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  • FIRST POST
    • Mamahope
    • By Mamahope 23rd Jun 19, 1:45 PM
    • 12Posts
    • 2Thanks
    Mamahope
    What would you do?
    • #1
    • 23rd Jun 19, 1:45 PM
    What would you do? 23rd Jun 19 at 1:45 PM
    West Cornwall: - 1985 south-facing 3/4 bed semi-detached house with cavity wall insulation, 200-300mm in loft, older double-glazing throughout: 2cm air gap, solid concrete floors. Around 100m2 internal floor space plus north-facing conservatory (unused in winter as seems ridiculous to turn the radiator on in there).

    Not entitled to any grants etc.

    We have a Worcester Heatslave oil boiler 15/19, 20 years old, 83% quoted efficiency - running fine.

    The 1200 plastic oil tank however will probably need replacing within a year or so - have been quoted £1900 all in and seeking a second / third opinion.

    The engineers are encouraging me to replace the boiler too but I'm not rushing to do this as the spare parts are still supported.

    USEAGE: - We only use around 600L (£300) of oil per year and 35 bags of logs (£140) in our modern woodburner. The house is rarely cold in the mornings, we hardly ever have heating on outside of 4-9pm. Rare for it to be below 0C this far west.

    Do we:

    1. carry on with our old oil boiler and replace tank as necessary?

    2. connect to mains gas (£3,300 connection fee and whatever it'll be to rip out & replace oil boiler with gas condensing boiler)

    3. install ASHP - RHI makes it attractive but we'd likely have to replace 6 or 7 radiators with bigger ones (unless Altherma HT?), and would the need for it to be running 24/7 in winter mean that our annual heating bill is actually more than current overall?

    4. Install air-to-air multi-split system, but what would we do for hot water - electric immersion? Solar thermal?

    5. Modern storage heaters - any good these days?

    6. Solar PV somehow linked to space-heating?

    Our decision isn't critical right now, just thinking ahead really... Any thoughts most welcome, thank you
    Last edited by Mamahope; 23-06-2019 at 2:05 PM.
Page 1
    • mumf
    • By mumf 23rd Jun 19, 2:44 PM
    • 223 Posts
    • 776 Thanks
    mumf
    • #2
    • 23rd Jun 19, 2:44 PM
    • #2
    • 23rd Jun 19, 2:44 PM
    The way I see it,electricity will be the way forward,as just about every fuel source will be banned by 2050!
    • Mamahope
    • By Mamahope 23rd Jun 19, 4:11 PM
    • 12 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    Mamahope
    • #3
    • 23rd Jun 19, 4:11 PM
    • #3
    • 23rd Jun 19, 4:11 PM
    Thanks, I just wish the air-to-water systems were 100% proven to work with some sort of guarantee if they don't perform as expected... Have lined up a survey & estimate which will hopefully include projected running costs, but choosing a competent installer seems to be a gamble, upon reading the threads here, and costly to repair if something goes wrong?
    • Rodders53
    • By Rodders53 23rd Jun 19, 4:22 PM
    • 704 Posts
    • 454 Thanks
    Rodders53
    • #4
    • 23rd Jun 19, 4:22 PM
    • #4
    • 23rd Jun 19, 4:22 PM
    Pretty much any replacement won't stack up against running the system until it absolutely needs replacing.

    ASHP and larger radiators could work OK if designed right, a suitably sized HW tank can be heated to 40-45C via it without major drama and you can get automated systems to Legionella sterilise the water to 60C, weekly.

    Read up the long thread on ASHP (and Ground Source as bits apply to your situation from both).

    Solar thermal and electric can be costed and you can do the sums wrt payback periods etc.,.

    ASHPs cost only slightly less than oil per kWh of energy depending on efficiency (worse when cold or trying to raise water temperature higher) so installation payback on energy cost savings will be.... pretty much never.

    BUT soon no new homes will be allowed to install mains gas boilers (probably all fossil fuel technologies?) and will use electric heat pump technology. So installer knowledge will rise and cost should fall.

    Doing your research, reading and calculations now will mean you are better prepared for the day your oil system needs replacing?
    • Mamahope
    • By Mamahope 23rd Jun 19, 4:32 PM
    • 12 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    Mamahope
    • #5
    • 23rd Jun 19, 4:32 PM
    • #5
    • 23rd Jun 19, 4:32 PM
    Thanks, confirming lots of my thoughts... I'm working my way through all the threads and yes, it pays to be prepared for when the old Heatslave is uneconomical to repair... though if that's sooner rather than later would I have wasted almost £2K on the replacement oil tank? On the other hand, an oil boiler is only as old as it's replacement parts and perhaps they don't go catastrophically wrong from that era? 83% doesn't strike me as the worst efficiency either...
    Last edited by Mamahope; 23-06-2019 at 4:35 PM.
    • Cardew
    • By Cardew 23rd Jun 19, 8:30 PM
    • 27,889 Posts
    • 13,748 Thanks
    Cardew
    • #6
    • 23rd Jun 19, 8:30 PM
    • #6
    • 23rd Jun 19, 8:30 PM
    Thanks, I just wish the air-to-water systems were 100% proven to work with some sort of guarantee if they don't perform as expected... Have lined up a survey & estimate which will hopefully include projected running costs, but choosing a competent installer seems to be a gamble, upon reading the threads here, and costly to repair if something goes wrong?
    Originally posted by Mamahope

    Well said!


    It still seems incredible to me that heat pump customers are expected to spend many £thousands; and receive large RHI subsidies, with absolutely no guarantee of performance; as you say - a gamble.


    Manufacturers produce massive amounts of data for their heat pumps e.g. a COP of XX with outside temp of YY and inside temp of ZZ. However data that has little relevance to their heat pump's system performance when installed.



    Indeed it is impossible for a customer to objectively know how their system is performing.


    I would feel a lot more comfortable if the major manufacturers installed sytems themselves and gave some guarantee of performance.
    • Mamahope
    • By Mamahope 23rd Jun 19, 10:19 PM
    • 12 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    Mamahope
    • #7
    • 23rd Jun 19, 10:19 PM
    • #7
    • 23rd Jun 19, 10:19 PM
    Yes indeed! Thank you. I wonder if biomass is more reliable...
    • lovesgshp
    • By lovesgshp 24th Jun 19, 9:10 PM
    • 1,349 Posts
    • 747 Thanks
    lovesgshp
    • #8
    • 24th Jun 19, 9:10 PM
    • #8
    • 24th Jun 19, 9:10 PM
    Consider a couple of air/air heaters for the heating and maybe something like a Ariston Nuos for your domestic hot water, as it can be supplied with various tank sizes.
    As Manuel says in Fawlty Towers: " I Know Nothing"
    • Mamahope
    • By Mamahope 25th Jun 19, 9:56 AM
    • 12 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    Mamahope
    • #9
    • 25th Jun 19, 9:56 AM
    • #9
    • 25th Jun 19, 9:56 AM
    Thanks - got an air/air company coming out for a look today (though husband isn't keen on the noise they make) and an oftec engineer also looked at the oil tank today for 2nd opinion.

    He reckoned connecting to the gas network (£5-6K all in with new Worcester gas combi) was preferable to ASHP air/water, due to the cost of the replacement radiators. He wasn't up to date on the RHI figures though and said it was being phased out...
    • lovesgshp
    • By lovesgshp 25th Jun 19, 2:50 PM
    • 1,349 Posts
    • 747 Thanks
    lovesgshp
    If it is a air/air company, ask if they have a unit you and your husband can listen when it is operating. It would normally be about the same as a fan or fan heater inside the house.
    As Manuel says in Fawlty Towers: " I Know Nothing"
    • Rodders53
    • By Rodders53 25th Jun 19, 4:22 PM
    • 704 Posts
    • 454 Thanks
    Rodders53
    We have Fujitsu LU series split pack air to air heat pumps to supplement our oil fired underfloor heating. But primarily to keep swmbo cool in bedroom and lounge with no issues of pollen.

    The bedroom one runs all night at the moment. The indoor units can hardly be heard on the low fan setting. Faster speeds are only needed for rapid heating/cooling; and only for a fairly short time if the units are sized correctly.

    The 'fan heater' analogy is plain wrong. Our indoor unit fan speeds vary automatically and even start and stop as required to maintain set temperature.

    The outside units are, of course, noisier; but again only on the initial 'hard working' stages.

    The same outside unit noise will occur with air to water units (probably more depending on ratings).

    Cheap aircon units will be noisier than the better quality brands, probably. Indoor unit noise can vary slightly too, even from same makers (basic vs premium?). Some are also prettier than others.
    • matelodave
    • By matelodave 25th Jun 19, 5:02 PM
    • 4,535 Posts
    • 2,900 Thanks
    matelodave
    Don't confuse split units with the rattly old window mounted units. Split units only have a circulating fan in the internal units which is usually run at low speed and are therefore almost inaudible.

    Even the external units aren't noisy. We've got an Daikin Althema 11kw A-W unit. You cant hear the compressor and even when both fans are running it's significantly quieter than the external oil boiler that was installed over the road from us last winter.

    As lovesgshp says, go and listen to one, rather than relying on hearsay.

    A decent unit, properly installed should be almost silent.
    Never under estimate the power of stupid people in large numbers
    • Mamahope
    • By Mamahope 25th Jun 19, 10:26 PM
    • 12 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    Mamahope
    Oh we had one before in a log cabin (Mitsubishi Heavy Industries hyperinverter). I loved its simplicity but husband confessed he can't stand them so it's a no-go. Company didn't even show up today anyway...
    • markin
    • By markin 26th Jun 19, 12:31 AM
    • 656 Posts
    • 557 Thanks
    markin
    If you can get it set up in a corridor you won't hear it or feel the air flow as much and the heat or cooled air will still get around if the doors are open.
    • Mamahope
    • By Mamahope 28th Jun 19, 1:23 PM
    • 12 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    Mamahope
    Hmm... We have 2 rooms downstairs separated by a wall, perhaps there could be 2 air-to-air units effectively 'back to back' high-up in each room... (one room has woodburner anyway so that unit wouldn't be on all the time annoying the husband) then 4 upstairs rooms perhaps ducted via loft pipework...

    What would be best form of heating water? LPG water boiler with 47kg bottles?
    • Mamahope
    • By Mamahope 28th Jun 19, 1:25 PM
    • 12 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    Mamahope
    Or Ariston Nuos, as lovesgshp advised above...
    • markin
    • By markin 29th Jun 19, 11:23 PM
    • 656 Posts
    • 557 Thanks
    markin
    I thought plastic tanks would last 30-40 years... How old is yours? I see a lot of tanks are under £500, So that would seem the cheapest option really.


    How often should an oil tank be replaced?
    The average home heating oil tank will last somewhere between 15-30 years. Some insurance companies and local city ordinances will require you to replace the tank between the 15-20 year mark for safety reasons, but with proper care a tank could reasonably last much longer
    • Mamahope
    • By Mamahope 1st Jul 19, 7:23 AM
    • 12 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    Mamahope
    No, a new tank installed to modern regs (bunded, not single skin) is the best part of £2K unfortunately. It's at least 20 years old and 2 engineers have said it'll need replacing in the next year or so.
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