Friday, December 19, 2008

Heating System Questions


Lots of Questions - One Answer

A readers letter, unedited and uncorrected, just as I received it, Cathy wrote:

came across your blog , am building a house and would like to know which pellet boiler system your bloggers recommend. price , usage, etc and also on solar panels. In my ideal world i would love to have a combined system but it all depending on cost (and grants)

i just went onto sei site re grants to find i fall into none of the catorgories,i am a new build,(cant apply for greener homes grant) and well the pilot home energy (dont know what thats about ... they analysing stuff) , warmer homes (not applicable), and low carbon homes (well thats putting money out i.e betting on a horse, you dont know what you gonna get till work is done) this i cant afford.

do i really need to put in oil, live in my house for a year just to rip it all out and to apply for a grant next year to be environmentally friendly.


My reply:

Hi Cathy - You really need a specialist consultant or a fair bit of research to answer your complex questions. Most bloggers are average people, just like yourself, who write letters (blogs) about things that interest them. Bloggers are not part of any sort of club or organisation, they don't get paid for the research work they do, They share that information, as is, with the world at large through their diaries - otherwise called Blogs.

You yourself could do the research needed for your system by searching on the Internet, reading up, and by ringing around - just as good as I can. I encourage you and other people who have done the bit of research, to publish their results through Blogs etc. I would be glad to hear about your research anytime and publish it in my blog for the benefit of others.

Tony McGinley

Personal Note:

I get an increasing number of letters, like the one above, asking me for very specific advice and even asking me to do research on systems etc.

I therefore feel the need to make it clear from time to time, that I am NOT a consultant, I am NOT a journalist. I do NOT get paid for my time, phone calls, travel, expenditure in doing research. I do NOT undertake any consultancy projects. I do NOT have any privileged information or special access to sources.

I would really love to occasionally hear from people who have done some research or project and who feel they have useful information to share with others.


1 comment:

FR from Tipperary said...

Hi Tony, just came across your blog. You'd love our story: We are afetr installing a complete new heating system in a renovated old house (now >300sq m) commissioned in April 2008. We chose 13 sq m solar panels plus a 25kW SHT combi boiler pellet and log. Fisrtly: the solar panels (supplied by AS Solar) were not yet tested to the last due to the summer we had, but seem to be ok. The boiler is fantastic! output and regulation and automatic switchover functions are great. Empy the ashes once every 6 weeks etc. BUT: the auger system to transport the pellets into the boiler is a DISASTER! It cost 3200e for motor, 3m rigid and 2m flexible auger from an adjoining pellet store room. Since April, We had to 3 x empty out the store and re-fill (by Timberpro) due to complete blockages. And on 22.12. the s/s auger broke in the middle of the rigid section with 5ton pellets overhead! Since then: manual pellet feed all day long (AGAIN!). Question: which engineer can I get to investigate WHO is responsible for this mess (estimated to cost me another 5k to fix!). SHT is blaming the builder of the store and the pellet quality etc. blame is passed around. They are due to empty the store again around Jan 20th and replace the broken shaft. If you wouldn't mind, I'd just like to find an independent knowledgable engineer to assess the situation then. Thanks for reading the rant... Best regards Folke R. Tipperary.