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Combi-Boiler Blowing Out

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SamTheSkull | 21:23 Tue 15th Oct 2013 | Home & Garden
6 Answers
Hi, I have a combi-boiler located in a cupboard at the bottom of the stairs. It is an 'Ideal' brand, but I'm not sure of the model #, as the manual is for the C24/C28/C32.

It was fitted about 10 years ago in the same location as it's predecessor, and the flue is fitted behind it exiting on the North wall into our shared driveway (which is East-West oriented).

When it is windy, it 'blows out' (I don't think there is a pilot, I think it has electronic ignition). The fan and pump etc all continue to operate as if the heating or hot water is on, but there is no heat. This is terrible when in the shower obviously!

On calm days, it s fine, but the windier it is, the more often it blows out. I live in Scotland! The boiler is regularly serviced, and was done so about 2 1/2 weeks ago, but that has had no effect.

I suspect (with my limited-to-no knowledge of these things) that the flue is in a too-exposed location so the wind is blowing up it and blowing out the flame.

The previous boiler was mounted on an interior wall (side on to the exterior wall), whereas this one is back-to-back with the exterior wall, so the flue may have more direct access to the combustion chamber (my guess anyway).

Does anyone have experience of this kind of problem, and if so, how did you fix it? I thought it I could get an L-shaped Flue or something like that, or a wind-shield/plate-kind-of-thing (technical term) that I could fit to the wall a few inches away on the west side of the flue to protect it from the full force of the usual gales.Does this even make sense?

Many thanks!


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Just spoken to my boiler man, Sam. A "plume management kit" may well do it.......
12:58 Wed 16th Oct 2013
We had the exact same problem with the boiler - of a similar age - in our old house. The engineer tried numerous times and ways to fix it, including three replacement thermo-couplers. He said the wind in the flue shouldn't be a problem because boilers are meant to be built to withstand that. In the end, nothing worked and we had to have the boiler replaced. The replacement worked perfectly and no adjustments had to be made to the existing flue.

Can't remember the name of the old boiler (not the same as yours, though) but the engineer did say it was one of the worst brands/models around and he was surprised it had lasted as long as it did. Replacement was a basic, Worcester brand combi-boiler, apparently very much liked in the domestic heating industry.
so when did you last have it serviced, was it OK then?

Re saxy's reply, I too have a Worcester combi - no problems in 8 years, we like it.
Have a look at Hymie's first post here, Sam ..................

Probably all to do with the unbalanced pressure in the combustion chamber.

There are a number of things to consider. Changing the flue to a "high level flue" might prevent this. (Much the same idea as your deflector shield to prevent direct gusts of wind.
Just spoken to my boiler man, Sam. A "plume management kit" may well do it.......

^^^^ that's supposed to be a Youtube link. They don't work on here sometimes.

Go on to Youtube and enter "plume management kit"
Question Author
Thanks for the replies folks.

Thanks Builder, the video of the plume management kit, and this looks like exactly what I was thinking of. Our plumber is coming out next week to fit a new radiator, so I'll ask him to investigate for us.


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