in not available, and thus the cost of firewood is often very competitive against the alternatives of No. 2 fuel oil or propane.


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Parsing a number

Differences exist between rules of thumb and precise calculations.
By John Siegenthaler, P.E.
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Differences exist between rules of thumb and precise calculations.


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Nature vs. math

Formulas and assumptions don’t always predict what happens.
By John Siegenthaler, P.E.
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 The following formula has been around the North American hydronics industry for a long time:  


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Trade-offs in boilers

Two boiler characteristics that need to make a comeback.
By John Siegenthaler, P.E.
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 North American hydronic professionals can now choose from dozens of modulating/condensing (mod/con) boilers. Many are designed for wall-mounting. Those who design these boilers strive for small enclosures and low weight.  


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The basics of radiant ceiling cooling

No drips allowed.
By John Siegenthaler, P.E.
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 For decades, well-designed and -installed hydronic heating systems have earned a reputation for superior comfort. Still, potential customers who understand and desire the benefits of hydronic heating often ask, “But how does this system provide cooling?”  


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Biomass heating systems can use both big and little tanks

How they can work together in a wood-fired heating system.
By John Siegenthaler, P.E.
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Interest in biomass heating systems continues to rise, especially in rural areas of the United States and Canada. Although plenty of devices are available that burn wood to heat water, the state-of-the-art device is a wood-gasification boiler.


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Solar Thermal Report- Spring 2013: If I Made the Tanks, Part 1

What would an ideal pressurized thermal storage tank for a solar combisystem look like?
By John Siegenthaler, P.E.
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Residential solar combisystems provide domestic water heating and some percentage of space heating. Although less known than domestic hot water-only systems, combisystems can be practical and efficient if properly sized and designed.
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Smoke Gets in your Eyes

It’s time to do wood-fired heating right.
By John Siegenthaler, P.E.
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Every August, I make a short trip to a local event call the Woodsmen’s Field Days. This gathering is all about cutting down trees and then slicing them up into either firewood or lumber.
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Energy and Power

They're not the same thing
By John Siegenthaler, P.E.
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Most of you reading this column consider yourselves heating professionals.
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In the August issue of PM, read about the continued construction and renovations being made to hotels and restaurants. Find out the focus of this year's ISH China show will be, who made this month's Truck of the Month and read what Elkay has to say about their commercial construction expansion. Also, read the latest news and discover the newest products being used by professionals in the plumbing and mechanical industry.
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