Vokera solves flue safety issue
Sprouting flues — the 65 m flue capability of Vokera’s Linea HE gas-fired boiler has been used to overcome problems with 1970’s prefabricated concrete flues in 36 flats in Birmingham.
When two prefabricated concrete flues serving multiple dwellings in Birmingham were found to be potentially dangerous, Vokera was able to devise a unique solution. Such flues were commonly used in projects in the 1970s, and the cement used for joints is easily corroded by flue gases, making the installations potentially unsafe. The problems came to light when Sanctuary Housing asked Sureway Gas to service boilers and perform safety checks throughout 36 of their flats in Birmingham. Mike Hickman from Sureway explains, ‘Most of the boilers were installed on the inside walls, and as the building was three storeys high, most of the flues go through multiple dwellings. We considered all options, including relocating the boiler elsewhere in the flats to outside walls, but that wasn’t really viable.’ As the flue runs on Vokera’s Linea HE gas boiler can go up to 65 m, it was ideal for the long distances required for the flats. However, that still did not overcome the problem of flue-gas condensate damaging the cement joints, so Vokera devised a plastic flexible flue liner that Sureway could run inside the existing concrete flues. Running costs were also an important consideration for Sanctuary, which manages 43 000 homes of all types throughout the UK. Vokera claims that running costs for its Linea HE are 35% less than a conventional boiler. These boilers also have 4-season functionality, compared with two.