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Oil Central heating, open plan barn conversion

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smitaly69smitaly69 Forumite
9 posts
Hi guys I need help, fast!! I live in an open plan loft/ barn conversion, heated by oil fired radiators. I'm using a massive amount of oil, roughly £150 per month.
I have the heating on 4hrs a day during the week and 6 or 7 hours at the weekend depending on the weather.
I've set the thermostat to come on at 5pm until 9pm but I've recently been told by the neighbour that she hears my heating coming on during the day.
I've now found out that my thermostat cannot be set lower than 10c meaning that when it's freezing outside and it's less than 10c inside the heating kicks in ,so it's coming on when I'm at work.
Today I've put it on the frost setting and waited for the heating at 5pm and no heating has come on! I have no seperate thermostat upstairs. What is the best set-up I can use to save money?? I've 6 radiators upstairs, the upper floor is roughly 20ft x 60ft. Thanks in advance

Replies

  • Ebe_ScroogeEbe_Scrooge Forumite
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    From what you've described, it sounds like your thermostat is kicking in if the inside temperature drops to 10 degrees, overriding whatever timer settings you've set. A frost stat would usually kick in at somewhere around 3 degrees or thereabouts, it's function is purely to protect the system from freezing. I'm no expert, but if you use the frost stat, is that overriding the normal thermostat, which is why it's not coming on when you want it to ? It's probably worth getting a heating engineer to have a look, and see if everything is wired up correctly.

    That aside, if the property is open plan then it's going to cost a fair bit to heat - you don't have as much flexibility in terms being able to heat different areas to different temperatures. The obvious first step is to check the levels of insulation, this will generally see the biggest savings in any situation. Loft, cavity walls, draft excluders, double glazing, etc. Things like double glazing are expensive to install, so have a very long pay-back period. Loft insulation is usually a quick and easy DIY job, and is well worth doing if it's not up to current recommendations.
    I may not know much about art, but I know what I like.
  • comeandgocomeandgo Forumite
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    Get your frost stat down a bit. The heating will kick in when it gets below that setting. Here in winter our heating seems to be on all the time, especially at night. Oil heating is very expensive, could you put in a wood stove to help heat your house?
  • CardewCardew Forumite
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    Could the boiler be switching on to heat the Hot Water tank? Assuming the boiler is not a combi.



    IMO a property heated for 4 hours every day should not drop below 10C unless it has very poor insulation, or the room thermostat is in the wrong place.



    However if you have the heating switched off during the day it should never switch on heating regardless of the temperature. As indicated above, it could be the 'froststat' switching on the heating. However the normal setting for a frost stat is 3C to 5C and would never normally operate during the day in a house that is occupied.


    Incidentally, depending on your insulation and boiler efficiency and building size, £150 a month for oil in winter is not massive for a barn conversion.
  • The frost stat should only come on at 5c, I've used 600ltrs in 2months, heating 4,5 hrs a day. I can hear it rumbling away in the night but no heating coming on, it's a combi boiler, no tank, apparently it was rumbling away again yesterday while I was at work.
    EPC rating D, certificate says roughly £400 a year to heat, I've used £300 in 2months.
  • comeandgocomeandgo Forumite
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    Yes, in winter I use a 1000 litres in 3 months but in summer a tank lasts 7 months.

    £400 a year using oil? Impossible.
  • G_MG_M PPR Forumite
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    smitaly69 wrote: »
    Hi guys I need help, fast!! I live in an open plan loft/ barn conversion, heated by oil fired radiators. I'm using a massive amount of oil, roughly £150 per month.
    Insulate, insulate, insulate.


    an open plan loft/ barn is always going to be hard and expensive to heat. You need to throw money at ensuring that the heat you generate does not disappear through the roof, walls, windows or out the barn doors!


    Insulate (and draught-proof).
    ** If I include a blue link in my post, click and read it before posting a follow-up question. The answer may be in the link! **
  • CardewCardew Forumite
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    smitaly69 wrote: »
    I can hear it rumbling away in the night but no heating coming on, it's a combi boiler, no tank, apparently it was rumbling away again yesterday while I was at work.


    Some combis have a small internal HW tank to enable hot water to get to the taps quicker. The boiler can fire up randomly to top up the water in this tank for a short time and several people on MSE have complained about this wakening them at night. This facility can be switched off.


    This 'rumbling' noise? Is it the boiler firing up or just the internal pump running?
  • dunstonhdunstonh Forumite
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    Hi guys I need help, fast!! I live in an open plan loft/ barn conversion, heated by oil fired radiators. I'm using a massive amount of oil, roughly £150 per month.

    I wish mine was only £150pm during winter months. IS there a reason why you think £150 is a lot for a couple of winter months? It doesn't sound a lot at all for an open plan barn. You probably use barely any oil over 7 months of the year. So, when you average it out as a really monthly average, it will be much lower.
    I've used 600ltrs in 2months,

    thats not a lot this time of the year.
    I've now found out that my thermostat cannot be set lower than 10c meaning that when it's freezing outside and it's less than 10c inside the heating kicks in ,so it's coming on when I'm at work.

    If your house is getting to 10 degrees or lower whilst you are out then you have serious problems with your insulation.

    Do you have woodburners? We have three in ours and one in particular is very good at keeping the ambient heat up and that reduces the oil heating and wood is cheaper than oil.
    I am an Independent Financial Adviser (IFA). The comments I make are just my opinion and are for discussion purposes only. They are not financial advice and you should not treat them as such. If you feel an area discussed may be relevant to you, then please seek advice from an Independent Financial Adviser local to you.
  • Robin9Robin9 Forumite
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    Have you an external frost-stat which would over-ride everything. ? I have one which works in two stages - 1) runs the pumps 2) kicks the boiler in
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  • Cardew wrote: »
    Some combis have a small internal HW tank to enable hot water to get to the taps quicker. The boiler can fire up randomly to top up the water in this tank for a short time and several people on MSE have complained about this wakening them at night. This facility can be switched off.


    This 'rumbling' noise? Is it the boiler firing up or just the internal pump running?

    Engineer came out today, the rumbling is the hot water trying to keep hot as the person above said. Apparently the unit uses 0.68 of a gallon per hour so I best get saving !!
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