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Author Topic: C.R.A.C  (Read 144185 times)
desperate
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« Reply #435 on: November 16, 2012, 08:41:44 PM »

Good move desp,
                 When I got my downstairs water heater for the hall,it aready had a mixer valve plumbed into it for a shower outlet just the same as your one,
 It should all work good.Are you going to connect all your zone valves to a central control station and a laptop,?
                                                                                              Biff

So far Biff that mixer valve and pump is working fine even though the valve is supposedly a "TMV for solar heated domestic water supply". The makers are so fond of all this bully, but it's just a way of emptying our wallets. Sadly I never got my head round all this lappy control and monitoring, so the control is all taken care of by three standard programmers with six channels and three timed periods working 6 zones I seem to have all the control I need. Too bloomin much according to the Mrs, fight She keeps forgetting which timer to override to get a bit of heating on the fly, but mostly it looks after itself now the "fiddling" period is sort of over.............maybe............well not really if I'm honest.

Hallo Sean,
we have been running the new kitchen UFH for about a month now, it comes on at about 8.30pm to give the Dragonstove time to get the T/S and hot water up to a reasonable temperature. Its on for 2 hours and to be honest at the moment it seems like more than enough heat to keep the house cosy, the only other heat we have is  in the morning running the bathroom rads for an hour and also the bathroom rads being connected to the pump output are on whenever any other zone is calling. So far we haven't had the main heating zones on at all, it would seem so far that unless we get an extended cold period they are going to be redundant.

The UFH along with those bathroom rads can absorb a LOT of energy, when we first fired it up we got the T/S good and hot and switched on, within about 25-30 minutes the store had cooled to the point at which the changeover stat fired up the gasser which then ran for about an hour almost non-stop. Gradually as the slab heated up over the next week the Dragonstove did more and more of the work, until now most evenings the gasser only comes on for a short period 30 mins or so.
The difference in the kitchen is huge, it has gone from being the coldest place in the house to the warmest and most comfortable. We seem to have homed in on a stat setting of 16C and a mixer setting of 35C this makes the floor feel to the hand not either warm or cold but there is a noticeable emission from somewhere. Several times now I have walked into the kitchen and thought the oven was left on low, only to find it isn't, I guess that is down to long wave IR floating about all over the place, what ever it is, it feels good even in the early morning 8 hours after the last heat input.

The downside? though is that we are using a bit more gas than last year due to the gasser cutting in a bit more,6-7M3 a week instead of 4-5M3  but it is early daze so far and we need a whole heating season to compare it properly.

Got to go now, see you later.

Psed
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biff
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« Reply #436 on: November 16, 2012, 11:05:14 PM »

Well done Desp,
               It gives a tremendous sense of satisfaction when it works properly.Some 20 years ago,when whirsbo was the only folks doing UFH.I found out quickly that they were difficult to talk to and almost impossible to give instructions to.So I chased them and did a couple of floors myself using my own design.I learned the value of honeywell motorised zone valves and used them in conjunction with wall mounted sensors and thermo switches to get brilliant results.The first quote I got from whirsbo was over 800.00 each for two small rooms,It was not the price that bothered me,They refused to route the pipes the way i wanted them and insisted on heating parts of the floor that i wanted kept cool.
  Once I did a couple of different floors i was looking forward to doing more and doing them better. I remember once using these white plastic rads that hung suspended flat between first floor joists.I just used them once,,something told me that they would be trouble at a later date.I was still a welcome visitor at that house for a good 6 years afterwards and all seemed well,,yet,,,,.The Birmingham Home Exhibition was one date I always kept free. Thats where most of the latest UFH ideas came to be viewed for the first time.Some of the plumbing gear coming out then were genuine breakthroughs but trying to persuade the veteran plumbers was an uphill struggle.I still have boxs of italian fittings from back them,lovely gear.
    wandering ramblings  over,,,,,, bike
                                      Biff
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Riverside
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« Reply #437 on: December 25, 2012, 01:38:30 PM »

Desperate,

I have followed your thread with great interest.
Looking att building an extension in a couple of years, plan on ripping out the combi, installing a system boiler and evac tubes too
Can you give an update on performance?
Would you be able to post a plumbing schematic of the final installation?
Thanks in advance

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Riverside
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« Reply #438 on: December 25, 2012, 03:01:41 PM »

Another question after looking at the manifolds, do you only put a one valve to isolate the supply to the radiator what about the return?

Or do you have 2 zone valves linked together so that opening and closing th valves allows flow and return to pass through the radiator?

Sorry for th simple question!
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desperate
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« Reply #439 on: December 26, 2012, 03:56:24 PM »

Hallo Riverside, thank you for your interest, it has turned into a bit of an epic, I hope you found some usefull info amongst all the numptiness Wink
As far as performance is concerned the evac tubes are supplying close to 75% of our hot water through the year,partly because we purposely oversised the panel spec to get more energy in the winter. During Nov-Feb we regularly have a full 200 litres of water heated to 30-35 degrees, then a quick top up to 55 degrees and bingo we're happy for the day, during the rest of the year though we are dumping lots of heat into the neighbours hot cylinder and elsewhere. It is a very nice feeling having a source of free hot water, but you need to seriously consider your motive for fitting solar thermal, if you want to save money it does not make sense if you heat by gas, even on electric and oil the payback is long term. If you want to reduce your carbon footprint and are prepared to pay for that it is a very good investment. The RHI if it ever happens may just make it financially attractive, but I would not hold your breath.

I will dig out the latest plumbing and electrical diagrammes for your perusal and post them up a bit later.

Those gate valves you see on the zone valve manifold are for balancing purposes mainly, we have six heating and hot water zones here, and if they were all left full open some of the higher resistance loops would be starved, so with my trusty food probe thermometer and those valves I can balance the system reasonably accurately. Similarly the valves on the kitchen UFH manifold is to balance the 3 loops of pipework and ensure that the floor is an even temperature all over. Some of the valves you see are also air bleed points and drain points, I hate with a vengeance those drain cocks that you operate with an Isle of Mann key, they always leak all over the place and they flow so slowly it is impossible to flush debris out of any system properly, similarly those air vent doofers were obviously designed by some numpty who has never bled a system in her life whistlie

Seeya later

psDe
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Riverside
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« Reply #440 on: December 26, 2012, 09:27:32 PM »

Desp,

Thanks, looking forward to seeing the schematics.
I live in a semi detached villa in Scotland, no intention of ever leaving this house, and only 37 at the moment!
Currently using a ferolli combi, but want a system boiler and a good old thermal store/cylinder to add extra coils etc
Would like to use less energy as much as possible to further reduce my footprint etc

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« Reply #441 on: January 26, 2013, 11:58:32 PM »

Riverside, if you are still watching apologies for the time it's taken to get this together.


above you can see the plumbing layout not including any of the solar loop and heat dump arrangement. The loop is pretty standard,the heat dump  though first heats our neighbours hot water cylinder with all the plumbing going through the adjoining loft spaces. When their tank reaches 60 degrees it gets diverted to our T/S, and if that gets to the high limit stat threshold it then fires up the T/S pump and heats the bathroom rads. When we go on holiday during the summer I manually open a couple of the zone valves to increase the heat sink capacity, so far so good. fingers crossed!



This one shows our wiring diagramme. It is basically an S plan system with a few bits stuck on the side. As you can see 3 timers and 5 stats create a call for heat that then goes to a system of 3 stats on the thermal store. First a changeover stat that decides if the store is hot enough to provide any useful heat, if it is then the T/S pump fires up and feeds the zone/s that are calling. If the store isn't hot enough the Gasser fires and feeds the zone/s instead. A mod I put in place after using that pair of stats on the T/S for 2 years was a third stat set at a much higher temp than the changeover stat. This was because we can sensibly use the heat from the store at say 45 degrees for the UFH, but if we try to heat the DHW, at that low a temp nothing happens, in fact it is possible to heat the T/S from the DHW cylinder. So as you can see the DHW timer and stat directly powers another stat on the T/S set at about 65 ensuring that heat goes the right way. This though could lead to a conflict whereby the store pump and the Gasser/pump are both on together, not disastrous, and has been tried to make sure, but not what we want, so the relay is powered by DHW stat to disable the T/S pump when the Gasser is fired.

This diagramme was drawn before the kitchen UFH was installed, but at the moment the UFH pump is powered by the kitchen stat directly rather than the auxiliary switch on the UFH Z/V, this is to prevent the pump from being back fed by other zones calling for heat. So far it all seems to work OK, even to the extent that when we had a new consumer unit fitted with all those fancy RCCBs and ELCBs and whatnot we still have power, and even the Sparks Megger/Fluke couldn't find anything wrong flyingpig horror surrender

The proof of the pudding will be in the gas consumption for the winter, but for the time being we still have not fired up the downstairs or upstairs rads this winter, even Mrs Desp hasn't complained of the cold extrahappy Kiss

More soon if anyone is still conscious.

Dpse
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desperate
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« Reply #442 on: January 17, 2014, 03:24:06 PM »

Didn't seem worth starting a new thread for what is a long shot, besides I keep meaning to update the shenanigans here at Cactusville.

Anyway,for now I need a 20 tonne load of topsoil along with some tarmac that will be kept seperate snatched out of a job we're starting soon,and about 18 tonnes of type1, and 5 tonnes of sharp delivered. Are there any grab loader operators out there who can operate in the south London/Surrey area. It would be nice to keep it in the family so to speak.

Desp
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StBarnabas
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« Reply #443 on: January 21, 2014, 09:25:41 PM »

Good to see that there is life in Cactusville. Would be fun to have a grab loader! Take care.
Sean
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« Reply #444 on: January 21, 2014, 11:08:40 PM »

Hi Sean, good to hear from you, all well at StB I hope, MicroDesp is still coaching me in the Dinosaur game, I'll be a dab hand soon. All the best to you and yours.

Desp
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« Reply #445 on: February 26, 2014, 05:27:30 PM »

At last some decent sun for a change
75 panel temp, 69 top of tank, 65 bottom of tank, not bad for a late February day, might even be into heat dump territory soon.

Desp
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« Reply #446 on: February 27, 2014, 10:04:10 AM »

At last some decent sun for a change
75 panel temp, 69 top of tank, 65 bottom of tank, not bad for a late February day, might even be into heat dump territory soon.

Desp

I won't be able to play this game this year as i've left the property with the panel on, worse still, it's going to stay empty which means loads of wasted free hot water :/
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« Reply #447 on: February 27, 2014, 12:18:14 PM »

Hi Desp,

Just looking at your schematics and read through this whole thread! As you say very similar to what i'm intending, just to confirm, do you have a separate DHW cylinder that is fed via ZV3 if i'm reading it all correctly? Or is ZV3 the actual feed to a heat exchanger for the rest of your house? What sizes are the cylinders your using?

My worry is that a small thermal store will not hold a lot of heat come heating season for the rads/ufh? I assume the idea being the back boiler/oil boiler continually tops up the TS to make sure there is enough? On the flip side in summer a large TS means a lot of heat input just to have enough DHW!?  Have you had any issues with the central heating stealing all your DHW?  thanks.
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desperate
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« Reply #448 on: February 27, 2014, 08:11:05 PM »

Wow Noodle, that's dedication ploughing through all that baloney ............hats off to you genuflect

We do indeed have a separate hot water cylinder with a boiler and a solar coil in it, and also a thermal store or more correctly a buffer tank I guess. The thermal store (T/S) is only heated by the WBS directly, it never receives heat from the gasser. The trick bit is the central heating system can receive heat from either from the T/S via a coil inside or the gasser, controlled by a changeover stat on the T/S and two zone valves, if the T/S is above 50 it powers whatever zone is calling, if below it shuts down the pump on the T/S coil pipework and fires up the gasser, they never both run at the same time. while the gasser is supplying the heating demand the WBS is reheating the T/S until it again takes over the job of supplying the demand.

Does that make sense??

It works really well all apart from one big drawback, our T/S is in the loft due to space limitations so all the heatlosses are lost to us. To minimize this loss I run the store at the lowest practical temperature which suits the UFH really well. I can run the UFH for an hour or so in the evening after the WBS has died down and cool the T/S down to a point at which the losses are acceptable. This then threw up another problem, running the T/S at 40-45 degrees didn't do much good to the DHW, in fact at first the heat went the wrong way, the hot water cylinder was supplying heat to the T/S. The last modification was to give all the hot water demand to the gasser exclusively, this isn't a big problem as the solar thermal is well over sized and provides nearly all our hot water from the middle of Feb right through to the end of November. The impact on our gas consumption has been almost invisible and it saves me having to remember to manually override timers and stuff to get hot water.

This lot has taken the best part of four years to learn to live with optimally, it went in in September '09 and this is the first year that it truly looks after itself automatically.........almost.

Desp
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« Reply #449 on: November 24, 2014, 09:05:21 PM »

Yo Desp

good that you finally got the whole thing balanced and working.

My underground heatstore ( that was also started around 2009 and turned into a giant battery ) and all the associated plumbing, thermal diverters etc has been ripped out / backfilled by its current owner, afaik, due to it confusing the local plumbing experts and the original oil combi is back to doing the donkey work.

Pity I wasnt asked to decommission the system as I would be able to use a lot of the components in my current project.



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