Thursday, 25 November 2010

Cold cold cold

Dawn was a thin red line on the eastern horizon, changing rapidly up into orange, yellow and green to pale blue, arcing over to indigo in the west and dimpled by Venus and the gibbous moon. It was very cold again but less of a frost.

I was outside in the dawn because I was heading for the boiler shed again; the heating was off, according to our 'towel rail test', and there was no hot water. This time, both of the main pumps had faulted, the pumps that are supposed to deliver all the heating and hot water to the plant rooms. The Building Management System was displaying an impressive array of red lights, and alarming every ten seconds as it tried to switch between faulted pumps. Thankfully, we were due to have another BMS demo at 9.30am, and the guy was able to fix things. The pumps were drawing too much current and had tripped, so he just reset them and turned a small button to control the current. I now know how to open the BMS panel and reset tripped pumps; another piece of little knowledge to add to my store of dangerous things! Unfortunately, when he was checking out the heat meters, he managed to dislodge a tube on the biomass boiler, which later caused a low pressure fault. We only notice these things when we feel cold and go out to check. It was easily fixed, but I at least felt cold all day.

The Met Office seems at last to be providing the general public with some probability-based forecasts (still in beta), to go along with the confidence-based severe weather warnings. Just for maximum and minimum temperatures, and only the mostly likely temperature and the 5% to 95% range, but it's a start. The cold snap is forecast to continue, so I hope nothing else goes wrong with the heating! Daft thing to hope, as none of us has any confidence in the thermostats. They have an error range of +/- 2 °C, but the one in the general office is showing 6 °C and cold though it is, it's not that bad! And the one in the Oratory is just blank.

1 comment:

  1. I blame Thomas; the heating worked fine while he was at General Synod!