Top 10 Boiler Problems Homeowners Experience

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Sudden boiler issues are never ideal. After all, only a few circumstances are more inconvenient than being in a home without hot water and heating at the peak of the winter. This article discusses several of the most common issues that occur with boiler systems. We will also share potential causes and solutions for these problems. In many cases, you will need to call for HVAC service to get your boiler up and running again.

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Top 10 Boiler Problems Homeowners Experience

Read on to learn a few of the most common boiler issues many homeowners encounter.

Boiler Is Leaking

oxidized boiler pipe due to boiler leak

A leaky boiler is typically due to an internal issue, like the pump seal or pressure relief valve. If the leak is from the pressure valve, it could be that the pressure of the system is too high. On the other hand, a leak stemming from a pump seal could be because the seal has worn out.

A leak in your system’s pipes could be because of corrosion or an issue with how your system was installed. It is recommended that you consult a certified HVAC technician to help find and repair the problem. An HVAC technician might recommend installing a new boiler if the issue is severe.

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Low Boiler Pressure

A built-in pressure gauge can usually tell you if the pressure of your boiler is too low. The ideal boiler pressure is 1.5 bar. A boiler cannot operate as it should if the pressure is below 1.
Issues like a failed component or seal, a system leak, or recently bled radiators can result in low boiler pressure. You can identify the problem by looking for signs of visible leaks. However, never attempt to remove boiler casings. If you find a leak, we recommend contacting an HVAC contractor. If you can’t find a leak, try repressurizing a boiler if possible, but this task is best left to a professional.

No Heating Or Hot Water From the Boiler

image of a woman in a cold showerIt can be frustrating when your boiler doesn’t do what it was designed to do, which is to provide heating and hot water to your home. This can be due to several reasons, like damaged system diaphragms and airlocks, broken thermostats, low pressure, and malfunctioning motorized valves.

Check the pressure gauge to find out if the problem is due to low pressure. If it is below 1, you may need to repressurize it. If a thermostat issue causes intermittent hot water or heating, check the manufacturer’s guide for a viable solution. You can contact the manufacturer for assistance if you can’t find any solutions in the manual.

If these suggestions do not help, it is advisable that you call a trained HVAC technician. After all, a professional is needed to resolve issues like a broken motorized valve or faulty diaphragm.

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Related Article: Best Ways To Maintain Your Hydronic Heating System

Frozen Condensate Pipe

This is a highly common problem, especially during the cold seasons. The condensate pipe’s job is to transport the moisture from the boiler to the exterior drain. The water can freeze during cold weather and cause a blockage. This is a common occurrence in homes where the condensate pipe is installed outside, in a garage, or other unheated spaces. This can cause the water to back up to the boiler and cause a system breakdown.

The good news is that it has a quick and easy fix you can do on your own. A long-term solution for this is lagging or insulating the pipe.

Boiler Radiator Issues

image of a radiator depicting hydronic home heating

Air or sludge buildup inside the radiators usually causes cold patches and other issues. As a result, there is unequal heat distribution throughout the home. Cold patches in various areas can point to different problems. Bleeding the radiator can usually resolve most of the issues with your radiator. Contact a seasoned HVAC technician for help.

Boiler Doesn’t Respond To Thermostat

If you recently have had to adjust the clocks forward or backwards due to time change, you should ensure the device is set at the right time. A boiler that’s completely unresponsive to your thermostat may be due to broken or old controls. However, you can do several checks before concluding the thermostat is completely broken.

First, try changing the batteries. This may sound obvious, but it is a common mistake. You can also try positioning the thermostat closer to the boiler. Ensure that there is no interference causing the problem. If the thermostat problems persist, read the instructions booklet for advice or call the manufacturer for assistance. As always, call an HVAC expert, such as Lawes Company.

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The Boiler Makes Banging, Gurgling, or Whistling Sounds

Boilers normally make some sound while it runs, especially as it is just starting up. However, call a qualified HVAC technician when your boiler suddenly starts making unusual banging, whistling, or gurgling sounds.

Unusual noises from your boiler can be because of air in the system, low water pressure, a faulty pump, or kettling (limescale buildup).

Related Article: Get A Wi-Fi Thermostat For Your Oil-Heated Home

Boiler Pilot Light Keeps Switching Off

Older boilers may be equipped with a pilot light. This should remain lit so that it can light the larger burner inside your boiler. A light that keeps going out may mean the thermocouple is faulty and is cutting off the fuel supply. Other reasons include a draft blowing the light out or a deposit buildup.

You can try reigniting the pilot on your own if you can. Ensure that you follow the boiler manual’s instructions carefully. If you own a gas boiler, ensure its gas stopcock is on before pilot reignition. Verify that you aren’t experiencing gas supply issues by checking other gas appliances. It is advisable that you get in touch with a licensed HVAC technician to help resolve this problem.

This is a more common issue with older boilers because modern units ignite electronically instead of using pilot lights. Consider getting a new boiler installed if the pilot light problem persists.


The Boiler Won’t Turn On (No Power)

When you have a boiler unit that won’t turn on, the first step is to check other appliances and power supplies to see if they work. If they do, check the fuse box and any switches that may have tripped or failed. It is recommended that you call a trained HVAC technician if you cannot find the cause.

A boiler that keeps switching on and off may have low pressure or a blockage that is inhibiting the system. If the pressure gauge is set below 1, repressurize the boiler. You can also call your local HVAC technician for professional assistance.

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Boiler Breakdown

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If the above issues are left unaddressed, your boiler will eventually succumb to a complete breakdown. This requires immediate attention from an HVAC contractor.

Other reasons boilers break down beyond repair are age and inefficiency. If your boiler is old and inefficient, we recommend getting a new system so you can have a system that meets your home’s heating and hot water requirements. Modern and energy-efficient boilers also help reduce your energy bills!

You must keep in mind that you should only conduct simple checks with minimum risk on your boiler. Do not try repairing your boiler yourself because this can be very dangerous.

Related Article: New Efficient Oil Heating Systems Increase Comfort And Decrease Fuel Use

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Call Lawes Company For Your Home Heating Needs

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For top-notch heating and cooling services in the area, get in touch with Lawes Company. Our team of the best professionally certified technicians can provide you with excellent HVAC services, including boiler repairs, furnace installations, air conditioner tune-ups, and more. Each of our skilled techs can service your HVAC system correctly using their extensive knowledge and experience.

Lawes Company guarantees to have highly competitive HVAC service rates in the region. If you need to replace your HVAC system, we can recommend the best one for your home while keeping your budget in mind. Your energy efficiency, indoor air quality, and comfort are always our priorities. To schedule an appointment, call Lawes Company today. We provide free, in-home estimates.

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