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Discuss Exposed pipes - a query in the Central Heating Forum area at PlumbersForums.net

Messages
27
Hello all

I have recently purchased a property and now starting to slice up the various jobs into DIY vs get a professional in.

Given the likely disruption, one of the early tasks I want to address is the exposed central heating pipework that effectively does a full loop around the first floor (wood joists)

Hopefully the pictures are of assistance. In a nutshell I am looking to have these covered and have the following questions:

1) is this something that a competent DIYer can take on?
2) the pipework covers 4 bedrooms and a bathroom, any idea would it would cost to have a professional do the work? (floorboards easy access throughout)
3) the pipes are much thicker than I am used to, is this just a case of different standards at the time it was originally installed? and would that mean pipework all the way back to the boiler would need to be changed so that it is the same diameter throughout?
4) the house was surprisingly warm for its age, would those thick pipes be doing a good job of distributing heat throughout the rooms (in addition to the radiator) or should I view it as an inefficient waste and my alterations would be more than just cosmetic?

Thanks in advance for all and any help

Martin

WC.jpg
Bed 3.jpgBed 2.jpg
 

Vee

Plumber
Gas Engineer
Messages
402
A gravity (possibly) circulated one pipe system from a bygone era. A beautiful example of an early 20th century heating system preserved in a time capsule including cast iron radiators and pipework with 100 years worth of internal corrosion.

If you want efficiency, get system upgraded to two pipe system. A full strip out and start again for a professional (not of the faint hearted type).
 
Messages
27
A gravity (possibly) circulated one pipe system from a bygone era. A beautiful example of an early 20th century heating system preserved in a time capsule including cast iron radiators and pipework with 100 years worth of internal corrosion.

If you want efficiency, get system upgraded to two pipe system. A full strip out and start again for a professional (not of the faint hearted type).
eeek! doesn't sound cheap and also not something I would attempt from a DIY angle.
excluding cost of news radiators, any ballpark idea what this might set me back?
 

Gasmk1

Gas Engineer
Messages
1,717
If you want them gone it’s a professional rip out and then re pipe with all new rads it’s going to be an expensive job also lots of reparation to woodwork and decorating. It’s not going to be cheap
 

Last Plumber

Esteemed
Plumber
Gas Engineer
Messages
4,166
Baxi (gas) system boiler, around 10yrs old
As Gasmk says, big job, much disruption.

If it isn't leaking and it works well, you might be better keeping it going. I work in a lot of buildings with systems that age and they are still going strong. If the boiler hasn't got one now, then when you change it it would be better with a commercial filter (to protect the plate) and a plate heat exchanger to separate the old from the new.
 

Gasmk1

Gas Engineer
Messages
1,717
As Gasmk says, big job, much disruption.

If it isn't leaking and it works well, you might be better keeping it going. I work in a lot of buildings with systems that age and they are still going strong. If the boiler hasn't got one now, then when you change it it would be better with a commercial filter (to protect the plate) and a plate heat exchanger to separate the old from the new.
Done it this way a couple of times best method if keeping large old systems Whether one or two pipe systems, good call
 
Messages
27
All much appreciated!

Appreciate is a length of piece of string type question but any finger in air view on what that cost would be? (4 bedrooms and excluding cost of rads themselves) Effectively only need to do for first floor, I would be available to help with chases etc and no need to worry about decorating as whole house getting done.

I'm thinking if it's closer to £2k than £10k I'd rather just get it done from the outset and forget about it
 

Marc Bowers

Gas Engineer
Messages
20
Question to the thread, What 10yo Baxi system boiler is suitable for a one-pipe system? Surely at 10yo it’s got to be condensing and I thought most manufacturers don’t recommend their boilers on one-pipe systems. If there is a boiler out there that does, it might save me a lot of grief on boiler upgrade for a customers system that we’ve been nursing along for years. If they don’t, then the property listed above has been incorrectly spec’d.

As for a cost for the job, if you want cowboys to nail clip 10mm pipes around door frames (unfortunately, I’ve seen it done) then £2k should easily cover it, if you want copper pipework hidden beneath floors, boxed in, old pipe runs made good, then your upper limit might be nearer the mark. If you’re serious then the only way forward is to get a local firm in to quote the job. If you don’t know anyone for recommendations, I find a trip to the local Plumbing suppliers can be fruitful as the counter staff know who regularly buys the quality fittings rather than the minimalist cheap and cheerful. It’s not a guarantee of good workmanship but it indicates who might have more pride in their work.
 

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