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My boiler is making a funny noise

installation engineer helping
My boiler is making a funny noise
At this time of year, you’ll be thinking about starting to fire up your boiler and get the central heating on.

When you live in a rural area, the winter chill can come in even quicker and you’ll want to be sure you can rely on your oil boiler. It’s turning ever-colder, and the extra strain on your boiler might flag up a couple of problems you weren’t aware of. Quite often, the first sign will be your boiler making a funny noise.

This can be particularly worrying, especially if it’s started to turn cold and you’re worried about the prospect of going through a cold snap without any heating or hot water. In a rural area, a harsh winter can cause all sorts of logistical problems and a lack of heating is the last thing you want to worry about. When you’re trying to keep your family warm, you’re likely to want to have the problem sorted as quickly as possible to give you ultimate peace of mind.

What’s causing it?

The causes of boilers making funny noises are numerous. It could be a pressure problem, a broken valve, a heat pump issue or a problem with sludge build-up in the water pipes. Noises tend to emanate from combustion fans, warm air furnace blowers or heating oil pumps, all vital parts of your off-mains oil boiler.

If you hear a banging noise when the oil burner starts, there may well be unburned fuel in the combustion chamber or an issue with the chamber itself. Working on boilers can be dangerous and if you don’t have specialist knowledge you should leave it to the professionals. The only way to tell what’s causing the problem for sure is to call a registered boiler engineer to diagnose the fault.

What should I do?

In the first stages, turn off the boiler. If the problem is serious, keeping the boiler switched on could cause further damage. Call an engineer to come out and look at the boiler and diagnose the fault. A simple check of the boiler pressure and levels could save you a call-out, so make sure you check those first.

If you have a service plan with a company for your boiler, you should call the number listed on your paperwork to ensure that you keep within the terms of your agreement.

How can I avoid having issues in the future?

Ensuring you’re covered by a service plan will help to protect against any large future costs. Having your boiler regularly serviced will keep it in good condition and minimise the chance of large problems occurring in the future.

If your boiler is more than fifteen years old, you may have trouble getting cover. In order to minimise the possibility of big problems in the future, and to give yourself peace of mind, you should seriously consider having a new boiler installed.

Looking at oil vs LPG

The benefits of LPG mean that having an LPG boiler installed is something you should seriously consider. With LPG being a cleaner, greener fuel, there’s far less build-up of ash and soot, meaning that maintenance and servicing efforts will be reduced.