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Combi Boiler


Syd

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Had a Combi Boiler fitted on Tuesday, fitters cut a wrong copper pipe and flooded our newly fitted kitchen.

Wife was absolutely LIVID, poor fitters, I felt sorry for them anyway they did a good job in clearing it all up :D :D

 

The difference this boiler has made is abslutely fantastic but we are, as yet, finding it difficult to get the correct heating to suit our personal preferences but we will get there.

 

Following on from a previous post on here we have overcome one big problem associated with these boilers and that is the condensate pipe freezeing up in the winter.

We have had this pipe run under the floorboards and into the bath drain pipe and a "condensate pump" to pump the waste out.

One less worry I hope

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We had a new gas boiler (not a combi) fitted last year and we found the difference in cost and efficiency amazing. Bills nearly halved and instant response when we need it.

 

It did take about a month to figure it out tho' and I am convinced that the boiler itself needed a while to settle down or "run in".

 

 

 

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Good luck with the new boiler and I hope it does everything you expect.

 

However, chatting with some of the gas fitters their opinon is that if you have an older boiler it is probably better to keep it. Not talking about ones with a pilot light but those types where a spark ignition lights the boiler each time. These evidently will last for decades, whereas the new combi's have a varied track record so far. Also it will take some time for the cost to be saved.

 

Like many things in our world sales pressure is often hidden under 'this will be a great improvement etc'. Not suggesting that this is your scenario but older people can be persuaded to change something perfectly suitable for something that is not.

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Dave225 - 2011-03-22 12:17 PM

Like many things in our world sales pressure is often hidden under 'this will be a great improvement etc'. Not suggesting that this is your scenario but older people can be persuaded to change something perfectly suitable for something that is not.

 

Salesmen can be very persuasive. My mum, who has all her mental facilties, was persuaded to have a combi boiler fitted by a well known company (lets call them "UK Energy"). She put a deposit down of £1000 and was then paying the rest on the never never over ten years. Luckily she told us before the cooling off period ended and she was able to cancel it when we pointed out she was actually paying £7000 for it. Not sure she would ever have recouped that much in lower gas bills. We then got a local guy in who supplied and fitted a combi boiler for not much more than the £1000 deposit she had paid to the big company. OK she did really need a new boiler, although the old one hadn't broken down, but it wasn't something she was thinking of having changed until the company rang up and offered to send a man round to discuss it.

Obviously the new boiler is much more efficient and was a good investment at the more reasonable price.

 

 

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Dave225 - 2011-03-22 12:17 PM

 

Good luck with the new boiler and I hope it does everything you expect.

 

 

Like many things in our world sales pressure is often hidden under 'this will be a great improvement etc'. Not suggesting that this is your scenario but older people can be persuaded to change something perfectly suitable for something that is not.

Are you suggesting that older people are STUPID.What a bloody nerve. >:-)

It's gullible people that are fooled by sales patter.

Older people in general tend to be a bit more sceptical than young people with more money than sense.

I don't suppose for one minute that you meant to offend, but you need to think a bit more before tapping the keys.

 

I know it's past 10pm, but I haven't had a drop yet. :D

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G and D - 2011-03-22 7:44 PM

Salesmen can be very persuasive. My mum, who has all her mental facilties, was persuaded to have a combi boiler fitted by a well known company (lets call them "UK Energy").

 

This company must be candidates for 'Rip of mechants of the decade' award :-S

I've spoken to several older people who have had their boilers changed at outragous prices by them, older people seem to think back to the 'good old days' where they built up thier good reputation.

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Well in our case this was not a case of sales pressure it is simply a case of getting the running costs of the house down in readiness for when our son has to live here when we are no longer around.

Warm Front supplied and fitted so no costs but was not happy when they did not fit temp valves to the radiators, that is the first job to be done when we come back from Spain in June.

 

Wife was carrying the remote control around with her like it was a mobile phone and adjusting the temp every five minutes so there is no wonder that it was going a bit haywire, we had 25 degrees last night at 12.30 at night.

Bit disapointed with the water temp though

 

The original back boiler was around 25 years old and so could reasonably be expected to be past it's prime.

 

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Guest peter
The boiler should have an adjustment for both heating and washing water temp's beneath a panel on the unit. Have a look.
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colin - 2011-03-22 10:42 PM

 

G and D - 2011-03-22 7:44 PM

Salesmen can be very persuasive. My mum, who has all her mental facilties, was persuaded to have a combi boiler fitted by a well known company (lets call them "UK Energy").

 

This company must be candidates for 'Rip of mechants of the decade' award :-S

I've spoken to several older people who have had their boilers changed at outragous prices by them, older people seem to think back to the 'good old days' where they built up thier good reputation.

No Colin, they are gullible people, who just happen to be old and don't understand about boilers. Just as many young people could fall for the same thing. If they had the money that is. I really do find it offensive that older people are thought of as a bit thick and stupid. The reality is quite the opposite. There are gullible people of all ages, end of.
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By trade I am a plumber but got out of the business before combi boilers became popular so i can honestly say I dont know much about combi's.

From what i have heard and seen of them I wouldn't give one house room, about 15 years ago I fitted a Gloworm wall mounted balanced flue boiler in the utility room, cast iron heat exchanger, not much can go wrong with it, no probs in getting parts for it if need be, I give it a service every 12 months, think it only cost a couple of hundred quid when I bought it.

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One reason that older people may seem to be "thicker" than your average 20watt bulb is that they are not switched on to the internet having been born too soon to benefit from it and so are being left behind.

 

Technology is great if you are brought up with it but not so good if you have to learn something as daunting as this must be to the elderly.

 

Not thick, sadly, just left behind

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Guest JudgeMental
The evidence is very clear a lot of old people are exploited by traders...New rooofs , tarmac drives etec...etc... and many have lost theire life savings. Have seen some awful stuff on TV
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We replaced our gas boiler four years ago with a combi, O.H. bought the Worcester he took the hot water tank out and the tank out of the loft and got a plumber to come and fit it in and do the gas work removing old boiler and fitting the new, the condensing pipe runs under the bathroom floor and out with the waste pipes, our Son an electrician fitted a room thermastat a wireless one, we get it serviced every couple of years and it has worked perfectly ever since, we run it all day with the day temp set at 20deg and the night temp; 15 deg ;-) I knock it up a bit when needed and we find t very econmical to run, we are not heating a tank full of hot water all day when its not needed.

 

Oh and O.H. may be knocking on a bit but neither he or I are talked into anything we dont want Never Have and Never Will. We have had the Gas board on the phone pestering us to do the monthly payment insurence its a rip off and cant see why anyone would agree to pay whatever!! it is a month for years on end for goodness sake leave it in the bank and pay someone if need be! and parts can be bought on the internet cheaply enough and lots of plumbers electricians out there willing to fit them :-S and before someone says you have to be carefull Yes you do and we are.

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In terms of economics maybe there is more to be saved by making sure you are on the cheapest gas and electricity tariffs that there is to be saved by changing boilers?

 

The added advantage is that it is free to change suppliers, and it can be done easily online - oh that's two advantages! Plus the savings are immediate - so that's three advantages, plus there is no disruption dust or mess!

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Is there a confusion here between combi boilers and condensing boilers?  Combis are those that eliminate the need for a storage cylinder by generating hot water on demand. 

Not having a boiler running to maintain 30 or more gallons of water hot, however good the insulation, is where the combi brings the biggest potential saving, but whether this is achieved depends on the pattern of use. 

We installed a Chaffoteaux combi about 20 years ago, and it saved its cost very quickly compared to its conventional predecessor with hot water storage cylinder, which was also around 20 years old. 

The Chaffoteaux became increasingly unreliable and was replaced four years ago with a Worcester-Bosch combi, but due to changes in legislation, the WB is a condensing boiler.  I cannot detect any actual improvement in annual gas consumption from the condenser, compared to its supposedly far less efficient predecessor, despite now also having a crude optimiser control in lieu of a timeclock and stat.

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My hot water storage cylindar is in the upstairs box room and as it is always warm it serves as a drying room, my cold water storage tank is in a well insulated loft, we have a gravity fed shower which gives you a real good dousing, no way would I get rid of my conventional heating boiler.
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Brian the idea that a combi is more efficient than a boiler and cylinder is false. For a start the heating period untill the water is at the correct temp. can be as long as 30secs. its using gas all this time also at a flow rate of 15 litres per min. you are losing 7.5 litres of water. When you turn off the hot tap a 3way valve dumps the heat from the combustion chamber into the heating system this can take as long as 5mins. this might be O.K. in the winter but in the summer its total waste. On top of this if you have a water supply shut down you cannot run the central heating you also have no reserve of water stored. With a cylinder you not only keep your heating but you have about 50gallons of stored water which if used carefully should last at least a day. (and you can flush your toilet). Its a choice and you make it for yourself. I would not give a combi room space. John *-)
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The WB in new house has a small 'tank' this is kept up to temp and recieves the 'dumped' heat. Works a treat.

In the old house we have hot water storage tank and multi fuel boiler, this also works very well in winter.

The differance comes in summer when the combi provides showers much more efficiently.

 

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colin - 2011-03-24 8:08 PM

The differance comes in summer when the combi provides showers much more efficiently.

 

So do 4kw of solar PV panels and an immersion heater that is timed for daylight hours!

 

And a daytime timed storage heater helps keep the lounge warm in the evening too!

 

I don't yet have any of these but a friend does and I'm very impressed because he gets paid 41.3p per unit (43.3p indexed from 1/4/11) for generating electricity - with no penalty whatsoever for using it rather than exporting it to the grid - because the assumption is that he exports half and uses half of all he generates regardless of actuality - and on the half assumed to be export he gets 44.3p (soon to be indexed to 46.4p unit). Good innit!

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We have a traditional oil boiler which works fine, but just recently rather than have it on a timer coming on for an hour or two at a time, I have left it on permantly to see if its more efficent (?)

 

Not sure if it is more efficent but does not seem to use any more oil :-S

 

I think the biggest saving is turning down the thermostat, got it down to 15 B-)

We are used to it now but when friends come round its fun watching them turn blue (lol) (lol)

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Tracker - 2011-03-24 8:17 PM

 

colin - 2011-03-24 8:08 PM

The differance comes in summer when the combi provides showers much more efficiently.

 

So do 4kw of solar PV panels and an immersion heater that is timed for daylight hours!

 

In a listed home, not a chance. If I had my choise I'd link up a home made solar hot water panel to heat water in summer, helped a friend do this years ago, works realy well and dirt cheap.

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teflon2 - 2011-03-24 7:47 PM Brian the idea that a combi is more efficient than a boiler and cylinder is false. ........

Depends what you mean by efficient.  What I mean is that it uses a lot less gas over 12 months, actual, from comparing the volume used and not the cost.

Water supply being shut down is a possibility, but has only occurred once in over 20 years here, and was for half a day, so just a small risk of inconvenience.

Power cuts are more of a possibility, with which one loses the heating as well, but it is true one would maintain hot water with a storage cylinder.  However, heating, and keeping hot, that big cylinder is a major gas consumer throughout summer, where our combi uses very little, and although power cuts happen, they are usually less that two hours and much less than once per year in frequency, so it works for us.

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colin - 2011-03-24 8:30 PM

I'd link up a home made solar hot water panel to heat water in summer, helped a friend do this years ago, works realy well and dirt cheap.

 

I'm not convinced about this?

 

If you have a large family who like to bath or shower in the afternoon when there is a lot of hot water fair enough but if there are only the two of you and you shower first thing in the morning before the sun has had a chance to do it's good work - assuming the sun shows at all - and then only use very modest volumes of hot water all day surely a combi boiler would make more sense - but I still like the idea of a solar fired immersion heater!

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Useing up your valuable roof space for heating water is a no brainer when you compare it's advantages with how much you get paid for producing electricity on your roof space.

 

We have been researching having a battery storage system installed as this would insulate us to some extent from power cuts but we have some way to go yet.

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