Please be aware that the information provided below is intended to be a guide to help understand what is involved in a conversion to coal or bio-fuel pellets. Please call us to discuss your individual heating needs. There are many ways to carry out a conversion to coal or bio-fuel (wood) pellets, and with our experience we can determine a course of action that is right for you.


Heat requirement is determined by air change, exhaust fans, doors, window, insulation, ventilation system, overall quality of construction, etc., so each installation must be assessed on an individual basis. For example, the Department of Agriculture heating recommendations for double poly greenhouses is 150 BTU per square foot. Poultry barns, at an average of 16,000 sq. ft. require 1 MBTU to heat. As you can see with these two examples, there are many variations that must be accounted for when determining the size of heater that you will need. You should have a heat loss calculation done for your facility by an engineer or consult with the owners of similar facilities and ask them about their heating requirements.


SizeRatingApprox. Heating AreaHeightDiameterChimneyWater Outlets
NAC20  500,000 BTU  16,000 ft2   114" 30"   8"   2" NPT 
NAC24  710,000 BTU  23,000 ft2  120" 36"   8"   2.5" NPT 
 NAC30 1,000,000 BTU  30,000 ft2  126" 42"   10"   3" NPT 
 NAC36  1,600,000 BTU  55,000 ft2  132"  48"   12"   4" NPT 
 NAC40 2,300,000 BTU  80,000 ft2  144" 54"   14"   4" NPT 
The All Canadian Heater should be housed in its own stand-alone building to provide truck access for coal delivery and ash removal. The location of the boiler house is also a factor in determining the size of pipe, pump volume, and head pressure to supply adequate heat to buildings. There is no set minimum or maximum distance that will restrict the location of your boiler house. By simply varying pipe and pump sizes you can accommodate any distance.

The boiler house should have a port underneath the heater that allows ash to fall into an ash pit below the boiler. Our customers have found that building the foundation/floor first, and then setting the heater in place before the walls and ceiling is the easiest way to install the All Canadian Heater. Once the heater is in place it is easy to finish building the remaining walls and ceiling. Or, if you prefer to build the entire boiler house before installation of the heater, you must insure that you provide an adequate opening through a wall or ceiling to bring in and position the unit.
For servicing and maintenance of the All Canadian Heater, the following clearances are required:

  • Clearance above the heater: 5'
  • Clearance at the sides of the heater: 2'
  • Clearance at the front of the heater: 5'
  • Clearance from the end of the stoker (for stoker removal): 4'

Access space for stoker removal must be determined by the customer in relation to the system used. i.e., monorail, fork lift, trolley, front end loader, etc.

augerFinally, these units use squirrel cage blowers to facilitate combustion, so the boiler house must have a fresh air source. The All Canadian Coal-Fired Hydronic Heater requires 110 volt 12 amp and 220 volt 12 amp power. Provisions must be made in the heater house for an expansion tank to be mounted above the expansion tank connection on the heating unit.

In regards to the specifics of installation (such as fire codes, building permits, construction guidelines etc.) you should approach the construction of your boiler house and the installation of your All Canadian Heater the same way you would approach the installation of a natural gas boiler. You must contact your local municipality and comply with all local codes and procedures.

The All Canadian Coal-Fired Hydronic Heater must be installed in accordance with all local building, electrical, plumbing and heating codes.

It is best to keep your coal protected from the elements in a roofed structure or in a storage bin. Customers tell us that it is best to have two coal bins. The first bin is a large storage bin located outside the boiler house for bulk storage. Your coal bin should be able to store the same amount of coal as your delivery truck. Thus, the capacity of the truck will help to determine the size of bin you will require.

The second bin is a smaller bin contained inside the boiler house (that gravity feeds the hopper on the All Canadian Stoker). This bin should be able to hold from two days to a week's worth of coal. With this configuration, coal bridging due to freezing is minimized and you always have a bit of reserve inside the boiler house if you run the outside bin dry.

The amount of coal you burn depends on the capacity at which you operate your All Canadian Heater. Our largest heater, the 2.3 MBTU unit, running at 100% capacity will burn approximately 230 lbs of Alberta coal in an hour. We arrive at this figure by dividing the total BTU output of the unit (2.3 MBTU) by the average BTU output of Alberta coal (10,000 BTU/lb). Thus 2,300,000 BTU / 10,000 BTU/lb = 230 lbs. Using the same formula we can approximate the amount of coal that each All Canadian Heater will burn in one hour running at full capacity:

  • 500,000 BTU All Canadian Hydronic Heater - 50 lbs/hr
  • 710,000 BTU All Canadian Hydronic Heater - 71 lbs/hr
  • 1,000,000 BTU All Canadian Hydronic Heater - 100 lbs/hr
  • 1,600,000 BTU All Canadian Hydronic Heater - 160 lbs/hr
  • 2,300,000 BTU All Canadian Hydronic Heater - 230 lbs/hr

Alberta coal generates an average of 6% ash of coal volume.

Ash falls through an ash port in the boiler house floor under the All Canadian Heater into an ash pit. Over the years, feedback from our customers has indicated that augers work well for removing small volumes of ash (as is produced by our smaller units). However, ash augers that are continuously under load with large volumes of ash tend to wear out quickly and require more frequent servicing. Instead of augers, some customers prefer an ash removal system that can slide in and out of the ash pit or by simply taking the ash out with a front end loader or bobcat.
Our largest unit (2.3 MBTU) was tested by the Alberta Research Council (now Alberta Innovates) for efficiency and emissions. The testing concluded a maximum output of 3.5 MBTU and an efficiency of 82%.  You can read the highlights of this testing.
Maple Leaf - RetouchedFor prices on any of the All Canadian products,
please contact us directly.

Additional expenses will vary for boiler house construction and installation in each individual application. For example, variables such as new or used building, concrete or steel floor, wood or steel frame, piping, pumps, radiators, ditching, new or used material, and the resources currently available to the customer will all have an impact on the overall cost of converting to coal. Depending on the amount of heat they use, customers report a one season to two year payback on their investment.

Quick! The more heat you need, the faster you'll see a return on your investment. Customers who have installed our largest (2.3 MBTU) units usually report a one season to two year payback on the cost of the conversion (including boiler house, the All Canadian unit, and plumbing). For an approximate figure on what you'll save, take your present yearly cost of natural gas and reduce it by a minimum of 50%.