Winter is the season when your boiler is working overtime and, consequently, a season when it can be especially prone to developing problems. As the temperature outside dramatically drops into minus figures, that’s obviously worrying, considering how heavily you could rely on your boiler to keep yourself comfortably warm.
It’s clear, then, why the adage that “prevention is better than cure” especially applies to boiler issues – so, here are some common examples of winter problems and how you could avoid them.
Strange Noises Coming From My Boiler
After a long summer when your boiler has been required to do minimal work in terms of heating up your property, you may find that when you switch it on for the winter, you’ll be greeted by some weird banging or groaning sounds.
These noises are a result of sludge building up in the boiler and leading the water to move unevenly, which in turn may cause the appliance to malfunction and overheat. While it will still technically work, that might not be the case for too long, so we would urge you to get your boiler serviced as soon as possible.
The Pilot Light Keeps Switching Off
If your boiler’s pilot light has gone out, this could be attributable to a blockage or an issue with the ignition system. For this reason, your first port of call should be the manufacturer’s instructions for getting that pilot light back on – but, if this approach doesn’t work, we would advise that you call out a heating engineer.
Obviously, water freezes in cold temperatures and that can include the water in the exterior pipes of your property’s heating system. Frozen water will be prevented from flowing to your boiler, which, consequently, won’t be able to provide hot water for your taps or radiators.
Attempting to thaw out your exterior pipes in a DIY fashion would risk further damage, so you should arrange for a professional to resolve the issue instead.
If you have a condensing boiler reliant on condensate pipework which lies partially outside the property, then this exposed pipework could potentially freeze, therefore, bringing your boiler’s operations to a halt. This boiler style may make a gurgling noise or show an ‘EA’ error code.
You can safely thaw a frozen condensate pipe yourself by pouring warm – but not boiling – water along the pipe’s length or placing a hot water bottle or heat pad where the pipe is seemingly frozen. Then, once the pipe has defrosted, you should reset your boiler to get it working again.
Low Boiler Pressure
If your boiler’s pressure is left to drop too low, this could adversely affect the functioning of your central heating system. Typically, a modern boiler will display, on its front, a pressure gauge that allows you to check the pressure levels.
However, if you are unsure how to either check or correct the pressure, get in touch with our Gas Safe-accredited engineers, who can help you with an array of other unexpected boiler issues, too. Having your boiler regularly serviced or if it’s already been some time since its last professional check-up, getting it serviced before the colder weather hits, can significantly decrease the chance of your boiler causing any problems during the winter.