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Green Building Bible, Fourth Edition
Green Building Bible, fourth edition (both books)
These two books are the perfect starting place to help you get to grips with one of the most vitally important aspects of our society - our homes and living environment.

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  1.  
    We have a heat store fed by solar thermal and a wood burning stove. I'm looking for a control system that can do the following, but so far without success:
    - controllable using an app
    - weather compensation (ie mixes temperature depending on weather)
    - app can see temperature of the heat store

    I've looked at John Guest - can't do temperature compensation.
    Emetti - don't do an app
    Honeywell - don't really understand how they work
    Heatmiser - couldn't really get a straight answer

    I've asked a number of plumbers for advice, they tend to promise that they can do such a setup, but then they don't get back to you. I'm happy to work out how to do it, but I don't want to learn all about a system only to find out that it doesn't do what is needed.

    Can somebody who is better informed recommend a potential system please?
    • CommentAuthortony
    • CommentTimeOct 14th 2018
     
    Hawk/Jace will do it so will Loxone, so could a raspberry pi but not sure about the app on the last one.
    • CommentAuthorgravelld
    • CommentTimeOct 15th 2018
     
    > weather compensation (ie mixes temperature depending on weather)

    Are you sure what this means? I have found different definitions (some just turn heating on earlier), so you might need to drill into that if that's really what you want.

    Why does the app have to "see" the temp of the TS and what is the purpose? Is this related to space heating or DHW?
  2.  
    I'd like the type of weather compensation that is aware of the actual external temperature and reduces the water circulation temperature accordingly.

    We have a wood burning stove, so it would be really useful to know what the heat store temp is, whether too low or too high.
  3.  
    Posted By: ComeOnPilgrimWe have a heat store fed by solar thermal and a wood burning stove. I'm looking for a control system that can do the following, but so far without success:
    - controllable using an app
    - weather compensation (ie mixes temperature depending on weather)
    - app can see temperature of the heat store

    This sounds a bit over complicated to me. I have a heat store (TS) and for knowledge about it temperature I have a couple of thermostat switches driving lights that come on when the TS at that height is at 60 deg. (one at 1/3 and one at 2/3 up the TS). Given that wood stoves are fairly imprecise items and if you want more heat then chuck on a couple of logs and see what you get, Oh and you have to be in attendance to do this so what advantage are you expecting to get out of an app? In the same way solar thermal will give what you get and I presume all you would need to know is if you need to light the WBS, again a simple couple of lights or temp gagues with a remote display would solve this - cos you have to be there to light the WBS.
    • CommentAuthorgyrogear
    • CommentTimeOct 15th 2018
     
    You could check out this company.

    (in which I have no financial or other interest)

    https://www.deltadore.co.uk/home-automation/heating-control

    (My home is fitted with one of their systems for driving electric UFH).
    We have two (wired) external temperature sensors.

    (Since we installed a WBS, we do not actually use the radiant floors any more...)

    gg
  4.  
    Posted By: tonyHawk/Jace will do it so will Loxone, so could a raspberry pi but not sure about the app on the last one.

    Hi Tony, the Loxone system looks really promising. I don't understand the Hawk/Jace reference though. Do you have s link or something?
  5.  
    Posted By: Peter_in_Hungary
    Posted By: ComeOnPilgrimWe have a heat store fed by solar thermal and a wood burning stove. I'm looking for a control system that can do the following, but so far without success:
    - controllable using an app
    - weather compensation (ie mixes temperature depending on weather)
    - app can see temperature of the heat store

    This sounds a bit over complicated to me. I have a heat store (TS) and for knowledge about it temperature I have a couple of thermostat switches driving lights that come on when the TS at that height is at 60 deg. (one at 1/3 and one at 2/3 up the TS). Given that wood stoves are fairly imprecise items and if you want more heat then chuck on a couple of logs and see what you get, Oh and you have to be in attendance to do this so what advantage are you expecting to get out of an app? In the same way solar thermal will give what you get and I presume all you would need to know is if you need to light the WBS, again a simple couple of lights or temp gagues with a remote display would solve this - cos you have to be there to light the WBS.

    At the moment I have a couple of cheap digital thermostats on the TS which work well. However, the TS is some distance from the stove. It's a pain going to the TS to check the temperature, whereas the phone is never far away.

    I was also thinking that in the future, if we connect to a more controllable heat source, then we'd need some kind of measure of how hot the TS is.
    •  
      CommentAuthorDamonHD
    • CommentTimeOct 15th 2018
     
    If you just want to look at temperature remotely then there's a number of things you could do round (say) SmartThings or similar 'geek'-oriented products that will get that information into the cloud for you to look at, ie on your phone, without charges.

    Then you can concentrate separately on a simple/reliable control system.

    Disentangling those two may make life simpler.

    Rgds

    Damon
  6.  
    Posted By: DamonHDIf you just want to look at temperature remotely then there's a number of things you could do round (say) SmartThings or similar 'geek'-oriented products that will get that information into the cloud for you to look at, ie on your phone, without charges.

    Then you can concentrate separately on a simple/reliable control system.

    Disentangling those two may make life simpler.

    Rgds

    Damon

    Good point. Something like this might work temporarily: https://www.amazon.co.uk/SMART4HOUSE-S4H-TM-00-Wireless-Temperature-Thermometer/dp/B00Q3DK5FI
  7.  
    Posted By: ComeOnPilgrimAt the moment I have a couple of cheap digital thermostats on the TS which work well. However, the TS is some distance from the stove. It's a pain going to the TS to check the temperature, whereas the phone is never far away.

    The solution to the same problem that I had was to put in warning lights in the house driven by thermostat switches on the TS. I'm not interested in the temp. of the TS other than when it is getting beyond useful (60 deg. for my rads and DHW) and I have found that the 2 lights as described above give sufficient indication to know if I need to light the boiler today or if tomorrow will do.

    Posted By: ComeOnPilgrimI was also thinking that in the future, if we connect to a more controllable heat source, then we'd need some kind of measure of how hot the TS is.

    If you have a more controllable heat source then a thermostat on the TS controlling the heat source is the way I would go - rather than manual intervention to manage the TS temp via the controllable heat source.
    • CommentAuthortony
    • CommentTimeOct 15th 2018
     
    https://www.tridium.com/products-services/niagara4

    Hawk jace is a more powerful version of Loxone and can do bespoke control systems, Loxone could be cheaper
  8.  
    @tony, thanks very much!
  9.  
    This looks a bit more reasonable as a temporary solution: https://m.ebay.co.uk/itm/Sonoff-TH16-TH10-Smart-Wifi-Switch-Monitoring-Temperature-Humidity-Smart-Sensor-/
    •  
      CommentAuthordjh
    • CommentTimeOct 20th 2018
     
    Seems to be a broken link?
  10.  
    A working link: https://www.google.com/search?q=Sonoff+TH16

    Looks interesting and very cheap. Like the idea of using switch and sensor hardware from this range while doing the clever control from an Alexa type device
  11.  
    Yes, it also looks like it can connect to IFTTT, meaning it could pick up information like outside air temperature from the internet. Also no need for an expensive server / control unit.
    •  
      CommentAuthordjh
    • CommentTimeOct 20th 2018
     
    I was interested by the recent story about the whole Yale smart security network going offline and people not being able to operate locks etc. I suppose I feel it justifies my cynicism. :shocked:
  12.  
    I think you can run the Sonoff system on a local area network, so it doesn't depend on the internet. But if the electricity is off, I guess that's a different matter.
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