Guide to Heating and Plumbing

Guide to Heating and Plumbing

How to Maintain your Boiler
29.02.2016 17:41

Boilers are one of the largest energy users in a building.  To reduce your boiler costs and to prevent any unnecessary expenses due to unattended operating boilers, it is essential that you know how to maintain them.

Fortunately, maintenance for boilers isn’t that difficult.  Read on for some guidelines.  

  • A Gas Safe registered engineer should have an annual service on your boiler even if it may seem to be working normally.  All the components and parts of the boiler will be checked and cleaned. It is best to have the boiler serviced during September to make sure the boiler can endure the exertion during winter.
  • Boilers that are not being used regularly will cause them to seize up.  It is recommended that the boiler be turned on for 10 to 15 minutes occasionally especially during the summer.Pressure is very substantial for an efficiently working boiler.  Over time, the boiler can lose pressure.  Always check the gauge for the pressure and refer to your manual for the instructions on how to top it up.  You can also ask your plumber for help or instructions.
  • There will be times when air can be trapped in the system causing the bottom of the radiator to feel colder than the top.  When this happens, you would need to bleed the radiators. To bleed the radiator, you will need a bleed key and some tissue or a towel.  Make sure to turn the heating off before bleeding.  Place the key into the valve and turn it counterclockwise for a quarter of a rotation.  You will then hear a hissing sound that would mean that air is escaping.  As soon as water starts dripping, turn the key clockwise to lock it and wipe the water off.  After bleeding, check the pressure gauge again as you may have to top up the pressure.
  • Visually inspect your boiler for any cracks, leaks, noises that don’t seem normal, or any black marks that may mean the boiler has a problem.  Also check for any blockages on the airbricks, vents and flues. As soon as you detect one of these, have it repaired.
  • Blue.  Your boiler’s flame should always be clear blue.  There’s something wrong with the boiler if the flame is yellow or smoky, so call a plumber if you start noticing that the color is changing.
  • Your boiler should have the enough clearance on all sides for proper ventilation.  Anything that may be blocking the sides of your boiler can affect its performance.
  • During cold season where the temperature drops below zero, the external pipes of the boiler are likely to freeze.  For safety purposes, the boiler will cut out.  You can insulate the pipes to prevent them from freezing but if they already have, just pour warm water over the pipe to melt the ice.
  • If you fail to maintain your boiler, it can start producing carbon monoxide.  This gas can kill so it is recommended that a carbon monoxide detector with an alarm is installed in every home. Check it monthly to be sure it’s properly working.

A well-maintained boiler functions better than a faulty one.  A faulty boiler does not only cause you to spend more but also puts your life at risk.  Always keep your boiler maintained to lessen your bills and to save your life. Discover these 5 heating options with pros and cons


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