Booking a Boiler Service annually is the best way forward...

Your boiler works hard every day to bring together gas, electricity and water to heat up the water for washing and your central heating system. It heats up, cools down, pumps and makes sure your home is warm and comfortable.

Knowing how hard your boiler works, you really need to make sure you are looking after it, and the most important thing is to make sure you have an annual boiler service carried out.

Many people wrongly believe a boiler service is an unnecessary expense, but please read on to find out why you should service your boiler every year. You may be surprised how it could actually save you money and even your life in the long run.

1. Servicing your boiler reduces the likelihood of unnecessary repairs or replacement.

Having an annual service ensures that any problems are picked up sooner rather than later, meaning we can repair or replace any worn or broken parts before it becomes a really big issue.

2. Regular boiler checks can save you money on your energy bills.

An inefficient boiler means higher energy bills. As part of your annual service our engineers ensure your boiler is running as efficiently as possible. If the efficiency of your boiler is really poor we may recommend having a new boiler installed.

3. If you’re a landlord, boiler safety is a legal requirement.

By law anyone renting out their property is required to ensure a Gas safety check has been carried out whereby a qualified Gas Safe engineer will check all gas appliances, including the boiler. If you own a property and do not do this you are breaking the law and put the lives of your tenants at risk.

4. Boiler services help to maintain your boiler’s manufacturer guarantee.

Many boilers come with a long guarantee. As a Worcester Bosch accredited installer, many of the boilers we install have a 10 year guarantee. However, if you don’t maintain the annual servicing of your boiler, you risk voiding the guarantee.

5. Annual Boiler Servicing ensures your boiler is running safely.

During an annual service the Engineer will check your boiler is not giving off dangerous carbon monoxide fumes. Thousands of people are rushed to hospital every year with carbon monoxide poisoning caused by faulty boilers which can prove fatal. It’s also really important that you have a CO alarm installed as well. If you would like us to do this for you please ask when you book in for your annual service.

During a Boiler Service you can expect the Engineer to do the following:

• Remove the boiler casing and look over all the components

• Check the gas pressure and flow is correct

• A flue gas analyser will be used to make sure the boiler is burning the right mixture of gas and air, and that the exhaust gases are correct and safe.

• Check that all the electrical connections are clean and in good condition

• Check the fans and other key components are working efficiently

• Check that seals are intact

• See that the electrodes are in a good condition

• Safety devices are checked over

• Check the condensate trap

• Check over all the water and gas pipework

• Check that your Boiler is working safely and efficiently.

If your boiler has been installed in a cupboard, please make sure you adhere to the manufacturer's recommended clearances so it can work safely and be accessed easily for a Boiler Service. Air vents, grilles and flues must be kept free from blockages. If you feel your Boiler is not running correctly do not remove the case. Only a Gas Safe registered engineer is legally qualified to remove the Boiler casing. If you think there might be a problem with your boiler, call a Gas Safe registered Engineer as gas is extremely dangerous and can cause leaks, fires, explosions and Carbon Monoxide poisoning.

An annual boiler service is just £75. Not really a huge price to pay if it helps keep your family safe and could prevent you having to pay out more in the long run, is it?

Roost Heating covers the Hampshire area centralised around Winchester, Eastleigh, Romsey, Southampton, Bishops Waltham, Hedge End and Locks Heath.

To book your annual boiler service with Roost Heating call us now on 01962 217917 or email hello@roostheating.co.uk

The Pros of Powerflushing your heating system...

 
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What is powerflushing?

A powerflush is a cleansing process that aims to remove any build up of sludge, rust or other debris from your central heating system.

Why do I need to powerflush my heating system?

Rust, dirt and debris from pipes turns into a mud like substance, that we refer to as ‘sludge’. Sludge will make your central heating system really inefficient as it stops the heat being transferred from the boiler into the heating system and from the radiators into your home, and can eventually cause a breakdown. Sludge can make your bills higher, your rooms colder and leave you with an unreliable system.

How would I know if my system needs flushing?

The main signs to look out for are:

• Cold areas on radiators e.g. at the bottom

• Radiators feel cold but pipes are hot

• Excessive noise from the boiler or pump

• Discoloured water when you bleed the radiators

• Heating is slow to warm up

• Some radiators struggle to heat up as well as others

• Boiler regularly shuts down and needs restarting

• No water escapes when you bleed a radiator

• Noisy radiators and or / boiler

• Small leaks in radiators.

 
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What are the benefits of having a powerflush?

• Radiators will get hotter and heat up more quickly

• Your radiators and boiler will sound quieter

• Your system will become more energy efficient meaning cheaper energy bills

• There will be less chance of breakdown

• It will increase the life of your heating system.

Tests carried out by an independent laboratory found that the efficiency of the heating system, when it was flushed and correctly inhibited (based on a 3 bedroom home) resulted in a 6% improvement in efficiency in comparison with an old system that had not been properly treated.

How often should you need a powerflush?

If your system has been well installed and the system water correctly treated with corrosion inhibitor chemicals, you shouldn’t need to powerflush. Older systems that have had problems in the past could need powerflushing every 5-6 years.

I am having a new boiler installed - do I need to have the system powerflushed first?

The boiler manufacturer will only guarantee your new boiler if it has been fitted to a clean system. A system can be cleaned by running the boiler with cleaning chemicals, but a powerflushing pump can move significantly more sludge.

What is the process and how long will it take?

The whole process can last from 4-10 hours depending on how many radiators you have in your home. Our engineer will connect a pump to your central heating system which will push a special chemical through your pipes, radiators and boiler. The specially formulated chemical removes the scale, sludge and rust. The engineer will collect and remove any sludge, leaving you with little mess or disruption.

If you would like a quote for powerflushing get in touch with us.

How to defrost a frozen condensate pipe on your boiler...


Condensing boilers create water when when they’re working effectively…

They all have a specific pipe (usually white plastic and running from your boiler) which routes this condensed water to your drainage system. Ideally the pipe will run internally so it’s not exposed to the cold, but many run (at least partly) outside which means they are at risk of freezing and affecting your boiler function.

 
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There are some things which will reduce the likelihood of frozen condensate pipes (mainly associated with how your boiler pipework is installed):

• Having a fully insulated condensate pipe.

• Having a minimum 32mm diameter condensate pipe.

• The pipe being as short as possible and with as few bends as possible.

• The pipe ending below a drain cover to prevent wind chill.

If your boiler’s condensate pipe does not look to be installed according to these guidelines then why not get in touch with Roost Heating and we can advise on the best course of action.

With severe wintry weather on the way, if you do have an external condensate pipe there is a chance it could freeze. This would cause your boiler to stop working (often making strange noises or displaying an EA error code) but there is a simple and safe technique that you can try to thaw it out and get your boiler back into action.

This process is only recommended if your boiler’s condensate pipe is easy to access and safe to reach. Just pour a jug or watering can of warm (not boiling) water along the exposed length of the pipe (you may need to do it a couple of times). Alternatively put a hot water bottle or heat pad on the exposed section. Then you can reset your boiler and it should start as normal.

If this doesn’t resolve the problem and your boiler is still not working, there may be a more complex issue. If this is the case, just get in touch with the Roost Heating Team and one of our Gas Safe engineers will get your boiler mended for you.

For more information, here is a handy video about defrosting your condensate pipe, courtesy of the Worcester Bosch technical team:

 
 

Thinking of getting your boiler replaced? - Read our Guide...


 
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We know this sort of purchase isn’t one you make with your eyes closed, so we have put together a handy guide to getting a new boiler:

Why might I need to consider new boiler installation?

● Your boiler is no longer efficient enough

- Older systems will naturally be less efficient, meaning higher energy bills. Many boilers were only 60% efficient when installed, and over the years that efficiency would have reduced, so it may be in your best interest to look at a new boiler. New government legislation introduced this year means all new boilers installed from April 2018 will need an ErP efficiency rating of 92% or higher. These boilers will not only be more efficient giving you warmer homes but they are also much safer.

● Your boiler needs regular repairs and is no longer under warranty

- Sadly like anything in life, boilers can start to show signs of wear and tear and if your boiler is no longer covered by a warranty or guarantee this can become costly. If you are having to fork out for repairs on a regular basis it might be time to say goodbye and look at getting a new boiler installed.

● The boiler has been condemned and is irreparable

- if your boiler has been condemned by a Gas Safe Engineer it means your boiler could be dangerous or is not combusting properly, which can lead to fumes and emissions being released in your home. If the engineer has deemed your boiler unfit, he or she will have switched it off and made it safe. If they have told you it is irreparable your next step will be to get a quote for a new boiler to be installed. This is another reason why it is so important to have your boiler serviced regularly, as problems like this are picked up sooner.

● Parts no longer available

- Possibly the most common reason for needing to have a new boiler installed is the fact that older systems may no longer have the parts available for a repair. Whilst it may seem more cost effective to repair a broken boiler, if the parts are no longer manufactured this won’t be possible.



Which Boiler should I consider?

Combination Boilers

- Combination boilers also known as Combi boilers heat the water directly from the mains supply when you turn the tap on, so there is no need for a storage tank or hot water cylinder. This makes them very efficient as there is no need to constantly heat and store water.

Regular Boilers

- Often know as conventional, traditional or heat-only boilers. These boilers are linked to a water cylinder and also require space in a loft or area large enough to hold two storage tanks, one to feed the central heating and one to feed the hot water. This type of boiler is generally installed into older houses, where the property may have a more traditional heating and hot water system.

System Boilers

- A system boiler is similar to a regular boiler in that they are linked to a water cylinder, however, as more components are in the boiler such as the pump more is covered by the manufacturers guarantee.


How long does it take to install a new boiler?

This tends to depend on the age and type of your system, but typically a straightforward boiler installation will be completed within a day. However we can give you a better idea of time scales at the time of quoting.

How much is a new boiler likely to cost me?

The cost of a new boiler depends on several factors such as, which boiler type, the size of your property, whether you use gas, lpg or oil, and how many bathrooms you have. For a quick quote head over here to our website and click on ‘Get a quote’ for a rough idea.

Or for a free no obligation, and more detailed quotation please contact us on 01962 217917 or drop us a line at hello@roostheating.co.uk

Why choose Roost Heating to do your Boiler Installation?

The Roost Heating team are polite and presentable, our engineers are DRB checked and we never use sub contractors.

See our code of conduct here

Meet the Roost Heating team here


As Worcester Bosch accredited installers we specialise in Worcester Bosch ‘which best buy’ boilers all offered with 10 year parts and labour guarantee* for complete peace of mind.

(*remember your boiler must be regularly serviced for the guarantee to stay validated).

Whether you're looking for boiler repairs, boiler servicing or a brand new, brilliantly efficient boiler for a growing brood, we take pride in our workmanship and always offer the highest standards of quality. Roost Heating can deliver a solution to suit and service that will surpass your highest expectations.

Don't just take our word for it though, visit our Checkatrade review page and see what some of our customers say about Roost Heating.

Here at Roost we love to give you the best deal possible, so why not follow us on facebook to keep up to date with our latest boiler servicing and installation offers.


Tareq's Tips #7 - Get your home ready for winter...

 
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If the recent drop in temperature has been a bit of a shock and your heating system seems to be struggling too, then here are some simple things that could help you stay warm all winter:

Review the current situation

When life’s busy it’s easy to overlook the everyday stuff. We often just switch on our heating in the autumn and leave it to do its thing, but taking a moment or two to check your boiler and heating system is running at its best can help keep your bills down and avoid any major faults further down the line.

Take a look at your boiler and check your radiators

There are some clear indicators of a boiler not behaving itself, like strange clunks or clicks, the pilot flame burning yellow or your carbon monoxide monitor going off all the time. Similarly if your radiators are not warming up much (or not at all) and your hot water isn’t hot enough then there’s definitely something wrong. Then all you need to get these problems sorted is a visit from the Roost Heating Team.

Arrange a boiler service

A quick and efficient way to get your heating system back in action is with a boiler service. At Roost Heating we’re competitively priced, Gas Safe and all carry professional ID cards as well as being highly trained and full of bright ideas. Get in touch today to book and you could be feeling warmer in next to no time.

Consider your thermostats

The positioning of your thermostats and whether they’re working properly can make a big difference to your heating system. During a boiler service we’ll look at your thermostats and can suggest changes if necessary. Also you might want to consider upgrading to a smart thermostat system such as Nest or Worcester Wave. These can be controlled from your mobile and will learn to align your lifestyle perfectly with your heating schedule.

Make sure your pipes are insulated

If the weather heads into sub zero territory, you want to avoid frozen pipes at all costs. With frozen pipes come burst pipes and that’s really not what you want on a cold winter’s day. Hot water pipes without insulation will lose heat much more quickly meaning your boiler has to work harder too. Adding pipework lagging or checking that your existing insulation is working effectively is key.

Book a Powerflush

Radiators will be much less sluggish if you regularly give them a good clean out. Gunk gathers in the radiators and pipes but we can help blast this away quickly and cleanly by powerflushing your system. After cleaning out your radiators and pipes we’ll refill your plumbing system with fresh water and a corrosion inhibitor. Powerflushing not only improves the efficiency of your central heating it will also help stabilise your boiler pressure.

If you have an elderly hot water tank, buy it a jacket.

Most modern hot water cylinders come with plenty of insulation, but some older models don’t. Adding a cylinder jacket can significantly reduce heat loss from the tank and help to reduce your winter bills.

Invest in a brand new boiler

Even if your old heating system seems to be working ok, investing in a new boiler can mean that efficiency is improved so much that you’ll quickly recoup the outlay through lower heating bills. Roost Heating can advise on which boiler would suit you best, can supply and install it and make sure it’s all set up exactly as you need - so why not get in touch for a no-obligation quote?

Our Gas Safe tips for #gassafetyweek

 
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We're registered Gas Safe and are always keen to share information about how you can keep your homes safe (as well as warm and energy efficient!). With #gassafetyweek in mind, read Tareq’s top 5 tips on gas safety here:

Get your gas appliances serviced regularly and safety checked every year for your peace of mind. If you rent, your Landlord should be taking care of this and you should ask to check he/she has a Gas Safety Record. If your landlord gets a Gas Safety check from Roost Heating during Gas Safety Week, he/she can get 20% OFF!

Make sure you know the signs of Carbon Monoxide poisoning so you’re not at risk: dizziness, headaches, nausea, loss of consciousness.

Check your gas appliances for signs that they’re not working correctly. If there’s a lot of condensation, any soot or the flame is yellow rather than blue, you may need to call in a heating engineer.

Fit a carbon monoxide alarm and check it regularly to make sure it’s working. Book a boiler service with Roost Heating during Gas Safety Week and you’ll receive a FREE Fire Angel CO Alarm.

Use a Gas Safe registered engineer like Roost Heating. We always carry Gas Safe Register ID cards so you know we’re fully qualified to carry out boiler checks, boiler installations and servicing safely.


To book a Gas Safety check, boiler service or boiler installation, get in touch with Roost Heating today!

Tareq’s Tips #6 Saving water in the Summertime…

 
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This beautiful weather is perfect for BBQ’s, beach trips and a general feeling of holiday-inspired happiness.

The down side is that there’s been so little rain of late that there are already the rumblings of a possible impending hosepipe ban. We each use, on average, a whopping 150 litres of water EVERY DAY to wash, cook and clean.

 
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Being a little more economical about our water usage is important because, although we’re not likely to run out entirely any time soon because of our temperate climate, generating clean water is a costly business. Maintaining the water levels in our reservoirs throughout the year is important for us, because we’re used to the convenience of a constant supply of water and effective plumbing, and it’s important to the wild inhabitants of the country because they need these habitats to survive. 

With the introduction of more and more water meters as standard, most people can benefit by using some simple water saving tips.

These may not all be relevant or practical for everyone but just picking a few to implement into your home could make all the difference to your conscience - and your household bills.

In reality, we’re all guilty of being a little ‘laid back’ about our water usage so now’s as good a time as any for some ‘Tareq’s Tips’ on saving water in your home, day to day.

For starters - top tips for saving water in your bathroom:

Installing a water saving shower head and ultra-low-flush-toilet means you’re instantly using significantly less water. Every minute spent in a power shower uses up to 17 litres of water and the average household flushes the loo 5000 times a year. A low-flush toilet uses only 4-6 litres of water each flush compared to 13 litres in an old style loo and if you can’t stretch to a new toilet, you could opt for a cheap and effective cistern bag.

Taking slightly shorter showers makes a huge difference too. 1 minute less can save up to 7 litres of water (and that saves the energy used to heat it too).

It sounds simple but switching the shower off whilst you’re lathering up or shaving your legs can make a difference, and not leaving the water running for ages before you get into the shower helps too. If your bathroom is freezing cold, or your hot water is unreliable and requires boosting then get in touch with us. You may benefit from a new bathroom radiator or an improved central heating system so you can save energy and reduce water waste.

Lots of people are still guilty of leaving the taps running whilst brushing teeth (this can waste 6 litres of water a minute), or using the toilet as a waste paper basket. It only takes 7 days to break a habit (apparently!) so just sticking up a temporary post-it in the bathroom to remind the family could quickly make the step-change.

When it comes to plumbing, leaky taps, pipes and toilets can be easily resolved and will mean you avoid damage and water wastage, so have a quick check around - or give the Roost Heating team a call if you have concerns.

In the kitchen - here are some simple things you could consider to save water:

Keeping a jug of cold water in the fridge means an end to running the tap to get the water nice and cold for a drink.

Using a washing up bowl rather than just the sink to wash veg, salad or dishes means you can put the left-over water on your plants rather than down the drain.

If you fill the dishwasher up efficiently every time, you use less water than you would washing up. A good excuse not to wash up - but make sure everyone in the family knows how to stack it full!

You don’t need to rinse dirty dishes before they go into the dishwasher  - just scrape off the debris before loading and make sure you clear the dishwasher filter regularly.

Maintaining the garden in the hot weather uses loads of water, but this can be minimised if you follow these water saving tips:

Water outdoor plants in the early morning or at the end of the day to stop water immediately evaporating in sunlight and heat. Water the soil so that the liquid goes straight to the roots, where it’s needed.

Mulching your plants with bark chippings or straw can help reduce evaporation and cut down on watering requirements.

Installing a water butt can save up to 5000 litres of water a year (and rainwater is better for your plants than tap water). Using a watering can rather than a hose may be more intensive but it cuts water use by at least 33% (and does wonders for your arm muscles).

At Roost Heating, we aim to work as sustainably as possible and provide the most efficient and environment-attuned heating systems that we possibly can.

We’re always full of bright ideas about how you can improve the effectiveness and efficiency of your home heating and plumbing systems and if you’re interested in alternative energy solutions like solar panels, ground source heating or air source heating, we can design, install and maintain them for you.

As well as implementing water saving techniques into your every day life, using smart systems like the Nest Thermostat or Worcester Wave can significantly improve your sustainability credentials. These nifty devices can learn about your energy usage and heating requirements and optimise the running of your home systems so that you use less energy overall but can always come home to a cosy home and a hot shower. 

If you’d like to find out about more about improving the efficiency or sustainability of your home heating or plumbing, why not get in touch?

 

A little bit of boiler chat - and some tips on gas safety.

 
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Boilers are often unappreciated, but in reality they’re heating heroes…

Your boiler may just look like a box, hanging around on your wall or lurking, hidden away in a cupboard, but have you ever taken a moment to appreciate what that box does?... 

It works hard every day to bring together gas, electricity and water, heating up the water for your taps and your central heating system. It heats up, cools down, pumps and makes sure your home is warm and comfortable. And that level of dedication is not to be sniffed at.

Knowing how hard your boiler works, you really need to make sure you are looking after it. It’s really important to make sure you have an annual Boiler Service carried out. 

Not only is an annual service important from a safety perspective, it can also make all the difference in terms of reliability, efficiency and the size of your household bills. Getting your boiler serviced could also prevent unnecessary boiler repairs or replacement further down the line too.  It’s important to note that if your boiler is still under warranty or guarantee, having an annual service is actually one of the conditions you have to comply with for the guarantee to stand.

If you are a Landlord, an annual service/gas safety check is a legal requirement for all of your properties. The law also requires that all servicing and gas safety checks are made by a Gas Safe registered Engineer.

 
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A Boiler Service isn’t just a quick check under the cover…

During your boiler service,  you can expect the Engineer to do the following: 

  • Remove the boiler casing and examine the components
  • Check the gas pressure and flow is correct
  • Use a flue gas analyser to make sure the boiler is burning the right mixture
  • of gas and air, and that the exhaust gases are correct and safe
  • Check that all the electrical connections are clean and in good condition
  • Check the fans and other key components are working efficiently
  • Check that seals are intact
  • See that the electrodes are in a good condition
  • Check the safety devices 
  • Check the condensate trap and pipe is not blocked
  • Check over all the water and gas pipework
  • Check that your Boiler is working safely and efficiently overall.

Phew.

 
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There are some basic rules about boiler positioning that should be followed too…

If your boiler has been installed in a cupboard, you'll need to adhere to the manufacturer's recommended clearances so it can work safely and be accessed easily for a Boiler Service. Air vents, grilles and flues must be kept free from blockages. If you have a very old boiler and are concerned about its positioning, we can advise.

If you have concerns about your boiler performance or gas safety, it’s best to act swiftly…

If you feel your Boiler is not running correctly do not be tempted to remove the case. Only a Gas Safe registered engineer is legally qualified to remove a Boiler casing. If you think there might be a problem with your boiler, you’ll need to call a Gas Safe registered Engineer. It’s easy to forget that gas can be extremely dangerous and leaks can lead to fires, explosions and Carbon Monoxide poisoning. 

Roost Heating engineers are all Gas Safe Registered and we cover the Hampshire area, centralised around Winchester, Eastleigh, Romsey, Southampton, Bishops Waltham, Hedge End and Locks Heath. 

 
 

Summer is the perfect time to get your boiler serviced (whether it’s a regular, combi or system boiler) and Roost Heating is currently offering a whopping 30% discount on Boiler Services, which brings the price down to just £49. (Offer valid until 31st August 2018). 

£49 for an annual service is not only a great deal but it helps keep your family safe, and could prevent you having to pay out for a costly boiler repairs or replacement. Book yours now by dropping us a line, or giving us a call.

Oh - one more thing - maybe give your boiler a quick pat next time you're passing. Just so it knows you appreciate it.

A note about tent safety and carbon monoxide...

 
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With the camping and festival season in full swing, this seems a good moment to mention tent safety. Carbon monoxide doesn’t just leak from boilers and gas appliances - it's also produced by gas and charcoal barbecues which means tents and BBQs just don't mix.

It sounds obvious, but the key thing is just never to be tempted to put a BBQ in your tent. Even if it's pouring down with rain, freezing cold or your tent is as big as a house, bringing your BBQ in, even for just a short while, is not safe.

It's not only the fact that it's a potential fire hazard,  the danger arises as barbecues have no way of venting the fumes and smoke, so the carbon monoxide collects inside the tent.

Alarmingly, research shows that 1 in 5 people are unaware that putting a BBQ in your tent is dangerous, and that's why we thought it was worth mentioning.

Happy camping, from the Roost Heating Team.

Get up to speed with Gas Safety...

 
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Gas Safety can be easily overlooked and Carbon Monoxide can be dangerous. 

It's important to take responsibility for your Gas Safety so you can rest assured that you're not at risk of Carbon Monoxide poisoning. Whether you're a homeowner, landlord or tenant, making sure you have an ongoing plan in place to check your boiler is working safely is well worth the effort.

Landlords

New regulations were introduced in April 2018 and it's important to know your gas safety obligations so you can protect your tenants. Landlords can now arrange for Gas Safety checks to be carried out any time from 10-12 calendar months after a previous check, whilst still preserving the original check expiry date. This means that whether a check is carried out less than 10 months or more than 12 months later, it will essentially 'reset the clock' and the new deadline will still be 12 months on - which increases flexibility for Landlords.

Tenants

It is your Landlord's responsibility to provide you with an annual Gas Safety Certificate so if you haven't seen one, best to ask them about it so you can check you're safe from Carbon Monoxide leaks.

Homeowners

Having your boiler serviced means that it will be checked for gas safety. Regular boiler services mean that you can ensure your boiler is running safely, efficiently and effectively. It's a great time to book a Roost Heating Boiler Service because we're currently offering 30% OFF! Find out more here.

Book a Gas Safety check or Boiler Service with Roost Heating...

Just get in touch with Roost Heating if you're a Landlord needing Gas Safety checks or a Homeowner wanting a Boiler Service. Our expert team of Gas Safe Heating Engineers will work swiftly and tidily and leave you feeling confident that your heating system won't be causing you any headaches for another year.

 

Tareq's Tips #5 - If you'd like to reduce your heating costs - we've got some ideas...

 
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It’s fair to say that this time of the year can be a financial minefield...

With bills from Christmas still lurking, more problems than usual with the car, the kids activities starting up again and the start of the new tax year looming, it’s all money, money money. Add to that the cost of heating your home and hot water during this chilly part of the year and it’s no wonder we can tend to feel a bit glum.

At Roost Heating, our aim is always to help customers out with cutting ongoing heating costs as much as we can. Our fully qualified, gas safe heating engineers are full of bright ideas about how you can improve your heating efficiency and save energy. Some heating system improvements like switching to solar heating or completely upgrading your heating system may be a longer term investment for you, with an initial outlay followed by longer term efficiencies, but other changes can be implemented quickly and at a very low cost, so you can start saving straight away.

Here are some plumbing and heating ideas that you can easily put into action to shave off a little bit from your household heating bills (and some  are ideas which we can help you out with too). Easily actionable, they’ll improve heating efficiency and reduce energy usage because as we all know, every little bit helps. If you’re already a moneysaving expert when it comes to your heating and hot water and these simple tips are old news, why not give us a call and we can make some suggestions for tailored energy saving next steps for your household heating system, which you can consider for the longer term? Alternatively a boiler upgrade could help make your home heating more energy efficient.

1. Pimp your radiators

If you have radiators which are fitted to outside walls, you can fix reflective tin foil onto the wall behind them to push more heat into the room. It’ll warm up more quickly and mean your radiator won’t need to work continuously , or as hard - and  that means less energy used. If you think your radiators are inefficient, consider a Roost Heating powerflush which can clear the sludge and get your radiators working more effectively. 

2. Stop the draughts

Badly fitted doors, sash windows, letterboxes and keyholes can allow gusts of wintry wind to bring the temperature down. Simple fixes like draught excluders, adhesive foam strips or fabric stuffing can make a surprising difference. Keeping internal doors closed can help too, particularly if some rooms are more draughty than others.

3. Check your insulation

Around 30% of heat loss from your home is through the roof. If you have no roof insulation, your insulation is very old or it’s not evenly distributed it could well be costing you money. Review your current insulation and add more/new insulation and it can make a significant difference to how warm your house feels and how hefty your heating bills are.

4. Consider your bath's insulation

If you’ve got a cast iron or pressed steel bath but you like a leisurely soak you might find yourself topping up with hot water rather a lot. Adding insulation underneath and around the bath will keep the water warm for longer and save energy.

5. Upgrade your thermostats to smart controls

Effective thermostats will mean your heating and hot water systems are working as efficiently as possible without you having to worry about them (or keep fiddling with them). Opt for controls with load and weather compensation features and consider smart, mobile phone linked systems like Nest or Worcester Wave which are surprisingly cost effective.

6. Switch to thermostatic taps and showers

For safety as well as hot water efficiency, it’s advisable to have thermostatic taps and showers.

7. Drop your home heating thermostat a degree or two

It sounds obvious, but lowering the setting of a room thermostat by just 1 degree Celsius can reduce fuel consumption by up to 10%. Put on an extra layer and think of the saving!

 

The above tips are easy to implement into the average home and can certainly help cut central heating and energy bills. If you do want to look at larger scale solutions to make your home heating and hot water production more efficient, more eco-friendly and more economical in the long term, get in touch with Roost Heating. Just as an example, according to recent figures from the Energy Saving Trust, adding solar water heating panels to your system will give you up to 60% of your hot water for free and our Roost Heating engineers can advise, design and install a state-of-the-art heating system to suit you - and your budget. Just get in touch to find out more.

Tareq's Tips #4. Six handy hints to help keep your house warm through a big chill…

 
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It’s looking like we’re due to see some big drops in temperature through December and there might even be a touch of the white stuff. If your house isn’t keeping you as snug as a bug in a rug, we’ve got a few ideas here for easy ways to stave off the shivers and optimise your home heating throughout the winter season.

1. Cut out drafts

There are plenty of places around the home which can really let a draft in. Adding an insulation strip around your front door for example can really cut out the cold air, as can fitting a letterbox cover and keyhole cover - all easily available from your local diy shop.

2. Get your radiators working harder

At Roost Heating, we always say that bleeding your radiators regularly is a no brainer because it will help to ensure they are working as efficiently as possible. If your radiators are old then a power flush to clear out sludge build up is also a good idea. A simple diy solution to get your radiators working even harder is to add shiny silver foil behind them so more heat is reflected out into the room. If nothing seems to kickstart them into action and they’re still failing to keep you cosy, just get in touch and we can come up with a solution.

3. Achieve the optimum home temperature 

When the temperature drops, it’s often an automatic reaction to turn up your heating thermostat. It’s the thermostat’s job to maintain a constant temperature whatever the weather so fiddling about with it won’t make you any warmer. Just set it to the desired temperature (20 degrees is the general preference) and then let it work its magic. If your thermostat’s not working properly then perhaps it’s time you opted for something a bit smarter - like a nest* thermostat? Find out more here.

4. Get your boiler checked

A cold house can often be due to a boiler that’s not behaving itself. Strange clunking noises, radiators that are gurgling and not getting hot or never enough hot water can all be signs that your heating system needs an overhaul. Best to book a boiler check which may result in a simple boiler fix - and will certainly mean you can rest assured that your boiler is safe. If you do need a brand new boiler, we can advise you on the best, most economical boiler for you and we can install it too so you’ll be toasty in no time.

5. Consider your soft furnishings

Adding blackout blinds behind your curtains, or incorporating thermal interliners within your curtains can keep drafts around windows at bay and help keep your house that bit warmer. Even with modern double glazing, windows can let heat out. Similarly wooden or tiled floors can be warmed up by adding a woolly rug - or you could consider incorporating an underfloor heating system to really heat things up.

 6. Check out your chimney

If you’ve got an open fireplace that’s purely decorative , or a chimney that you never use, it might be creating a draft or taking heat away from the room. You can buy ‘chimney balloons’ at most diy shops and quickly and easily fill the gap. Obviously not suitable if you’re planning on lighting a fire, but definitely worth investing in if you just rely on your central heating system.

When it comes to home heating, economical and efficient heating solutions and clever ways to save energy, at Roost Heating we’re full of bright ideas. For further information on new boilers, underfloor heating, smart thermostats and more - just get in touch.

*If you ‘Like’ our page on FB or ‘Follow us’ on Instagram you could be in with a chance of winning a nest thermostat plus installation! Find out more here.

Tareq's Tips #3 - If your heating isn't working properly, try our troubleshooting ideas.

 
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At this time of year, when it comes to heating it’s off/on… on/off… up/down…

...and it quickly becomes apparent if your radiators aren’t getting up to temperature, if there is any air trapped in the system, if you’re not getting enough hot water or if there’s not enough pressure in your boiler. 

In order to ensure you’ll be kept cosy all winter long, you can book a boiler service from Roost Heating.

We can power flush your system to clear any sludge or you could splash out on a brand new heating system. Before that though, there are some things that you can do yourself to refresh and boost your system - and this in itself could be enough to optimise it for the winter period. Carrying out these simple tasks could kickstart your heating, save you money and even reduce your winter heating bills.

We've come up with our top troubleshooting tips for getting your winter heating up and running.

If carrying out the DIY boiler troubleshooting tips below doesn’t make any difference and your heating is still a little lacklustre, give us a call and we’ll arrange a service visit. You’ll be confident that whatever isn’t working is well worth professional investigation by our gas safe, certified team - and we’ll have your heating running effectively and efficiently in no time.

1. Re pressurise your boiler

If you have a combi or system boiler, which are both sealed systems, there is likely to be a water pressure gauge on the front. This should be at a setting of around 1 bar whilst the heating is off.

When the boiler is operating, the gauge will usually rise to 1.5 bar or more and when the system cools down again it should return to around 1 bar.

If the gauge has dropped below the 1 bar level, the water pressure will need to be topped up with mains cold water. You will only need to do this if you have a sealed system boiler. 

You’ll need to find the boiler’s filling loop, which is probably at the bottom of the unit (it’s basically a loop of pipe with a valve at each end - like a silver hosepipe, but sometimes it;'s integrated into the underneath of the boiler).

Make sure the boiler is turned OFF and the ends of the hose are attached to the valves.

Open the valves and you should be able to hear water filling up the system.

Watch the pressure indicator on the boiler until it reaches 1 bar, then close the valves and switch the boiler back on.

If your boiler pressure is too high, you can find more information here, or if your boiler pressure is still too low, you can find more information here

For filling Worcester Bosch boilers with an integrated filling loop see the following guide:

https://www.worcester-bosch.co.uk/files/news/System_filling_guide.pdf

2. Reset your boiler

Refer to the boiler’s manual to find the reset button and press and hold it for 10 seconds. After a few minutes, the boiler should start working again.

Attempt it a second time if the initial reset doesn’t work. If it's still not working give us a call.

3. Bleed your radiators

With the heating turned on, check the radiators to assess which ones aren’t warm.

Once you’ve identified the ones which need attention, turn off the central heating. Once cool, use a radiator key and attach it to the radiator’s valve.

With a cloth in your hand (to catch water once all of the air is out), slowly turn the key anti-clockwise. If you can hear a hissing sound it means that there is air escaping.

Once all of the air has escaped, the valve needs to be closed again. If you have a sealed system you may need to top up the pressure again. You can find more information about bleeding your radiators here

4. Change thermostat batteries

If you have a digital thermostat, flat batteries can cause heating to fail.

Remove the thermostat housing from the wall mount and turn it over to find the battery removal slots. Take out the old batteries and replace them with new ones.

Most thermostats will require 2 X AA or 2 X AAA batteries.

Fix the thermostat housing back onto the wall mount.

It may take a few days for low battery warning sign to disappear from the monitor. 

If you need further advice about your boiler or heating system , or you want to book a boiler service, boiler replacement or emergency repair - just give us a call.

Tareq's Tips #2 - It’s best to get your heating sorted before the cold weather kicks in.

 
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As the summer transforms into September and the nights start drawing in, it’s a good moment to make sure your heating system is in tip-top working order - all ready for when you really need it. It’s not a problem during the sultry summer months if your hot water is a little tepid or your radiators never seem to heat up but once it gets a bit frosty you’ll be wanting a hot bath and a warm house.

Winter fuel bills can really rack up quickly so ensuring your heating system is running as efficiently as possible will mean that it’s also as economical as possible. If your boiler hasn’t had much attention lately, a service will ensure it’s safe too.

There are some particular things which can indicate that your boiler is on the blink:

- Your water is often not hot enough

- Your fuel bills are going up

- Your boiler is making strange noises

Sound familiar? Why not get in touch to discuss the best course of action or take a look at our current boiler recommendations and prices here.

If there are flow blockages in your heating system caused by scale or sludge then you may hear all sorts of strange clunks coming from your boiler. Whistling or gurgling can indicate trapped air or a blockage. There are some simple troubleshooting techniques to try, or it may be a case of booking a powerflush for your heating system which should get your radiators running more effectively too.

We can check your boiler to ensure it’s working efficiently, resolve boiler function problems or highlight potential issues. If your boiler has reached the end of its working life, we can recommend the best boiler for you and get it up and running in no time. 

At Roost Heating, we offer very competitive rates on boiler installation and are accredited Gas Safe, Worcester Bosch installers. Get in touch to find out about boiler servicing, buying a new boiler, power flushing your heating system or upgrading your radiators.

Once you’ve got your heating system checked, serviced, fixed or upgraded you can enjoy having cosy toes and nice hot showers all winter long. Fancy that? Get in touch with RoostHeating today.

(PS. Now is also a good time to check your Carbon Monoxide alarms. We’d recommend having one in any room with a gas, oil, wood or solid fuel burning appliance in it.)

Tareq's Tips #1 - Going on Holiday? Don't forget to switch off your water at the mains.

 
 

If you’re jetting off on holiday to somewhere sunny (or just popping to a campsite up the road) but you don’t want to come home to a nasty, soggy surprise - it’s advisable to turn your mains water off to the house before you head out of the door.

Burst pipes, slow leaks or flooding can be stressful and expensive, particularly if they’re left for any length of time so it makes sense to prevent them happening by switching off your mains water before you go away.

It may however be the case that for you, this is easier said than done.  Traditional brass stopcock water taps are often tucked away in the most inaccessible places. Difficult to locate and often hard to turn so sometimes it’s not possible to access them or adjust them, or it just seems to be an extra hassle that you don’t have time for as you dash out of the door. 

At Roost Heating, if your stopcock is stiff or inaccessible, we recommend fitting a modern and convenient new Stopcock which means it’ll be simple for you to switch your water on and off ongoing. Whether you’re going away but you still need the neighbours to do the watering or you suddenly have a leaky pipe or burst pipe and want to stop your water supply as quickly as possible, a Surestop Stopcock will enable you to switch off your water at the touch of a button. Find out more here: http://www.surestop.co.uk/owners/

We can install a brand new Stopcock for you and ensure you’re confident to use it too.

Just drop us a line to find out more or to book. Then you can head off on your holidays with one less thing to worry about.