Every 20 seconds a boiler somewhere in the UK comes to a noisy, grinding halt – leaving property inhabitants cold, unwashed and seriously out of out of luck. Whilst you may automatically reach for the phone to call in the plumbers pronto, it may be a simple problem that could be tackled in two minutes flat. Here are five of the most common boiler issues, and advice as to whether they can be handled by yourself, or require professional help.
1.No heat or hot water
There are a number of reasons why your boiler may be failing to produce heat or hot water, the main ones being: low water levels, broken motorised valves, diaphragms and airlocks or problems with the thermostat. In any of these cases, you’ll need to call a plumber.
2.A noisy boiler or clunky central heating
If your central heating or boiler has suddenly become very vocal with all sorts of gurgling, banging, crunching or whirling, then the chances are you’re either dealing with air in the system (which you can handle yourself) or, if you hear a high pitched noise similar to an old-fashioned kettle, you may have a restricted flow of water on your hands (which will require a plumber, as this is due to a build-up of lime scale).
Where a boiler is suffering from falling pressure, there may be a water leak or an issue with what is known as the expansion valve. This issue always requires a professional for proper diagnosis and treatment.
4.A frozen condensate pipe
If you have a condenser boiler, it will have what is known as a condensate pipe, which is responsible for moving the acidic water away from the boiler. You’ll likely be able to spot this pipe by looking out for a plastic tube that typically will be found leading to an outside drain. This pipe can sometimes freeze – however it can be quickly and painlessly defrosted by simply pouring boiling water over it.
5.A pilot light that keeps going out
If you find that your pilot light is either frequently going out, or is burning but has an orange/yellow flame, it’s important to get in touch with your plumbers ASAP. This could be down to a faulty thermocouple disrupting the gas supply, a draught, a build-up of debris or damaged seals. Whatever the cause, a disappearing or discoloured pilot light could also be a sign that your boiler is leaking CO2, so it’s vital you make that call immediately (read our blog on the other signs that your boiler is a death trap).
Still doing battle with a boiler that refuses to play ball? Get in touch with the professionals – speak with the Platinum Plumbers team on 020 8855 0361.