To Clergy Living in Parsonage Houses
Should you be going away at any time during a period of cold weather, a seasonal reminder to please take all necessary measures to ensure that there is sufficient background heat in your home to prevent hot and cold pipes or the central heating boiler freezing up. It's always advisable to ask someone local to keep a watchful eye on the property.
Where radiators are fitted with thermostatic radiator valves, it would be sensible to turn these down to the frost stat setting after which they will only come on when the room temperature is around 4 or 5 degrees centigrade. The boiler can operate normally and its internal thermostat will allow it to cut off when the water temperature has reached the pre-set limit, thus saving expenditure on unnecessary heating.
Whilst you are away, it is also sensible to ensure that the stopcock is turned off in order to limit any damage in the unfortunate event of a serious leak. If your home is heated using a modern condensing boiler, it would be wise to ensure that the external condensation pipe is free of frozen condensate prior to starting the boiler on your return (use warm water to defrost). You may want to wrap the pipe with insulation prior to going away and to ask a neighbour to check the pipe during times of extreme weather. Please also ensure that external (or garage) taps are turned off and insulated.
Where your home is heated by oil, it would be sensible to check oil tank fuel levels well before your break in order to ensure a sufficient supply of heating oil. Please remember that should the heating oil run out, the cost of enabling the system will not be met from the Houses Committee budget and you also run the risk of serious damage to boiler pumps, etc.
The office will be closed for the Christmas break from 12.30pm on Friday, 21st December until 9.00am on Thursday, 3rd January 2019.
I have attached to this letter our list of emergency contractors, which is also available on our website.
In the meantime, may I wish you all a very peaceful Christmas and a happy and healthy 2019.
For & On behalf of the Ely Diocesan Board of Finance
More information on clergy housing and a list of emergency contractors can be found on the diocesan website here.
If you are a Churchwarden helping to look after a vacant Diocesan property, more information can also be found here.