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Heating pipe flow indicator device?

Is there a gizmo, gadget, doodad, device that can be inserted on a heating pipe and show if water is flowing through it? Thinking it might look like a transparent globe with a colourful wheel inside which spins to indicate flow.


I'm having a tug of war with my building's management company about my hot water, and I'd like to stop guessing whose fault it is when my showers go cold. My heating is communal, and I have a storage tank with a motorised valve.

They say that there's nothing wrong on their end and that my motorised valve, installed half a year ago, is broken, and I have to fix it privately. The valve appears to work just fine - it makes all the noises, but of course there's no indicator anywhere (that would be too helpful). It also has a manual override lever, so I've removed power and set it to fully open, and still no heat, but I'd like to have something that instantly tells me when the valve fails instead of this back and forth debugging of the building's heating system.

4 Answers from MyBuilder Plumbers

Best Answer

Yes there is a devise you can use. It requires being installed on the the system. It’s called an in-line flow meter. It will show that there is flow but not that the there is temperature. It would need to be installed on the cylinder flow and would require isolating from the system and cutting into the pipe. You are correct that the valve does or should have a manual override but that doesn’t give a call to the delivery of heat. If your cylinder isn’t getting enough time to satisfy a complete warmup then you could be running out due to lack of capacity. This I would imagine on a shared heating system would be controlled by building control. If you do have access to the programmer set it for a longer period of time to ensure you have a completely full cylinder. If you are getting hot water but seem to be running out I wouldn’t say flow is the issue. I would say the amount of programmed heat up is set to your cylinder.

Hope that helps


Answered 21st Aug 2020

If its working the pipe will get hot if its not it wont.. no doodad im afraid..

If its failed the motor also wont make a noise as it opens , unless the spindle is broken lol..


Answered 18th Aug 2020

there are various flow indicators on the market,these have a visual impeller to show water flow,if you get and fit one make sure it is for hot water,leengate valves supply these.


Answered 19th Aug 2020

No, as far as I know there is no such device. Just put the heating on and check if the roads fully heat up. Then you’ll know water is circulating around the heating circuit.


Answered 19th Aug 2020

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