Intermittent Ignition Devices
- Older furnaces and boilers with a continuous pilot light can be retrofitted with intermittent ignition devices.
- These devices are difficult to install and should only be installed by professionals.
- Your furnace contractor can provide the installation cost and the payback period. If the payback is several years, you will need to decide if it is worth the investment.
- Although intermittent ignition devices can save you fuel costs, they are not always cost effective when installed on aging equipment.
- If it's possible to turn off your furnace's pilot in the spring and to turn it on again in the fall, you can usually save the same amount of money as you would use one of these devices.
- Many boilers and furnaces in today's homes are oversized, particularly if you've upgraded the energy efficiency of your home.
- It is sometimes possible to reduce the heating capacity of your gas boiler or furnace so it operates more efficiently by reducing the size of the gas burner orifice, and possibly also the baffles. This is a difficult process that should only be performed by a qualified technician, and in some cases, it could violate local building codes and void manufacturer's warranties. If allowed, the modifications could save up to 15% of your fuel costs.
- Steam boilers should only be de-rated if the steam system is also modified to remove excess radiators, which is a tricky procedure.