Lochinvar’s New FTXL™ Fire Tube Boiler Contributes to a Successful Condo Conversion in a Cold Canadian Climate

Case Studies

by Lochinvar Marketing Department | 04/27/2015

In 2014, a six-story office building in downtown Winnipeg, Canada, was converted into a mixed-use condominium complex.  The $2 million investment features luxury, loft-style executive condos on the top five floors and two retail/commercial units on the main floor. With the exception of the original concrete floors and walls, the renovation extended to all parts of the building – including the plumbing and HVAC system. 

MidCan-Hydronics, which is part of the Aqua-Tech Canadian sales team for Lochinvar, worked with Parsons Plumbing and Heating to line up the best possible equipment for the building. Larry Stefanec, president of Parsons Plumbing and Heating, ultimately selected all Lochinvar equipment for the building’s domestic hot water, space heating and air makeup. 

Stefanec and his team decided to meet the building’s plumbing and HVAC demand by splitting them into two systems. A 400,000 Btu/hr KNIGHT® Boiler was chosen to provide space heating. The boiler also provides domestic hot water heating for all five condo units through a Squire® Indirect Water Heater. At the time of the renovation, Lochinvar had just released its new FTXL™ Fire Tube Boiler. Fernando Carreiro with MidCan-Hydronics worked with Lochinvar to secure a 500,000 Btu/hr FTXL Boiler that would serve as the sole heat source for the building’s makeup air unit. 

The new FTXL Boiler is capable of delivering up to 10:1 turndown and up to 98 percent Thermal Efficiency – higher than any other boiler in its class. This turndown range allows the FTXL Boiler to adjust its heat output to meet demand, minimizing fuel use. Lochinvar’s variable speed pump integrates seamlessly with the SMART SYSTEM™ control on the FTXL Boiler to keep its boiler temperature rise at a designated temperature. Since Winnipeg’s climate can range from extremely cold winter weather to warm summer months, the FTXL Boiler’s ability to meet variable loads optimizes efficiency throughout the seasons. 

Prior to the arrival of the FTXL Boiler, the makeup air unit was temporarily working off of the KNIGHT Boiler until FTXL officially hit the market. Once it became available, the Parsons Plumbing and Heating team took the air handler off of the space heating loop and hooked it directly to the FTXL Boiler. The FTXL Boiler is designed for maximum space efficiency and flexible placement in the mechanical room, and its small footprint made it an ideal fit for the building’s mechanical room.

“We’ve been installing Lochinvar equipment for years, and we’ve become very familiar with CREST, KNIGHT and ARMOR,” said Larry Stefanec, president of Parsons Plumbing and Heating. “We had heard about Lochinvar’s upcoming launch of the FTXL Fire Tube Boiler and we were excited to have the opportunity to check it out first-hand for this job. The installation for FTXL was similar to KNIGHT, so the setup was simple and turnkey.”

The FTXL Fire Tube Boiler proved to be a flexible solution for this project as it offers the capability to overcome some of the existing construction challenges. For example, the boiler allows for direct-venting up to 100 feet, which proved to be helpful since the site includes a long venting application. 

Since the job was wrapping up in the spring, they didn’t expect to have the chance to test out the FTXL Boiler as much as they wanted. However, Winnipeg’s winter weather continued well into spring and even summer, which allowed the team to see FTXL in action for a couple months.  

“We couldn’t have been more pleased with how well the FTXL was able to meet the challenges of this job and operate smoothly in Winnipeg’s frigid temperatures,” said Stefanec. “When all you see is a nice plume exhausting the FTXL vent pipe, you know things are going well. We’re looking forward to seeing it continue to exceed expectations next winter, especially once we tap into its remote connectivity capabilities.”