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Which Flue liner?

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default Which Flue liner?

Post by Hairyloon on 5th January 2010, 1:08 pm

Well, I know it needs to be a HETAS approved, stainless steel, twinwall, but I'm not sure that narrows it down very much, there seems to be no end of them out there... or are they nearly all coming out of one factory and are exactly the same?
Presumably not: there seems to be enough competition that it's driving the prices down, but does that mean that some are cheap and nasty, or is the standard a standard and it either is or it isn't?
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default Re: Which Flue liner?

Post by Fahrenheit on 5th January 2010, 8:02 pm

There is a massive difference between makes and manufacturers. Most liners are made of a certain grade steel either 316 or 904.....these are standard grades and all should be the same. They're all around 0.12mm thick steel either double or tripple crimped. I personally don't rate the docherty stuff (which is what flusystems.com sell) because it isn't very strong and a 10m roll of docherty's stuff weighs half as much as the stuff i use. It's more flexible but this is because it isn't as strong. Fitters probably prefer using it as it goes around bends easier. The inner if Midtherm and Specflue is a lot smoother than Docherty's as they sem to be much better and more acurately formed. From my experience Docherty/Fluesystems liner nearly always comes damaged.

As for standards you'll find that they either meet it or don't......some liners will state that their liner is tested to a higher standard so one would assume these would last longer and take more abuse.

There are a lot of good makes of liner about.....i only have experience of Docherty, Midtherm (which wasn't their own brand it was imported) and Rite Vent.............I found the Midtherm and Rite Vent stuff to be very good and i've been using Rite Vent for around 3-4 years and it is regarded as the best.

Get the diameter suitable for your stove.......you could put 7" liner on a 6" outlet but i wouldn't put it on a 5" outlet.
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default Re: Which Flue liner?

Post by John Cossham on 17th January 2010, 8:29 pm

When we moved house we got both chimneys lined with insulated concrete as this was the srongest and best solution. The company, based near Harrogate, called 'chimneycrete' put an inflatable sausage up the cleaned flue, and knocked a hole at first floor level and in the roof space to position this sausage in the centre of the flue.
Then the liquid concrete laced with vermiculite was pumped in and the holes blocked up to prevent the stuff flowing out. When the concrete was set, the sausage was allowed to deflate and removed, leaving a smooth kink-free flue up the centre of the chimney. These are an important part of how we heat our house, with no central heating, but using about 5 tonnes of waste wood a year. They make our two Clearview stoves work really well. They will never need replacing, which cannot be said for steel flue liners, which last 10 to 25 years, depending on amount of use and how used.
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default Re: Which Flue liner?

Post by Hairyloon on 18th January 2010, 3:39 pm

Good enough, but the lady here has just paid over £1400 to have that done.
Set against that, around £200 for a steel one and an afternoon monkeying around on my roof to fit it...
Even if I have to replace it every 10 years, it'll be a long time before the concrete works out as cost effective.
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default Re: Which Flue liner?

Post by John Cossham on 18th January 2010, 5:23 pm

She was done! Ours were £800 each, but maybe her house is twice as tall as ours? And not everybody is as keen to climb on roof tops as you, so our quote to have the double-skinned insulated stainless steel liners fitted was about £550 each, so we went with the longer term but slightly more expensive option. I guess I'm thinking of future generations...

And one thing I omitted to say, I asked the contractor which cement he used and he said he could get any. So I asked him to get Lafrage cement, cooked in Sheffield I think, using waste rubber tyres for heat, so therefore a renewable resource and lower fossil carbon emissions.

I do however understand the situation where you have a tight budget and just want a working stove as soon as possible. We saved up for our lined chimneys for quite a while.
John
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default Re: Which Flue liner?

Post by Hairyloon on 18th January 2010, 5:32 pm

John Cossham wrote:She was done! Ours were £800 each...
Prices have skyrocketed: up 40% over last year.
I think there are only two firms doing concrete linings in Yorkshire, but there are no end of steel liner manufacturers springing up... though knowing which are any good...
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default Re: Which Flue liner?

Post by Wilhelm Von Rhomboid on 18th January 2010, 5:59 pm

I would question whether concrete is a renewable resource tbh.

The whole sustainability of concrete debate is fairly polarised in fact: the Concrete industry on the one side and pretty much everyone else on the other. Although both sides do have points to make.

Funnily enough I am embroiled in a contretemps at the moment regarding whether the use of high thermal mass (using concrete) to maintain thermal comfort in a building is more sustainable than conventional methods (using energy to supply coolth/warmth). I know which side I'm on, I'm just not quite sure it is the right one... Rolling Eyes

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default Re: Which Flue liner?

Post by Hairyloon on 18th January 2010, 6:32 pm

Wilhelm Von Rhomboid wrote:Funnily enough I am embroiled in a contretemps at the moment regarding whether the use of high thermal mass (using concrete) to maintain thermal comfort in a building is more sustainable than conventional methods (using energy to supply coolth/warmth).
I would think that depends on a number of factors... duvet thickness for example.
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default Re: Which Flue liner?

Post by Wilhelm Von Rhomboid on 18th January 2010, 6:34 pm

Although the building in question is an office block.

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default Re: Which Flue liner?

Post by Hairyloon on 18th January 2010, 9:42 pm

Wilhelm Von Rhomboid wrote:Although the building in question is an office block.
Duvet thichness not a major factor then?
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default Re: Which Flue liner?

Post by Wilhelm Von Rhomboid on 18th January 2010, 9:47 pm

Not so much. And in fact it is principally about maintaining coolth during summer months given climate change predictions. So duvets not a major factor at all, really.

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default Re: Which Flue liner?

Post by Hairyloon on 18th January 2010, 10:20 pm

Wilhelm Von Rhomboid wrote:Not so much. And in fact it is principally about maintaining coolth during summer months...
Ah, well in that case, what you want is a big heat pump. Pump the heat out of the offices, and keep it all in a big bucket in the basement.
Then in the winter, you let it out again.
Piece of cake.
Next. Wink
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default Re: Which Flue liner?

Post by Wilhelm Von Rhomboid on 18th January 2010, 10:29 pm

But the aim is to minimise energy consumption.

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default Re: Which Flue liner?

Post by Hairyloon on 19th January 2010, 12:07 am

Wilhelm Von Rhomboid wrote:But the aim is to minimise energy consumption.
:? It doesn't consume much energy to store heat in a bucket.
Ok, it takes some to pump it about, but it's not that thirsty else ground source heating wouldn't work.
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default Re: Which Flue liner?

Post by Fahrenheit on 21st January 2010, 6:48 pm

There's no denying the conrete liners are very good. They also reinforce your flue so it doesn't matter if the mid-feathers are buggered or not. £800 is pretty cheap......i know they usually charge around £1200 for a two storey house plus scafffold or cherry picker ofr access.

The liners are the easiest option and give you the choice of reverting back to an open fire if you ever wanted to......once you've poured a 6 inch flue then you can never put in anything bigger. I'm assuming the £800 per flue didn't include the installation of the stove or a cowl, or clay liner adapter or length of flue? This is all extra. We're usually around £780+ vat to supply and fit the liner, all connecting parts including closure plate and delivery and installation of the stove. This includes supply and installation of a cowl. It would still cost a fair bit extra for the conrete flue and most people move house within 10 years so a flue that lasts 20yrs or so is more than adequate.
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default Re: Which Flue liner?

Post by John Cossham on 21st January 2010, 7:49 pm

Hi there Farenheit, the cost was an all-in; we already had both stoves and fitting them was easy. I even built one of the hearths myself. The Chimneycrete guy didn't use scaffolding or a cherry picker, just ladders and ropes.

The only advantage of a steel liner apart from the cost that I've heard of is similar to your 'revert to an open fire' option (as if anybody would actually go back to such an innefficient and wasteful method!) is that some people might wish to use the large chimney space to route various communications through the house.

But for us, the chance to use no central heating, have annual gas bills of less than £100 and cut our (fossil) carbon footprint to a fraction of an ordinary house meant that we wanted to have a pair of stoves which had flues which pulled really well. All the reviews and info we found said that insulated concrete was the best and longest-lasting option.

I guess we were lucky too, finding someone who would do it for a competitive price and use the lower carbon-footprint cement we asked for.

The main thing though, for people to know, is that the flue is an integral part of the stove installation, and a poorly pulling flue can result in people saying 'this stove doesn't work very well'.

On a different note, has anyone heard of or used a 'Draw Collar'
http://www.drawcollar.com/
which pre-heats the flue, in cases of poorly drawing flues due to the topography outside, or wind direction blowing the smoke back down the flue? It seems like an expensive option as it relies on a powerful electrical heating element. Thoughts?
John
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default Re: Which Flue liner?

Post by Fahrenheit on 21st January 2010, 9:38 pm

Fair enough......we pass a fair bit of work to Ray at Chimneycrete as his lining system is best for open fires. Just put him in touch with a guy who wants around 8 flues lining!

I thought about getting involved in concrete liners but we're so busy with what we do now that i see no point in diversifying.

So Chimneycrete lined the flue, fitted a cowl, installed the stove using a proper clay liner adapter and a peice of VE.....all for £800?
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default Re: Which Flue liner?

Post by John Cossham on 22nd January 2010, 12:46 am

Quite a few years ago, yes it was about this much. I can delve into our paperwork to find the exact price and date, but it was approximately £1600 for the two soon after 2001 which is when we moved here. The cowls fitted weren't very good and since we've had The Stove Gallery/Pete the Sweep fit better ones. We like TSG/PtS, a very good company.
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