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Frequently Asked Questions

We get asked a variety of questions on a regular basis by our clients worried about their boiler or central heating system. We have collected these questions and for your convenience, have answered them below so you can quickly find an answer to your question.

If we haven't answered your question or you notice your heating system matches one of the issues listed below, get in contact with us today by giving us a call on 01227 361806.

The heating system is constantly losing pressure what should I do?

If you are constantly losing pressure in the heating system you could try the following to establish the cause:

Check all visible joints including radiator valves and connections for obvious signs of leakage. There needs to be consideration to potential leaks to any under-floor pipe work.

Check that there is no water being discharged from the pressure relief valve. This pipe usually goes from the boiler through to an outside wall and terminates outside. Check this for signs of dripping. If it is wet, this may mean that the pressure relief valve is faulty.

In either case, if your heating system keeps losing pressure, get in contact with a specialist and get professional advice.

What does it mean if the top of the radiator is hot and the bottom cold?

This can be more of a challenge. This can occur on older systems and is often due to a build up of sludge in the bottom of the radiator. Excessive deposits in a central heating system indicate that the water has not been treated with a corrosion inhibitor over the life of the installation, or perhaps the inhibitor has been emptied at some point and not topped up. Other indications are noisy pumps, sticking valves, poor warm up times, intermittent radiator warm up and boiler overheating. Although it is often possible to effect an improvement by adding a chemical 'central heating restorer' to the system or disconnecting the radiator and flushing it out outside with a high pressure hose ultimately the most permanent remedy is professional flushing & cleaning.

Some of my radiators are cold but when I try to bleed them, no water comes out!

This can be caused by an airlock. Try turning all the other radiators in the house off (using the radiator valves noting the number of turns each time) and then try bleeding. Reset the valves to their original positions when you have finished. Alternatively sometimes central heating systems suffer from a 'blocked cold feed', which will gradually cause the system to run out of water because it isolates the water feed and expansion tank from the radiators, pipework, boiler & controls. Repairing a blocked cold feed is not a DIY proposition. Call us for further advice.

My central heating has started coming on with my hot water (whether I want it or not)

This is usually down to a failed motorised valve (on a conventional cylinder/boiler system).

My combination boiler will only deliver hot water when the central heating is on!

This is usually a fault within the diverter valve mechanism; this is not a DIY job. Call us today to speak to a specialist. We only need to be advised on the boiler/system type for an idea on costs.

What does it mean when the pump is ‘whining’ loudly?

It can mean that the bearings are badly worn, there is an obstruction in the flow of water, or there is no water in the system. Call us for an instant quotation.

What are the differences between ‘combination’ and ‘conventional’ boilers?

A combination boiler is where the boiler heats both the central heating and provides instantaneous hot water without needing external tanks or cylinders. However it is worth noting that combination boilers will primarily only serve one tap at a time. Conventional /traditional boilers normally require a stored tank of cold water in the loft area & a hot water storage cylinder in the airing cupboard. This type of system is more suitable if hot water is likely to be required to more than one tap at a time.

Should I have my heating system treated or cleansed?

Worcester thoroughly recommends the good practice of cleansing a heating system as an important part of the boiler installation process. The recommendations within BS7593 should be followed, whilst also paying attention to notes within the boiler's installation and servicing instructions and those instructions as directed by the flushing agent manufacturer. It is best practice to cleanse an existing heating system prior to installation of the new boiler. After the boiler has been installed, the heating system should be cleansed of debris and refilled with inhibitor. Your chosen boiler installer should be fully conversant with all current standards/regulations relating to this part of the installation.

How do I know that my condensate pipe is blocked?

There are 2 main indicators that your boilers condensate pipe may be blocked.

  1. The boiler may make a gurgling sound when attempting to start.
  2. The boiler may repeatedly 'lock out' or stop working and the display may show an error code.
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