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Treacle

Anyone know anything about woodchip/pellet heating boilers?

Been looking into options to replace our very hungry Oil fired Rayburn. Already contemplating Solar water heating for summer months, but also saw a feature about wood chip/pellet central heating boilers on TV recently.

Having had a Google there is so much info its getting confusing. Some site state wood fired boilers are only suitable for large houses or community schemes, but I'm sure the one on TV was a domestic type. We want something fairly automated, similar to a conventional boiler and are willing to pay a bit extra for the initial outlay to recoup over time against the cost of fuel. I have also read that the wood chip/pellet distribution is patchy so works out expensive to deliver.

Any advice or experience would be helpful.

Thanks T
RichardW

Looker at it & discounted it very quickly.

No local supply
cost far to much to install / maintain
monetry running costs to high
enviroment cost to high (sounds odd but look at how far the wood has been shipped how many factories & processes its been thorugh to get from a tree to a fuel)
Our needs were to small (even tough we have a very large house & what I consider to be a high demand)
As they need to batch burn you need a thermal store too.
Not power cut safe & as we have lots keeping warm with no power is important


We are looking at room fires with large back boilers & thermal stores but runs simplisticaly & not computer controled to make them less power hungry so in a power cut we can run them of a battery / inverter or a very small genny (computer controlled ones need a very good genny to work) Or a larger cooking range with a higher water heat output than our rayburn has or a stand alone log water boiler & thermal store. As our washing water comes from our cooker we have not considered solar to heat that water & would NEVER use solar to HEAT or more accuratly PRE HEAT the water in the heating system. Its too costly for too little return at the wrong time of year.

Justme
Jonnyboy

Why not go for a woodburner that burns cut wood rather than pellets?
Chez

Where are you Treacle? There's a place local to us in Powys who were very informative about them. However, we discounted them, like Justme, for much the same reasons - they seemed massively over-engineered for our needs.

I also think that because at the moment you can get grants to put them in, installation companies do seem to advise them as the best course of action ...
judith

Chez wrote:
they seemed massively over-engineered for our needs.


Not to mention the price Surprised
The headline price was about a third of the price you would actually pay for an up and running system.
Treacle

Jonnyboy wrote:
Why not go for a woodburner that burns cut wood rather than pellets?


We already have a wood burner in one room, but difficult to fit back boiler (too far from the tanks etc).

One reason we are looking to get rid of the Rayburn (which incidentally we have considered converting back to solid fuel as it was originally), is that we don't want it lit constantly. We are lucky with very old 2ft thick walls, our house is fairly thermally efficient anyway, so having the Rayburn on all day in the winter, on all but the really coldest days, is too hot. Having a woodburner in its place is therefore not really an option.

Chez - I'm in Cornwall. I think I stumbeld across the Powys people in my search.

Thanks for all replies, off to think again!
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