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Thread: Central Heating - anyone had it installed?

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    nickydwuk's Avatar
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    Default Central Heating - anyone had it installed?

    When we move over we are contemplating getting central heating put into our chosen house. We are softies from the UK after all

    Has anyone else had this done? Are the workmen in NZ reliable and what is it likely to cost?
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    We've recently had ducted c/h fitted in our place in NZ. I'm off to bed now as it's very late but will fill you in tomorrow unless Taffy cares to do it for me, as he's living there and went through it all. Sounds like all went well, anyway, and there was a good result.
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    If you're considering having central heating UK style (with radiators and boiler etc) then unless you're mega rich, forget it. There's no such thing here, you can't buy the stuff anywhere so it's all imported. Add that to the fact that very few people have much, if any, experience of installing it then you've got an expensive disaster waitnig to happen.

    The ducted heatpump style thing we've got is really good though. There's a monster a/c unit outside, and a unit in the attic, and throughout the house just simple vents in the ceilings that pump out hot (or cold in summer) air. The company we used were good, no problems with them. Even so, this still isnt particularly cheap!
    Taffy

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    A recommendation on blown-air heating; if you can, get it to come through the floor rather than the ceiling (sorry, Taffy). Considering that hot air rises, you'll get better heating of your house with floor heating. If you have a slab foundation or very little crawl space below the floor, this won't be possible. But if you do have room, it may well be worth the extra money or griping from the contractor to have the hot air come from below.
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    Yeah, we're on a slab so as you say, wasnt possible!
    Taffy

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    Nick, here's an old thread about heating in NZ houses, if you haven't already read it.
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    So does anyone use ceiling fans over there? Coming from Texas it's pretty much SOP for every room. There's a switch on the side to make the air flow in the opposite direction which is supposed to help with heating vs cooling. Not that I've ever used the switch in my entire life ;-)

    But also hearing about the musty or humid air in some houses I think the fans would be a help. I've gotten to where when I walk into a room and the fan is off I notice it right away.

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    selchie's Avatar
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    Ceiling fans would definitely help push air down, though they do have such a dominating presence in small rooms. I know they're lifesavers at my sister's place in Texas.
    If men had wings and bore black feathers, few of them would be clever enough to be crows.
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    It's crazy isn't it? No central heating!!! I miss using the radiators to dry my clothes aswell but we have at last aquired a tumble drier.
    We live in an old villa so it's very draughty - just got a bill for $250 energy for ONE month!! Arhggg... that's opposed to the usual $100 per month. Eiderdowns, socks and blankets are the best, ha! Oh and back to using the good old fashioned water bottle too.

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    I don't know anyone with central heating around here ... but then we are in the milder Far North.

    Our rental was so cold that we wanted to make sure the new house was warm. Heat pumps seemed to be the national favourite and I thought two or three around the house would work. After a discussion with the very honest heating engineer, I rather reluctantly opted for one heat pump, a woodburning stove (for emergencies mostly) and a heat transfer sytem to the kids bedrooms.

    Maybe we have had a lot of mild weather since moving in the new house, but we have hardly needed to use any heating and I am well pleased the Kiwis now use insulation in their new houses(!).

    The heat pump, after several minutes of warming up, really does give out a lot of heat. The one pump is sufficient to heat the dining room, kitchen and living room of our house within an hour or so. The heat transference system sucks up some of the heat pump's heat from a nearby vent and sends it to the kids bedrooms - it works but is not instant heat and the bedrooms can get colder before they get warmer as the cold air in the ducts has to come out before the warmer air is sucked in. A good thing with the heat pump is that it can have a timer so it can come on just before getting up; it can also be used as air conditioning.

    I still cannot believe how warmer it is living in a well-insulated new house to that of our rental which was only built in 1994. Building standards seem to have improved a lot.

    I think that if I lived as far south as Dunedin I would certainly have two or three inside the house (probably at a cost of around $12-$15,000). The woodburning stove is a must, even if just for bad weather power cuts (they start at around $1,200), most existing NZ houses have them. Don't know about underfloor or any other heating here. Other than that it is as Deb says - socks, the extra blankets, extra-warm clothing and hot water bottles.
    Glenda
    In NZ since June 2005
    Better to light a candle than to curse the darkness - Chinese proverb

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