Inflation in the pipeline

I mentioned before how I had a small central heating meltdown.

Spanner came up and had a look at the mess and decided I needed a new reactor vessel [or I think it’s a reactor vessel – it looks like an inflated steel balloon].  He replaced it and fucked off.

Since then, the system has been a right pain in the arse.  If I want to run the heating, the sequence is as follows –

Open the inlet valve until the pressure reaches 1 Bar.  Wait until it stops farting through the air release valve.

Open the inlet valve again as the farting will have caused the pressure to drop.

Switch on the pump.

Bleed the air out of the nearest radiator.

Re-pressure the system again.

Stop the pump and wait for it to stop farting.

Start the pump and re-pressure once more.

Light the boiler.

Repeat all the above every forty five minutes, but leaving out the "light the boiler" bit as that would be silly.

As you can well imagine, I wasn't looking forward to the cooler nights which doubtless we will experience over the coming winter.  I decided to get the fucking system fixed for once and for all.  I decided now was the time, as people will have forgotten about their heating in the middle of a hot spell, so the heating bloke should be readily available for my little overhaul.

I managed to track down the chap who had installed the system originally but he couldn't make it here for a while – he was up to his neck overhauling people's heating systems as they all had booked him thinking he would be idle for the summer.

He came out last Saturday and played with my little pressure valve.  He listened to the farting and gleefully announced that I had a leak.


Now the house here is divided into two sections – the Old House and The New Wing [the latter has been called that for the last forty or so years].  The Old House has massive granite walls and solid floors so all the plumbing runs along the walls.  If there had been a leak there I possibly would have noticed it.  The New Wing, on the other hand not only has wooden floors but I refloored the whole gaff about six years ago with lovely solid oak.  The leak had to be under the oak flooring.


He came back yesterday with his pal who is a flooring expert.  They proceeded to rip the guts out of my beautiful oak flooring and found a beautifully dry underfloor area devoid of leaks.  They ripped up more flooring.  Still no leak.  They ripped up the lobby.  Nothing.  They finally ripped up the bathroom floor and there it was – a leaking pipe.

So now I have a fully functional heating system.  The pressure hasn't dropped an iota in nearly twenty four hours.  All I need now is a really cold spell so I can try it out in anger.

I also have a ripped up floor.

Ripped up flooring

They are supposed to be coming back today to re-lay the flooring.

I can't help but think though that it would have been easier and cheaper to just buy heavier overcoats?


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Inflation in the pipeline — 10 Comments

  1. It might have been easier to cut the pipework either end of your floor, and possibly other places, then test each hidden length under pressure to see if it leaked before removing the floor

    • There were two options.  They could indeed have just ripped up the floors at the radiators.  The process would have fucked up the boards making them impossible to reuse.  I would therefore have to buy another batch of flooring which wouldn't match the existing.  The other option was to lift the boards a length at a time and then reuse them afterwards.  The lads did that and the end result is that you wouldn't believe they had ever been moved.  Brilliant job!

  2. .It's good to hear all went well.  As I was reading the post I was picturing plumbers with fire axes going at it on your flooring

  3. There are boiler and pipe free systems down in the Midlands. A fine bog of turf will provide all the tax free fuel you need for the winter and you can even save on electricity by boiling the kettle on the fire

      • The turf this year is very good – though not as good as last year, which hardened to the consistency of coal and was not liable to a single cent of carbon tax

  4. As it happens I'm sitting here waiting for the plumber to return as we speak.  Apparently it's the ignition box or some such.  He's been trying to track the source of the problem that leaves me with a sudden change from hot to cold water in the middle of a shower!!  As it's now gone on strike permanently he's finally found the problem………I hope.

    • I would have thought that a sudden switch from hot to cold is a good thing?  Good for the circulation.  A bit like running out of the sauna into the snow.

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