How to avoid boiler problems at Christmas

Published on December 8, 2021

RJ Martindale Team

How to avoid boiler problems at Christmas 

The countdown to Christmas is on – love it or hate it – it’s almost here. But one thing you’re unlikely to have on your present list this year is a boiler breakdown. Not only is it an inconvenience, but it’s also an unplanned cost at an expensive time. To avoid boiler problems this winter, follow our top tips to keep your central heating running smoothly. 

Tips to get your boiler winter-ready 

The moment the temperature starts to drop, we turn to our central heating system, but after months of not being used, it may not be quite as easy as just turning it on. 

Avoid boiler problems and get ready for winter by preparing your combi boiler for the cold months ahead. 

  1. Make sure it’s on

To start, make sure your boiler is definitely on! In the event, it’s been switched off by accident, you’ll need to reset it by following the manufacturer’s instructions. 

  1. Test your heating

Don’t wait until you need your central heating to check that it’s working. 

Switch it on now while the weather is still mild – we recommend turning on all the radiators in your house and setting your thermostat to its maximum temperature. Wait for 15 minutes then feel the radiators to check that they are starting to get warm.   

  1. Check the pressure

This is a good time to check the boiler pressure – you can find the gauge on the front of your boiler. It should be between 1 and 2 (or within the green range). Low pressure can be a sign of a leak so follow up by inspecting your pipes and radiators. 

  1. Bleed your radiators

If your radiator has cold patches, it could be because trapped air is stopping them from filling up. Bleeding your radiators releases the air and allows water to circulate. 

  1. Arrange apowerflush

If they are still not getting warm, it could be because of a build-up of dirt, sludge, rust or other debris. To remedy this and extend the life of your boiler, arrange to have your radiators professionally cleaned with a powerflush (a deep clean). 

Going away over Christmas? 

If you’re planning to go away over Christmas, looking after your central heating system is just as important to avoid boiler problems on your return. 

At this time of year, it’s common for pipes to freeze – and then burst. Which not only affects your central heating but a burst pipe can cause damage to your property. 

To stop this happening, set your heating to come on while you’re away. You could either leave it on a low heat continuously or programme it to come on occasionally. This will keep the water flowing through the system and stop the pipes from freezing. 

You can also buy pipe insulation from most DIY stores, which work just as well. 

How to avoid boiler problems 

To avoid boiler problems over Christmas, we recommend having your boiler serviced by an engineer before the big day arrives. You can expect an annual service to pick up any issues in the system before they become bigger (and more expensive) problems. 

Not only will this save you money on costly boiler repair bills, but a planned service is easier to manage than an unexpected breakdown – especially over the festive period. 

Moreover, it’s an investment that will pay off in the long-term, because servicing your boiler can also prolong its life. The consumer website, Which? recommends servicing your boiler every year to extend its life and avoid boiler problems. 

We include annual servicing as standard in all our boiler cover packages. Prices start from just £6.50 per month, which includes a boiler service and a carbon monoxide test. 

This works out at £78 per year – the cost of an annual service, paid over 12 months. 

Taking out home care cover   

If the worst happens and your boiler breaks down, you could be in for a long wait to have it repaired. Reputable heating engineers are at their busiest in November and December when most people turn their heating back on and discover a raft of problems. 

When you take out RJM Homecare boiler cover, you’re guaranteed a speedy response, 365 days a year. We put our homecare customers first, so you aren’t left waiting, and unlike the bigger companies, we don’t charge a call-out fee and there’s no excess to pay. 

Without heating cover, you could be hit with a bill you weren’t expecting. It costs between £150 and £300 to repair a boiler, and upwards of £1000 to replace it. 

Though you might think it’s worth taking the risk, nearly a fifth of homes in the UK, experienced at least one boiler breakdown in 2018 – that’s over 4 million homes – and the older the boiler, the harder it is to avoid boiler problems. 

There are four plans to choose from: 

  • Annual Care £6.50 per month 
  • Essential Care £15 per month 
  • Premium Care £20 per month 
  • Advanced Care £25 per month 

Our boiler cover not only saves you money on repair bills, but you can relax over Christmas knowing that if something goes wrong, you won’t be left without heating or hot water – not good news if you were hoping to get out of washing the pots! 

Why choose RJM Homecare? 

We are a family company in Bolton, Greater Manchester, known for our outstanding service and customer care. But don’t just take out word for it – our customers consistently rate us highly, and we have over 180 five star Google reviews.    

Our engineers are trained to the highest standards and they are Gas Safe registered, so you can rest assured that you’re in safe hands. We go above and beyond to make sure our customers are well-looked after – and that includes over the festive period. 

If you want to avoid boiler problems this winter, we can help you fine tune your system. Contact the team today to book your annual boiler service before Christmas. 


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