Does your home depend on a boiler system? Boilers are the heating system of choice for a number of homes and businesses, particularly older constructions. And while this technology might be one of the older ones out there, it certainly isn’t any less effective at keeping your home or business warm and comfortable in an energy-efficient manner. And while boilers do tend to last for decades, they do eventually wear out and need to be replaced.
If you are experiencing any of the following symptoms, a repair may not be the wisest decision. Instead, you should consider a full system replacement and enjoy a new, high-quality heating system that solves this problem while increasing efficiency and overall comfort through even the coldest winter conditions.
Heat-Up Takes Considerably Longer Than Normal
Under normal circumstances, you should start to feel an increase in temperature just a few minutes after turning your boiler on. A properly-working boiler shouldn’t struggle to bring water up to temperature, and within a mere matter of minutes, this heat should be radiating out through rooms controlled by your thermostat. However, if you find that it takes 10 minutes, 15 minutes, or even longer for you to start feeling a difference in temperature in your home, you probably have a potentially serious issue.
A lack of heat can mean one of several things. It could mean your heat exchanging system isn’t working properly. It could mean your boiler isn’t receiving enough fuel or energy to properly heat your system. It could mean you have a leak somewhere in your system, resulting in a loss of water pressure. If your issue is on the more serious end of the spectrum, you shouldn’t hesitate to reach out to a professional plumber to find out more about replacing the system entirely.
Your Boiler Smells Odd
When working properly, a boiler should never emit a smell of any sort when running. A boiler that is emitting a foul stench when operating could be exhibiting one of a number of potentially serious problems. For starters, an exhaust-like smell could be indicative of an exhaust or fuel leak, and that means your boiler could be leaking carbon monoxide—a dangerous, toxic gas.
A foul smell could also be a sign that a key component of your boiler has burned out, either through an energy surge, overheating, or simply just too much use over a long lifespan. If you detect a burning smell when running your boiler, call a professional and have the issue investigated right away.
Your Boiler’s Flame Is Not the Typical Blue Color
When burning propane or natural gas, your boiler’s burner should emit a strong, distinctive blue flame not all that unlike your gas-powered stove or range. If your flame is any other color, there’s a good chance you have a serious issue. A yellow flame is an indication that your boiler is leaking carbon monoxide. Carbon monoxide is generally formed when gas is burned in a low-oxygen environment, preventing carbon emissions from bonding with two oxygen atoms to create carbon dioxide as it would normally. A carbon monoxide leak can be deadly, and thus any boiler exhibiting signs of one of these leaks may need to be completely replaced right away.
“Kettling” is the term used to describe the strange noises a boiler makes when water pressure is strongly inhibited by sludge and limescale buildup in your heat exchanger unit. This is particularly common for boilers that rely on a natural, unfiltered supply of hard water—one of the most common water issues found throughout the United States. As sludge and limescale build up in the lines that heat your water, the pressure in these lines increases and causes irregular water flow throughout the system. As a result, lines vibrate and you might hear a distinct humming or whistling noise. Continuing to operate your boiler under these conditions could result in permanent, irreparable damage.Our team is here to help you with all of your boiler problems this winter! Schedule an inspection or repair by calling Smith’s Plumbing Service at (901) 290-1110 today.