🕑 4 minutes read
Ah, the UK winter, can be a magical time when the snow has covered the landscape and transformed it into a picturesque winter wonderland. It’s even more enjoyable if you’re taking in the snow-covered vista inside a warm, cosy and comfortable house that feels like it’s in the middle of summer. That warm cosy feeling has a calming and uplifting effect on one's mood. That is, of course, if your boiler is regularly maintained and happens to be working efficiently and safely.

Where would we be without these beloved gas appliances when winter is upon us?
Keeping your boiler under close supervision during the winter months is essential to ensure the heating doesn’t fail. Be vigilant and engage a gas-registered engineer to investigate any unusual signs or noises that could suggest the boiler is about to break down.

Some boiler issues can be tricky to detect. Still, a professional gas-safe registered engineer will be able to diagnose any potential issues and rectify them before a breakdown and a costly repair. To keep your boiler in peak condition, you must not avoid its annual boiler service.

Common boiler mistakes

• Skipping your Annual Boiler Service.
Not having your boiler serviced annually could prove to be costly in the long run. Not only costly in money terms but in health and safety terms, especially if a carbon monoxide leak goes undetected. It could also mean higher energy bills if the boiler is not working efficiently or the radiators are gummed up with sludge.

If your boiler has been recently installed and is still under guarantee, the boiler manufacturer will stipulate it is serviced annually for the duration of the guarantee. Failure to do so could invalidate any repair claim and leave you paying for the repair/s.

An annual boiler service will ensure the boiler is running efficiently, which can help keep your energy bills under control and, by the way, a lot cheaper than a boiler breakdown and repair!

• Having your annual boiler service in the summer.
The last thing you think about is heating during the summer months if the summer of 2022 is anything to go by. Yes, it was a hot one.

You don't need your boiler to provide heat during summer, but you still need hot water. Summertime is the ideal time to have your boiler thoroughly serviced in preparation for winter to avoid a breakdown when temperatures drop, not to mention the inconvenience when it does. Firing up the boiler and putting it through its paces is recommended; maybe one start-up in the summer and one before the end of autumn. This will help identify any potential problems which you don’t want when the temperatures start dropping!

• Delaying or ignoring necessary repairs and or replacements.
If you have an oil or propane tank, you'll need to keep a close eye on the fuel levels to avoid running too low or before the tank empties. If the fuel level drops too low, debris could end up blocking the fuel filter brought on by a tank that’s run dry. Keep a close eye on your tank's gauge; if it is below 25%, then it's time to call your fuel provider to top up your fuel reserves. If not, getting your heat back might take a thorough cleaning of the filters, which can result in an extra cost.

• Don't ignore any drips or leaks.
A leak could indicate a loose connection or a faulty or cracked pipe. These inconveniences can cause a drop in pressure if not fixed. If it’s an internal leak, it could lead to something more serious. Any signs of drips or leaks must be fixed as soon as possible by a gas-registered heating engineer!

Be aware of the kettle-like sound (light or heavy banging) emanating from your boiler – it may be a warning sign, not just background noise. Any signs that your boiler is not working as it should may, at some point, leave you out in the cold and out of pocket. If this is the case, don't delay; seek a reputable heating company to diagnose and fix the issue.


• Neglecting to check the boiler's pressure.
Any fluctuations in boiler pressure can impact your heating and hot water requirements. It’s advised to check the boiler pressure regularly to see if it is within the recommended pressure range. If the pressure needs to be topped up regularly and it’s not holding, it could be due to any one of the above, i.e., leaking or cracked pipes etc. Checking the pressure frequently is advised. If you have problems with the pressure in your boiler, contact a trustworthy heating company to investigate.

• Check the thermostat.
A thermostat is an essential device for regulating temperature and saving money. With the high price of energy, it’s important to control the temperature setting on the thermostat. First, is the thermostat working as it should, i.e., it recognises the pre-set temperature and shuts down when reached? If it runs continuously, ignoring the pre-set thermostat setting, it could mean the thermostat needs fixing or changing. A boiler running continuously will impact your energy bills considerably in these difficult times. If you recognise the above, contact a heating company in London to fix it.

• Boiler turns off without reason.
When this happens, a fault code usually appears in the boiler panel. Refer to the boiler handbook; it will explain the reason and remedy. It could be something simple that you can fix yourself, such as re-pressurising the boiler. If the handbook suggests something a more intricate or complicated fix, then it’s time to call a qualified gas engineer in London.

Remember, boilers require regular maintenance/servicing in order to remain efficient and safe.
Finally, some boiler faults are caused by a substandard installation. For instance, a boiler with a Kw output that’s too low for your family’s heating and hot water needs. If this is the case, it could mean the boiler has to be on almost continuously to serve the family's needs, which will result in higher energy bills. Sometimes, to save money, it has been known that people turn to a keen DIY-er who is not gas safe registered or legally covered to fix or install a boiler! BEWARE of these individuals as most probably don't have public liability insurance and or don’t offer guarantees.

In addition, when a gas boiler is installed, it has to be registered with the Gas Council, which will demand certain information - such as the boiler make/model/serial number, name of the company or individual who installed it, plus their Gas Safe registration credentials, which must be on the Gas Safe database. All of the above give total traceability (and peace of mind) should something go wrong. So, if you’re tempted to go down the ‘cheap’ route and engage a rogue engineer - DON’T!

⭕ Every landlord must ensure that all rented properties within their property portfolio undergo a gas safety check and annual boiler services, which proves a duty of care to their tenants. Without proof that all the gas appliances in a property have been regularly serviced, it could result in a heavy fine and or imprisonment in the event of a gas-related accident.

Always get professional support!

For every gas boiler or gas appliance repair, it's always best to consult a professional boiler repair service in London to manage your gas appliance repairs and safety check. Failing to service your boiler annually could cost you more than peace of mind. It could mean the boiler manufacturer invalidating their warranty/guarantee. This means if there’s no track record of an annual service etc. could mean that you will have to pay for any costly repairs!

At serviceteam, our qualified boiler engineers can inspect your boiler, assess your home size and heating needs, and help install the correct boiler to suit your family's requirements. Serviceteam is Worcester Bosch-approved installers, but you can have any preferred gas boiler installed by us. Serviceteam Plumbing and Heating are available 24/7 to cover your needs. We provide top-tier gas-safe boiler repair services for domestic and commercial premises throughout London and its surrounding areas.