My boiler has been on the fritz for weeks, staying lit for a while and then going out. Worse, it thinks it's still lit and keeps circulating water from the water system without heating it. In effect, my heating system becomes a cooling system, dropping the air temperature in my flat to near zero.
With enough coaxing I can re-light it, but timing is important. If I leave it to when I feel cold in the rest of the flat, all the hot water that had been circulating through the radiators is gone. So I took an old Pentium 3 laptop and old webcam and put my boiler's internal thermometer on Skype. Now I leave a video window open on a laptop down the hall and can hear the boiler's gurglings while watching the circulating water temperature for sudden drops. (In the picture above it's doing well, topping sixty degrees). It helps me get to the boiler early enough to prevent all the hot water from being flushed into the drains.
I am quite conscious that I've plumbed new depths of nerdiness by giving my boiler its own Skype account that I can call anytime. (I have it set to answer my calls and turn on its webcam automatically.) British Gas will be saving me (from my sad self) in six days, if they show up.