Heating system re-vamp

At last, the long planned heating upgrade has been completed.

The main reason was to replace our old boiler which really struggled to heat the house during winter. The boiler was 15 years old and "F" rated according to the government website, so replacing it with a new A-rated unit should save gas too, which of course saves a few £££ as well. At the same time it was going to be an opportunity to get the rads fitted with TRVs.

Keen to make things even more efficient we also wanted to zone the house so each of the 3 floors could be operated independantly.

As these things do, what initially sounds like a simple job "replace boiler" of course was far more significant, requiring new pipework through several rooms, new cabling in others and carpets & floorboards up in a number of rooms.

And no heating for the duration. Booking this in for the start of April seemed safe, and indeed we thought that right up till we saw the snow coming down during our "weekend without". Oh well, I bet we used less gas that weekend than our neighbours :-) .

But now it's all finished, and the 2nd stage of "heating upgrade" can begin:

The upgrade was also a bit of a trojan horse for much better control of heat. Each floor zone is controlled by Idratek relays instead of traditional room stats. At the moment the relays are activated based on temperature but the next stage is to control by time/temperature so that each floor can have a different temperature set point per hour.

The final stage will add room presence, so only those floors containing rooms with people in them will get heated to the normal temperature, with empty rooms going to a "standby" temperature.

The inclusion of TRVs on each radiator is another enabler - we've fitted Drayton TRV4s. Partly because they look good, but also because the wet part can take an electronic actuator valve as a replacement for the usual head. By doing this we can get electronic control [i]per radiator[/i] rather than just per floor zone.

So, in stages, the intetion is to work towards having the heating controlled on a room-by-room basis taking into account whether there is anyone actually using the room.

But for now, it's just good to have the basic heating back!