Interfacing to Firebird boiler

I have just had installed a new oil boiler to replace my 25 year old non-condensing oil boiler that was proving more and more unreliable. I chose the Firebird Envirogreen Kitchen C26 boiler. Now I would like to make the control system as efficient as possible using OpenHAB or similar open source software. Does anyone know whether the Firebird boiler can be controlled remotely, e.g. can I control the “switch on” temperature, the “switch off” temperature or anything else that may need to be changed to get the boiler operating in the most efficient mode under all conditions? The boiler cannot modulate (as far as I am aware) so it may only be these two temperatures that need to be changed. If the boiler can be controlled, what communications medium and what protocol is used? Is this documented anywhere?

Many thanks - Rowan

Do you have a thermostat?

If they have a knob that you use to set the temp you can move that knob with a servo.

I have a thermostat on my hot water cylinder, and two Honeywell T3R wireless controllers, one for upstairs and one for downstairs. The Honeywell controllers are clearly not fit for purpose though, since downstairs I have sitting room and bedrooms which have totally different heating requirements, and upstairs I have the study plus a bedroom, which also have different requirements. I need to replace these with intelligent OpenHAB rules controlling the radiators via wireless actuators.


Yes but if there is an RS232 or USB or I2C or SPI or other control input, that would be a tedious and expensive way of doing it. Is there such an input?

Thanks - Rowan

I don’t know it only gets cold enough here to put a jumper on in the winter.

What hardware do you have in your house for heating?

Would these help

Thank you for showing me these. There are all sorts of interesting products here that I had not previously found. However, if I have understood their prices correctly it still costs $157 for 6 actuators plus the WiFi gateway, so to equip my house (19 radiators) will cost nearly $500. This seems excessive to me. Also the device still incorporates a display, touch controls, a thermal sensor, none of which I need. Also it is not clear that the gateway can be controlled by an external system such as OpenHAB. So it seems as if I am paying for a lot of functionality that I don’t need, and even then not necessarily getting a solution that will work with OpenHAB.

To repeat, what I need is a low cost battery powered device with wireless control (Bluetooth, Zigbee, Z-Wave, 433 MHz or similar), which will simply open and close the valve, indicate battery level, and maybe report back on valve position. I do NOT need a temperature sensor, a display, any local controls, the ability to store daily or weekly programmes or to operate without remote control. I will simply send an “open” command from my central house controller when I want to open that valve, and a “close” command to close it. Temperature will be measured by a separate sensor nowhere near the radiator, connected to the house controller.

Does anyone know of such a device?

Thanks - Rowan

Such a device probably does not exist.

General purpose valves, such as might also be used in irrigation systems etc., are wired.

Battery devices for various wireless technologies also have temperature sensors.
Given you requirements with unusual room layouts, I’m not sure what the objection is.

“Thermostat” type valves can be coerced into on/off usage by commanding impossibly high or low temp targets.
But valves suited for single radiator flow are unlikely to be up to controlling full system flows.

The reason people asked what your current control arrangements are is to see if that can be hijacked for what you want. E.g replacing an existing room stat with a smart one.

For info, I have discovered that I can buy the Eurotronic Genius BLE 100 radiator actuator (which is battery powered and has wireless connectivity via Bluetooth) from Reichelt for £9.55. Using this would mean that I need several Ethernet to Bluetooth gateways to cover my whole house, but this still sounds an effective and economic way to achieve what I want. So much for the theory that no-one is going to make anything like this for less than £10.

Thanks - Rowan