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01 Dec 2010 00:00 by dr who Star rating. 37 posts Send private message

 Hola all ,

Is it just me that has problems with cold showers in the winter time here or has anybody else suffered from this. The gas boiler is burning away but the water just refuses to get warm. The gas bottle is outside so it will get colder but is this really the cause ? Also the boiler goes off with a bang everytime we turn the hot water tap on (hot water , i wish ) , but the end result is cold agua. This happens every winter. I had the boiler serviced last year and twice the year before and yet they said everything was ok. Is there anybody out there with a solution ?............................................................please 


The Doctor

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01 Dec 2010 21:43 by mumashine Star rating in Near La Serena Golf,.... 27 posts Send private message

mumashine´s avatar

Hiya dr who

My expert says - the bang noise............'explosive ignition' indicates pilot is too short - you need to get this seen too.

If you can get hot water at any tap then the problem is not with the heater - he recommends that during the winter you may need to turn up higher your temperature control on the water heater if it has one.

You may have a problem with your shower mixer valve - if you have one - or the shower head (this is not a rubber hose on your bath taps)

Hope this helps.




Regards, Mumashine

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02 Dec 2010 00:18 by buildersteve Star rating in alhaurin el grande. 28 posts Send private message

Hi doctor

most common problem is if water pressure is low or restricted.

first thing to check is that the tap filters and shower heads are not scaled up,if they agua fuerte will clear this very easily but make sure you flush with cold water very quickly.

also the boilers interior scales up and this restricts the flow of water ,you may want to get this descaled

a way of checking if its a water flow problem is to simply remove the shower head to allow more flow

[ scale inside causes the boiler to over heat ]    hope this is of some help 



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02 Dec 2010 13:34 by joanmalaga Star rating in Costa del Sol. 422 posts Send private message

I am suffering of the same! A real pain and according to the gas people nothing i can do!

Yipeee! Cold water during winter!


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02 Dec 2010 13:55 by guslopez Star rating in Lorca, Murcia.. 745 posts Send private message

When the temp. is very low the butane cannot vaporise & stays liquid therefore giving very little heat to the water. In the UK we used to use propane in the winter which has a lower  boiling point  & will heat the water even at 0ºc. You can get propane bottles although there's 1kg less in them from both cepsa & repsol.


Todos somos Lorca.

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02 Dec 2010 17:24 by dr who Star rating. 37 posts Send private message

guslopez (and joanmalaga) , that is what it is. Cant believe i havent found this out before. Joan , when the air is cold , butano cannot fully vapourise , so therefore it doesnt burn properly. Although the flames are burning away , it is not enough to heat up the water. So last night , i bought a new bottle of gas and wrapped it up in an old duvet and left it in the utility room overnight. Bearing in mind that we've been having coldish / slightly warmish showers for the last week and a half or so , it was with some doubts in my mind as to whether this would do the trick. I connected the new bottle of gas on this morning , the better half jumped in the shower , and when i popped my head round the door , i could hardly see her for the steam. Piping hot !!! The bottle is back in the utlity room wrapped up in readiness for tonights showers. Try it joan , i do believe you can buy some insulated covers to wrap round the bottles to stop them from getting too cold.

Thanks to all for replying.

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03 Dec 2010 15:03 by foxbat Star rating in Granada. 1114 posts Send private message

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Found this on an RV motorhome site...which explains why Butano does not perform well at low temperatures...

If you have a heavy draw on the regulator (total gas demand maximized) in cold temperatures (winter) as the vapor is drawn off, it causes the remaining liquid in the tank to become colder, and, as the temperature falls, butane becomes less and less effective. Butane remains a liquid, which means it will not give off any gas vapor at 31 degrees F at atmospheric pressure, while Propane continues to perform at a higher level at the same temperature - it liquifies totally (stops gassifying) at -48 degrees F at atmospheric pressure.

Heating a gas boiler obviously puts a high drain rate on the tank and so it gets even colder than the ambient air around it.

Propane is the gas of choice under these conditions but whether its freely available is a differnt matter of course.

Many moons ago I eas lodging with a guy in a caravan in Reading and his Butane tank used to freeze up almoost every nght, since he used the gas for his living room heating it was a real problem keeping warm.



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