An old inefficient boiler can be one of the major factors in your household bills rising. This can leave you with lukewarm radiators. And the chance your boiler will eventually pack up altogether.
It’s not all bad news, a few checks, and tweaks can get your system performing well again. Read on to see what we recommend.
- Book an annual service.
Treat your boiler like you would your car. Annual servicing keeps it running safely and effectively. This is a no brainer really
Having an annual check by a Gas Safe registered engineer should prevent your boiler from seizing up in the winter. And is a good opportunity for any minor issues to be detected before they become major problems.
- Keep your boiler clean
Not a fixture in your regular cleaning routine. But keeping your boiler dust-free will pay dividends in the long run. You’ll prevent the pipes and tubes from getting clogged up, which could hamper performance and cause higher heating bills.
To prevent dust from settling on your boiler, give its outer housing a wipedown whenever you clean the house. The inside of the boiler will be taken care of during its annual service. Another reason to have your boiler serviced regularly by a Gas Safe engineer. Never attempt to clean your boiler’s interior yourself.
- Bleed your radiators
This minor maintenance task should lead to cheaper bills too. When assessing your radiators, after the heating has been on for an hour or so, the whole radiator should be hot across its entirety. If your radiators are cold along the top then they need bleeding. If they a cold along the bottom, this is a sign they are blocked and require further attention.
- Top up the pressure
Combi boilers are all sealed systems, which means you have to add water to the system via a filling loop. A drop in pressure will affect your boiler’s efficiency but it’s easy to correct. Check the gauge on your boiler. It should read around 1-1.5 bar if the pressure is healthy. If it doesn’t, then you can easily top it up yourself. Having to repeatedly top the pressure up is indication of a bigger issue and will require an engineer’s visit.
- Use a Powerflush
You have bled your radiators and assessed the performance. And found some radiators are hot across the top but cold along the bottom?
“Sludge” will be to blame. Sludge and debris can form deposits in your pipes, radiators, and also in your boiler. These deposits can form to such an extent that your boiler can’t heat your home efficiently, or at all.
If your radiators are suffering from cold spots, some aren’t working, or your heating is very slow to heat your home, it might be time to Powerflush. A Gas Safe registered engineer can do this for you. A Power Flushing machine sends water through your central heating system at high speed. This dislodges any build-ups of sludge, rust, and debris. Your boiler and central heating will be far more efficient afterward and should last longer.
- Insulate your pipes
If your pipework loses heat before it gets to the heat emitters (radiators) your boiler will have to work overtime and will cost you money in the long run. If all your central heating pipes are well lagged (insulated) with easy to fit foam tube lagging. Then the amount of heat lost will be minimal and will keep the heat produced by the boiler concentrated where you want it most, your radiators. Pipe lagging is available at all good DIY stores, just make sure you know the size required. Typically the smaller pipes are 15mm and the larger pipes 22mm
- Turn the heating on
If you left a car sat on your drive for 8 months, chances are it will struggle to start. Your boiler is no different. During the summer months, your boiler is only firing up to provide you with hot water, meaning the internal diverter valve doesn’t move. It’s not uncommon for the diverter valve to become stuck, meaning that when you come to switch your heating on in the autumn, you will find it won’t work. This will lead to an expensive call out and repair.
Avoid this by switching your heating on for half an hour every few weeks.
If all else fails… consider a high-efficiency boiler
If, after trying all these tips, you’re still struggling to heat your home and water effectively. It may be time to look at getting a new boiler installation. Modern A-rated condensing boilers are the most efficient on the market and so are the most economical to run.
We explain the basics of A-rated boilers here so you can make an informed choice if this is your next step.
Our range of boiler installation packages starts from as little as £1595 Inc Vat.