Over the last few years the whole of the UK has seen harsh winters, each seemingly worse than the last. Snow, gale force winds and heavy rain have been commonplace and flooding has dominated the news.
With the cold winters, we have also seen an increase in boiler breakdowns and a massive rise in the demand for boiler repairs.
However, preparation and foresight is key. There are steps you can take to ensure that you aren’t left without heating whilst waiting for a plumber to carry out boiler repairs.
Check your boiler
Throughout the year, we recommend that you regularly check that your heating is working sufficiently, and once the temperature starts to drop, ensure that you turn it on now and again. This means that your boiler is less likely to break down when you start to use it regularly.
Check your boiler pressure
Combi boilers often stop working purely due to a drop in pressure. If you do experience problems with your boiler, check the pressure dial and check your radiator pipes for any signs of a leak. If you don’t have a leak then you should be able to increase your pressure using the valve handle – but make sure you check the instructions first.
Bleed your radiators
When your heating is on, check the temperature of your radiators at the top and the bottom. If there are patches that are hot and some that are cold then there could be air pockets trapped in the system. This means that you need to bleed your radiators – or removing the trapped air. If you still have a problem once you have bled your radiators then it could be due to sludge, therefore a chemical flush could be required which will need to be carried out by an engineer.
Insulate your pipes
If you have a condensing boiler, pipes are more prone to freezing. Therefore to prevent expensive boiler repairs you will need to insulate your pipes with ‘lagging’, which can be bought at most DIY shops. If the problem persists, you may need to move pipes so that they are internal – this will prevent any future freezing.
You may want to consider taking out a boiler care programme. Most boilers last for between 8 and 12 years, and it’s believed that around six million boilers could be near the end of their life-span. A boiler care programme will give you that added peace of mind.
You could avoid boiler breakdowns or expensive boiler repair costs by having a thorough check before the weather turns. This could work out much cheaper than replacing the boiler as any parts required would be identified before you get the point where the system needs replacing in its entirety. Boilers should be serviced every year, especially when it’s so important to make sure the system is safe.
If you would like further advice on boiler care or a boiler service before it’s too late and you need to have boiler repairs carried out, contact us today. If you smell gas, call the National Grid on 0800 111 999 immediately.