Summer may seem like an odd time to consider preparing your boiler for the winter months, however conducting checks on your boiler now could significantly reduce the risk of a breakdown when you need it most. We’ve put together some handy tips and advice, all of which can be carried out before winter arrives. To ensure your boiler and central heating system are both ready for when the cold spell hits, read our tips and advice below;
Service Your Boiler
An annual boiler service is crucial to ensuring your boiler works as expected. During a boiler service, your heating engineer will check the components of your boiler for wear and tear. They will also be able to investigate any deterioration of your heating system before this begins to cause damage to your boiler and system. An annual boiler service is also usually required to maintain manufacturer warranties, so getting a service booked could really help you save money later down the line too. Be sure to get your boiler service conducted by a Gas Safe registered heating engineer for safety and to ensure validation of your warranty.
Insulate Your Pipes
During the winter months, standing water in your pipework can freeze. This can in turn cause your boiler to stop working. Insulating your pipework or keeping your heating on at a constant low temperature can help to prevent this from happening. Use the months ahead of winter to ensure your pipework is insulated and prevent unwanted frost from forming later in the year. Should the water in your pipework freeze during the winter months, you can defrost them simply by pouring over warm water or applying a gentle source of heat such as a hairdryer.
Fit a Carbon Monoxide Alarm
Carbon monoxide is odourless and tasteless therefore easy for a leak to go unnoticed. Carbon monoxide leaks however can potentially be fatal if you’re exposed to vast quantities or exposed over a prolonged period of time. As you’ll be using your boiler more during the winter months, it’s worth investing in a Carbon monoxide alarm as regular smoke detectors will not detect carbon monoxide in your home. Installing a carbon monoxide alarm in your home is quick and easy to do and could potentially save your life. We stock a range of carbon monoxide alarms including this model starting at less than £25.
Check Your Pressure
One of the most common reasons for loss of heat is a result of the boiler pressure dropping. Your boiler will usually have a pressure gauge with a green zone highlighted typically found between 1 and 1.5 bar. Your boiler pressure should be within this zone when the system is cold. If your pressure is dropping or has dropped, it’s likely that you’ll experience a reduced supply of hot water around your system. To avoid this from happening, it’s advised that you keep an eye on your boiler pressure and increase this using the filling loop if too low or bleed the radiators in your home if the pressure is too high.
If your boiler pressure is constantly dropping or increasing, it’s advised that you seek the advice of a Gas Safe registered heating engineer.
When your boiler loses pressure, this can have an impact on efficiency levels and it’s therefore advised that this is rectified as soon as possible. Topping up the pressure in your boiler is quick and simple to do. You can refer to the manufacturer’s installation guide or read our blog here.
Check Your Radiators
Before the winter months arrive, it’s a good idea to test run your heating system and conduct a check on your radiators. If your radiators are cold towards the bottom when calling for heat, you may have trapped air within the radiator. To remove this, all you’ll need to do is to bleed the radiator.
Cold spots on radiators can however be indicative of a wider problem. Sludge build up and dirty water passing through your heating system is associated with cold spots on radiators and can cause poor performance and even result in boiler breakdown. It’s therefore imperative that any such issues are fixed as soon as possible by powerflushing the system or treating with chemicals from the likes of Fernox. Read more about this here.
Keep warm this winter by preparing your boiler for the cold ahead. Our website is stocked with a range of accessories, appliances, filters and chemicals all designed to keep you comfortable and warm. Contact our sales team today for assistance and advice.