Summertime is the ideal time of year to give your oil central heating boiler a bit of TLC and reward it for its hard work over the cold, winter months. In the long run, maintaining your boiler can save you money, make it run more efficiently, and alert you to potential problems which if left, could lead to costly repairs or even the need for a new boiler.
So, I wanted to share my simple, top tips with you to give you some help and guidance on how to give your heating oil boiler a bit of pampering. Especially important just now with the current cost of living crisis – let’s face it, we’re all feeling the pinch!
Get your boiler serviced annually
My first tip is to get your boiler serviced each year. You will need to switch your heating oil boiler off at least an hour before your engineer services it, so that all parts have sufficient time to cool down. So having your boiler serviced in the summertime makes perfect sense as it’s the time of year when you don’t need your central heating switched on.
I would most definitely recommend you only get your boiler serviced by an OFTEC qualified heating oil engineer. You can find one by visiting the OFTEC website. The engineer will check your boiler for any signs of wear and tear that could potentially lead to problems in the future if not rectified, change the nozzle which, if blocked, will slow your boiler down and replace any damaged or worn parts, give your boiler and components a good clean, check for impurities and do a carbon monoxide check (carbon monoxide is the lethal gas that’s often referred to as the ‘silent killer’). And your engineer will also check your heating oil tank too as part of your boiler service.
Check your boiler pressure
If your boiler’s pressure bar is too high or too low, it could lead to damage and heating problems, so it’s important to check the pressure on a regular basis. If the pressure is too high there’s more risk of leaks in the system, and if it’s too low, the system won’t work as well. Your boiler’s instruction manual will tell you where the pressure gauge is and what the pressure should be, but if you’re concerned, call out an OFTEC registered engineer to take a look.
Bleed your radiators
Over time, air can become trapped within your radiators, which will reduce the efficiency of your heating system. If your radiators have cold spots, make gurgling noises or take longer than usual to warm up, then they need bleeding. Your heating system needs to be switched off while you do this – although it’s best to bleed them while they’re still a bit warm.
However, I’d recommend you bleed them once a year, even if they’re working properly.
You will need either a radiator key or a flathead screwdriver, depending on the type of radiators you have, and a bit of water is likely to come out, so some old cloths or towels to put on the floor. Then just turn the bleed valve until the trapped air begins to hiss. When a little water starts to trickle out, that means that all the trapped air has gone, and you can close the valve again.
Treat your boiler with our Premium Heating Oil
Our Premium Heating oil is specially formulated to optimize the performance of your boiler. It does come at a small, additional cost, but trust me when I say it’s worth it!
It’s a cleaner burning, more efficient fuel than our standard kerosene – it enhances boiler efficiency by up to 15%, lowering fuel consumption due to better fuel economy, and it also reduces fuel-related breakdowns and boiler service problems. That’s because it helps stop rust developing in your boiler and also prevents sludge building up in your tank.
Don’t run out of oil
It might seem obvious, but keep your eye on your fuel level and I’d really advise you don’t let it get too low, or even run out. If your tank runs dry, it can cause problems for your boiler and your oil fired central heating system.
Of course, the first thing that will happen if you’ve run out of home heating oil, is that your boiler will shut down. It’s possible you will need an engineer to restart it. But also, over time, sludge can settle at the bottom of your tank, especially if it’s old – if your heating oil level falls too low, this sludge can be drawn into your heating system and boiler, clogging filters and preventing your system from working properly. Again, you’ll need an engineer to clean the filters and fuel lines and re-start your boiler.
So I’d always recommend you check your fuel level regularly – the best and easiest way is by dipping it with a clean garden cane, but you can also fit a gauge to monitor your levels.
Then there’s our automatic refilling service which takes care of all this for you – we’ll monitor your heating oil tank for you and top you up when we’re in your area, so you don’t have to think about it and can have peace of mind you’ll not run out of heating oil.
I hope you’ve found my tips on how to look after your heating oil boiler helpful. And don’t forget, I’m always here on hand to give you help where I can and have a chat.
You can call me anytime on 01757 270 337 or email me at Kareena@whiterosefuels.co.uk.