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Smart meter install boiler issue


Hi,

I hope you can help as I’m stumped.

Had the smart meter installed yesterday but ever since the house doesn’t seem to be warming up as it would normally do. When I touch the radiators, they aren’t that hot and also the boiler is making a ticking noise when it’s on and lit. It all seems too much of a coincidence that this is happening now.

What can I do? Thanks in advance.
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Best answer by Marc 6 March 2020, 11:14

JoseC;49593:
Hi,

I hope you can help as I’m stumped.

Had the smart meter installed yesterday but ever since the house doesn’t seem to be warming up as it would normally do. When I touch the radiators, they aren’t that hot and also the boiler is making a ticking noise when it’s on and lit. It all seems too much of a coincidence that this is happening now.

What can I do? Thanks in advance.



Hi @JoseC
Welcome to the community!
The installation shouldn’t have any effect on either gas or electric household appliances. It's an isolated installation. As long as appliances were turned off before the power was turned off, there won't be any effects.

If there was a fault with the equipment anyway, it's not unusual for that to become more obvious when you turn it off and on again. Has the boiler been serviced recently?
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19 replies

JoseC;49593:
Hi,

I hope you can help as I’m stumped.

Had the smart meter installed yesterday but ever since the house doesn’t seem to be warming up as it would normally do. When I touch the radiators, they aren’t that hot and also the boiler is making a ticking noise when it’s on and lit. It all seems too much of a coincidence that this is happening now.


How puzzling @JoseC! Welcome by the way.
​​​​​​​Just to gain a bit more info... Do you have any other gas appliances in the house? Are they behaving normally?
Userlevel 7
Badge +11
hi Jose
A better description of the boiler behaviour may help pinpoint the problem.
So it's firing up, the gas is lighting, any idea how long the flame stays on?
Is it a combi boiler, does it provide instant hot water, if so is that working normally?
If it's not a combi and you have an indirect cylinder is that heating up OK?
Is the boiler cycling, that's to say coming on for short periods once warmed up and then the flame goes out and it re-fires every so often?

What make and number is the boiler, do you know the output in kW?

there are a number of possibilities in no particular order

Working on the possibility that it's not a coincidence (although it could be!) If it's firing up then it's getting a gas supply, but can you check that the isolating valve (stop tap) at the gas meter is fully open, the gas pressure to the boiler may be inadequate. When it's fired up if it stays on are you able to work out how much gas it's using while lit (you'll need to time the meter over a few mins). I'll help you work out if that looks like the amount it should be using when lit for the kWh output of your boiler, that will go some way to eliminating whether it's a gas pressure issue.

If (and it's a big if) the power down has caused this then the surge as the power was switched on could have damaged the boiler electronics that seems unlikely but for the tick, could it be a relay or some electronics switching?

If the boiler is staying on and not cycling that would indicate that it's not generating enough heat to cause cycling, in other words the pump is able to remove the heat produced. (If the pump was faulty it would cycle as the heat would build up in the boiler). If the heat is being removed that in turn would indicate there is less heat than there should be perhaps caused by low gas but this is all a big guess.
Thorough, very thorough @woz!
JoseC;49593:
Hi,

I hope you can help as I’m stumped.

Had the smart meter installed yesterday but ever since the house doesn’t seem to be warming up as it would normally do. When I touch the radiators, they aren’t that hot and also the boiler is making a ticking noise when it’s on and lit. It all seems too much of a coincidence that this is happening now.

What can I do? Thanks in advance.



Hi @JoseC
Welcome to the community!
The installation shouldn’t have any effect on either gas or electric household appliances. It's an isolated installation. As long as appliances were turned off before the power was turned off, there won't be any effects.

If there was a fault with the equipment anyway, it's not unusual for that to become more obvious when you turn it off and on again. Has the boiler been serviced recently?
​​​​​​​
Userlevel 7
Badge +11
ha! thanks, I wonder if we will ever know...
25 quid;49625:
Thorough, very thorough @woz!
Userlevel 7
Badge +11
actually not thorough enough, I forgot to mention the gas regulator on the meter, they sometimes go faulty and it's probably been disturbed.
25 quid;49625:
Thorough, very thorough @woz!
Userlevel 7
Badge +8
woz;49648:
actually not thorough enough, I forgot to mention the gas regulator on the meter, they sometimes go faulty and it's probably been disturbed.


​​​​​​​They replace the regulator when they change the meter
https://community.purepla.net/threads/9399-Are-we-wasting-our-breathe-Do-noobs-see-our-answers
Userlevel 7
Badge +11
ahh..thanks (again) Duppy
I didn't know that was done in all cases, so that'a a suspect then.
Duppy;49653:
​​​​​​​They replace the regulator when they change the meter
Userlevel 7
Badge +11
OK, we get the point...
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25 quid;49666:
https://community.purepla.net/threads/9399-Are-we-wasting-our-breathe-Do-noobs-see-our-answers
😝
Userlevel 7
Badge +11
I raise you one emoji
25 quid;49682:
​​​​​​​😝

Hi all,

Many thanks for all the info, got plenty to check up on. I’ll let you know how it goes after doing the checks.

- - - Updated - - -

25 quid;49666:
https://community.purepla.net/threads/9399-Are-we-wasting-our-breathe-Do-noobs-see-our-answers


I think it’s a great idea to have an in-app notification when there are replies to the thread.
Userlevel 7
Badge +8

@JoseC 

Did you ever find out what the problem was, there is now another member reporting the boiler not working after a meter install. Your findings may help them

Hi @Duppy,

Never did find out properly, everything on the boiler seemed to be working. I just learnt to live with it.

This winter I did have to get an engineer out as the boiler pump was seizing. They ended up changing the pump, a sensor and the expansion tank as that had gone too.

It might be an early warning to get the boiler checked over as it may be on its way to failing. My house is pretty open plan so I’ve noticed it takes a long time to get the house warm but the radiators are hot to the touch so can’t really be improved other than perhaps flushing the system.

I highly doubt the installation of the smart meter could influence the heat.

Userlevel 7
Badge +11

Hi @Duppy,

Never did find out properly, everything on the boiler seemed to be working. I just learnt to live with it.

This winter I did have to get an engineer out as the boiler pump was seizing. They ended up changing the pump, a sensor and the expansion tank as that had gone too.

It might be an early warning to get the boiler checked over as it may be on its way to failing. My house is pretty open plan so I’ve noticed it takes a long time to get the house warm but the radiators are hot to the touch so can’t really be improved other than perhaps flushing the system.

I highly doubt the installation of the smart meter could influence the heat.

It could if the regulator is disturbed for example or if the gas valve is not fully opened.

Userlevel 7
Badge +3

@JoseC It might be worth checking the radiators are adequate for the size of the house/rooms. A radiator that is hot to touch clearly is radiating its heat but it sounds not enough. Also is the boiler sending the hot water long enough or cutting out too early? If it is a condensing boiler for it to function properly the flow and return temperatures ideally should be around 70C out 50C back. Better still 60/40. Boilers installed today have to have to have an efficiency rating above 90% but it is suspected many are not set up properly to achieve that. If the return temperature is above 54C I understand a boiler will not condense. Many set the flow temperature to 80C, the boiler is unlikely to be condensing.

However, looking at your original post, if the heating was fine pre smart meter and is not good post smart meter then my first check would be whether the gas and been turned fully on after the installation. Although this would more likely affect domestic water as opposed to heating. For the former a high kW output is needed (hence the high volume of gas required (not pressure) for the latter for most houses 12kW is too much.

It sounds like something is out of balance. Don’t immediately be persuaded by an installation bod that a new boiler is needed!

 

 

 

 

 

@G4RHL 

When I had the parts installed after the boiler packed in, I got the engineer to look at the gas, to which he did a pressure test to see if there were any leaks, so the gas has been fully turned off and on in the process. 
I would guess the radiator isn’t big enough for the room itself.
The boiler itself is an ecoTEC plus 831.

Userlevel 7
Badge +3

It is quite easy to check if the radiator is big enough. You need the room measurements and go to a site like this one:

https://www.bestheating.com/btu-calculator?gclid=EAIaIQobChMI7vGDr_b97gIVIwytBh2VRQxMEAAYASAAEgLzPfD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds

it will tell you the size of radiator needed. I worked out that for my whole house I needed a maximum of about 12,5kW. When I checked my existing radiators only one was under specified  but another could do with something better. There is a bit of a myth that radiators more than 15 years old should be upgraded and today’s are better and bigger. What I believe brought that about was an edict from the EU, that organisation we used to be members of, which decreed that the base level calculation had to change. This meant that in theory, to provide the same heat as before, radiators had to be bigger.  People think that means height and depth. It is more the design from single panel radiators up to double panel convectors, even triple panel.

Whilst all my radiators are over 23 years old if I wanted to change them I still can on a size by size basis (i.e. height and width) but improve on them by making some double convectors. But my calculations showed I did not need to change them other than one room - the kitchen. Two central heating installers said leave them all alone, change the boiler first (I needed a new boiler) and see what happens. All is indeed fine. I will change the single panel radiator in the kitchen to a double panel convector and yes, this will be a little over the top but it will not produce wasted heat. Also, despite the original being 23 years old, the new one is the same size, slightly deeper, and will hang on the original wall brackets and connect to the same points.

So, before embarking on a new radiator, just check what you have first. 

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