The boiler was intermittently returning error EA and not firing. This was usually occurring first thing in the morning, when it was timed to start, resulting in a cold house – no central heating or water heating. Using the boiler reset control would get the boiler going but could take a few attempts and it was something that we thought we could live with.
The boiler was serviced on 18 November 2020, by Mitch from Midland Central Heating, during which some possible faults were reported requiring further work – replacement of the Bearing Plate and Auto Air Vent. This work should (may?) resolve the EA problem.
These are the parts which were replaced – the auto air vent is on the left and the bearing plate on the right.
At least Mitch seemed to know what he was doing and was better than the guy we had last year (2019) who hadn’t even cleaned the condensate trap which was clogged with debris and may be (according to Google) the root of the EA error issue. I ended up clearing the condensate trap but the EA problem remained.
Being winter and what with Covid-19 and Christmas, New Year etc, it initially proved difficult to arrange a follow up visit from Midland Central Heating but eventually, when we were just about at the point of going elsewhere, an appointment was made for 18 January (2 months later!!). Luckily the fault had only occurred a couple of times since the service and not at all over the Christmas/New Year period. Mitch would be returning to replace the Bearing Plate, the suspected cause of the EA issue, and also the Auto Air Vent which would be worth doing at the same time with the boiler stripped down.
The work took about an hour at a negotiated cost of £175 (inclusive of vat) all of us wearing masks during the visit – strange times.
While talking with Mitch, he mentioned that the installation of Gas boilers, in new houses, has been banned from 2025.
A gas boiler ban in new homes was announced as a policy by then-Chancellor Philip Hammond in March 2019. Despite a later change of government, the policy was reaffirmed by the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson as part of the ‘Future Homes Standard’.
On the 19 January 2021 the Government published the outcome of the Future Homes Standard consultation, The document outlines what changes will be made and at what pace. The new Future Homes Standard should ensure that all new homes built from 2025 will produce 75-80% less carbon emissions than homes delivered under current regulations.
Mitch also mentioned that research was in progress to establish the feasibility of replacing gas boilers by boilers which will burn hydrogen instead – it should be a simple conversion job to modify recent boilers to use hydrogen, but older boilers would probably have to replaced completely. This might come to fruition in the future.
Worcester Bosch have not only been advocating for hydrogen, but they have also developed a prototype boiler that can run on 100% hydrogen gas.