Since Mia and her husband, Rich Szymanski, started Mialek Mechanical in Hoboken, NJ, they have turned down plenty of jobs simply because the homeowner wanted something that would not work.
“I just don’t want the company’s name on a job that’s not going to live up to its potential,” Rich explained.
New construction is rare in Hoboken, and all of the older homes present unique challenges. According to Szymanski, his insistence on specifying and sticking to a few select products puts him in a category of installers that makes up roughly 10 percent of the total; what he calls “product-specific contractors.”
Mialek received a call from a homeowner who was paying far too much to heat his home, and he was not getting enough domestic hot water. His daughter and grandson had just moved in with him. Lukewarm showers were the result.
The goal was to retrofit the home’s 40-year-old hydronic system with a high-efficiency modulating boiler.
Mialek removed an oversized 175 MBH gas-fired boiler along with a 40-gallon domestic hot water heater. Unlike the atmospheric boiler, which vented through a chimney in the center of the basement, the 105 MBH Alpine condensing boiler replacement was hung on a wall to save space. A new Alliance indirect tank was installed where the old water heater had been.
“There are three main reasons we use products made by U.S. Boiler Company,” said Szymanski. “First and foremost, it is an American company that makes products that work very well. Second, there is literally a product for every single application we encounter, from oil-fired steam to modulating gas, and we have successfully installed every model they make. Last, but definitely not least, is the support we receive from their local sales representative, Venco Sales.”
The efficiency of the properly sized Alpine boiler reduced the owner’s gas bill by 50 percent. That’s quite an accomplishment considering that his DHW load had doubled, controllability went up, and the home now stays warmer than before.
The retrofit also opened up floor space so that the owner has more room to work in the basement.
Above: The home was served by a 40-year-old boiler, which was not satisfying the recently increased DHW load.
Above: The new 105 MBH Alpine condensing boiler and Alliance indirect water heater cut the owner’s gas bill by 50 percent while raising comfort levels.
Above: Rich Szymanski, owner of Mialek Mechanical.