/ A couple of questions about central heating

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aln - on 22 Jan 2013
My flat has radiators running off the combi boiler, controlled by a thermostat in the hall, opposite a radiator which is permanently on. If I want to stop my pipes freezing when I'm out, will this one radiator be enough to do that. Or do I have to have them all turned on?
Also, when I'm at home and trying to stay warm while using as little fuel as possible, my instinct is to have all the internal doors closed, use draught excluders et. Yet last year when the system was getting an annual service, the gas man told me the system actually works more efficiently if the doors are left slightly ajar. This seems counter intuitive. Any experts out there who can shed light on this?
BTW I have double glazing and cavity wall insulation already.
aln - on 22 Jan 2013
In reply to aln: N0-one?
MG - on 22 Jan 2013
In reply to aln:
> My flat has radiators running off the combi boiler, controlled by a thermostat in the hall, opposite a radiator which is permanently on. If I want to stop my pipes freezing when I'm out, will this one radiator be enough to do that. Or do I have to have them all turned on?

Check you boiler manual. I think most have an frost-stat built in that will prevent the pipes/radiators freezing.


> Also, when I'm at home and trying to stay warm while using as little fuel as possible, my instinct is to have all the internal doors closed, use draught excluders et. Yet last year when the system was getting an annual service, the gas man told me the system actually works more efficiently if the doors are left slightly ajar.

Sounds like an urban myth similar to you should have your heating on all day for more efficiency,.
rocky57 - on 22 Jan 2013
In reply to aln:

It's a bit early for a reply just yet. All the plumbers are out working at the moment.
marie - on 22 Jan 2013
In reply to aln: Which pipe is freezing?

My condensation pipe freezes in extreme weather (it's outside) - I'm having something fitted to it soon, at the point the condensation leaves the boiler, that releases more water through and slightly heats it so it doesnt freeze as easily in the pipe on the way out...

My plumber told me there is more condensation if the heating is on (or if you run the hot water tap) for a prolonged time.

I am only repeating what I've been told, I have no knowledge or experience!

craig1983 - on 22 Jan 2013
In reply to aln:

No expert, but from personal experience I've found that having the heating on doesn't stop pipes freezing....its more about keeping the water in the pipes moving, so leave a tap running (perhaps not ideal if in England where your water is metered)

Stop draughts coming in from outside, but letting air circulate round the flat will mean the whole flat will be at the same temp...thermostat cant measure the temp of rooms its not in :)
annieman - on 22 Jan 2013
In reply to aln: Suck teeth, long intake of breath whilst I figure out how much I'm gonna charge you. It's probably the boiler. LoL

No idea.
gethin_allen on 22 Jan 2013
In reply to aln:
If you have thermostatic radiator valves on the rads just turn them to the snowflake symbol in the rooms you aren't in.
Many heating thermostats/controllers have a antifrost setting too.

Your thermostat shouldn't really be next to a radiator as you won't warm the whole room.
The radiator in the hall is usually left without a thermostatic valve to provide a return to the boiler if all the other radiators are off.

Re. stopping things the pipes freezing, If you are really bothered just put the heating on for 15 min a couple of times a day. it won't cost much and will do the job.

Re. keeping warm cheaply, if your thermostat is in the hall I'd leave the door to wherever you are sitting open, otherwise the thermostat will cut off the heating way before the room you are in is warm.
aln - on 22 Jan 2013
In reply to rocky57: I like it :D
aln - on 22 Jan 2013
In reply to gethin_allen:
> (In reply to aln)
> If you have thermostatic radiator valves on the rads just turn them to the snowflake symbol .

I have them. That's what I've been doing. The rest of your advice sounds good.
Thanks for all the replies. I always like to go by the wisdom of strangers on the net rather than seek expert advice. ;)
deepsoup - on 22 Jan 2013
In reply to aln:
> Thanks for all the replies. I always like to go by the wisdom of strangers on the net rather than seek expert advice. ;)

On an amazing range of subjects there usually is a bit of expert advice in a random UCK thread. The trick is working out which posts it's in. :o)
caravanshaker on 22 Jan 2013
In reply to aln: You're supposed to put the thermostat down to it's lowest setting, probably a snowflake, then leave the central heating on constant.

That way it only comes on if it really needs to stop pipes freezing

HTH
Tricky Dicky - on 22 Jan 2013
In reply to marie:
> (In reply to aln) Which pipe is freezing?
>
> My condensation pipe freezes in extreme weather (it's outside)

You can just put some pipe lagging over it.
Ridge - on 22 Jan 2013
In reply to craig1983:
> (In reply to aln)
>
> No expert, but from personal experience I've found that having the heating on doesn't stop pipes freezing....its more about keeping the water in the pipes moving, so leave a tap running

Not a good idea if the waste pipe freezes outside the house, causing your kitchen/bathroom to flood..
krikoman - on 22 Jan 2013
In reply to aln: Takes a lot to freeze pipes inside the house, I had a house which is being "worked" on and was empty over 2 winters temp. was down to -15 outside a year or two ago.

we used to put heating on for half hour around 5 am none of the pipes froze.

+1 turn valves to *

+1 insulation on condensate flow.

More condensate the more your boiler runs.

Don't leave the tap running!!

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