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Vaillant - hot water problems

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Posted by Em on October 06, 2004 at 04:32:19:

I moved into my flat 3 Ĺ years ago and have had problems with my Vaillant combination boiler on and off since. The heating is fine but the hot water is very temperamental, particularly in Winter. Unfortunately, the previous owners didnít leave the manufacturers info for the boiler.

Previously, the problem I had was that when I switched the hot water on, the boiler would either not fire up at all or the hot water light on the boiler would only come on very faintly and not heat the water. I could usually get the hot water working by either just switching the heating on (rather than being on through auto mode) or switching it on and then switching the boiler on and off until the light came on fully and we were away.

Unfortunately, the problem seems to have got worse this time and, although the hot water light glows brightly (once the central heating is switched to on rather than just auto, even when the timer auto heating is on), the water heats up briefly, but not very hot, then goes cold. I can sometimes get the water to stay hot by switching the central heating to on and making sure the boiler is firing on all cylinders (not sure if thatís the correct technical term!) with all the lights on the front of the boiler glowing, again by switching the boiler on and off until the hot water works.

The pressure gauge on the front of the boiler is currently pointing at 1.3 bar.

Iím not sure of the model of the boiler. Do you know whereabouts I should look on the boiler?

Having heard various horror stories from friends relating to central heating engineers and plumbers in my area Ė both in relation to cost, incorrect diagnosis and poor quality of service, I have been unable to get a recommendation of a good person to use.

I am very wary of phoning someone out of the yellow pages, not knowing whether what they tell me/recommend is right and paying through the nose for it. Iím sure that you can tell that I have no plumbing/DIY knowledge or experience!

I would really appreciate any comments re the possible cause of the problem and any suggestions on who to use (just go through yellow pages?). I live in NE England.

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