Grand Designs?

In an occasional ‘comment’ post, I want to warn my blog readers about the perils of ‘research’ on the internet. Earlier this year we were approached by an insolvency company looking for a quote to fit 20 electrical fan heaters into a development of 2 year old ‘eco houses’ in the UK. I could tell you the whole story but I don’t want to get into trouble so I am going to have to be vague about where they are. Their email said that these 20 fan heaters would be put into the eco home development, which seemed incongruous, as […]


Greenstar 8000 LPG 70Kw Boiler Cascade in listed building

Our customer bought a large house near Ashford Kent, in a rural setting. They knew the property needed a lot of work, the previous owner had dedicated his life to refurbishing it, and to be frank, there was an awful lot still to be done when he handed over the keys. This was a refreshing refurbishment to be asked to get involved with; our customer had read this blog from time to time, and we were on his list for this project before we knew about it. Unlike some customers, who would buy a large property, have it completely remodelled […]


Game changing oil boiler installation in Leatherhead, Surrey, 10 year warranty.

Oil boilers are considered to be rather outdated now, what with the UK Government pledging* to have us all driving around in electric cars and heating our homes with hydrogen. While not saying where the electricity, or the hydrogen, will be coming from, of course. *Sensibly, these promises are being made with a timescale of at least 15 years away, meaning they are worthless. Amidst these pontifications, a boiler manufacturer has quietly beavered away and come up with a very low Nox (Nitrous Oxide) oil boiler; in fact, it is billed as the least polluting oil boiler you can install […]


Johnson & Starley warm air replaced by Worcester Bosch boiler and EasyControl

This case study begins in a terraced house in Tunbridge Wells, Kent. A kitchen renewal has a short while ago necessitated the warm air heater being relocated into the garage. Our customer had some concerns over the way this part of the work had been carried out, and it turned out they were right to be worried. Generally speaking, moving a warm air unit is not easy… there’s ductwork deep under the floors, which are usually concrete, and most older warm air units have a vertical ‘open’ flue, akin to a fireplace. So moving the box itself isn’t difficult, it […]


1960s Potterton Diplomat full of soot

Our customer in Twickenham was the proud owner of this Potterton Diplomat. We’ve scrapped a few of these recently; whilst frighteningly inefficient by modern standards, when one looks at the whole life cost, the fact that it has lasted at least as long as three contemporary boilers; perhaps it has helped save the planet by comparison with so called ‘green’ boilers?? What it nearly didn’t do, was save the owner of the house, who is partially sighted and aged well into his 80s.  The boiler was completely sooted up, so much so that flames had started appearing up the front […]


Only one a year?

Recently, Gas Safe Register published some data saying that the average Gas Safe technician may see one dangerous gas appliance a year. In my experience, it is more like one a month.  Here are a few examples of things I’ve seen in the last 12 weeks; Example 1: We were asked to install an Evohome multi zone system to a house in Tonbridge, Kent.  While we were there, our customer asked us to service their boiler, which was a 6yr old Vaillant ecoTEC+ 831. The boiler was in a little boy’s bedroom, and our customer was mindful that the boiler […]


Another howler

Using the Harry Potter term, this ‘rogue’s gallery’ picture set is taken from a property in the Greater London area.  Asked to simply provide a quotation to upgrade the existing boiler system to Honeywell Evohome zoned control, I stumbled upon this. What we have here is a 50Kw Evinox condensing boiler, installed by a contractor on behalf of the previous owner around 12 years ago. The current owner had concerns about the unusual flue termination and had arranged different contractors to carry out the annual boiler service over the last 8 years.  None had mentioned any problems with the external […]


Beware approved trader websites

My brother in law lives in Nantwich, having just moved into a rural property.  He needed a new oil boiler, but as we are 200 miles away, it wasn’t practical to travel up to do the work. He asked me how he should find a good contractor; I suggested he should find an OFTEC registered installer (OFTEC are the trade technical body for oil fired heating) and also select someone who was a Worcester Bosch Accredited Installer. So far so good, he got a couple of quotes and the chap that impressed him most got the job.  This particular contractor […]


Cooking on gas

I went to a house in the Crawley, Sussex, area to provide a quote for a new boiler.  The owner has already used us to replace his boiler in his main residence. While I’m measuring up inside for a new boiler, the tenant said, ‘ Are you going to remove the saucepan?’ I get asked a lot of strange questions when doing a quote visit, but this one had me stumped.  Why would I change a saucepan?  The tenant had appeared perfectly sane up until that point, so I asked what she meant and was directed outside to look at […]


Dodgy gas installations

From time to time (about once a month at the moment) we find some examples of lethal work carried out by others.  Usually this is when we’re quoting for replacements or upgrades, because generally we’re busy enough not to get involved with servicing and repairing stuff we haven’t originally fitted.  These two examples were spotted in May 2012.   This is a boiler in a house extension in Croydon, South London, that a builder has ‘moved’ so he can finish a customer’s extension.  The builder, a Chinese gentleman who refused to give his name but vehemently assured us and his […]

Customer Testimonials

Excellent Work

Excellent work , the workers were very efficient, considerate and tidy. They worked with the least disruption possible for an elderly lady. Any unexpected problem was dealt with safely and professionally. The finished heating is to a high standard. K.T. Kent

Jennie 05/05/2017