When winter comes, you’re going to be grateful for your boiler. A well-maintained boiler is critical to keeping your home warm and toasty during the cold months. It pays to make sure it’s in tip-top condition. Like other systems around the house, your boiler will exhibit certain “symptoms” to let you know when trouble is brewing.
Keep an eye out for these warning signs so you can address boiler issues straight away.
1. Water leaks
Water leaks are always a sign you need emergency plumbing services stat, whether it’s a sign of broken pipes or an issue with the boiler. Leaks can cause severe water damage to your home. It also encourages mould and mildew growth, which can affect your health. Any leak can also damage the boiler by corroding adjacent parts and disturbing nearby electrical components.
Whatever the cause of the leak, contact a plumbing service immediately to get the boiler looked at immediately. Quick action on your part is crucial when it comes to minimizing water damage to the house.
2. Strange sounds
Systems making strange noises is also another clear indicator of a problem, whether it’s clanking pipes or sudden hissing. Boilers often make noises when starting up, running, or shutting down, and you may become used enough to them not to notice.
In case of unusual sounds like whistling or banging, however, those tend to stick out. The sounds usually indicate buildup in the boiler. As boiler deposits grow, it affects the water flow. Disturbing the water often causes it to steam or boil, resulting in those strange noises. Once you notice any unusual sounds, contact a plumber immediately to clean the boiler and remove the deposits. Move right away to increase the boiler’s efficiency and prevent damage to the system’s inner workings.
3. Unpleasant odours
Foul smells are usually a bad sign in general. For boilers, it may indicate a serious issue. In the case of gas-operated boilers, unpleasant odours may be a sign of leaks. Avoid any sparks from lighters and open flames, and call a boiler contractor right away to address the problem. More modern boilers may also give off smells when experiencing problems. The smell of burned metal, plastic, or oil might mean overheating in some part of the system, like the electronics. Whatever the cause, always take note when you suddenly catch any overpowering odours.
4. Low water pressure
Low water pressure is almost always an indicator of a problem with your plumbing or heating systems. When it comes to the boiler, low water pressure often means the boiler has become blocked from sediment buildup. Annual maintenance is key to keeping the boiler maintained all year round and avoiding any issues.
As a homeowner, it’s usually better to avoid doing any DIY work to fix the problem yourself, especially if you’re not entirely familiar with how the system works. Fixing your heating is a job best left to the pros, so give them a call for any speedy and efficient hot water tank repairs.
5. Lack of heat
Inconsistent heating is another obvious sign that the boiler needs immediate attention. The most unmistakable sign is when the system doesn’t give you any hot water at all or when it provides only water after a while.
There may be multiple reasons behind the failure, but it can be challenging to determine the cause from a glance. For ideal results, contact a professional to get an accurate diagnosis. A technician can get to the heart of the problem, and replace the right parts to get you your warm water back.
6. High energy bills
Sudden spikes in your heating bills are a typical clue that your boiler is experiencing some difficulties. Like other systems, as a boiler wears down, it becomes less efficient over time. To heat your home, the boiler needs to work harder, and consequently burn hotter. Remember to get regular maintenance for your appliance to ensure it keeps operating at peak efficiency. The problem is especially noticeable in older boilers, so it may also be a good idea to look into upgrading your system.
Do some research to find the best boilers for home heating; it’s a great way to find the best unit to heat your home and meet your needs. Many newer boilers use electronic ignitions, removing the need for a pilot to keep running at all times. They also use less fuel to heat the same amount of water, so they can help keep your heating bill lower in the long run.
7. Inefficient home heating
Have you noticed any cold spots around the house when you turn the thermostat up? Does it take longer for the house to warm up when it’s cold? If yes, you may need to call for boiler repair. Cold spots are often a sign of poor circulation from the boiler or through the heating system. Rather than suffer through a cold room or higher heating bills, call a professional to take care of the issue.
Regular maintenance is always key to maximizing your system’s efficiency and cutting down on costs in the long run. Just in case the problem has to do with the radiators, it’s better to have a certified technician do a full inspection than attempt a do-it-yourself fix.
8. Frequent boiler shutdowns
Having the boiler turn itself off regularly isn’t just an annoyance. It’s also a serious sign that something’s wrong with the system. Most boilers have a built-in temperature sensor that triggers a shutdown when it hits a certain point. This failsafe is there to stop the boiler before it hits dangerous temperatures and overheats.
Overheating can have several causes, ranging from faulty parts to low water pressure. Whatever the source of the malfunction, contact a well-trained technician right away to diagnose the problem and help you avoid a plumbing emergency.
Colour changes in the pilot light
Many older types of boilers use pilot lights to light up the burner when needed. Take a look at the pilot light to help you tell when you need boiler servicing. A change in the light’s colour is often an indicator of incomplete combustion. That means the light is giving off carbon monoxide.
Another clue is the smell of rotten eggs. Natural gas is odourless on its own, so a compound is added to it to give that distinctive smell. Alternatively, your pilot light may also suddenly cut out. Call a technician immediately to take care of the pilot light and keep the house safe.
Lack of recent maintenance
Ideally boilers, like most machines, need annual boiler maintenance to stay at peak efficiency. If it’s been a few years since your boiler’s last checkup, now is a good time to call the plumbers. Even if there haven’t been any problems so far, regular inspections is one of the boiler maintenance best practices you can use to stay warned of any undiscovered issues.
Some problems lie in wait and take time to really manifest, so it’s prudent to let the boiler have a checkup so you can catch any issues before they have time to inconvenience you.
When you need quick, reliable plumbing solutions, call The Pleasant Plumber Inc. We offer 24-hour emergency service to help out with your plumbing issues, whether it’s burst pipes or boiler troubles. Give us a call at (204) 930-9360 for quality plumbing whenever you need it.