A boiler that overheats has the potential to cause some serious damage to your property. Find out the common causes and learn how to fix them here!
The idea of your boiler overheating can be a scary thought, especially as there is a small chance it could explode should no one notice the issue first. Luckily, if you have a modern boiler, you are at very low risk of this happening as numerous safety features would kick in first. Nevertheless, a boiler that keeps overheating will need to be attended to, usually by a professional engineer. To help you work out what is happening with your boiler, we have shared some of the most common signs, causes and fixes on this page.
Why Should I Be Worried if My Boiler Overheats?
As we’ve said, there is very little chance of your boiler exploding, but this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be worried if your boiler starts to overheat. An overheated boiler does pose other concerns such as a fault that could be damaging the internal components or the risk of toxic gas being released into the property environment.
Before you get too worried, you can breathe a bit easier if you have a modern boiler as they are at much lower risk of causing you harm if the unit overheats. If your boiler is older or hasn’t been professionally installed, then there is a slim risk that it could catch fire – these risks can be mitigated if you get your boiler serviced regularly.
How Can I Tell if My Boiler is Overheating?
If your boiler is overheating, then it will typically lockout and stop working. When you go to the boiler unit to check the issue, it will be displaying an error code that will signify it is overheating. Error codes are simple to look up online or they will be detailed in the user manual for your specific boiler model.
What Are the Common Causes of an Overheated Boiler?
If you are experiencing an overheated boiler or you are keen to avoid it happening then take a look at the common causes so that you can pre-empt a problem before it gets too difficult to manage.
- Limescale Build Up – one of the most common reasons for an overheating boiler is when limescale is left to build up. Typically, limescale gathers on the heat exchanger, stopping it from being able to effectively heat the water it sends through the system. If your boiler has a build-up of limescale then there is a high chance that it will make a whistling sound, giving you the clue you need to arrange for an engineer to flush your boiler and remove the limescale.
- Pump Problems – the pump inside a boiler works to move water around the radiators throughout the property. If a pump fails then the water that the boiler has heated will have nowhere to go, resulting in an overheated boiler. This issue requires an engineer to replace the pump so that the system can resume normal flow again.
- Failed Thermistor – inside your boiler is a thermistor that works to check the temperature of the water, sending signals to the boiler to boost the temperature if it is too cold or lower it if it is too hot. When a thermistor stops working properly, there is a chance that the water could end up being overheated, causing the boiler to also overheat. This problem must be fixed by an engineer who will be able to repair or replace the thermistor.
- Blockages in the boiler – this issue is very common in older systems and causes the boiler to make lots of noises when in use. The noises are due to blockages and blocked pipes can stop your heating from working properly, leading you to put the heating on more. Depending on where the blockage is, you may find that it overheats your boiler when it is working hard to heat your home. There are several different solutions for this issue, with the most popular being a power flush that sends strong chemicals through the entire central heating system in order to clean it out.
Can I Save Money and Fix My Own Boiler?
Many people think that fixing their own boiler is a simple task that will save them time, money and hassle. While there are some superficial boiler issues that you can try to fix yourself, an overheating boiler needs the expertise of a heating engineer. The main reason for this is so that the problem can be correctly diagnosed and any difficult repairs can be done professionally, ensuring your safety.
If you are still tempted to dive in and try to fix your own boiler then it is important to note that by UK law, the only person that can complete repairs on a gas boiler is a Gas Safe certified engineer. It is vital to check the credentials of any potential engineer as the risk to life and your property is significant if an unqualified person attempts to repair your boiler.
What is the Best Way to Avoid an Overheated Boiler?
When it comes to avoiding an overheating boiler, the best way to do this is to implement preventative strategies. The most obvious way to do this is to have your boiler serviced on an annual basis and replaced when it comes to the end of its recommended lifespan.
In reality, the biggest boiler issues tend to boil down to debris that needs to be moved from specific parts of the system. If you want to try to avoid this from happening then you could opt to have an inhibitor put into the system or a magnetic filter installed – both of which will work to reduce the risk of debris occurring.
Ultimately, if your boiler is over 8-10 years old then you should start exploring new boiler options. At Boilers Prices, we have a free comparison tool that you can use to find the right solution as well as access to the best engineers across the country. Avoid an overheating boiler and start looking today!