Maintaining your boiler regularly is incredibly important but is often something that gets overlooked by the vast majority of homeowners. Boilers can be costly items to repair and replace. When boilers are not operating correctly or efficiently, not only could they cost more to run or even stop you from having your morning shower, they could potentially be putting yours and your family’s health at risk. As such, we’ve put together a handy list of our 8 top hacks to help you get the best out of your boiler, save you money and to keep you safe.
1. Annual Boiler Service
An annual boiler service will:
Your boiler needs to be serviced annually by a properly trained gas safe engineer. They will be able to check all aspects of the boiler are in proper working order and identify any small issues before they turn into an expensive and annoying breakdown.
2. Check and Bleed Your Radiators
As the primary source of heat in most homes a quick check of your radiators at least once a year (ideally before it gets cold) can save you a lot of trouble.
3. Check the Boiler Pressure
If you have a combination or a system boiler then a regular check of the system pressure is essential. Check that the pressure gauge is at the correct level according to the manufacturer’s instructions. The rule of thumb is 1.5 BAR but anywhere between 1 and 2 is usually ok.
If the pressure in the system is too low then the boiler may stop working and if it is too high it may be an indication of a problem with the expansion vessel within the boiler.
4. Cold or cool Radiators
If you find that some radiators are cooler than others or have some that don’t work at all then some of the possible causes could be an improperly balanced system, faulty Thermostatic Radiator Valves (TRV’S) or sludge in the system. Balancing a system is a little more difficult than bleeding radiators but still doable without an engineer. Faulty TRV’s or sludge however, may require an engineer.
5. Check Your Pressure Relief Pipe for Drips
This will be a small (generally 15mm) copper pipe that terminates externally, usually directly beneath the flue position. This pipe connects to the pressure relief valve in the boiler. If you notice that it is dripping or appears to have been dripping recently, this could indicate an issue with the pressure relief valve or the boilers expansion vessel. In either case, consult a heating engineer.
6.Check the Condense Pipe
Anyone that survived ‘The Beast from the East’ will remember the terrible weather conditions that came with it, this kind of cold weather can cause an improperly run condense pipe to freeze.
When the condense pipe on a high efficiency boiler freezes the condense water backs up into the boilers primary heat exchanger which will cause the boiler to lock out on an ignition fault.
This is only an issue if your condense pipe is run externally. If it is then it needs to be run in a larger sized waste pipe and not the 21.5mm overflow pipe that will connect to the boiler.
7. Check the Boiler Flame
This will only really apply to older non condensing boilers that have a little glass window that allow you to see the flame when the boiler is on.
If you do have one of these older boilers then ensure the boiler is burning with a strong blue flame, if the flame is orange or yellow and has a wavy look to it turn the boiler off immediately and contact a Gas Safe registered engineer as this boiler could pose a carbon monoxide risk.
8. Do NOT Attempt a Boiler Repair Yourself
If you have noticed any issues with your boiler, either mentioned above or otherwise, you will need to get in touch with a Gas Safe registered engineer. We are the only people legally allowed to work on gas appliances to make sure they are functioning effectively and most of all safely.
If you would like any help with any of the points we have raised in the article then fill out the form below and we can have one of our highly skilled engineers attend your property to make your boiler is in good working order.