Common Boiler Problems: Causes and Quick Fixes

While we always recommend calling a trained engineer to help with boiler problems, many technicians charge by the hour. Considering this, if you are able to diagnose the issue and take a few preliminary steps before you book a repair, you could save the engineers time and cut the cost of your service.

Check out our troubleshooting guide to find out what the most common boiler problems are, how to diagnose them and what steps you should take before you call an engineer.  


Better safe than sorry. If you ever feel uncomfortable handling your central heating system, consult an oftec or gas safe registered engineer

Radiators Do Not Heat


If your radiator is hot at the bottom and cold at the top, this may be due to a buildup of air, rust in the pipes, or an issue with the pump (i.e. the hot water is not being circulated properly).


What to do:

The first thing you should do is bleed your radiators to remove any air that is trapped in the system. If this does not improve the heating issues, you may require a power flush.

Radiator Problems


Boiler Turns Off


This can happen for a number of different reasons, including low water pressure, thermostat issues, or if you have a frozen condensate pipe, air in the system or a faulty pump.


What to do:

If it is cold outside, you may need to thaw your condensate pipe. You can also try bleeding your radiators to remove any air in the system. If you notice that your water pressure is low, you can phone your supplier to see if there is any work going on in your area.

Boiler Problems


Pilot Light Keeps Going Out


The most common reason for this happening is a faulty thermocouple, although it can also be caused by damaged seals.


What to do:

In either case, this matter is best left to a professional.

Pilot Light Going Out



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Noisy Boiler or Noisy Central Heating


A noisy boiler is often caused by “Kettling”, which is a build up of limescale in the heat exchanger. Banging, gurgling, rumbling or whistling pipes can be caused by a build up of limescale or air in the system.


What to do:

By bleeding your radiator or power flushing your pipes, you can remove limescaleand air from your system. If the noise continues, you should book a service with a qualified engineer.

Noisy Central Heating


Thermostat Doesn’t Work Correctly


This could be caused by a faulty thermostat. Older thermostats tend to deteriorate over time, and can cause issues for your central heating system.


What to do:

Before you call an engineer, check out our troubleshooting tips below.  

Broken Thermostat


Boiler is Leaking or Dripping


There are a number of reasons why this may happen, from loose connections inside the boiler, to broken parts.


What to do:

This type of fault can only be fixed by a qualified heating engineer.

Leaking Boiler


Boiler is Losing Pressure


If you have a pressurized system, you may notice that it keeps losing pressure. This could be caused by a water leak, or a problem with the expansion vessel.


What to do:

You may be able to re-pressurize your boiler yourself, by following the instructions in your boiler manual. If not, a trained engineer will be able to help you with this.  

Boiler Losing Pressure





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Troubleshooting boiler problems



Still Experiencing Problems? Book a Boiler Repair Service!


If you've tried our troubleshooting tips and are still having issues, the best thing to do is to book an emergency repair with a qualified engineer.

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