Whether you have a natural gas, LPG, electric, or oil boiler, you must be sure what to fix yourself and which problems require professional assistance. Although it is highly recommended that if you are experiencing any issue with your boiler, you should call a certified boiler engineer, there are some things you can do to resolve basic boiler issues. Before you try these fixes, you need to make some basic checks. You should also be careful when carrying out DIY fixes. If your boiler is still under warranty, your warranty may become invalid if anyone other than the manufacturer’s authorized engineers repair your boiler. If you still want to carry out some basic maintenance, follow our guide below for some simple DIY checks and fixes.
- Checking the Power Supply: Before you begin any fixes, the first thing to check is if your boiler is supplied with the fuel or power it needs. A gas boiler either runs on natural gas ( if you are connected to the national grid) or LPG. An electric boiler runs on electricity, while an oil boiler needs oil.
- Checking the Thermostat: Thermostats are of various types. Some are fully automatic. Thermostats ensure that your water temperature is well-regulated and you get the desired temperature. If your thermostat is set too low, you may not get the desired result. If your thermostat is set too high, your boiler might become inefficient.
- Checking the Pressure: Boiler pressure is essential for a continuous hot water supply, which is why boilers always have a pressure gauge. Check the pressure to see if it is at an adequate level. If it is not, follow our guidelines below to repressurize your boiler.
- Bleeding the Radiators: Bleeding the radiators will release any trapped air, which prevents radiators from working correctly.
- Check for Leaks: If there’s a leak, your boiler may not function correctly. Check for leaks in pipes, valves and other parts of the system. It is advised to get the leaks repaired at the earliest to prevent any complications.
- Checking the Pilot Light: Some boilers have a pilot light, and if you have such a boiler, you have to ensure that it’s lit. You can follow your manual and relight it if it’s not lit.
- Inspect the Condensate Pipe: The condensate pipe is responsible for removing condensation from your boiler. If it’s blocked or frozen, your boiler won’t function correctly. Inspect it for any blockages, and if necessary, thaw it out or clear it.
- Checking the Air Intake: Boilers need a regular supply of fresh air for proper functioning. You have to insure that there is no blockage in the air intake. Clear any blockage for smooth operations.
Even after trying the above DIY fixes, if your boiler does not work properly, it is best to call an experienced engineer to diagnose the problem.
How to Repressurize Your Boiler?
Repressurizing a boiler involves adding water to the heating system to restore the pressure to the correct level. Here’s how to repressurize your boiler:
- Turn Off the Boiler: Before you start, turn off the power to the boiler and wait for it to cool down.
- Locate the Filling Loop: The filling loop is a flexible hose with a valve on each end. It’s usually located near the boiler and may be attached to the pipes or the boiler itself.
- Open the Valves: Open both valves on the filling loop so water can flow into the boiler.
- Watch the Pressure Gauge: Keep an eye on the pressure gauge on your boiler as you fill it. The boiler pressure should ideally be between 1 – 1.5 bar, but check your owner’s manual to confirm the correct pressure for your boiler.
- Add Water: Use a hose or container to add water to the heating system until the pressure gauge reaches the correct level. Don’t overfill it.
- Close the valves: Once the pressure is at the correct level, close both valves on the filling loop.
- Turn the Boiler Back on: Once you’ve repressurized it, turn the power back on and wait for it to heat up.
- Check for Leaks: After repressurizing your boiler, check for any leaks around the filling loop or anywhere else in the system. If you find a leak, call a professional to fix it as soon as possible.
By following these steps, you can repressurize your boiler and get it working correctly again. If you need help performing this task, it’s always best to consult a professional.
How to Reset Your Boiler?
If your boiler isn’t working as it should, you may need to reset it. Here’s how to reset your boiler:
- Turn Off the Power: Before you start, turn off the power to the boiler and wait for it to cool down.
- Find the Reset Button: Look for a button on the control panel of your boiler labelled “reset” or “reboot.” The location of this button may vary depending on the make and model of your boiler, so consult your owner’s manual if you need more clarification.
- Resetting the Boiler: Press and hold the reset button for a few seconds. If it doesn’t reset, repeat the procedure.
- Wait for the Boiler to Start Up: Once you’ve reset it, turn the power back on and wait for it to start up. This may take a few minutes, so be patient.
- Check the Boiler’s Display: After it starts up, check the display to ensure it’s functioning correctly. To resolve any error message, you may have to call a certified and experienced engineer.
It should be noted that boiler resetting should be your last resort. Frequent problems in your boiler may be an indication that it requires professional attention. Some boiler models may require a different reset process, so consult your owner’s manual for specific instructions.
How to Bleed Your Radiators?
Bleeding your radiators is a critical maintenance task that can enhance the efficiency of your heating system. Here’s how you can bleed your radiators:
- Turn off the Heating: Your radiators must cool down before you bleed your radiators. Turn off the heat and give your radiators some time to cool down.
- Locating the Bleed Valve: Radiators have bleed valves located at their top side. Look carefully, and you will find it.
- Preparing the Area: Place a rag or a towel under the bleed valve for containing any water that drips.
- Opening the Valve: Using a screwdriver or a radiator key, open the valve by turning it counterclockwise. You will hear a hissing sound when trapped air escapes from the radiators. Water will start coming out once all the air has escaped.
- Repeat: Repeat this process for every radiator
- Checking the Pressure: Once you have bled all the radiators, you can check the boiler pressure being shown on the pressure indicator. If the pressure is not adequate, follow the boiler instructional manual for repressurizing the system.
How to Change Your Boiler Thermostat Batteries?
To change the batteries in your boiler thermostat, you can follow these steps:
- Locate the Battery Compartment: The battery compartment is usually on the back of the thermostat. Look for a small door or panel that can be easily opened.
- Remove the Old Batteries: Once you have located the battery compartment, you will need to remove the old batteries. Most thermostats use two or three AAA batteries. Use your fingers or a small screwdriver to pry the old batteries out gently.
- Insert the New Batteries: Take the new batteries and insert them into the battery compartment. Follow the correct orientation as indicated by the +/- signs.
- Close the Compartment: Once you have installed the new batteries, close the compartment. You can do this by pressing the panel or door back into place.
- Check the Display: Turn on your thermostat and check the display to make sure the new batteries are working properly. You may need to reprogram your thermostat settings.
- Dispose of the Old Batteries: Make sure to dispose of the old batteries properly. Many communities have recycling programs that accept household batteries.
When to Call a Boiler Engineer?
- No Heating or Hot Water: If your boiler does not provide any heating or hot water, it’s essential to call an engineer. This problem can arise because of several issues, such as faulty pump, faulty pilot light, or a broken thermostat.
- Strange Noises: If your boiler is making strange noises such as banging, whistling or gurgling, it’s a sign that something is wrong. An engineer can identify the source of the noise and fix the problem before it gets worse.
- Leaks: If you notice any water leaking from your boiler or pipes, it’s important to call an engineer. Leaks can cause serious damage to the infrastructure of your home and can also be a safety hazard.
- Unusual Smells: If you smell gas or burning when your boiler is running, it could be a sign of a severe problem. Turn off your boiler immediately and call an engineer as soon as possible.
- High Bills: If your energy bills are rising without any increase in consumption, it indicates low boiler efficiency. A qualified and experienced engineer can inspect your boiler and identify the cause.