Knowledge Base Q&A

How often should I get my boiler serviced?
Gas appliances should be serviced every twelve months its like an mot for your heating system to make sure your appliances are working correctly safely and efficiently. Only gas safe registered engineers are allowed to work on your gas appliances you should make sure they are registered and allowed to work on your appliances by going on the gas safe register and checking them out we also carry a gas safe card with us which you should ask to see when we arrive. If you have a new boiler it will have a warranty with the manufacturer which will require an annual service is carried out annually otherwise it will invalidate the warranty. While servicing we can see if there are signs of problems starting to happen water leaks or seals perishing etc we can’t see everything though so problems can still happen even after having the appliances serviced but we may extend the life of the appliance.

What is a Boiler service?
When we service the boiler we test the gas carrying pipes for any leaks at your gas meter. We take the boiler cover off and clean any dirt from inside if you have a modern boiler we will clean out the condense trap and check the seals we will check the fan we check the boilers emissions with our flue gas analyser and make sure they are within the manufacturers settings set out in the boiler manual we check flue seals and make sure products of combustion are being expelled correctly and we inspect any flue joints it is essential to check flue way are clear as carbon monoxide is very dangerous its tasteless and odourless and you cant see it you may see signs of staining around the flue which will need to be inspected urgently. When the system is checked for efficiency we can make sure its running at its best and is saving you money and helping the environment. No one expects the boiler to stop working and having the boiler serviced reduces the risk of this happening that said things can still happen but when it does you know at Dyers Plumbing and Heating Ltd are here to help you whenever you need us.

How do I know if I need a new boiler?
This is a really good question there are a few reasons why you would need a new boiler but please don’t be rushed into it as it can be a rather large investment but it could save you money and use less gas and give off less emissions. The average heating costs are around 55 percent of what we spend a year on energy bills so if you have an older boiler replacing it with a modern A rated condensing boiler will definitely save money annually especially with updated controls. You can check your boilers online at the energy savings trust this will give you an idea of what upgrading can save you. your current boiler could be leaking or have a part that needs replacing which could make it beyond economic repair or the parts can be obsolete we normally wait until the boiler breaks down before we have them replaced which normally means its when we need them the most so it becomes an emergency and a panic buy in some cases and we could rush in and buy the cheapest option. A budget boiler may be a good option because of the up front saving and they will come with a manufacturers warranty but they may be shorter than the leading boilers. But from experience A budget boiler is not always the best option as they will be more expensive to repair in the future and manufacturers after care may be poor compared to the higher end of the market and some heating engineers will refuse to work on some cheaper brands.

What boiler is right for me?
COMBI BOILER When replacing your boiler there are several things to consider . what fuel type have you got either gas oil lpg or electric . What system do you have currently how many people live in your home and how many baths and showers you have so how much hot water you would need and how good your water pressure is and also how much room you have available. If you’re considering a combination boiler (heats the water when you turn the tap on) there are things we need to know how many radiators do you have what is the water pressure like how many hot water outlets are there a combi boiler will free up some space and removes the need for tanks in the loft and got water cylinder in the airing cupboard. If you have poor water supply all is not lost there are a few other options to help boost he pressure.
HEAT ONLY BOILER this boiler will be used with a hot water cylinder and will provide stored hot water with an immersion heater back up if your boiler fails you still have a means to get hot water and the tank in the loft supplies the cylinder with water.
SYSTEM BOILER this boiler has a pump built in and still uses the hot water cylinder design but the need for the smaller water storage tank in your loft is removed and the system gets filled from the cold mains via a filling loop this way if there’s ever a leak on the system there is only a limited amount of water than can leak out but with the tank in the loft the water is limitless until the water main is isolated which could cause major damage to property. 

How much is a Boiler Service?
boiler service price can vary boiler depending on what boiler you have. manufacturers are usually more expensive than smaller companies we charge from £60 plus vat we also offer a monthly service plan to help spread the cost of the service which helps you budget your money.

Updating Heating Controls
There are a few different ways you can save money other than just replacing your old boiler.
you can have thermostatic radiator valves fitted to each radiator in the house apart from the radiator nearest the room thermostat .This will give you give you easier control of the heating in each room individually some rooms you may want warmer than others and with a simple turn of the valve it can be altered.
A modern room thermostat and programmer will also save money and be easier to control especially with smart controls which can be used via mobile phone apps or computer. A room thermostat will let the boiler know when the house has reached the predetermined temperature that you find comfortable so once your temperature has been met it tells the boiler to stop and stops you wasting energy without the thermostat your boiler would keep going until the temperature setting on the boiler is met and you could find yourself getting to hot and opening windows to cool down.
Having a clean heating system with a magnetic filter fitted will make the system run efficiently heating the radiators evenly without any cold spots or sludge in the system will heat the rooms quicker the filter will be checked annually usually when the boiler service is carried out or more regular if your system is still dirty after the system is cleaned we put inhibitor in the system to help maintain optimum performance and prevent corrosion happening inhibitor levels will be checked on services as well.

What does inhibitor do?
Inhibitor is a chemical we put in your central heating system to prevent the radiators corroding and having sludge or scale building up which will make your system run badly.
the inhibitor prevents damaging the boiler and radiators also most boiler manufacturers and maintenance plan providers will come and test your heating water when they are called to look at a boiler repair and if they find minerals contaminating the system in most cases they will not carry out repairs and invalidate any plans or outstanding warranty and will recommend the system is cleaned there a number of different options available with cleaning systems.

Why is my water black when I bleed my radiators?
When a system is dirty and corroding the magnetite in the system is known as sludge and is blocking up your system so realising this early and getting it cleaned will prevent further costly problems making the boiler and pump work hard and wear out quicker.
What is a power flush?
A power flush is when we connect a cleaning machine to your system and add strong cleaning chemicals to it and it pumps it round your whole system and we do each radiator at a time making sure we get most of any dirt in the system and flush it all out and refill and add the inhibitor we do this on very dirty systems.

Is Chemical cleaning effective?
This is where we add a cleaning chemical to the system and let the boiler and pump push it round your system and normally leave it in the system for a few days and come back and flush it all out and add chemicals this can be an effective way of cleaning a not so dirty system obviously a power flush is more effective but this way can be a bit cheaper. 

What is a magna cleanse?
A magna cleanse is a machine we use which has two large very powerful magnets which collect any metals floating round your heating system we connect it onto the system and add a cleaner and run it around the heating system doing each radiator in turn restoring good even heating on the system which will save money on energy costs and we will flush out the system and refill and add inhibitor.

What do I do if my boiler starts leaking?
if you find water under or around your boiler you should get container to catch the water to prevent any damage happening to anything near. If it’s a large leak you should isolate the main stop cock and electric supply and call a heating engineer so they can come and repair it as soon as possible if left the leak could get worse and cause more damage and be expensive to repair.

What do I do if my pilot light goes out?
If your boiler has a pilot light and it goes out there are normally instructions on the boiler on how to relight it but if it wont stay lit you will need to call a heating engineer to come and change the thermocouple. only gas safe registered engineers can take the front cover off the boiler so this should only be done by them.

My boiler isn’t working and there are lights flashing what do I do?
If you have lights flashing or a code on the screen you can get the boiler manual and see what the light sequence is or what the fault code is and it will tell you roughly what is wrong if it’s a low water pressure code the boiler pressure will need to be increased or if the gas has ran out and the boiler can be reset by simply pressing the reset button if the fault keep coming back please call so we can have a closer look.

Why does my hot water go hot and cold?
There are a few reasons why this can happen the boiler can have a sensor that’s faulty or dirty the boiler pressure could need topping up. The main reason is the plate heat exchanger has a blockage caused by sludge in the system and simply just changing the plate heat exchanger will be cure the problem but if the system isn’t cleaned it will soon block again and you will have to change the part regularly. So a clean out and new part should sort it for years to come.

What is a condensing boiler?
Many people get confused when we talk about condensing boilers they think it means they have to have a combination boiler and lose their hot water cylinder this is not true you can get condensing heat only or system boilers as well as a combination boiler. A condensing boiler is a boiler that is more efficient than the older ones and the flue gases that get expelled from the flue are cooler than the older boilers as they use the heat from the flue. The boilers produce condensation which runs down the flue and through the boiler and to a nearby drain that’s why when we fit new boilers we have to connect it to the drain.