Your boiler is the lifeblood of your home, keeping you warm in the winter and maintaining it should be high priority. Not only will you find that keeping on top of potential problems creates fewer hassles for you, it will also reduce the amount of money you spend on your heating system.
Hiring someone to come and maintain your boiler for you is the best way to go. There are a few reasons for this, including the fact that it is just simpler and more efficient to have someone else handle everything. The work required to service the boiler will take away from other things you have to do.
It’s also important to let a profession handle things because they have a good list and know what they’re looking for. The layperson can easily miss something that could lead to bigger problems in the future. Many a plumber has been called out to fix a disaster that was caused by DIY repairs.
What Maintenance Your Boiler Needs
What will the plumber do when they come to work on your boiler? The proper maintenance is essential if you want to keep your system running efficiently. The extra cost of having someone come out once a year or every six months is well worth it, since you’ll save money in the long run.
The plumber doing the maintenance will have a checklist to go through, but it’s a good idea to know what they will be checking.
The plumber will look at the vents and flues to ensure there are no blockages, which could be dangerous and will also keep the boiler from working properly. It will burn more fuel to heat the same amount of space, making it essential that any blockages or dirt in the system be eliminated.
They will also examine the valves and pipes to ensure there are no leaks. Any old or worn out parts should be replaced during this annual exam. The plumber may need to eliminate dust and debris from the system, particularly if you have hard water in your home. The hard water can create lime scale. This builds up in the boiler and impairs its efficiency. During the annual inspection, this should be taken care of via de-scaling.
Certain parts of the boiler will need to be lubricated, as well. Anywhere there are moving parts, such as the fan and pumps need lubrication in order to work at their most efficient. While the plumber is lubricating the fan, they can also clear out any dust. Dust tends to collect on the machinery, and needs to be cleaned on a regular basis.
Finally, anyone doing maintenance will need to flush the boiler. This should be done a couple times a year to eliminate any dirt or debris that has gotten into the boiler. The water needs to be flushed out, gaskets replaced, and then the boiler will need to be refilled.
Once your boiler has been inspected and maintained, you will be advised of any possible issues. This is the best way to prevent problems in the long run.
You can also keep an eye on a few things to do with your boiler, throughout the year. Checking water levels, for example, is something that should be done once or twice a month. As long as the water levels are good, you shouldn’t run into major issues. However, if the levels drop for any reason, it could destroy your boiler, so keep an eye on it. Since the system is a closed one, you shouldn’t have to worry about drops in water unless there is a leak. You should be sure to leave the pilot light on when checking the levels.
Hiring a professional to handle things will let you take advantage of their years of experience to check the boiler and find any issues that may not yet be causing problems. If you catch things early enough, you can prevent bigger issues like flooding and gas leaks later on. This is actually a very big reason to do regular checkups and maintenance, to stop small problems from becoming big problems.
Signs You Need a Boiler Replacement
Even if you take the best care of your boiler , it will eventually need to be replaced. Not sure when that might be? Here are a few of the signs that your boiler is about to need a replacement.
It’s more than 15 years old: While maintenance can keep boilers running for longer than this, it’s rarely worth it. Newer technology will have advanced enough that you can save money by installing a new boiler. It will be more efficient and safer, so it’s best to replace your boiler every 15 years.
The flame is yellow: A healthy boiler has a blue flame and should always be this colour. Yellow means there may be carbon monoxide present, which can be very dangerous. You should have a carbon monoxide detector installed in your home, but check the flame regularly, as well. If it’s yellow, your boiler needs to be fixed or replaced immediately.
The boiler is leaking: While leaks can be fixed, they are often an indication that your boiler is getting on in age and needs to be retired. Leaks may cause short circuits and structural damage, so it’s best to repair these as soon as possible. More than a couple of leaks in a few months indicate a bigger problem, so you should start looking for a new boiler.
You’re paying more in fuel: If you notice that your boiler is using more fuel than usual, that’s usually an indication that your boiler is becoming less efficient. It wastes fuel and that can mean higher fuel costs. Sometimes the defect is something that you can repair, but other times it will require a replacement being installed.
The house is not evenly heated: When you notice that the heat level is different in each room of the house, this indicates an issue with the boiler or the pipes. The boiler may also take a lot longer to heat up in the first place. You’ll need to get it checked out and you may find out that there is no repair for the problem. That’s when you’ll need to look for local plumbers to get a replacement boiler.
Repairs are becoming more and more common: A new boiler shouldn’t need any repairs, just maintenance on a regular basis. If you continue to repair your boiler, it means there’s a need for a new boiler. This is particularly true if you find that more and more parts are hard to find when you do need to repair the boiler, indicating your boiler is too old and needs to be replaced, too.
Through proper maintenance, you can keep your heating system running well for many years, but eventually, there will come a time when you need to buy a new boiler and have it installed. You’ll be impressed with the efficiency. The next step is to keep it operating well over time.
Find Local Plumbers for Boiler Installation
If you need to replace your boiler or have it maintained, it’s a good idea to call in the professionals. Look for local plumbers who can come out to install the boiler and maintain it in the long run.
While you can obviously get people to install the boiler initially, it’s best if you can form a relationship with the plumber. How do you go about choosing the right one?
Ideally, you’ll find plumbers who are professional and have years of experience. Since there may be an emergency at some point, you’ll also want a plumber who can come to your rescue at any point. It may be preferable to go with a company that has multiple plumbers so there is always someone available to help you out.
There’s a good reason you want a professional doing your maintenance and checkups. Even though you can learn to do this stuff yourself, a pro plumber has years of experience. They can pick up on problems faster than you can and may even catch issues that you would miss completely. It’s worth hiring someone else to come in and help.
Ready to start scheduling your boiler maintenance? Leave it up to the professionals at GasTech to handle everything for you. Contact us today to find out how we can help.