Central heating and boiler tips

Here is a few things you can do as a homeowner to keep the heating system in your home happy.

Keep radiators bled of air

Keeping radiators vented of air will make sure you are getting the radiators full surface area of heat. When a radiator is cold at the top and hot at the bottom this is a sign there is air in the radiator. All you need is a radiator key pictured below to vent the air. Make sure the heating and hot water is turned off, place a towel or bit of tissue and slowly turn the key anti clock wise (do not fully remove the bleed pin) you will hear the hiss of the air as it leaves the radiator. Once water starts to come from the radiator you have successfully vented it. If no water or air comes from the radiator you may need to add more pressure to your system.

Keeping boiler/system pressure topped up

If you have a pressure gauge on your system then you will have a filling point which is where you keep the water level correct for the system. This should typically be between 1 and 1.5bar. Constant pressure loss over a short period can be caused by a number of faults most commonly lack of servicing or water leaks. It’s important to correct any pressure loss issues as filling up with fresh water can speed up the corrosion process inside your system.

Turn Thermostatic radiator valves.

Thermostatic radiator valves that are not often turned or left off can seize in position, this means when you come to use the radiator it won’t heat up correctly or even at all.

Keep the boiler serviced

There are a number of procedures carried out on a boiler service that ensure the safety, efficiency and longevity of the boiler and system. A boiler service is a must every year if you want to have a safe fully functioning heating system in your home.

Keep the System topped up with inhibitor

Your heating System is a combination of two main substances metal and water when these two react rust is produced, System inhibitors are designed to limit this reaction. Most inhibitors are designed to be added every 5 years or when the system is drained.

Have a magnetic system filter fitted.

A magnetic system filter such as the ADEY Magnaclean are designed to catch iron oxide or sludge which is circulating in the system. Sludge is a major cause of heating breakdowns and reduced efficiency.

Keep the heating header tank covered

Lots of dust and debris floats around in the loft and the last place you want this to end up is in the header tank where it could be sucked into the heating system. Pop a cover on this to keep it clean.

Run your heating during the summer

Once a month run your heating for 5 minutes or so, this keeps things moving and your heating system is less likely to breakdown when you first turn it on after the summer shutdown.

Keep radiators clear

Make sure your radiators are not obstructed by furniture such as sofas pushed up against them or curtains covering them. You will be paying for gas but not getting the full benefits of the gas you have used.

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