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Discuss New to forum - ex plumber (with a question!) in the New Member Introductions area at UKPlumbersForums.co.uk.

  1. dejr

    dejr New Member

    Hi all,

    I'm David, long time lurker of the forum so thought about time I joined :). I did my training many years ago (not gas safe) worked for myself for a few years then ended up in a completely different career direction. I enjoyed the work though and what I picked up has come in handy many times since.

    I am in the process of getting an extension designed and whilst I'll have a builder doing the bulk of the work I'm also hoping to get involved in a fair bit of it once the shell is complete.

    I am just doing a plan for the plumbing at the moment and one thing I'd like to incorporate is a gas outlet by the patio for a future outdoor kitchen. The builder uses a gas safe engineer who will be moving the boiler to the new utility room etc, however I didn't think about this initially but would make sense to have him do this work at the same time, if it's possible.

    I wanted to check the consensus on how it should be installed before I ask and commit to the work being done, hence the post!

    The run would be from the utility room, through the new extension then a couple of meters to the patio. I reckon it's 10-11m in total.

    Could it be terminated to a outlet which would allow for other appliances (such as a patio heater) to be connected along with a NG BBQ?

    Although I can source a NG BBQ I can't seem to find much information UK specific, it's mainly US.

    Any advice appreciated.
     
  2. Chalked

    Chalked Plumber GSR

    There just isn’t the choice for not gas barbecues in the uk.
    Same with patio heaters. So it’s much simpler and cheaper to get a butane, or propane one. Then just use a bottle.
     
    • Useful Useful x 1
  3. dejr

    dejr New Member

    Cheers Chalked, you're probably right though I've seen a few of the built-in units start to appear, like on the bbqworld site, but can't find out much in the way of what's required to get the supply out there.

    Once I'd seen one of these setups with the bar, cooler, bbq etc I was hooked on the idea!

    Maybe I'll just get a run of copper in place along the length of the extension whilst all the works are going on and leave it at that until I'm ready to build it.
     
  4. ShaunCorbs

    ShaunCorbs S. Mod Trusted Plumber GSR Top Contributor!!

    Not cheap

    BBQ World Mobile Site

    Also I would get a length of trac pipe installed if your thinking about it
     
  5. oz-plumber

    oz-plumber Plumber

    You're an ex-plumber, you know how plumbers do work on their own houses.

    Tee into an existing gas line and run a pipe to where you want it.
    Don't bother resizing the gas main for the extra load - if the BBQ's flame drops, just turn off the boiler - you will only use the BBQ in summer, so unless you have a combi this won't come into the equation.

    PS - I would never buy a house that a Plumber lived in.
    Short cut central - except my place - well over Plumbed.
     
    • Funny Funny x 8
  6. Harvest Fields

    Harvest Fields Trusted Plumber GSR Top Contributor!!

    I would upgrade the gas pipe if needed

    Edit- I also wouldn’t buy an ex plumbers/gas engineer/builders house
     
    • Like Like x 1
  7. dejr

    dejr New Member

    Ha ha, yes I fully intend to over-plumb this place :)

    Will go the trac pipe route Shaun, thanks.

    I've got to start spec'ing the UFH, boiler, thermal store etc next. It's been a while so I'll probably be back for help / recommendations!.
     
  8. CHRISX

    CHRISX Active Member


    Hello oz-plumber and Harvest Fields,

    What have You experienced in Homes previously owned or still lived in by Plumbers that makes you state to `never buy a House that a Plumber lived in` ?

    Apart from the old adage that `a dripping tap will be left for weeks [or longer] in a Plumbers Home`, I have worked in a few Homes that were said to be previously owned by `Plumbers` but in most cases it was easy to see from the workmanship that those people might have been calling themselves `Plumbers` but they were NOT !

    Of course even with some `qualified Plumbers` their standard of work can still be what We would regard as disgraceful something that I have seen often.

    If someone was unlucky enough to buy a Home where one of those Plumbers had lived and done extensive work there obviously could be future problems but I cannot imagine that an experienced Plumber who works to a good standard of workmanship would do otherwise in their own Home ?

    I have completely re-plumbed my Home from the Mains connection outside in the pavement [new incoming Main] - installed the Bathrooms and a separate downstairs W.C. - installed the Kitchen and Utility Room Sinks etc. and all of the Soil & Waste pipes plus some additional underground Drainage.

    I have installed all of the Gas pipework including extending it in 28mm to an outside Meter when new Gas Supplies were installed in my Road / the local area and external Meters were specified and I installed the Heating system [in 1986] having replaced the Boiler and Radiators plus new TRV`s, Programmer and upgrading to a Programmable Room Thermostat a few years ago - I have serviced the Boilers personally and the system has the Fernox Corrosion Inhibitor [10 Litres] replaced every 5 years after a system cleanser has been used.

    I have carried out all of those works just as professionally as I would have if working on the `Highest Class Property` - although I pride myself on installing to the highest standard of workmanship on every job irrespective of the `class of property`.

    Surely all of our Members would also work to their normal standards when doing work in their own Homes ?

    I would really like to read some of your experiences - is it possible that the `Plumbers` whose Homes you have worked in / seen poor workmanship were people who were just calling themselves `Plumbers` ?

    CHRISX
     
  9. Ric2013

    Ric2013 Plumber Top Contributor!!

    My house:

    I have a Viva FOV on my WC cistern I decided to fit because I refused to pay the premium demanded by Armitage Shanks for a replacement washer.

    I fitted the Viva because I cannot get spares for it and refuse to fit an FOV to a customer's house when spares are unobtainable. So that's one way the house has suffered through being mine.

    Parts of the plumbing in my house have been redone to a high standard (but re-using scrap copper pipe where possible), but since no one is paying me to replace the legacy work, it stays. I accept water hammer on unclipped pipes (fitted prior to my owning the house) when the neighbour turns her tap off, because I ain't ripping up the bathroom floor to clip them. Where it has been practical, of course I have made improvements, but in a customer's house it would be new pipe and redesign, not cobble around what's there when what is there is a bit suspect.

    Also, the heating setup is very much a compromise that I live with, rather than something I would supply to a customer. But doing it properly is currently unaffordable, and I understand the system and can make it do what I want it to do because, unlike most customers, I understand my system well.

    I could re-do the bathroom and make it really smart, but this makes no sense environmentally. What I have works, and if it breaks, I have a resident plumber who can make repairs, so why worry?

    IF I stay in this house for the long term, then, yes, it will all be good work, but as it is, the plumbing is the least of my concerns and doing things piecemeal when I have no call-out charge to my own house, makes sense in a way that wouldn't make sense for non-plumbers.

    Also, I'm surely not the only plumber that uses his own house for the kinds of experiments that I would not inflict on my customers?
     
  10. CHRISX

    CHRISX Active Member

    Hello Ric2013,

    Virtually all of the Plumbing & Heating work that You have mentioned is on existing Plumbing & Heating systems - not `New` Plumbing & Heating installations.

    Obviously I understand when there are also Financial constraints.

    I feel sure that if You were installing a new Heating system or Re-Plumbing your Home / installing a new Bathroom you would do so at your normal standard of workmanship.

    Some Members might disagree with me on this:

    I would find it difficult to produce workmanship that was below my normal high standard - my method of working / high standard of workmanship has become habitual.

    I would not find any `short cuts` / lower standards of workmanship to be in any way time saving if I tried to lower the standard of my workmanship - actually having to change my methods of doing things would add time to the works.

    Chris
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  11. YorkshireDave

    YorkshireDave Plumber Top Contributor!!

    Tis odd.

    My boiler is a 1997 Ideal Mexico which I refuse to change. It supplies a compensated loop for the htg and will stay as long as I'm breathing cos its built like a brick outhouse and, because of the way its controlled, our running costs are better than many, so called, 'efficient' boilers.

    Best of all, our environmental footprint is genuinely minimal. ;)
     
    • Like Like x 3
    • Funny Funny x 1
  12. CHRISX

    CHRISX Active Member

    Hello YorkshireDave,

    I don`t know if your `Tis odd` comment was about something that I wrote in my message regarding describing installing my Home`s 2nd Boiler, new Radiators, TRV`s etc.

    I replaced the Boiler because I wanted it in a completely different position because of refurbishing and altering the layout of my Kitchen and I replaced the Radiators because some of them were 28 years old and most were 18 years old - new Radiators = new TRV`s & Lockshield valves.

    The first Boiler that I installed at my Home in 1986 was a Potterton Netaheat Electronic - a large bore waterways cast iron Heat Exchanger and good / reliable controls - still working really well when disconnected from the system in 2014 although regarding `Energy Efficiency` it would be decried by other Heating Engineers and `Green living` aficionados.

    However as you mentioned because of good Controls including a Programmable Room Thermostat and TRV`s I do not feel that my Heating system was particularly `inefficient`.

    Perhaps I used 10% more Gas than a more efficient Boiler would have used - perhaps £100.00 per year extra costs - hardly anything to be financially concerned about or an incentive to have replaced my Netaheat Boiler with a `more technically advanced Boiler` where the first Breakdown would probably involve replacing a very expensive component.

    I like to think that because I serviced it every year and I regularly replaced a `double dose` of Fernox MB1 Corrosion Inhibitor in the Heating system [every 5 years or less after chemical cleansing] it was still working well in 2014 when I replaced it because of alterations to my Home`s Kitchen layout.

    I terms of reliability during the 28 years that it heated my Home I had to replace the Gas Control valve [after 25 years], the PCB / Spark Generator & Flame monitor unit [after 26 years] and the Ignition spark lead [after 26 years with the PCB unit].

    I am sure that there would have been at least another 5 - 10 Years of `life` left in the Potterton Netaheat Electronic if I did not have to fit a new Boiler in a different position in my Home.

    I did consider moving the old Boiler because it had been so reliable but I knew that I would not have been able to get any of the correct Flue pipe and would probably not have been able to remove the existing Netaheat Flue pipe without damaging it - I might have been able to but I remember putting a lot of mortar into the space around the Flue when it was installed.

    However the main reason why I bought a new Boiler was that Parts for the Potterton Netaheat Electronic are only available on websites such as Ebay - even then not all replacement parts - the Gas Control valves are no longer stocked by Potterton Interpart or any other Gas component suppliers and I have only ever seen a couple of used ones on Ebay.

    So I could not justify reinstalling my old Netaheat in the new position because something would definitely have needed to be replaced at some time and would probably not be available.

    I thought that I would respond to your message to mention that although as a Heating Engineer I obviously do agree with `Energy Efficiency` for new Installations - I would have still kept my really reliable `Energy Inefficient` Potterton Netaheat Electronic if there had not been a good reason to install a new Boiler in a different position because of a Kitchen refurbishment / layout alteration.

    Good to read that your Boiler is still going well since 1997 - I do remember installing Ideal Mexico`s in the 1990`s and early 2000`s - they seemed well made then but I am sure that it`s longevity has a lot to do with You regarding Corrosion Inhibitor in the Heating system and regular Servicing etc.

    Chris
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2018
  13. oz-plumber

    oz-plumber Plumber

    My boiler is 17 years old. Changed a couple of pumps and generally give it a 'once over' every few years.
    Might have a look at it tomorrow while van is being serviced!!

    My hot water service is a Rinnai 24 - never looked at, it but it still works.

    Was meant to have replaced the chimney flashings 17 years ago - I remember they didn't look good then, but haven't leaked, so would have been a waste of time and effort to replace them back then.
    I really should have another look at them!!!

    I could go on, but I won't - I might remember something else that should have been done - that hasn't.

    Taps don't leak, toilets don't leak, heating system doesn't leak - come to think of it - nothing leaks.
    Why upset something that may end up causing a leak.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  14. YorkshireDave

    YorkshireDave Plumber Top Contributor!!

    Hi Chris

    It was meant as a simple post. You 'prompted' it but nothing else.

    What it illustrates, is that the real environmental and fiscal costs associated with boilers are far more than those highlighted by manufacturers desperate to sell more kit. Most, not all by any means, market their products knowing full well that the numbers they quote regarding efficiencies are only applicable to a very small percentage of boiler destinations. Despite that knowledge they continue to promote in that way so installers become imbibed with those numbers and (incorrectly) end up believing them.

    We have always been able to run home system efficiently, its just that few people have been taught the essential basics of good quality controls. Frankly, the latest boiler plus initiative is simply farcical. NO controls can negate living in a leaky bucket so the very first thing any homeowner should do is insulate first. Then, and only then, should one consider anything else...

    I could.l go on but won't. I have a business that deserves my attention.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  15. CHRISX

    CHRISX Active Member

    Hello again YorkshireDave,

    Thanks for your reply - I asked whether you were commenting on something that I wrote in case I had inadvertently irritated You with my comments in a previous message.

    I completely agree with your comments about the ridiculous situation where `Energy Efficient appliances and Heating Controls` are somehow deemed to have provided an `Energy Efficient Heating system` in properties that have little or zero Loft Insulation and old draughty single glazed Windows and Doors.

    Although the new Heating system might be running more `efficiently` than an older Boiler and Controls that will be more than negated by the massive unnecessary heat loss in properties which fit your description of a `leaky bucket` !

    Just imagine someone fitting a Weather compensation device to a Heating system Boiler that was installed in such a property - as You wrote Farcical !

    Chris
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
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