Boiler repair isn't generally something you want to attempt on your own. The mechanism involved contains piping hot water under pressurized conditions. It's best to let professionals handle the job. An ineffective attempt at repair can often lead to the breakdown of other components within the unit, exacerbating the cost to get it up and running.
With that in mind, it is important that homeowners understand some of the symptoms that indicate a faulty boiler to avoid having potentially simple repair jobs turn into catastrophic boiler failures. Here is a brief list of some of the most common indicators that your boiler needs a checkup, along with explanations as to what is likely causing the issue.
Unit Doesn't Produce Heat
When boilers produce only mildly warm heat, or no heat at all, the most common explanation has to do with the machine's water supply. In particular, changes in the water levels inside the unit, or the buildup of residue from hard water, can drastically reduce the heat-generating capabilities of boilers. Many times simply flushing the water in the unit will restore the units heat production, though this is certainly not a task for the uninitiated, and an improperly completed fluid flush can cause major damage to the machine's internals.
A leaking boiler is almost always the result of an incorrect pressure setting inside the unit. Although large leaks are fairly easy to identify, the evaporation that occurs from the heat generated by the unit can seemingly 'patch' smaller leaks. This might seem like a convenient solution in the short term, but left unchecked, those small leaks can snowball into much bigger problems. There is also the possibility that the unit's water circulator or pressure relief valve are damaged and in need of replacement. Even if the leak seems as insignificant as a drop of water every few minutes, it's always best to contact a boiler repair professional to assess the unit's overall condition.
Although you might mistake the sounds for a boiler's normal operation, rumbling and growling noises emanating from the boiler are usually the result of what is known as kettling. Kettling is a result of what happens when lime scale builds up on the boiler's heat exchange mechanism, and can lead to inconsistent and erratic heat generation. Another reason your unit might be rumbling is that there is trapped air in the system. Whatever the cause, boilers making strange noises tend to indicate that something is not working properly.
Overall, these represent the three of the most common issues that plague residential and commercial boilers, and it is always best to have boiler repair professionals from a company like Vowel Plumbing & Heating inspect the unit to comprehensively assess the damage.