A home’s heating system is one of the most used home appliances. However, many people do not think about their boilers until it is too late. This ofte
A home’s heating system is one of the most used home appliances. However, many people do not think about their boilers until it is too late. This often happens when the heating stops working or if they no longer have adequate hot water in the shower. Boiler faults can be costly and frustrating, especially when they happen when you need them the most. Additionally, faults that go unnoticed can be dangerous and this is why it is so important to do regular checks to see if your boiler needs replacing. Below, we will explore what you should be looking out for to see if it is time.
The Boiler’s Age
Most boiler models are rated for about 15 years of operation. With regular maintenance by qualified professionals, this lifespan can be extended by a few years. However, no matter how well you take care of your boiler, you will need to replace it some time. Therefore, if your boiler is over 15 years old, it is time to start thinking about getting it replaced.
Rising Energy Bills
As your boiler gets older, it becomes less efficient which leads to an increase in energy bills. Your boiler’s efficiency is often written on its ERP label which is based on a seven-point colour grade. Green (A-rated) denotes an efficiency of 90%, meaning that 90% of all power consumed is used in the heater. Red (G-rated) denotes an efficiency of 70%.
By replacing a G-rated boiler with an A-rated boiler, you stand to save over £300 annually on your energy bills. Modern condensing systems are the most efficient boilers right now and should be an obvious pick for homeowners looking to save on their energy bills.
As your boiler ages, it will need repairs annually. However, if you are calling a heating engineer to come over more than once a year, it is time to start thinking about getting a new boiler. This is especially the case where the sum of repair costs over a year is close to or greater than the cost of installing a new boiler.
When getting the new boiler, you need to make sure that it is a proven model that will serve you well for 10-15 years or even beyond if taken care of properly. It is therefore vital to get in touch with reputable sellers and installers like Boiler Central. Doing so ensures you get the best model for your needs. Boiler Central will ensure you get a new boiler that will serve you well over that period and that is installed correctly to prevent issues such as leaks after installation. Their site allows you to buy proven boiler models online, have them installed, and even look into financing if you need it.
There Is an Odd Smell When the Boiler Is On
A boiler that is in pristine condition should not produce any odours. Two main odours should concern you; a sulphurous odour and faint smells. The sulphurous odour might indicate that you have a gas leak. In this case, you should turn off the boiler, close all gas valves and get in touch with a gas safe engineer immediately.
The faint smells are usually an indication of a carbon monoxide leak. While carbon monoxide is odourless, the faint smells indicate that the boiler is not burning fuel efficiently. Some other signs of a carbon monoxide leak that may require that you replace your boiler include the flame burning yellow instead of blue, dark soot, too much condensation on the windows and the pilot light burning out frequently.
If you do not notice any of these signs but still get headaches, shortness of breath or feel nauseous, you likely have a carbon monoxide leak and should evacuate immediately.
Radiators Taking Too Long to Heat Up
An efficient boiler – one that is working as it is supposed to – reaches its maximum temperature and starts producing heat as soon as it is turned on. However, you might notice that your radiators are taking too long to get hot. This could be a sign that your radiator is either not working as expected or needs to be replaced.
Before replacing the boiler, check that your heating system does not have any blockages. Sludge causes these blockages which leads to cold spots on your radiators. If you do not have a blockage, it is time to call a Gas Safe Registered engineer.
A Leaking Boiler
Finding out if your boiler is leaking is easy; there will be puddles of water around the boiler. A leak points to faulty internal parts or a boiler that has reached its end of life. A leak can lead to further problems such as corrosion, rust, structural damage to the house as well as lots of wasted water. In the worst of cases, these leaks could cause an electrical short-circuit which could lead to costly repairs.
The Boiler Is Noisy
Your boiler will make some noise, but that is okay for its operation. These noises will include noise when it is switched on and as it starts operation, as well as a low humming sound when it is working.
However, clinking, banging and whirring noises are not normal and could indicate a problem with the boiler. These problems include broken valves, sludge building up or problems with the central heating system or the boiler itself.
The best course of action is to switch the boiler off to avoid further damage and call an engineer. If you have had similar issues resolved in the past or if they are recurring, it is time to get a new boiler.
Replacement Parts Are Getting Harder or Costlier to Find
It is harder to get parts for older boilers and if you do, they will likely be too costly to justify the repairs. But, before you immediately decide to replace the boiler, do some research. Some retailers may have the parts you are looking for, even if they are second-hand parts.
If you cannot find the parts easily or the cost of these parts is too high for you, you need a new boiler.
Although getting a new boiler is costly, it is worth it. You get to avoid costly repairs, the risk of structural damage from leaks and the dangers associated with gas leaks and carbon monoxide positioning.