What to do if you have a leaking boiler

Published on August 2, 2021

RJ Martindale

Got a leaky boiler? Here’s what you need to do

If you have discovered a leak in your boiler, then you need to act fast as to minimise any damage caused. A leaking boiler is a telltale sign that your boiler is malfunctioning in some way and there are many reasons why it might be happening.

We have put together a helpful guide as to what you need to do should you find yourself with a leaky boiler disaster on your hands.

Why is my boiler leaking?

As you might already expect, a boiler isn’t supposed to leak water and with advanced boiler systems, water should be tightly sealed off and unable to escape. However, if you find that your boiler is leaking water, then it might as a result of the following:

  • Your boiler pressure needs topping up.
  • Extra pressure from the boiler system may be being released through the pressure relief valve.
  • Your heat exchanger (the component that warms up your cold water) is damaged.
  • You have recently had a new boiler fitted but the bond between the heating system pipes and boiler have not been sealed properly.
  • Your boiler is old and may have stopped functioning properly as a result of age.

Typically, the above problems can be fixed but a replacement may be needed. Find out more information about RJ Martindale’s boiler repairs and replacement services here.


How can I tell if my boiler has a leak?

If there is no obvious sign of leakage, an indication that your boiler has a leak will be that it cuts out as a result of low pressure. When you try to top it up, pressure will be lost again rapidly.

You might also notice drips of water coming from the boiler or water trailing down the wall where it is attached to. Small boiler leaks can sometimes reveal themselves by taking the form of mould or damp near to the boiler or by misshaping the skirting boards and counter tops in the vicinity.

Make sure that you check any visible pipes for water leaks as well as keep a lookout for staining on nearby walls or ceilings.

Should I turn my boiler off if it’s leaking?

If you notice a leak, then you should switch off your boiler to stop it from coming into contact with electrics and creating water damage to your home. If you notice a leak, you shouldn’t try to fix it yourself and you should contact a professional to take a look.

RJ Martindale offer a range of boiler repair services as well as emergency services to fix a leaking boiler. If you suspect a leak, get in touch.

Is a leaking boiler dangerous?

A leaking boiler can become a hazard if it is not fixed quickly. Boiler leaks can cause short-circuiting to the electrical components in your home and any contact between water and electrics creates a big safety hazard.

If left, a boiler leak can create serious water damage to your home and belongings. Water damage not only destroys your furnishings but can also lead to mould growth and this can really affect your health and the air quality of your home.

Additionally, leaking boilers can result in the rusting and corrosion of pipes in your boiler system.

Water damage can also weaken the structure of your home and make it vulnerable. This is why getting a leaking boiler looked at immediately is so important for the safety of the residents in the house and nearby.

What should I do as soon as I notice my boiler is leaking?

Once you notice a leak coming from your boiler, you must act fast to minimise damage. Firstly, you should place towels, a bucket or bowl under the boiler to catch the water and you should turn off electricity to the boiler to prevent the risk of electric shock and potential damage to your central heating system.

You should then contact a professional to take a look at your boiler. RJ Martindale provide a range of boiler repair and replacement services, as well as emergency callouts.

What should I do if my boiler is leaking gas?

If you can smell gas, then this can be very dangerous. If there are black stains around the boiler, then this is a sign that you have a gas leak. You might also notice more condensation on surrounding windows than usual.

You might also experience the following symptoms:

  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Confusion
  • Tiredness

If you think that your boiler might be leaking gas, then you should open all windows and doors immediately, as well as put out any naked flames. Call an emergency service for someone to come out straight away.

What should I do if my boiler is leaking oil?

If you notice signs of oil stains or oil pools, then this could indicate an oil leak from your boiler. If you suspect an oil leak, immediately close the tap or valve on the oil tank and ventilate your home.

You should seek the services of a gas safe registered engineer and if you or anyone else starts to feel unwell, then leave the house and seek medical advice.

RJ Martindale offer specialist plumbing and heating solutions to residents based across the North West. Made up of a team of accredited boiler servicing experts, we are on hand to help you out. Find out more about our heating and boiler services here or contact us to speak to an expert.

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