Diagnosing boiler leaks can be a difficult task. It needs a strategic approach and a close look at the boiler from top to bottom. In most cases, boiler leaks are not serious and can be repaired rather easily. But, left unattended, they can affect the performance of the boiler and cause significant damage.
Before you call in the experts, you can attempt to diagnose the boiler yourself if you have some experience. Sometimes, boiler leaks are easy to fix and you can save yourself a hefty repair bill. But, fixing a leak can also be dangerous. If you haven’t worked on a boiler before or you feel uncertain, it might be best to get help.
Common Causes for Boiler Leaks
Faulty pressure valve
If the boiler is leaking from the boiler pressure valve, the pressure of the boiler may be too high. Ideally, the boiler should function at between 18 to 21PSI. The pressure valve is designed to leak if the pressure is too high as safety protection. This helps to prevent other appliances from getting damaged.
All you need to do to determine if this is the problem is to check the needle on your pressure gauge. If it’s out of the green section and in the red, there’s too much pressure in the boiler. It’s also possible that sediments and limescale are trapped inside, which could also cause the valve to leak.
How to fix a leaking pressure valve:
The fix depends on what’s causing the valve to fail. Here’s a quick guide that can help you get to the bottom of things and get your boiler back on its feet.
- Turn off the boiler and give it time to cool off.
- Once it has cooled down, let some of the water out by lifting the manual pressure relief level for about 3 seconds. The water will come gushing out and should be clean. If the leak continues after letting out some of the water, there may be sediment trapped inside.
- Repeat the process to see if the leak stops.
- If that doesn’t help, close the water feed to the boiler, then remove and replace the relief valve.
- Water should come out of the pressure relief valve. If water doesn’t come out, the valve may be plugged. It might need to be replaced.
While you’re in there, you might also want to check the boiler expansion tank. Sometimes, a problematic pressure valve could also indicate the boiler expansion tank is filled with water. You might need to address this problem as well.
Keep up to date with our latest news: How does a Boiler Work?
Faulty temperature valves
The leak could also be as a result of a defective temperature valve. If the boiler pressure goes too high, it could trigger a leak. If the temperature valve is faulty, there are no two ways about it. The only way to fix is to replace it. Once it’s repaired, the leak should stop.
Corrosion in the Boiler
For older boilers, one of the most common causes of leaks is corrosion. Corrosion not only affects the boiler but also the pipes and tanks. It causes them to be weak over time and eventually pokes holes causing leaks. The fix depends on the location of the corrosion. If it’s around a valve, replacing the valve could get rid of the problem. If it’s more extensive, you might need to replace the boiler.
Poorly installed pipe fittings
Ill-fitting pipes can be another weak spot for your boiler, and they leak quite easily. If the leaks are happening after recent repairs, it’s worth checking the pipes to see if they fit correctly. If that’s the cause, you need to have the pipes reinstalled and that should take care of the leaks. When the leak has been going for an extended period, the damage to the boiler might be too severe and you might need to change the boiler and pipes.
Faulty seals or pumps
Seals on your boiler pump can come loose. If they do, the boiler can start leaking. Luckily, this is an easy issue to fix. Replacing or resealing the pump will stop the leak. Some boiler problems, including most leaks, are relatively easy to fix. You don’t need an engineer to come over for assistance. With these simple boiler leak fixes, you can get your boiler working again in no time.
However, if you don’t have experience handling boilers, even if the fix is simple, it’s vital to have an engineer give it a look. Boilers can be dangerous, especially in inexperienced hands.
If you need more information on how to fix a leaking boiler, get in touch with our team at Boiler Installation Nottingham.