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Author Topic: Central heating boiler...help  (Read 6852 times)

funtimefrankie

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Central heating boiler...help
« on: October 18, 2008, 07:50:39 PM »

My Glow worm boiler is a good 30 years old. Every year when it's time to switch the heating on the pilot light keeps going out.
I've changed the thermo couple ..flame failure thingy but it still goes out. I light it, set the heating going, but next morning after its been off the pilot light will be out.

It's run fine all summer just doing the hot water twice a day.

Any ideas??  (Constructive) other than get a new boiler............
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dougal99

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Re: Central heating boiler...help
« Reply #1 on: October 18, 2008, 08:25:27 PM »

I had a similar problem which turned out to be a constricted pilot light jet.The boiler was given a complete clean and all was OK.

HTH

Doug
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Colin H

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Re: Central heating boiler...help
« Reply #2 on: October 18, 2008, 10:25:21 PM »

Hi FTF,

Model name please and is it free standing, wall hung, balanced flue, open flue etc.

Is your system fully pumped or gravity. to identify this how many water pipes come off the boiler and are there electro/mecahnical valves fitted usually in the airing cupboard.

Colin H.
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Colin H

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Re: Central heating boiler...help
« Reply #3 on: October 18, 2008, 10:48:27 PM »

FTF one more thing can you take a pic of the main gas valve thats where the thermocouple ends up and then keep your fingers crossed and your legs and anything else you can think of.


Colin H.
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Ron1

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Re: Central heating boiler...help
« Reply #4 on: October 18, 2008, 11:22:00 PM »

It looks as if you need a CORGI REGISTERED PLUMBER. If you do not know what your doing your family could be in big danger, gas goes BANG, the house comes down, and if you servive you could go to jail.

You can work on your own appliences but if any thing happens you will not be insured.  :o :o :police:
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funtimefrankie

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Re: Central heating boiler...help
« Reply #5 on: October 19, 2008, 09:10:26 AM »

Hi FTF,

Model name please and is it free standing, wall hung, balanced flue, open flue etc.

Is your system fully pumped or gravity. to identify this how many water pipes come off the boiler and are there electro/mecahnical valves fitted usually in the airing cupboard.

Colin H.

It's 45 -60 N  free standing balanced flue, gravity system, the only electonics are are the heating pump and time switch, no valves.

ron1...I won't be getting into the gas bits, other than the changing the thermo ccouple and cleaning the pilot jet......
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Ron1

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Re: Central heating boiler...help
« Reply #6 on: October 19, 2008, 10:45:42 AM »

I had a simular problem 3 years ago, it was the gas valve was worn out, price new £ 125-00 plus fitting, my boiler was 32 years old, so I invested in a new boiler at £400-00 plus fitting, works a treat, plus lower gas bills. I am a builder, but still can not touch gas.
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boatmadman

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Re: Central heating boiler...help
« Reply #7 on: October 19, 2008, 10:50:54 AM »

At my work we burn 13 cubic metres of unodorised gas every second at a pressure of 20b. I operate and maintain these systems, but I am not allowed to touch domestic gas. hmmmm

Ian
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funtimefrankie

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Re: Central heating boiler...help
« Reply #8 on: October 19, 2008, 11:31:09 AM »

I had a simular problem 3 years ago, it was the gas valve was worn out, price new £ 125-00 plus fitting, my boiler was 32 years old, so I invested in a new boiler at £400-00 plus fitting, works a treat, plus lower gas bills. I am a builder, but still can not touch gas.
I'm tending towards a nw boiler but there are  so many tales of cowboys about.............
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Colin H

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Re: Central heating boiler...help
« Reply #9 on: October 19, 2008, 09:34:15 PM »

FTF,

Bearing in mind what others have said I can still offer some advice. I know that boiler very well and there are only 3 things which can cause pilot outage.

(1) poor pilot light flame picture. Turn the boiler off and look through the little window is the pilot light nice and blue and does it fully envelope the thermocouple probe. Then whilst you watch the pilot light have someone fire the boiler does the pilot remain steady or does it `lift off` away from the thermocouple probe. If this happens when your CORGI registered engineer arrives to clean the pilot light injector ask him to do it the old fashioned way not with a can of compressed air. He must remove the injector and soak it in hot water this will dissolve any scale then by blowing water through the injector several times this will insure it is properly clean.

(2) Bad thermocouple but your engineer as already replaced this I would check tighten the nut on the gas valve.

(3) The main gas valve is going down. This is all bad news the reason I asked for a pic was to identify the gas valve it is as I feared a Honeywell 24 volt valve and Honeywell ceased production of these valves in 2006 your engineer may find one in stock somewhere but I doubt it. This will mean a new boiler.

Now the really bad news Building regulations now mean that we cannot just replace the boiler the whole system will have to be upgraded.

You have a choice the least expensive option would be a combination boiler with room thermostat and TRVs on the bedroom radiators.

Should you wish to keep your hot water cylinder you will need a new boiler, the system will have to be changed to a fully pumped system with room thermostat, cylinder thermostat and electro/mechanical valves. this will have to be wired to also act as a boiler interlock. TRVs on the bedroom radiators pipe insulation in the airing cupboard and maybe even a new cylinder.

SIT DOWN.




I have in the last two weeks completed just such a job the cost to the client was












£2775-00p

Colin H.
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tobyker

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Re: Central heating boiler...help
« Reply #10 on: October 19, 2008, 11:02:48 PM »

FTF, sorry to hear of your problems. If replacement has to be the answer, see if your council is giving any grants for new boilers - they may if you go to one of these new-fangled condensing ones with no cold or hot water tank. Very popular up here in Scotland as there are no cold water pipes in the loft to freeze up.
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Colin H

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Re: Central heating boiler...help
« Reply #11 on: October 20, 2008, 03:35:33 PM »

Toby up in Scotland you have a choice between condensing and non condensing in England it is virtually condensing or nothing.

Colin H.
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Richdef

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Re: Central heating boiler...help
« Reply #12 on: October 20, 2008, 04:08:46 PM »

hi FTF

Just a point to note if your boiler is 30 years old it will be extremely inefficient just a quick look tells me it is probably only has a seasonal efficiency of 65% on the SEDBUK. This equates to a G rated boiler and should be replaced (to put that in perspective would you buy a G rated electrical appliance).  You will find a new one in the UK has to be B or above to comply with the building regulations.  Most new installations have A rated boilers with efficiencies of 90% and above! Although the capital cost of the new boiler is high it will payback quickly especially when u add modern controls. just as a not we would look to replace any boiler over 10years old becasue new ones are so much better and more efficeient - lower fuel bills!

Your current system will be usable however some modification may be required (without a detailed look at system cant really give exact advice).  This will most likely require the addition of control valves (electro/mechanical valves or as most of us know them a solenoid valves) and the separation of your cylinder onto a separate circuit (addition of 2 new pipes from the boiler to the cylinder).  Personally I would not recommend changing to a combi system if you have anything more that a small flat particularly if you already have a cylinder - may as well use what you have (less disruption and will continue to work the way is has always done)
With regard to cowboys make sure the selected installer is corgi (ie certified to work with gas do not attempt to mess with gas unless you are registered!) registered and get a few different quotes basically chat to the guy that gives u the quote and you will most likely pick up the cowboys because they donít really know what they are doing and will not give very good information when probed or asked questions.

With regards to your current boiler you really should not be doing anything inside the case unless you are registered to do maintenance.  How do u really know what is gas or not etc is it worth risking it? 

Anyways hope this helps.  With regards costs colin H is probably not too far out but pays to shop around

Richard
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Colin H

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Re: Central heating boiler...help
« Reply #13 on: October 20, 2008, 05:31:31 PM »

FTF,

With all this talk of a new boiler just a few tips for you if you decide to go down that route.

Remember CORGI registration only covers gas safety it does not mean that the person concerned know anything about central heating design nor does it mean he will not try to rip you off. Ask to see the persons CORGI card and look on the back. There you will find additional information, you are looking for a tick in the box that relates to central heating appliances and also that the man is energy conservation accredited.

With regards to a choice between a combination boiler and a conventional system I.E. using a hot water cylinder. Gone are the days where combination boiler were only of any use in a small flat of the like. The modern condensing combi's are quite capable of dealing with a family home.

However one of the most important things that is often forgotten is the supply and cold water into the property it would be no good at all if your purchased a boiler capable of delivering 15 ltrs of hot water a minute when you only had 12 ltrs a minute coming into the property. Therefore if you go down the combi route and the engineers does not check the incoming water supply be wary.

As Rich states make sure you get a few quotes, but try and set the parameters your self. I.E. what make and model of boiler you want there are boiler out there that can be purchased at a very cheap price but again remember that the company must make its money some where so if the boiler is cheap they will make there money on spares. As an example a circuit board for my Ideal boiler costs about £100-00p where as the most expensive circuit board I have purchased to date cost £243-75p plus VAT.

SWAMBO as just call for tea so I will get back later to see if I can help further.

Colin H.
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funtimefrankie

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Re: Central heating boiler...help
« Reply #14 on: October 20, 2008, 07:28:52 PM »

Well, a central heating fairy had another look at the pilot light. There is a T shaped thingy on top which did not seem to be directing the flame to the thermo couple so the fairy twisted it round a few degrees, an ,low, the light has shone out since then.

What a fine fairy :-)).

Thanks to everyone for the advice... I know I need a new boiler, but the thought of the cash and the mess puts me off.

If it keeps going this winter I get a new one in the spring....I say that every year O0

The loft could do with more lagging, but there's so much stuff up there to remove first..............................
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Colin H

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Re: Central heating boiler...help
« Reply #15 on: October 20, 2008, 09:03:28 PM »

Didn't  know we had CORGI registered fairies, mind you some customers seem to think we have magical powers.

If you decide to go ahead next year FTF let me know and I will do what I can to help.


Colin H.
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Colin H

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Re: Central heating boiler...help
« Reply #16 on: October 20, 2008, 09:10:12 PM »

FTF,

I forgot, don't forget what I said about the gas valve, if that goes down you are stuffed. Better a planed, controlled boiler swap than having to consider everything whilst you have no heating or hot water.

Yours Colin H.
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