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Firebird oil fired boiler problems

Discussion in 'Plumbing and Central Heating' started by brianjbox, 14 Oct 2011.

  1. brianjbox

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    Hi all

    We have just moved into a new home with one of the above fitted, the house was a repossession so little of the history other than the neighbours tell us it's only a couple of years old.

    The house has had a lot of money spent on it, new double glazing, new wiring, new plumbing including the central heating system.

    On arriving at the house my first job was to rush round checking the electrics before turning the power on, all came on fine, the next thing I had to do was install a kitchen sink [previous owners removed the kitchen]. I'd bought a commercial s/s free standing sink off ebay and already fitted flexible push fit tails to the taps and waste/trap with compression fittings so it'd fit to existing plumbing no prob's. Fitting the sink took about 30 minutes I guess then I turned the water on and we made a cuppa :D

    The wife calls out that theres steam coming from the bleed valve on one of the rads, the boiler had come on [not intended at this stage] so I quickly turned it off as I hadn't filled the central heating system yet.

    We carried on unloading the lorry and later that evening we after filling the rads up and getting the boiler water pressure up [sealed system] tried to take showers but had no hot water, I had a mate who has an oil fired boiler so I called him and was told not to panic as the boiler will have all sorts of stats fitted to protect it and I shouldn't have damaged anything when it fired up before I filled it, we boiled kettles and had a bath that night.

    Next morning I tapped on our new neighbours door and asked if they could recommend somebody to check our boiler over, they didn't have anyone but phoned a friend who did and we contacted him and he came out the next day.

    The boiler man replaced the 'hi limit stat [the one with the reset button]' and the boiler fired up, we had hot water :D we paid the man £70 cash an he left.
    That evening the boiler wouldn't come back on, I went out to check it and it smelt to hot [done 20 years of plumbing and used to design and build commercial gas cooking equipment] the man came back out the next day where I showed him the tank bleed thing on top was now spouting water and the heat had blown the solder on a 22mm fitting on the back of the boiler. The fitting was replaced and a new DHW pump fitted, the system was fired up and seemed to run ok so I asked for a price and was told I'd be sent one as he didn't know exactly how much the parts were. I did tell him the pumps were around £60 as I'd just fitted two in my mates central heating system but I still had to wait for an invoice, boiler man left.

    A day later the boiler packed up again, it only came on when I pressed the reset button [boiler had tripped out and amber light was on plus it smelt really hot again] so I called the man who initially said "I should contact Firebird, tell them the problems and see what they suggested??? the boiler man came out the following day. I was told it was now the other pump [central heating] shagged so he found a replacement in his van and fitted this to the DHW and the new Grundfoss to the heating system?
    The second pump was fitted and the system ran again, I was told I'd be sent the bill [hadn't received the second one yet]. I asked why the boiler needed so many parts as it was quite new and got told it must have been sabotaged by someone that knows what they were doing, boiler man left.

    Boiler ran for two days before tripping out again, I reset it and it worked for a further couple of days before tripping out again. I wasn't going to ring the boiler man back up until I received his bill which I got yesterday, with the VAT it's £335 is a bit more than I expected but the boiler still doesn't run right.
    I did ring him up and have a go because I was charged the £70 to fix it in the first place, I believe underlying faults may have caused more damage and feel if checked out properly and spotted other parts might not have been needed [or other call outs]. I'm also a little worried that he didn't know what he was doing and was just guessing replacing parts willy nilly until it went, anyway he has offered to come back and look at it again and will only charge me for more new parts if required.

    Right this isn't a gripe about the cost because if it was working perfectly [still trips out and Firebaird website says contact your boiler man :rolleyes: ] I wouldn't care.

    If you're a boiler repair man is this how it's done?

    Does anyone know what maybe causing the boiler to trip out once a day or couple of days if we're lucky?

    Does sabotage seem a realistic reason for a two year old boiler needing so many knew parts?

    Do I call the man back to fit more new parts [why does he use pipe grips on new brass fittings chewing them up]?

    Are Firebird boilers crap as when I've paid this bill I can't be far off the half the cost of getting a new one?

    What should I do next, it's our new home and I have so many other things to sort out I just want it running properly.

    Last thing is it right you don't quote or give prices for a job or guarantee [guarantee maybe the wrong word but I'd expect the the thing to run longer than a day] , I got told it's because I've moved up here [Lincolnshire] from London and I don't get a price because there's supposed to be trust and I just get a bill at the end. I ask this last question as I've been self employed for 20 years, have to give a price and guarantee my work for at least 12 months.

    Thanks for reading guys

    Brian

    Better add it's a Firebird combi, sealed system that sits outside and I don't know the model number or have any manuals on it :(
     
  2. numpty1

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    its a cabin pak by the sound of it,YOU killed the pumps running it dry :LOL:
    YOU probably fried the stats at the same time,be prepared for more parts these boilers leave a lot to be desired in their design, plate heat exchangers leak on the washer connections frequently flow switches leak/stick frequently.dry firing the boiler has seriously overheated it to cause a joint to blow so heaven knows what else YOU HAVE fried :rolleyes: bottom line is YOU caused the damage with YOUR incompetence so dry your eyes and have some cheese to go with your whine :rolleyes: oh and good luck getting it repaired. ;)
     
  3. Boilerman2

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    As Above! Firebird Combis are a pile of cack!! even when they haven't been dryfired!! I always advise anyone buying a repossesion, to have a decent contingency fund availible as you never know what problems you will encounter!! if there is no evidence i.e building control document for the boiler installation, an OFTEC CD10, & CD11 document you will not even know if the boiler was installed properly in the first place
    and finally don't be too hard on your service engineer, he was obviously doing his best to help you ;)
     
  4. brianjbox

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    Thanks I think :confused: YOU seemed to have failed in answering any of my questions though :rolleyes:
     
  5. brianjbox

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    Cheers for telling me my boilers cack, that is one of the questions I asked so thanks ;) Mind you had a mate here since and his boilers a different make yet shares a lot of the components :confused:

    The gripe [not whine] I had is the fitting 22mm end feed elbow that was clearly visible on top was fine Monday after the boiler man fixed the unit, it melted down Tuesday with steam blowing from it :confused:
    The pumps were running Monday/Tuesday as the water was circulating round the rads and we had hot water at the taps when called for, yes I could have fried these and they took three days to die but I didn't fry the solder on the elbow which means it was left still cooking things, it could have quite easily cooked the pumps.

    My original post was long winded so you had all the facts, I didn't hide anything and I know I probably caused damage even though with all the stats put in to protect everything I shouldn't have done :confused:

    I was actually after some constructive advice on how to proceed from here really.

    Brian.

    Coincidently the house had a tenant in for two years, everything had stickers on to say it'd been serviced/checked every year so it's good guess the boiler was installed by a professional as that's two to three years hold according to the neighbours.
     

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