A leading energy provider has said it expects thousands of boilers to fail as the cold weather forces people to fire them up for the first time in months.
Facing a 33 per cent increase in demand for call outs, Scottish Gas has urged households to think ahead, so that any heating issues can be fixed before winter sets in.
And as temperatures continue to fall in the run up to winter, there’s likely to be another mass wave of boiler breakdowns on the horizon.
What do the experts say?
Alexandra McGregor, a Scottish Gas engineer, said, “We are expecting a surge in call outs over the next two days as average temperatures fall below 10 degrees.
“Whether you’re reaching for the thermostat or can hold out for a few more weeks, winter is only just getting started.
“It’s a good idea to have your boiler serviced before you become completely reliant on it, so that it’s ready to stand what’s to come.”
How to keep your heating working
- Keep your boiler ticking over
Like a car that hasn’t started for a while, your boiler can seize up if it’s not turned on for an extended period of time.
It’s a good idea to run your central heating for at least an hour a day during the colder months – even if you’re going away – to make sure it keeps running smoothly.
Check out the boiler manual to find out how to set the timer.
- Bleed your radiators
When your heating’s been out of action for a few months, air can enter the system and form bubbles at the top of your radiators, which stops them from working efficiently.
Turn a radiator key in the valve at the top to let the air out. It’s worth having a rag or a small container to hand to catch any drips.
- Insulate your pipes
Frozen condensate pipes is one of the most common heating problems - water expands when it turns to ice, which can lead to burst or damaged pipes.
Insulating materials are an easy, cost-effective solution, available from most DIY stores – if you keep your water system nice and cosy, it will do the same for you.
- Take advantage of tech
Using a smart thermostat to control your heating on the go means you can avoid wasting money on energy you’re not using.