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Author Topic: Wood pellet boilers  (Read 254 times)

DavidandCollette

  • Joined Dec 2012
Wood pellet boilers
« on: April 30, 2019, 09:43:47 am »
Off to see a property with one of these boilers. Are they any good?
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Womble

  • Joined Mar 2009
  • Stirlingshire, Central Scotland
Re: Wood pellet boilers
« Reply #1 on: April 30, 2019, 10:01:34 am »
There was a local grants scheme in operation in our area, which means that we and many of our neighbours have them. Basically when they are good, they are very, very good. But when they are bad, they are horrid.


If it's a decent (e.g. German or Austrian) make, and well installed then life is generally good. All that's needed is to keep it serviced and to empty the ash bin once in a blue moon.


Problems people have encountered include blockages in the conveying pipes (usually bad design or layout), dusty pellets choking everything up (buy the more expensive ones), and damp pellets sticking to surfaces (keep everything very dry). Apart from that, life is good!


Edit: Find out if it was installed under the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI). There are / were two schemes - domestic and commercial. The domestic scheme for instance provides a tasty flat rate payment every quarter based on the size of the boiler installed. This runs for seven years, and I'm sure that if you buy the house, the entitlement (and responsibilities) under the RHI scheme will transfer to you for the remainder of the term.
« Last Edit: April 30, 2019, 10:04:09 am by Womble »
"All fungi are edible. Some fungi are only edible once." -Terry Pratchett

DavidandCollette

  • Joined Dec 2012
Re: Wood pellet boilers
« Reply #2 on: April 30, 2019, 06:43:30 pm »
Thanks for that Womble. Having seen the (pink) farmhouse which needed everything doing and the land, which needs everything doing, and th the 17 year covenant which means he could build on part of it....... no. Bloodtly estate agents!

honeyend

  • Joined Oct 2011
Re: Wood pellet boilers
« Reply #3 on: May 02, 2019, 09:53:22 pm »
Our neighbours built a new super insulated house, and they are taking their out after its signed off. Too expensive, the pellet price has gone up, and it uses too much so they are replacing it with an oil boiler.

oor wullie

  • Joined Jun 2012
  • Strathnairn
Re: Wood pellet boilers
« Reply #4 on: May 02, 2019, 10:55:31 pm »
Our neighbours built a new super insulated house, and they are taking their out after its signed off. Too expensive, the pellet price has gone up, and it uses too much so they are replacing it with an oil boiler.

Something doesn't sound right there, if it's super insulated they should hardly use any pellets (or anything else).  My 130m2 house is probably equivalent to current building regs (built 7 years ago to slightly above regs) so hardly super insulated (unless compared to an old draughty stone house).  I burn about 2 tons of logs a year for all heating and hot water - the price of 2 tons of fuel (whether pellets or logs) would have to go up an unbelievable amount to justify buying a new boiler!

Womble

  • Joined Mar 2009
  • Stirlingshire, Central Scotland
Re: Wood pellet boilers
« Reply #5 on: May 03, 2019, 10:41:35 am »

I think you're right, Oor Wullie. Unless they make changes to the house itself, they're still going to consume the same amount of energy each year, just from a different source.

From a quick search, wood pellets have a calorific value of around 20 MJ/kg, whereas heating oil is about 45 MJ/kg. Sticking that in a BOFP calculation (back of fag packet  ;) ) gives me much the same cost per unit of heat for both pellets and heating oil. Clearly different boilers will have different efficiencies, but I'd be very surprised if they can recoup the cost of a new oil boiler, not to mention any losses in RHI payments.
« Last Edit: May 03, 2019, 10:43:22 am by Womble »
"All fungi are edible. Some fungi are only edible once." -Terry Pratchett

 

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