How To Use Correctly

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How To Use Correctly

Post  Brown_Horse on Thu Jan 26, 2012 3:02 am

Hi,

First of all, apologies if this has been asked before. I have searched the net with no definitive answer and just want to make sure I am using this properly.

I recently moved into my new flat which has a Pulsacoil A-Class installed. The letting agent knew very little about it and what she has said seems to contradict what I have read else where. The set-up I have is as follows. There are two switches next to the A-Class, one which appears to go directly to it and another that goes to a timer. From what I understand, BOTH of these switches have to be on as one will control the overall power of the boiler and the other will control the timer. Is that first part correct?

I am on the economy 7 plan so have set the time to flick on for two hours in the off peak period. I have not yet run out of hot water and just want to ensure that the A-Class is not permanently on and using up masses of electricity. I would greatly appreciate it if someone could let me know that I have set it all up correctly. I was unsure as to whether only the switch to the timer should be on at first however the boiler appears to do nothing at all if both aren't switched on. (The green light on the front of the boiler will not come on unless both are switched).

Thanks in advance.

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Re: How To Use Correctly

Post  Rhys Cleary on Thu Jan 26, 2012 5:01 am

hey mate,

im in a very similar situation two switches, ive asked the same question yesterday so hopefully some one might have an anwser soon fingers crossed.

rhys

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Re: How To Use Correctly

Post  ut99 on Thu Jan 26, 2012 5:30 pm

I'm no expert but my understanding of the way it works is as follows:

The two switches are somehow connected (by magic or something) so that one is live only during peak hours and the other is live only during off-peak hours.

The basic principle is that the pulsacoil heats up a tank of water to just below boiling point overnight, using cheap electricity. This tank is really well insulted so stays hot for ages. The hot water in this tank is used to heat up cold water coming from the mains by way of a heat exchanger. There is a pump which pumps the hot water from the store through the heat exchanger.

You should therefore leave both switches permanently on as during the day a supply is needed to run the pump. Peak electricity will only be used to heat water if you press the boost button. I'm not entirely sure of the purpose of the timer as there's a sensor which stops heating the water when it reaches a certain temperature.

Also regularly check the plastic tank on top of the unit and keep it half full.

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Re: How To Use Correctly

Post  Brown_Horse on Fri Jan 27, 2012 3:51 am

Thanks for that. Suggests I have it all set up the way it should be. I did check the plastic tank last night after reading about it yesterday. Mine is just below half way so I will top that up too.

I tried to monitor the electricity usage over a 24 hour period in the hope this would let me know whether it was on constantly. I tested it at 4 different points, 7am (when I leave for work) 6pm (when I return from work), 11pm (when I go to bed) and then again at 7am. I expected the majority of the usage to take place between 11pm and 7am as this is when the A-Class should be heating the water. It used 3 (I assume Kwh?) during this time but the same amount between 7am and 6pm when I am not even in the property. This suggests to me the same amount of enery is being used throughout the day and that its constantly on. Basically all I am trying to avoid is a large electricity bill. Im not sure whether 3 kwh per time frame is alot or a little usage?

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Re: How To Use Correctly

Post  ut99 on Fri Jan 27, 2012 4:27 pm

If you run an appliance rated at 1kW for 1 hour it will use 1kWh of energy. The immersion heaters in the pulsacoil are rated at 3kW, so will use 3kWh every hour of operation. So the measurements you have taken are equivalent to the heater running for 1 hour in each of the periods you mention. Of course this assumes that nothing else is using energy at the same time. 3kWh over a period of, say 10 hours, equates to 3kWh/10h = 0.3kW or something using 300 Watts running continuously. This could easily be a combination of your fridge/freezer, appliances on standby, phone/laptop charger, lights left on ...

Anyway if your heater was running continuously over the same time frame it'd be using 3kW x 10h = 30kWh!

For info, on average we use about 7kWh of 'night' electricity but we have night storage heaters as well and 4kWh during the daytime and there's someone at home all day. So your usage sounds about right, although your daytime is maybe a bit high compared to us, though we are very energy conscious compared to most ppl!

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Re: How To Use Correctly

Post  Ncope68 on Wed Apr 17, 2013 7:21 pm

We're in exactly the same position as all of the above.
After living in this 1 bed flat for 2 years our electricity usage is just marginally higher for night usage on economy 7 despite the flat being empty all day.
Our previous flat had a similar '2 switches on the wall system'. The switches were both off (not illuminated) unless the tank was being heated at the off- peak time, showing just the 1 switch being illuminated. The only time I ever put the other switch on was for a peak-time top up if required as we had exhausted the tank's supply.
Is this not the same situation with this system as it seems strange that our usage only differs marginally between day usage and night?




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