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Heating Oil or Mains Gas?

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  • Qyburn
    Qyburn Posts: 2,472 Forumite
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    Apodemus said:
    Yes, the standards seem to be a real nightmare to make sense of.  In practical terms, I have always understood kerosene and diesel to be almost completely interchangeable, with the exception of lubricating ability (and taxation!). 
    .
    I don't think that's the case, normal heating oil is described as "28 seconds" whereas Diesel is "35 seconds" which is a significant difference. Some appliances may be happy with either, for example the Eberspacher heaters and their clones. Some definitely are not, as we found trying Red Diesel in an Esse cooker once. 
  • Apodemus
    Apodemus Posts: 3,410 Forumite
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    Qyburn said:
    Apodemus said:
    Yes, the standards seem to be a real nightmare to make sense of.  In practical terms, I have always understood kerosene and diesel to be almost completely interchangeable, with the exception of lubricating ability (and taxation!). 
    .
    I don't think that's the case, normal heating oil is described as "28 seconds" whereas Diesel is "35 seconds" which is a significant difference. Some appliances may be happy with either, for example the Eberspacher heaters and their clones. Some definitely are not, as we found trying Red Diesel in an Esse cooker once. 
    That's interesting, which Esse?  I used to use diesel and kerosene interchangeably in an old Esse - I'm not sure which model it was but it had a very simple burner, where the oil basically dripped down a tube, spread across the base of the burner-chamber and burned.  Occasionally the end of the tube would get blocked with the clinker that built up on the base of the chamber, but I can't recall it being markedly worse with one fuel rather than the other. 
  • Qyburn
    Qyburn Posts: 2,472 Forumite
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    I couldn't tell you the model I'm afraid but the burner sounds the same, oil flowed into the bottom and combustion air entered through the perforated sides. Running on Diesel it all sooted up, burner, boiler oven etc. It was one hell of a job cleaning it out.

    I wonder, and this would be the wildest uneducated guess, but I wonder if appliances designed for Diesel are happier with kerosene than vice-versa. Maybe your Esse was setup for Diesel, it wasn't that uncommon given that Red was around the same price as heating oil. Rayburns had "K" or D" model versions.
  • Qyburn
    Qyburn Posts: 2,472 Forumite
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    Just came back to me that the innards were called a "pot burner".  There was a separate opening into which you put a sort of stick with wick on the end to light it from cold. Does this look like yours?
    https://www.solidfuelappliancespares.co.uk/product/10-burner-pot/
  • Apodemus
    Apodemus Posts: 3,410 Forumite
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    Qyburn said:
    Just came back to me that the innards were called a "pot burner".  There was a separate opening into which you put a sort of stick with wick on the end to light it from cold. Does this look like yours?
    https://www.solidfuelappliancespares.co.uk/product/10-burner-pot/
    I can't remember ever seeing the whole pot, but it sounds the same.  As you say, there was a loop of wick that you lit and laid in the pot to light it.  There was also a probe that you pushed down the oil-feed from time to time to clear the soot.  Occasionally avgas was available which was known to burn very much cleaner.  Otherwise, servicing involved a hammer and chisel to remove the clinker from the base of the pot.  

    You may be right that the air-flow was set up differently for diesel than kerosene, but apart from the clinker issue, mine burned really clean and hot - easily maintained frying temperature on the stove-top, eight radiators and lots of hot-water.  Given that the alternative at the time was the Rayburn with the horribly temperamental Don burner, the Esse was streets ahead!
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