Our boiler sits quite inconspicuously in our little pantry, chugging away when we have the central heating on (not that often now we have the wood stove) or hot water.
Lately It's not been working all that well. When we set it to heat the hot water it takes an age to do it and then it likes to put the "lock out" light on and stop anything from happening.
I've been shown how to fix this problem and I have got it working a little better now but it doesn't hide the fact that it's an old boiler and probably hasn't got that long left anyway.
My question is this - Is it worth repairing and to keep messing with it?
When we build the extension we'll need a new boiler anyway and I want to have it outside the house rather than inside, taking up valuable space. In fact where the boiler currently sits will, eventually, become the downstairs loo.
A new boiler would be much more efficient as well, making the expensive oil go that bit further. Last year was exceptional in the fact that we used hardly any oil at all but we're quite exposed here and although we have the log burner it doesn't really heat upstairs, so we still need our central heating (or so the wife tells me).
So we're currently toying with the idea of changing it for a new outside oil boiler and I've just done some work for a friend so fitting it will hopefully not cost too much. This will help spread the cost and the work load of the extension, getting a few jobs out the way early.
The other option is to go for something like a ground source heat pump or a biomass boiler although I don't know enough about these to comment (although I'm trying to learn).
The extension will have another wood stove in it so I'm hoping in the future a large proportion of the heating will be done by burning wood but it's good to have a backup system and one that can heat the water.
Which way would you go? there are quite a few government grants about at the moment for using some of the "alternative" heating systems but they have quite a high up front cost to them before you see any return.