How to check your central heating is working

Home appliances are devised to make work easier. However, this is not the case when they breakdown. As a result, we are often forced to call in the handyman who ends up costing us huge amounts of money. One the contrary, such repairs can be made at home by you, saving you money.

Below we are going to look at the ways in which you can check on whether your central heating system is working or not as well as having a look at fixes that you can try yourself to sort out any issues that you might come across.

Fixing your failed radiator

Double-check the basics

A radiator can stop working if it’s out of the monthly plan or either drained out. As a result, it’s crucial that you check on your meter and assess whether you have enough credit to run a radiator. If not, then you’ll need to subscribe for a plan that should sustain you. Afterwards you can then check on whether the devices attached to the radiator (such as the fuse box or the cooker hob) are working.

Monitor Your Recent Power Supply Trend

Just like most devices, radiators are built to work on power. As a result, a power surge or power loss can cause it to reset. If you have had a power loss recently, then you ought to check the timer to see if it is on a reset or not. If so, then you can quickly fix the radiator by reprogramming it. We recommend that you keep your manual handy in case you find it hard reprogramming the timer.

Reset the system

Resetting a device is often a common way of fixing most technical problems. To do this, then you ought to reset the boiler according to its manual. If you have a version from 2003 or before then you can check the pilot light on the radiator. To perform a reset for such devices then you’ll have to turn it off until the light goes out, after which you can relight it and the heater should come back on again.

Check the thermostat temperature

Room temperatures set to below 21 degrees can often stop a heating system. As a result, it’s advisable that you check the thermostat and its temperature. If the temperature is set to below 21 degrees then you should set it higher and see if it starts working again.

On the other hand, if the above tweaks don’t work for you, then you could either try bleeding the radiator or defrosting your condensate pipes.

Bleed the radiator

Bleeding is an essential step for a radiator that is either cold at just the top or hot at just the top. This process can also work a radiator that completely cold too. Bleeding is often done via a key that is purchasable at most hardware stores. Bleeding processes are used to release excessively built-up pressure within the radiator.

  1. Get a radiator key, insert it into the groove in the valve, usually located at the top of your radiator.
  2. Using a rag as shown in the video to catch any drops, as well as to protect your hand, slowly turn the key in an anti-clockwise direction, and listen for a hiss (this is the air escaping.)
  3. When the hissing stops, turn the key clockwise again.
  4. After this you will need to check the boiler pressure, and if you need to increase the pressure you can do this by filling the valve (to about 1.5 on your meter bar.)

To make the process more effective, we recommend bleeding radiators on the bottom floors as you work your way to the upper floors.

If there is a constant pressure drop within your system after a bleeding fix, then it is recommended that you call for help from an engineer.

Precautions for bleeding your radiator

  • Always have a towel by the valves before attempting a bleed on the radiator.
  • Ensure that the radiator is completely cooled before bleeding.
  • For safety, you should hold the key with a piece of cloth as you slowly turn it anti-clockwise to avoid getting burnt.
  • Do NOT use screwdriver as your radiator key.
  • Check on your radiators every month

Defrost the condensate pipe

Defrosting is also useful when it comes to fixing failed radiator systems. Radiator systems have condensate pipes; these condensate pipes often get blocked by condensed air. As a result, the system either has a problem letting gas into the system or a problem letting out condensed air. This problem is most persistent in mid-winter when temperatures often drop drastically.

To diagnose the problem, then you should assess whether the boilers condensate pipe is flashing. The blue flashing light is often fitted by a small window gap at the boiler’s flap. If it’s not flashing as it should, then you ought to ensure safety first by switching of the power system.

You can then attempt a warning repair by evenly kittling hot water by the condensate pipes while focusing on the pipe’s joints. Also, you can try tucking in the tubes with a hot water bottle for half an hour. We recommend using warm water and avoid using boiling water at all costs. However, if this hack doesn’t work for your systems, then you should call in the handyman for a fix.

As seen above, fixing your radiator can be as easy as checking the pilot light, bleeding a radiator, or checking the timer. By following our advice, you should not only save yourself some money that would have been spent on a technician but also have your heating system working in no time.

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