If you consider yourself something of a handy person to have around the home, then you may be eager and willing to fix whatever you can yourself, without having to spend money on professional help. Some jobs are tougher than others, however, and boilers can be some of the most complex (and potentially dangerous) appliances in the home.
So, can you fix your own boiler? What can you do to make sure it’s taken care of and what should you do when something goes wrong with it?
Can I repair my own boiler?
One of the fears of the DIYer is that they might end up spending more money than they need to on services that they didn’t necessarily need. Unless you’re certified to work with boilers, however, it’s dangerous to go tinkering by yourself. However, that doesn’t mean there’s nothing that you can do.
One step that might see some minor hiccups cured and a good place to start is resetting the boiler. If you have the manual for your boiler, it should tell you where the reset button is. In most cases, you need to press this for ten seconds. If the problem isn’t fixed after two resets, there’s something more complex wrong with it.
Bleeding your radiator
If you have your boiler turned on and you can hear it working, but your radiators aren’t heating up, then there are two likely causes. The first is that there’s a build up of sludge inside the radiators, made from corroded materials, dirt, and other debris. In this case, you need a professional to flush it and there’s little you can do yourself.
Otherwise, there may be pockets of air trapped inside the water in the radiator, that make it hard for warm water to travel through them effectively enough to keep them heated. If that’s the case, then bleeding the radiator may be your best bet. It can hard to tell the difference as to whether to bleed or flush a radiator, so it’s always worth trying the former.
Turn off your heating and find the valve of the radiator. Holding the key with a cloth, turn it anti-clockwise. If you hear a hissing noise, then that means trapped gas is escaping. It’s wise to have a plastic tray or cup beneath the valve as water can drip out, as well. Once you can no longer hear hissing, tighten the valve by turning the key clockwise again.
Fixing your thermostat
If you have an electronic thermostat, then issues with heating in the home may not have anything to do with the boiler system, itself. Rather, the thermostat might be the issue. Often, dead or low batteries are the culprit. Find your thermostat manual, figure out what kind of batteries it uses and how you can access the battery compartment. If the problem isn’t fixed when you replace the batteries, you may need the help of a professional.
The dangers of boiler DIY
Boilers aren’t just full of hot water. They’re gas appliances. This means that a poor fitting or fix can be extremely dangerous. One of the most serious risks of all is an explosion due to a gas leak. Another danger to be wary of is carbon monoxide poisoning. CO is an invisible odourless gas that can kill if enough is inhaled. Trying to fix your own boiler isn’t just unsafe, it’s potentially deadly.
What to do when your boiler is in trouble
Given the risks associated with trying to do too much boiler repair on your own, it’s wise to err on the side of caution (and sense) and to call a professional when you need to repair your boiler. Boiler repair teams like WeFix aren’t just experienced. We’re also certified, meaning that we have been trained to approach any and all boiler repair jobs with safety in mind first and foremost.
Furthermore, you need a team that’s ensured. This means that should any damage be done to your boiler or property during the repairs, you aren’t left handling the costs. If you try to do some DIY, even if you manage to avoid putting yourself in real danger, there’s a significant risk you might accidentally cause some damage. In the end, that’s only going to increase the costs of repairs.
When in doubt, it’s safe to err on the side of caution with the help of WeFix. Tell us what the problem is and we can provide an instant boiler quote and arrive in no time to ensure that you’re back up and running without any surprise fees or huge additions to the cost.