Four ways to prevent boiler problems

Many homeowners have discovered that boilers aren’t cheap, so getting the maximum lifespan from the one you have should be a high priority.

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Use professional installers

The well-being of your boiler begins with its installation. It’s hardly ever as simple as dropping in a replacement boiler and connecting a couple of pipes.

Improper boiler installations cause systems to run inefficiently, hitting you in the pocket. By overtaxing pumps and other components, they lead to boiler breakdowns, which is worse. Your problems don’t end there; improper installation voids your boiler’s warranty and your home insurance policy.

DIY gas plumbing is illegal, but even water plumbing is fraught with complications. Victorian homes may have had many plumbing systems over the years, and it often isn’t clear which pipe goes where. Modern combis cut down the number of tanks and pipe runs, but it’s still a challenge delivering correct pressures to different parts of the home, keeping air out of pipes, and ensuring release valves, thermostats and overflows all work reliably.

Routine checks

Check that your pilot lights are lit with a clear blue flame regularly. Bleed radiators of air every two months, and watch those outflow pipes in icy weather.

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Few householders watch their boiler’s pressure gauges. Your boiler manual tells you how and explains how to adjust the pressure valves.

Even fewer test their water, yet TDS (total dissolved solids) meters are cheap online or from aquarium suppliers. Use one to check the purity of the water you drink and the quality of the water in the boiler.

Water quality

Water significantly affects a boiler’s reliability and lifespan. Salts and metallic impurities cause sludge to build up throughout the system. Energy performance degrades, pipes make noises, and joints may leak. Eventually, the boiler will fail.

There are several ways to deal with water impurities, including additives and magnetic filters. Consult an experienced company familiar with water conditions in the region. For example, for advice or an emergency plumber in Gloucester, try

Professional maintenance

Annual boiler inspections are now mandatory for many households. While the chief objective is to ensure gas and ventilation safety, it makes sense to ask your engineers for a full service. Problems that are fixed early are almost always inexpensive and will save you a great deal of money in the longer run.


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