Monday, 6 December 2010

Fun with the Boiler

In general, I'm pleased with the decision to go for a wood-fired boiler to heat the gîte. I like the idea of its eco-friendliness, and I like the fact that the heat costs me about 4 (euro) cents per kilowatt-hour. On the other hand, it does need looking after to make sure that all is well: The quality of the after-sales service is an important consideration, and not one that was taken into account when making the purchase.

The boiler is made by Heizomat, a German manufacturer, 100Kwatts and, like many things German, built to last. However it was installed by Nideck Chauffage, a French outfit, who were the sole Heizomat distributors in France at that time. I had been unhappy with the after-sales service from Nideck, and I was recently delighted (and relieved) to discover that Heizomat are setting up a direct sales and support operation in France. I can now go the the manufacturer for any help I need, and this gives me considerable comfort. I do stress out when I imagine having guests in the gîte and no heating.

The concept of the boiler is basically quite simple. Wood chips are fed in one end, and as they enter, air is blown over them to get them burning quickly. The hot air and smoke exits at the other end of the boiler having passed over the water jacket. All this is regulated by a computer control system mounted on the wall. It's great when things are going well, but when the system is out of kilter, the effect can be dramatic. This happened the other day, and the boiler room filled with smoke. I was very glad the boiler was some way away from the house.

The problem was a simple one, resolved after a careful investigation and some calls to Heizomat France. I feel much better but I am keeping an eye on it.

5 comments:

Mark said...

Kind of glad we have gas and oil

PigletinFrance said...

Hi! I've just arrived here from Ooh La La English Demoiselle and am glad I did! I currently live in Lyon (and have done for a long time now) but Husband and I are in the process of searching for a new home in the country and one of the properties we've found has gites so I'm currently considering running those... In Lyon we have underfloor gas heating and I've been learning so much about wood burning boilers, fuel and gas its amazing! I've heard that wood burning is good, we want a granules a bois? Is this what you have?

I will look forward to following you in the future!

Mark In Mayenne said...

Hi Piglet, thanks for following my blog and for your comments. My boiler doesn't use the wood granules, it uses straight wood chips. These have advantage of being cheaper per unit of heat generated, but on the other hand they take up more space. The bolier can however be programmed to burn wood granules if should want it to. Mine is a big one, 100Kwatts because it's potentially heating 750 square metres of living space, and a pool. A typical house will be more than adequately heated with 30Kwatts or so.

the fly in the web said...

What puts it out of kilter, do you think?
That photograph of the smoke emerging from the open door would have had me panicking!

Don't need heating or air conditioning here...two complications less!


That sponge looked good in your last post...I haven't made one for years but I think I'll have a go again, as baking powder is freely available...

Margaret@Boiler Service said...

It's very much important of getting service after buying boiler from any reputed company. Because few weeks ago I bought a boiler from an ordinary boiler company . Now it's getting problem .So when I put my boiler to the boiler company but they disagree to provide service. It's really a disgusting matter for me.

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