Boiler FAQs

Boiler FAQs

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How do I know if my boiler needs replacing?

If your boiler is making strange noises or smells, or doesn’t seem to be working properly, it may need replacing. Boilers usually last about 15 years. Even if your boiler is working normally, it’s worth replacing when it gets this old.

Can I stay at home while my boiler is being replaced?

When your boiler is being replaced you won’t have hot water or central heating. If you don’t mind this you can stay in your home, and use portable electric heaters if needed.

How does the A-G boiler rating system work?

The A-G scale refers to the energy efficiency of your boiler. G-rated boilers are the least efficient, and give you less heat and hot water for your money. Installing an A-rated boiler will reduce your energy bills and carbon emissions.

How can I tell the age of my boiler?

There is no easy way of telling the age of your boiler simply by looking at the installation. However, there should be records available informing you of the year the boiler was fitted.

By having a boiler service completed, the engineer will be able to tell you the age and efficiency of your boiler and whether a replacement is advised.

How can I tell if I have a combi boiler?

Combi boilers don’t have hot water tanks in the loft or airing cupboard. The boiler will start each time the hot tap is turned on.

Another way of recognising a combi boiler is with the number of pipes. Five pipes indicate a combi; two for heat, two for hot water and one for gas.

How do I know if I have a condensing boiler?

Condensing boilers can often be recognised by the flue and the material this is made from. The flue is located at the back of the boiler and will go through the external wall. Condensing boilers will often have a plastic flue, whereas non-condensing flues will be metal because the waste gas is of a higher temperature.

Should I insulate my home or replace my boiler?

The idea of replacing your boiler is to improve energy efficiency and reduce bills. With an inefficient home you won’t benefit from this, so it’s always advised to ensure your walls and loft in particular are well-insulated. This will effectively mean you’ll need less heat throughout the year, saving even more on energy bills when you do install a replacement.

What size boiler do I need?

Essentially you’ll need a sized boiler which can distribute heat to the various radiators in your home. By investing in a larger boiler than necessary you’ll run the risk of lower efficiencies and unneeded costs.

With the boiler it’s always best to speak with a registered Gas Safe engineer who’ll be able to advise you on the best boiler for your home.

Are condensing combi boilers more efficient than regular condensing boilers?

This isn’t always the case. What’s vital though is selecting a boiler which will cater to your heat and hot water needs. As always, a registered boiler engineer is the best person to speak to regarding this.

Will I need extra ventilation with a condensing boiler?

There are no extra ventilation needs for a condensing boiler, however a purpose made ventilation may be needed if fitted in a compartment.

Could I install the boiler myself?

All gas work MUST be completed by a Gas Safe registered engineer. That means that unless you’re a qualified gas engineer on the Gas Safe register, you must not install a boiler yourself.

How often should I have a boiler service?

Boiler services are needed to ensure of efficiency levels and to highlight any potential faults or problems before it’s too late. It is recommended for boilers to be serviced every 12 months and this will cost between £50 and £75 from a registered boiler engineer.

Should I have a system flush?

System flushes are carried out to improve the efficiency of a home’s heating. When a new boiler is installed it’s important to have a power flush completed to remove sludge and debris, ensuring efficiencies will be as high as possible.

Even if you don’t have a new boiler fitted, having a flush every few years will improve performance and prevent cold spotting in radiators.

How can I get consistent heat from my radiators?

There are two possible fixes to radiators which aren’t providing an adequate amount of heat. Bleeding the radiators is one potential fix, which can be carried out independently. This helps to remove air from the system which is preventing hot water reaching parts of the radiator.

If this doesn’t cure the problem, then an engineer can perform a power flush, removing sludge and grime build-up in the heating system.

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