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4.1 out of 5 stars43
4.1 out of 5 stars
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on 26 December 2009
I wanted a book on CH systems (and the corresponding Hot water system) which specifically covered how the electrical components were interconnected and how they interfaced with each other. This book was very informative in providing both wiring diagrams and explaining how each component was activated and how it activated the next component. It has various chapters on Valves, Pumps, Boilers, Radiators, Control Systems,Hot water and heating circuits etc. It gives clear explanations of how various parts of the system work such as 2 and 3 port valves, frost thermostats, boilers and variants that you might expect to find. This is not a book which will teach you how to fix a leaking tap, in addition it is not one of those glossy DIY manuals. This book is focused on central heating systems and goes into great depth, not a general plumbing DIY manual.
Prior to reading the book I did not have a clue how my system worked or what the mess of pipe work did- now it all makes sense. By chance the actuator on a 2 port CH diverter valve failed last week (day before Xmas eve!)- and I was able to identify the fault, buy a new actuator and replace it. Prior to reading the book I would have frozen to death over Xmas as I did not even know what a 2 port diverter v/v was.
Could not have asked for more really.
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on 12 November 2009
I bought this book along with two other "big name" DIY titles and this was the most useful by far - I don't even refer to the other two any more. You don't get any colour diagrams or photos but you do get lots of detailed, technical information that is well structured and easy to understand. There are some odd spelling mistakes (as if the wrong word has been selected by a spell checker) but in practice, it makes no difference to the sheer value of this book.

It also looks to have a comprehensive wiring section but I haven't studied this as I've already re-wired my entire system, so I can't provide detailed feedback.

I would reccommend this book to anyone who wants to understand how their central heating system works or what might be wrong with it - even if you just want to be more knowledgeable when talking to a heating engineer or plumber.

I'm only a DIY reader so I can't really give a detailed technical appraisal. However, it seems to be up to date (published in 2008 at the time of this review) and differentiates well between older systems (eg floor mounted, low resistance boilers) and current equipment and practices (eg combi boilers). I have found it to be an excellent source of information.
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I am a houseowner and through necessity,a DIY enthusiast, as on the few occasions that I have needed to use the building trade I have often found their prices exorbitant, and their quality of work a lottery. And should you be unfortunate enough to have your central heating fail in the winter, you are at their mercy! Having moved into a 15 year old bungalow with a standard boiler, pumped, open ended vent system with a hot water cylinder, after having electric storage rads, and an open coal fire in our previous homes, I needed a book dedicated to Central Heating/Hot Water which my own DIY books only briefly covered.
This is a black and white paperback with 181 pages containing 58 illustrations and diagrams. I noticed it was only first published in 2008, so is an up to date book, which I was pleased about. There are 16 chapters, starting with the "History of Central Heating" and ending with a 19 page "Fault Diagnosis" other chapters cover Heating Circuits, Hot Water Circuits, Rads, Corrosion, Lime Scale and Chemical additives, Pluming, Heat, Motorised Valves, Pumps, Boilers, Cisterns, Control Systems, Wiring and Other Heating Technologies.
It only goes into the basics of boilers, as there must be hundreds of different models on the market, and obviously this is where us DIY,ers have to relent to "Health and Safety" as is explained straight away in this chapter. It does however give you a brief outline on Boiler types, Fuels, Components etc.
I have already done a minor repair. Have a much clearer picture of how my system works, and will be using this as a reference book for many years to come. Well worth the money.
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on 4 March 2013
Purchased this book to find out how the central heating and water system worked within the home. Thankfully the pictures which outlined the component parts and what they did, explained enough for me to undertake the job and repair which would have been a very costly job if I had called in a Plumber / Heating Engineer. Knowing the job has been done properly and not fleeced by a cowboy has given me a lot of satisfaction. Well worth the cost and saved me over £500 which I was quoted and actually cost me in total repairing it myself £45. Highly recommended.
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on 6 November 2011
Good review of central heating theory and could help in heating design in an easy to read book. Not necessary for DIYers, but an excellent reference for professionals and technical individuals.
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on 25 January 2014
I used to do plumbing and central heating installations over 30 years ago and wanted a book with the latest info. This has it in spades. Cracking book. First class and highly recommended if you want to know how your system works or you are updating it. I'd give it 10 stars if it was available. No pretty pictures in it but what is there is very illustrative for your needs.
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on 11 February 2013
Worked through it all as soon as I got it. Very clear and focused. I already know most of what it covers, but wanted a refresher on general principles and to see what has changed in recent years. I can't comment on how accurate it is, but it sounds about right. Only four stars because I haven't yet tested it in practice. The book is clearly an instant print one, and seems well produced, although some real oddities with wrong words and mis-spellings, although it still makes perfect sense. Doesn't matter for an instruction manual like this, as it still reads very well.
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on 28 June 2014
I expect this is one of those books apprentices will be expected to have bought or read but will in practice never be read more than once. For example, it covered the history of central heating right back to Roman hypocausts!

I learned some useful stuff about the workings of my system but nothing about how I might repair it, plan its improvement, or replacement.

Not much better then than a Wikipedia entry padded out to book length. This is a book to browse at the library not to buy.
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on 3 December 2012
I enjoyed reading this book and it was very helpfull. I must however mention the mistakes in the book with regards to spelling and words being left out etc.Just found this very annoying as I continuously had to re-read sentences etc. But a very good complimentary book that goes into good depth with many interesting facts.
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on 15 May 2016
Good book if you know nothing but as most people only have one type of heating source, then another book more specific to your own fuel source would be better. Covers oil gas electric. I only needed it for oil, and still had to research other publications to get all the info I needed.m
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