As parts of the UK prepare for the coldest winter weather in recent years, condensing boilers which produce water as a by product become more at risk of breaking down if temperatures remain at sub zero for a prolonged period of time. If the boiler stops and a gurgling noise is heard then a blocked condensate pipe may be a cause especially if the temperature is negative and the pipe goes to an external drain. The boiler buoy can give a simple indication that this is the problem and has a easy to operate tap to bypass the blockage and allow the boiler to restart.
By the end of this week temperatures are likely to fall and some regions will be negative by day. This is a possible repeat of the 2010 and 2011 winters when many households faced condensing boiler shut downs. Seven years on there are another 10 million condensing boilers installed and though regulations reduced the condensate freezing risk, external perpetual negative temperatures will stop boilers working.
Many housing associations have fitted the Boiler Buoy during the summer annual servicing, with heating engineers holding van stock for emergency call-outs.
Home owners should contact their local engineer for advice on frozen condensate issues, or purchase a Boiler Buoy at a local merchant.
Wrekin Housing Trust near Telford have installed the Boiler Buoy to reduce issues associated with condensing boiler condensate freezing. They have issued guidelines to residents to open the drain tap during any cold spell and periodically check the container. This successfully stops any boiler lockout in the event of freezing, liquid is only collected if freezing occurs, all very simple and no energy used unlike trace heating.
Issued at: Monday 30 January 2012 at 10:37
There is a 100% probability of severe cold weather between 1000 on Monday and 1000 on Friday in parts of England. This weather could increase the health risks to vulnerable patients and disrupt the delivery of services. Please refer to the national Cold Weather Plan and your Trust’s emergency plan for appropriate preventive action.
Milder conditions are likely to arrive during Saturday and Saturday night, with temperatures likely to rise above threshold values in all regions.
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