Boilers in the size needed to heat a building as large as a school are definitely big-ticket items.
An estimate for new boilers at the Warren County Career Center appraises the cost at approximately $250,000.
So when the Warren County School District has the opportunity to get a new one for free, it is definitely something to consider.
WCSD Director of Buildings and Grounds Dr. Norbert Kennerknecht told the school board's Physical Plant and Facilities Committee on Monday that the district received a proposal "from a boiler manufacturer who has a very high efficiency boiler they would like us to try out."
If the district participates, the manufacturer would donate the boiler, assuming it was permitted to retrieve data from it "to verify it works before it becomes a production model."
Once the beta model was ready for production, Kennerknecht said, "They would provide the finished product at no charge" to the district.
"They ask we pay for installation," he said, noting that they are examining needs to figure out where such a boiler could be best utilized. The Warren County Career Center was one specific district building mentioned.
"I do have a meeting scheduled with a manufacturer's representative and a contractor to get firmer prices to see what we're talking for installation," said Kennerknecht, explaining that the beta boiler could potentially be a secondary backup option or "prime if it is very good."
Kennerknecht said the company is interested in obtaining winter data so it is possible that this could move very quickly, potentially in advance of the Jan. 17 school board meeting. He assured the committee that he would only "move forward if it makes sense for the district."