How safe is my boiler?

Is your boiler making a loud noise? Are you wondering why your boiler is leaking? Your boiler can have issues from time to time. Some issues can be very serious and potentially dangerous, while others are easily fixed. We’re here to help you know how to prioritise boiler safety issues, and how to get them sorted.

1. My boiler is leaking water Priority: High

If you find yourself asking, ‘why is my boiler leaking?’ you’ll need to act fast. It could be a sign that an internal part has failed. It’s not necessarily dangerous, but it could be a boiler safety issue. If you spot a boiler leak you should switch off your boiler to make sure the electrics don’t short circuit and to stop water damage in your home. Don’t try and fix it yourself, get a professional Gas Safe engineer to deal with it.

2. My pilot light flame has changed colour Priority: High

A pilot light turning orange or yellow could be a sign of poor combustion, which is very serious. What should you do? Turn your boiler off immediately and contact a Gas Safe engineer to get them to come round and have a look.

You might also notice:

  • Smell of gas when your boiler’s running
  • Scorching or brown/black marks on the boiler
  • Musty smell or signs of soot
  • More condensation than usual on your windows

And remember, if you think you’ve got a carbon monoxide or gas leak, immediately switch off your gas supply at the meter, open your doors and windows to ventilate the house, then leave the home and get outside. Contact the National Gas Emergency line on 0800 111 999.

Remember, you must stay outside and don’t use electrical switches or naked flames until the experts have given it the OK.

3. My pilot light keeps going out Priority: High

If this happens frequently, then get a professional to help. Especially if you’ve also noticed any leaks, noises or any other high priority issues.

4. My boiler is making a loud noise Priority: Medium

Gurgle. Bang. Whistle. Not sounds you want to hear your boiler make. If your boiler is making a loud noise, it’s most likely to be due to a build up of air or material inside your central heating or a drop in the water pressure. It’s not dangerous but if left unattended, it could lead to a boiler breakdown. Noise issues with boilers can be annoying, but we’re here to help you solve them.

5. My boiler keeps turning itself off Priority: Medium

This is another problem that can be linked to low pressure, thermostat issues or even a lack of water in the system. They could all cause your boiler to turn itself off. If you can’t figure it out after trying different methods, a Gas Safe engineer can help. You don’t want to keep having it turn off and on again, so nip it in the bud and get it fixed as soon as you can.

6. My heating and/or hot water isn’t working Priority: Medium

This might sound like a huge problem (and it is really when it’s cold outside or you want a warm bath!) but it could be because of boiler pressure or thermostat problems (more on that later). The good new is that’s a simple fix so you can get your boiler back working soon. Alternatively, it could be an airlock in the system or a broken part. If your boiler’s still not working after checking thermostat or pressure problems, get a Gas Safe registered engineer in to help.

7. My boiler has lost pressure Priority: Low

Check your boiler pressure – you can find out how to do this from your boiler manual or looking up online – the pressure should sit at 1.5 bar. It could be low pressure that’s stopping your system from getting heat and you can fix this yourself by going through a quick check of your boiler gauge. If you want some help with this, check out our handy guide.

8. My condensate pipe is frozen Priority: Low

One of the most common causes of boiler shutdowns is when your boiler’s external pipes freeze over in extreme low temperatures. But thankfully it’s one of the easiest to fix too – once the pipes thaw, it should resolve itself. You can always try fixing it yourself by pouring hot (not boiling) water on the pipe end. Or you could use a hot water bottle or heat wrap to thaw it out. Wait a while, switch the boiler off and on again and hey presto, it should be working. If not, get in touch with a Gas Safe engineer. If this is something that’s happening regularly, we can help to stop your pipes from freezing.

9. My thermostat isn’t working Priority: Low

Dangerous? No. Annoying. Yes. So by making a few small checks, you can fix this problem. Check that the timings haven’t been changed, the temperature adjusted, or crank up the temperature on the thermostat to see if it sets the boiler into action. If not, it could be worth replacing your old thermostat with a new smart thermostat.

Find a Gas Safe engineer

Our expert engineers are all Gas Safe registered so they can come and look at your boiler and central heating and help with any jobs that need doing. They’ll talk you through what needs to be done and give you a fixed price quote.

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