Central Heating and Hot Water

  lotvic 22:00 27 Dec 2011

Spent a couple of hours this afternoon with British Gas Engineer (have got Boiler Care Cover) I think this makes the 5th or 6th time I've had to have them out for various faults. Thank goodness I didn't cancel the Care Cover at beginning of month.

Boiler wouldn't turn off even though Timer switch for CH and HW were in Off position. Only noticed something was wrong when the control rad in hallway was redhot and nearly scalded myself from hot tap. Quick trip into loft to look at boiler and found green light was still on which indicates that boiler is fired up.

3 way port had seized up and switch, have got a tank full of boiling water.

It is only 24 months since new boiler install and new port and switch etc.

Is it me or has anyone else found that equipment these days is not lasting reliably. I did wonder if it could be down to 'cheap' components.

  Woolwell 22:07 27 Dec 2011

These ports do seize up but that shouldn't have happened so soon.

Personally I don't bother with boiler cover (it's still under warranty actually) but I do have 2 or 3 plumbers/heating engineers that I know would turn up at short notice. Last time I needed one he came within 2 hours. I save the money on paying for the cover to pay the infrequent visits of the plumbers. I do make sure that it is thoroughly serviced annually.

  lotvic 22:20 27 Dec 2011

Number of repair visits I've had to have I'm glad I did carry on the cover this time. I had it free previously - special deal with work I'd had done. I had been meaning to cancel it now that I've got to start paying but never got round to sorting it out.

All things considered I think I'll carry on with Cover over this winter ;)

  Forum Editor 23:05 27 Dec 2011

"3 way port had seized up and switch, have got a tank full of boiling water."

Regardless of what happened to the 3-port valve, the boiler's internal overheat thermostat should have turned it off if your room-stat didn't. Perhaps there's something I've misunderstood?

  lotvic 00:31 28 Dec 2011

Perhaps it's my use of 'boiling hot' that is at fault, I should have said 'scalding hot'. The water in cylinder must have heated to practically same temp as the boiler circulating water. The hot water cylinder thermostat is set at 60 C (140 F) but water out the tap was far hotter than that. Because of the stuck position the cylinder thermostat had no effect. In any case the Timer switch for CH and HW were in Off position but the boiler didn't turn off.

"boiler's internal overheat thermostat". I'll have a study of the manual to check on that, thanks. I shall certainly be keeping a close eye on system tomorrow.

  Kevscar1 05:30 28 Dec 2011

They just don't make them like they used to. Bolier was here when we moved in 19yrs ago and I suspec it is the orignal when the house was built in the 70's, never had a problem.

  zzzz999 06:06 28 Dec 2011

I have literally had my boiler replaced by British Gas under their boiler care programme. Boiler was new when we bought the house, yet over the past 5 years almost every component has needed replaced. Its not as if the boiler we have is a cheap one, according to our gas man its near top of the range but even the best boiler makers are sourcing components from all over the world which is undoubtedly leading to quality issues.

  the hick 07:19 28 Dec 2011

Notwithstanding that the 3-port valve had stuck, it does seem the boiler thermostat may be set toward the high end of its range. Also, is it possible to remove cover from the 3-port valve, and actuate the lever a few times to free it? It may help in short term, but will no doubt need replacement. Regarding build quality, boilers generally do not last as long as the older types, but they may use less fuel, and I believe 'combis' can be worse, with the heat-exchangers not lasting long in hard-water areas.

  J B 11:45 28 Dec 2011

I had the same thing happen to me last winter. I freed up the three way valve and it lasted for about a week, only this time the boiler shut it's self down. Result, no heat or water. I called my engineer and got him out double quick. He changed the three way valve and for good measure changed the central heating circulating pump. Upon taking the pump apart he found that the pump was completely clogged up. Installed new pump and touch wood it has been working ever since. Hope this helps. J.B.

  lotvic 12:18 28 Dec 2011

Thanks for all the comments, they have been very helpful

"boiler's internal overheat thermostat" kicks in when 5 C over the boiler thermostat setting

"3 way port seized up" Engineer fitted new one, showed me the old one, he couldn't move it manually it was solidly stuck.

"the boiler thermostat may be set toward the high end of its range" Yes it is/was set at about 75 C (max setting is 82 C) any suggestions for the ideal setting for boiler circulating water/temperature of rads?

  lotvic 22:16 28 Dec 2011

All seems to be working okay now, so will green tick resolved.

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