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House is either freezing cold or far too hot!! WTF??

(16 Posts)
msrisotto Tue 25-Nov-14 17:29:43

I don't understand my heating system at all. Think it is a bit broken.
It is set to keep the house at 23 degrees in the hope that it will stop me freezing over. It doesn't, the heating still has quite a low bar for when it decides to get going. Then once it's going, it doesn't stop and I want to open the window!

The downstairs is cold - the heating comes on and the radiator behind the sofa is tepid warm, takes hours to get hot (doesn't need bleeding and it does get hot in the end) whereas the radiator in the kitchen is almost hot within minutes.

Also, the 'advance' button doesn't work, the heating just comes on at it's regular set time.

Any ideas?

Iggly Tue 25-Nov-14 20:21:51

Check the boiler itself - can you adjust the radiator temp?

Also can you get someone out to look?

grumpyoldgitagain Tue 25-Nov-14 20:25:19

Sounds like they need balancing

The valve on one end of the radiator adjusts the speed of flow through the radiator, the ones near the boiler which get hit first need if screwing in to slow the flow down which will in turn increase the glow near the ones further away so they should all get hot together

Sometimes takes quite a while to get right

msrisotto Tue 25-Nov-14 20:26:28

The boiler itself appears to be working and the radiators are set to high temperature settings.

I can get someone out, I'm just dreading another big bill sad

grumpyoldgitagain Tue 25-Nov-14 20:27:25

Fucking autocorrect that should be hot, it and flow

msrisotto Tue 25-Nov-14 20:30:59

Ah balancing. Sounds intimidating. How do you know which way to screw the valve? Also, the radiator that takes the longest to heat up is downstairs, on the same floor as the boiler - would you expect that to heat up easier as it is closer?

msrisotto Tue 25-Nov-14 20:34:30

There are some how to guides online, thanks for giving me something to try

grumpyoldgitagain Tue 25-Nov-14 20:40:53

Normally screwing it clockwise reduces the flow and anticlockwise increases it

Sometimes the opposite end to the thermostat on the radiator just has a plastic cap which doesn't actually move the valve, sometimes it has a slot inside and will actually move it

The one nearest the boiler may be screwed nearly shut and not flowing enough or the pipes may run the opposite way and it be at the end of the line

PigletJohn Wed 26-Nov-14 10:20:29

You say the radiator valves are set to hot. That sounds like they have thermostatic radiator valves. Turn them all to 3 for a start. Turn your room stat to 20.

(Turning thermostats up high does not make the room warm faster, it just means that some of your rooms will eventually get too hot)

Post a photo of the room stat, the timer/programmer and the radiator valves (both ends).

msrisotto Thu 27-Nov-14 16:33:36

Hi PigletJohn, I have done what you said. Oddly though, the hallway radiator doesn't have the valve like in the first photo.

msrisotto Thu 27-Nov-14 16:34:42

And the other photo

PigletJohn Thu 27-Nov-14 17:49:31

in the room where you have the wall stat, the radiator should not have a TRV. This is to prevent them being in contention, which could result in the rest of the house being too cold (usually) or too hot.

Radiators which get hot very quickly, or very slowly, compared to all the others, are a sign of poor balancing.

Balancing is not difficult, but it takes time and diligence. Almost all the effective adjustment is in fractions of a turn when the lockshield valve is almost closed. They will need to be about half a turn to a turn open. None of them should be fully open, or anywhere near.

PigletJohn Thu 27-Nov-14 18:03:23

I am not familiar with either the wall stat or the programmer.

Assuming you do not have the instructions, have a look at the makers' websites. If you can't identify them and download the instructions, email them with your photos and any numbers or other markings you can see, possibly under a flap. Potterton is now part of Baxi. The programmer is probably their name badged onto a commercial programmer. There is a good chance that it is on an industry standard backplate and if faulty (unlikely) could be swapped easily. The colour and lettering look like Honeywell but is not a model I recognise. The advance button will move you to the next programmed event; but for that to have any effect you need to have several programmed events (on and off times) per day. page down to Product Literature

msrisotto Thu 27-Nov-14 18:47:18

Thanks. I will try balancing at the weekend. I've looked at a couple of how to guides online and one says to start by turning the valve off before opening it again, and the other says the opposite. Does it matter which?

Yes, I have the heating timed to come on in the early morning and late afternoon. The advanced button used to work fine, I pressed it a couple of hours before the heating was due to come on today and it didn't do anything. I pulled the batteries out of the room stat and put them back in again and it came on so that might have been what that problem was about.

PigletJohn Thu 27-Nov-14 20:56:24

turn all the lockshields fully off before you start. Then open one half a turn at first, then not more than a quarter-turn per minute, until you feel hot water starting to flow through one of the pipes. Then do the same with the next.

Much more long and tedious description here which I will probably never want to type again. Look for the post timed at Sat 11-Oct-14 14:42:02

msrisotto Thu 27-Nov-14 21:00:24

Hehe, I'll take a look, thanks smile

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