Friday 9 February 2018

A broken boiler during the coldest week of the year so far

Back in early October I was so organised, and I booked in a boiler service. Although we had never had a problem with our boiler since we moved in six years ago, it had only been serviced a couple of times, so I thought it was a good idea to get it sorted before the winter. There was a small fix needed, otherwise all good, that was us sorted.

Unfortunately it wasn't that simple, and a few days later the boiler stopped working. We had it fixed, and it kept us going until a couple of weeks ago, when we couldn't get it to light one morning. We called the plumber, who wasn't available until the next day, so we settled in for a cold night, then typically the next morning it started up again. He still came out, but couldn't find anything wrong with it, and it was fine until last week when it packed up again, and this time it didn't kick back into life. Although we can try to get it fixed, with the boiler being over 15 years old, after discussions with the plumber we decided that a new boiler was the best option. We have a date for installation booked next week, so just a few more chilly days to get through.

Small portable heater

I'm quite surprised by how much the cold in the house has affected me. I thought it would be fine - we have an immersion heater at least for hot water, I have lots of jumpers, and I like hot drinks. But although I'm quite happy if I'm sitting in one room with the heater on, if I want something from another room it seems such a mission to go out into the cold (and it is very cold!) and open and shut all the doors until I get to where I need to be. All the rooms upstairs are freezing, and as for the top floor I've not been up there in days - for all I know there are icicles hanging down from the ceiling!

We've managed to gather together three heaters, each of which can heat a room effectively, but only if we keep the doors shut and leave them on. As soon as the heater turns off it becomes very cold very quickly. We have moved the children's mattresses into our room and so we are all sleeping together with a small heater on over night. It was quite fun at first, a bit like camping, but the novelty has quickly worn off. Even the children want to go back into their own rooms now!

It has really made me appreciate how dependent we are on central heating at this time of the year. I can't imagine what it would be like if we didn't have the heaters, and we live in a double glazed, new build house. I don't think I'd be able to concentrate on anything apart from how to keep warm!

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