Getting your boiler serviced is an essential step in making sure your central heating installation is functioning correctly. Having a boiler malfunction can lead to a cold home without any central heating services, something especially unpleasant and potentially dangerous on a chilly winter day.
To prevent this, boiler services from a Gas Safe Registered engineer can help maintain your central heating system. By checking your boiler is working as effectively and efficiently as possible, a heating engineer can ensure your home continues to be a warm, comfortable, and safe place.
Read on to learn more about what happens during a boiler service, from how often your central heating system requires one to what a service actually entails.
What Is A Boiler Service?
For those unfamiliar, a boiler service is a comprehensive check-up of your central heating installation. An engineer, who should be fully qualified and Gas Safe Registered, will undertake a series of procedures to check whether your boiler is working correctly and in a safe, effective manner.
If you have a boiler and central heating installation, a service from an engineer is vital in maintaining the equipment’s long-term whilst keeping your home cosy and energy-efficient in the short term. The expertise of a boiler service engineer can service a central heating system in an appointment that should only last under an hour, resulting in minimal disruption to your life.
The Boiler Service Process:
Heating engineers undertake boiler services by going through comprehensive step-by-step checklists to see how well the device is functioning. By conducting a range of tests, they’ll be able to understand the health and effectiveness which with the boiler operates. This checklist could include;
1. Initial Visual Inspection
The first step is a visual inspection of the boiler. This involves the engineer looking over the device to check for any damage and identify any immediately visible issues with the boiler. They will then clean or change the necessary components if required.
2. Operations Check
As you might know, every boiler has numerous controls and settings. In a boiler service, the heating engineer will test these thoroughly, ensuring the device’s controls and safety features operate correctly.
3. Flue Releases
The flue is the pipe from the boiler to the outside of the house. The nature of the flue’s route and how it has been constructed will be checked, as obstructions to the terminals and the route can disrupt the release of combustion. An inadequate flue can cause safety issues if it isn’t fitted or operating correctly.
The main components of the boiler will be removed, inspected, and cleaned by the heating engineer. These components are the main burner, heat exchanger, flue ways, and ignition pins. They will be checked thoroughly to make sure they have no damage and are ready for typical usage in the central heating system.
5. Other Checks
The heating engineer will then do some more inspections and tests. Their boiler service will ask questions such as:
● Does the flame sense device work properly?
● Is the pilot burner efficient?
● Does the high-limit thermostat function correctly?
● Is there enough ventilation?
● How is the electrical wiring?
● Is the location of the boiler safe? Is it near any combustible materials?
● How is the gas and pressure flow?
● Are the seals effective?
These are only a few questions that will probe whether your boiler is functioning safely and correctly.
6. Maintain Records
The boiler service engineer will make a record of all the tests and checks they undertake. Other information such as boiler pressure and heat input will also be recorded to gain a better understanding of how well the boiler is working. You will be able to keep the engineer’s recordings for future boiler services, inspections, and other issues.
7. Set-Up For Use
Once the boiler is serviced to check how well it works, the engineer will reset the settings adjusted for inspections and tests back to the boiler’s defaults. This will mean that the boiler is functioning as the customer expects it to - if they require a change in settings, the engineer can assist the customer in demonstrating how the controls work for future use.
It is important to remember that the above is a generalised checklist for a boiler service, each job will have its own specific nuances and additional checks. Condensing boilers, for example, will necessitate thorough checks of their drainage system.
The Benefits Of A Boiler Service
Boiler services can be of great benefit to you, the effectiveness of your central heating system, and your property in general. First and foremost, it is worth mentioning the danger of faulty boilers. Between 2010 and 2020, more than one hundred people died every year from accidental carbon monoxide poisoning in England and Wales. A maintained boiler is a safe boiler, keeping you and your family safe from any harm from your heating system.
If there are smaller issues or faults with your boiler, they can easily become larger ones if left unfixed. Having a boiler service can detect minor problems and stop them from becoming larger, more complicated issues with your central heating system. Additionally, by preventing future repairs, this can save you money in the long run.
The cost-effectiveness of boiler services continues with how you can save on energy bills. A heating engineer will thoroughly inspect how efficiently your boiler is functioning and help optimise it for your central heating installation requirements. This will, of course, depend on the age and model of your boiler, but an inspection can make your home energy system more efficient and economical.
How Often Do I Need A Boiler Service?
You should have a boiler service once a year, at the very least, to be certain that it doesn’t have any water or gas leaks. Regular (i.e. yearly) boiler service is an insurance requirement to ensure your boiler is safe in operation. Not having annual boiler services can lead to a breakdown or invalidated warranty on the device, highlighting the importance of keeping track of the maintenance of your heating system.
It is also worth noting that if you’re a landlord, yearly gas safety records are a legal requirement. Having a boiler service during a gas safety check can be a great way to understand how your central heating installation, as a whole, is currently operating and enables any issues to be addressed there and then.
When Else Might I Need A Boiler Service?
Even with yearly service booked in, there are a number of other times that you might need to contact a heating engineer. Some examples of how to know its time for a boiler service include when;
● There is an irregular flame in the boiler
● There is a yellow flame in the boiler
● There are stains and smoke marks on or nearby the boiler
● The boiler is repeatedly overheating or refilling
● There is a drop in water pressure
● The pilot light is going out
If any of these have occurred to your boiler, it is important that you get it serviced at the soonest possible opportunity.
What Does Gas Safe Registered Mean?
All engineers who work with boilers and gas-based central heating installations must be Gas Safe Registered. This is an official register of the engineers legally permitted to work with gas. The register requires certain qualifications and specifications that demonstrate competencies in gas maintenance, such as boiler services and repairs.
You should ask your heating engineer for their Gas Safe Registered credentials in an effort to make sure they are fully qualified to service your boiler.
Gastech - Heating and Plumbing
If you’ve felt compelled by this guide to boiler services, Gastech Heating and Plumbing might be able to help. Our team of Gas Safe Registered heating experts are able to install, maintain, and repair boilers with ease, ensuring that your home is safe, energy-efficient, and cost-effective to run.
Gastech Heating and Plumbing provide additional bathroom design and installation, as well as plumbing and central heating services. With our help, your central heating installation will be operating efficiently and effectively as possible.