Posting a message to the forum will remove the above advertisement
  1. Checkout our Plumbers Insurance area - heavily discounted Public Liability Insurance and Van Insurance specifically designed for plumbers.

Discuss Buffer Tanks - 2 or 4 port connections in the Renewable Energy area at UKPlumbersForums.co.uk.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Nostrum

    Nostrum Plumber GSR

    Windhager controls have optimum start but they're in my opinion not very user friendly!
     
  2. missplumb

    missplumb Plumber

    We don't use the built in controllers as most of our systems are district heating pumped from a remote plant room to PEX so temperature control becomes a bit more awkward
     
  3. Worcester

    Worcester Plumber

    Are you mixing the flow as it leaves the buffer to keep the temperature down in the heat distribution mains? I am aware of a few doing that so as to allegedly prolong the life of the heat main.
     
  4. missplumb

    missplumb Plumber

    No, it generally leaves the plantroom at about 80 and according to the rehau rep, the pipe can easily cope with them temps fire the duration. I don't see the point in heating the buffers up and then cooling it before it leaves
     
  5. Worcester

    Worcester Plumber

    The reason for different temperatures is to operate all parts of the system at their most efficient temperatures.

    Biomass boilers work well with high output temperatures, and controlled return temps. (say 80/60)

    Most heating systems for houses in a retrofit environment should have been designed for condensing boilers, so would be expecting 65 flow /55 return.

    You lose more heat through a district main pumping at 80° than at 70° because of the temperature gradient.

    Do you therefore mix down at point of use? If not then you'll presumably that means greater cycling of the end user heating system, are the end user control systems updated? - Are the end user heating systems rebalanced and flow / return temperatures of the radiators optimised as part of the installations?

    There are loads of extra efficiencies to be had that way. So far all our clients are using significanlty less than predicted when they have comprhensive heating management systems in place.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  6. missplumb

    missplumb Plumber

    Where necessary our temps are reduced at point of use but the reason for the higher temps is that the systems we retrofit into are old stone stately houses with over 100 rooms, old column rads, no temperature control and they are tight with they're money. They are not interested in altering the internal plumbing because "it worked before on the oil boilers" and because we are financing the systems anyway they don't want anything disturbed because other than a cheaper fuel bill, they don't get anything out of it.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  7. Nostrum

    Nostrum Plumber GSR

    Unfortunately there are buildings out there now that have never been heated before as its not required, with a biomass boiler installed burning wood for the fun of it. Like wise although a renewable technology is being used, energy efficiency goes out the window as it has an opposite effect on the repayments. It all makes a mockery out of the whole scheme really.

    We went to see a district system in North Devon, no lagging on any of the pipe work, all the pumps and HIUs purposely fitted in outside 'sheds' with no insulation etc

    In some respects I'm glad the tariffs have dropped. I'm in it for the long haul and just hope the domestic tariff dropping is enough for the gold rush installers to move on, leaving the rest of the money to fund the customers who make the most of it.

    Oddly we are getting more enquiries now for biomass then were we 2 months ago. Fortunately the customers aren't solely interested in it for any return. I just hope it continues like that!
     
    • Like Like x 3
  8. Worcester

    Worcester Plumber

    Yep, it's one of those anomalies, if you're metered, you'll consume as much as possible. Even in the domestic market, when we install systems to maximise efficiency, if they aren't using up to the EPC figure, then open the windows and wind the heat up else you'll never get the maximum back, and when the payments are greater than the cost of fuel that's what the clients (some of them not all) will do.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  9. missplumb

    missplumb Plumber

    I agree, but there is a big difference in thinking between the domestic customers with sub 50kw boilers and the larger commercial customers we have. Wealth breeds wealth, that's all they think about - how much they can get for least outlay. Domestic customers i guess would be much more receptive to having the most efficient controls and systems fitted as the benefit to them is cheaper bills.
    We've been to see installations on farms where they have installed copper pipes in the concrete yard to warm the tractor tyres! !!!! And warm air blowers fitted externally .
     
  10. Nostrum

    Nostrum Plumber GSR

    Yep, it's the way of the world. People will find a way to make money out of anything. They should have sewn up the loop holes long ago, somehow. with the amount of money they are giving away they should be doing more inspection to check eligibility. Perhaps they will, I hope they do.
     
  11. Worcester

    Worcester Plumber

    Last edited: Jul 21, 2015
  12. Nostrum

    Nostrum Plumber GSR

    The rumours have been kicking around for solar and on shore for a while, hopefully not a repeat of 2011, do you still do much on the solar side?

    RHI is guaranteed until 2016 I believe? Although judging by that meeting, there doesn't seem to be much in the way of security for it beyond then.

    The difference with solar/wind and renewable heat is that solar is an emerging market still and a lot of money has gone into the R&D of the technology, which has led to a sharp fall in manufacturing costs. Much of the renewable heat market already existed, we've just been late adopters to it all.

    As a small company we're very competitive and can often spec a much better system for less than our competitors. Theres not much room for movement, the capital cost won't come down like it has with wind and solar, maybe it could for non Domestic, the latest cuts will soon see. In fact the RHI may have inflated the installation costs at the beginning?
     
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2015
  13. Sparkgap

    Sparkgap Active Member

    We put in a couple of pellet boilers to feed a couple of primary schools about 9 years ago. Absolute disaster! Ripped out one after a couple of years and put oil back, other went about three years later, a year after the manufacturers replaced the boiler with another! :banghead:
    One site didn't have a buffer tank to start with, soon had the biomass boiler bods changing their minds and saying it needed one putting in as boiler needs to develop a temperature difference from top to bottom to provide a load. Did that but school eventually got sick and tired of the boiler and wanted it out.
    Also did a survey at a new PFI school in Bedford four years ago: both Hovel pellet boilers had broke within 6 months to a year of opening, school didn't bother fixing them and happy to run on backup gas boilers as problems with dust from pellet store was causing problems.
     
  14. missplumb

    missplumb Plumber

    we have taken out quite afew biomass boilers from schools, but when you looked at the system, they were never designed correctly and tbh, the boilers were s~*t, but 10 years ago we didnt know any different. we have replaced some of these boilers with new ones, altered the systems and controls, and had them accredited to Rhi which makes a huge difference to them - and now they are much happier using them.
    i just think there wasnt enough technical knowledge in the uk about biomass back then!
     
    • Like Like x 1
  15. Sparkgap

    Sparkgap Active Member

    The other issue is staff not wanting to get dirty clearing the ash. One site the caretaker said it wasn't in his job description to clean out the boiler!
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.