Building More Affordable American Dreams

One Baxi Boiler At A Time

Reliable Home Heating at New York's Rockaway Peninsula

The Briarwood Organization of New York City has thrived through periods of economic challenge over the past century by always remaining open to embracing new and better ways to make new housing more affordable. The developer/builder put that mantra to work again over the past year and it is paying off handsomely for homeowners.

Briarwood was concerned about the performance and maintenance of a hydronic heating system installed previously in its Arverne Waters Edge development on Rockaway Peninsula. So, the firm decided to move to a more reliable and more efficient system for subsequent new homes. The Briarwood choice: the energy-efficient, space-saving Baxi Luna modulating wallhung boiler, which supplies all of the heating and domestic hot water for each home.

“Our move to Baxi has clearly worked out for us and especially our homeowners,” says Francis Eddings, project manager of Arverne Waters Edge at Rockaway. “The Baxi Luna system has proved to be a more efficient and a more reliable heating solution, freeing up valuable living space for our 900 to 1,200 square-foot suites. It is half the size of the boiler we used before, and we no longer need a 20-gallon storage tank.

“We have installed the Baxi boiler in a small closet, along with a stackable washer and dryer,” says Eddings. “Because the Baxi Luna unit operates so quietly, we even have that mechanical and laundry closet located in the master bedroom for a number of the suites.”

Making Affordable Housing Even More Affordable

Briarwood has enjoyed a 30-year partnership with the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development, the largest municipal developer of affordable housing in the nation. The creation and preservation of affordable housing in neighborhoods across New York City is part of the city's Five Borough Economic Opportunity Plan to implement a vision for long-term economic growth.

Over the past 10 years, Briarwood’s Waters Edge at Arverne development has revitalized an area that was once a thriving beach resort but then went into decline. The development now features 210 affordable condo units is located on four infill sites between Beach 59th St. and Beach 62nd St. just across from the Rockaway Boardwalk and Rockaway Beach. With the subway moments away and easy ferry access, the community is well connected to Manhattan. Sales of the Waters Edge condo units are restricted to families making up to 175 percent of the Housing and Urban Development income limits ($134,400 per year for a family of four).

“Together with our Department of Housing Preservation and Development partners, we are helping everyday New Yorkers achieve their home ownership dream, for much less than market value” says Francis Eddings. “Purchasers can take advantage of a homeowner tax credit, and about $4,000 in other incentives we are providing. In addition, our gas provider (National Grid) has helped us make homes with the Baxi wallhung boilers more affordable by contributing a high efficiency equipment rebate they offer for this Energy Star listed appliance.”

Ease of installation and service

As project manager, Francis Eddings not only oversees construction and operation of the site, but he brings a hands-on approach to his work. He welcomes the opportunity to acquire product knowledge about any equipment and construction methods used in Briarwood developments.

“I attended a Saturday Baxi installation training class at the Baxi reps in New York City and Long Island, along with all of the selected Baxi installers at Norton Mechanical,” says Eddings. “There have been few problems with the equipment, and I am really impressed with the ease of installation and maintenance.”

Baxi Luna residential models come fully assembled, and include a fittings kit, wall mounting template, the initial 90-degree elbow and three feet of termination venting, as well as a Bertelli controller used to set up the parameters of the boiler to meet precise heat load demands

Baxi manufactures 4,000 boilers daily in its 1-million-square-foot plant in Bassano, Italy, and has been making the Luna series since 1978.

Baxi cuts fuel bill in half

“Before installing the Baxi Luna boiler at Arverne Waters Edge, and after taking installation training and earning my Baxi Certified Contractor accreditation, I installed it in my own home at Far Rockaway, which was built in 1920” says John Norton Jr., owner of Norton Mechanical. “The results were phenomenal and they made me an instant believer in the product.”

John Norton installed his Baxi Luna combination CH and DHW boiler in February 2008; his fuel bill for the previous month was more than $400. His fuel bill dropped to $198 in the same month a year after his Baxi Luna was installed.

“That was an amazing savings, especially when you consider that our 90-year-old home is not the tightest envelope at Far Rockaway,” notes Norton. “Once I saw the cost savings and experienced the simplicity of installation, the Baxi Luna became a clear choice for me.”

Because the builder demanded assured quality and consistent installations, John Norton Jr. preassembled each Baxi Luna for Waters Edge phase II homes on a sheet of plywood, along with pipes and any components required by local code, including a fill valve. He set up, tested and flushed each unit beforehand, and his installation team was then able to install two boilers a day with no on-site assembly required.

“This Baxi installation was a home run!” exclaims John Norton.

“I must admit that I was initially reluctant to take on this job with a high efficiency, precision technology appliance. I was comfortable with the cast iron boilers I had worked on for years with my father, who founded Norton Mechanical. That has all changed with the success of my first install, and now I can’t say enough good things about the Baxi Luna heating solution.”

With two Baxi spare parts kits in each of its service vans, Norton Mechanical stands prepared to resolve any issue for homeowners at Arverne Waters Edge II. “We have not needed to use these parts, but having them is important to our promise to stand behind our installs,” says John Norton Jr. “We also know that, if we need them, local Baxi reps and the North American Baxi distributor are ready and able to help resolve any issue.” Baxi promises quality, safety and environmental protection Baxi Luna is an installed product, meaning authorized regional Baxi distributors only sell the product to qualified contractors to ensure precise installation and servicing of the high technology appliance. The North American distributor of Baxi products, Marathon International, its Baxi reps and distributors provide ample training. Contractors earn Baxi-Certified installer status by successfully completing an on-line test available through a series of Baxi Luna training and certification CD-ROMs. Baxi certification reinforces the Baxi commitment to quality, safety and respect for the environment. Above all, it ensures peace of mind and home comfort for builders and homeowners.

Preferred by builders, architects and engineers of affordable housing as well as custom homes, Baxi Luna wallhung boilers are energy efficient and environmentally friendly and are field convertible between NG and LP. All Baxi boilers are CSA, ASME (H-Stamp) and Energy Star certified, have stainless steel heat exchangers, and can be used in a wide range of low and high temperature applications.

Learn more at

A case study by Marathon International, Exclusive North American Baxi Distributor — www.
December 2010