Every home owner has experienced the frustration of coming home to a cold house after work. This is especially true in the winter when heaters are prone to breaking down, and leaving you out in the cold.
If you are experiencing an issue with your heating, the first step is to determine what the cause of the problem is.
The simplest reason why heating keeps going off is the current temperature in your house. When most modern heating systems reach a desired temperature on a thermostat, they shut off to conserve power.
If you have already checked this out and determined it’s not that, then there may be something else going on inside of your heating system.
There are many parts of a heating boiler that could be malfunctioning or broken down but one thing you can do yourself if you are feeling up for it is check whether the pilot light has gone out.
Your heating is not the only thing that can cause your power to go off. There are many other reasons why this may happen, but most of them are easily fixed with a bit of knowledge.
A few other common reasons for issues in your heating system are:
- A faulty thermostat setting.
- Loose wire connections on the circuit breaker panel or furnace control board.
- Corroded wiring coating on electrical contacts inside electric water heater tank which prevents electricity from flowing through the unit.
In most cases, any problems which require a boiler to be opened up, will need a heating engineer to attend. However, there are also some easy checks you can do to isolate where the problem might be.
Luckily, we have compiled some tips for troubleshooting common problems that may cause your heater to turn off or otherwise malfunction.
Common problems that may cause your heater to turn off
- Check the thermostat settings to make sure that it is set at the right temperature
- Double check your vents to make sure they are free of debris or lint buildup
- Check for any signs of a leak in the pipes, including water pools beneath your radiators, near walls or ceilings
- Ensure that there are no objects blocking the heater’s airflow, such as curtains, furniture, or toys
- Turn off power to the heater at the circuit breaker box if you have a gas furnace to ensure safety before proceeding with any repairs
Why does boiler keep firing up when heating is off?
When the temperature outside your home drops, your boiler fires up to heat up your home. You may not know it but the boiler is constantly trying to keep up with demand for heating.
If it can’t keep up, you’ll have a cold home or – even worse – frozen pipes. What often happens is, the power going into your water heater is cycled off and on by a timer which also monitors the temperature in your home.
Some other common reasons for a boiler to constantly be firing up are
- The boiler is firing up when heating is off because the thermostat that controls the boiler’s operation has been set to a higher temperature than your home
- You can change this by turning down the thermostat and setting it back to the desired temperature
- A faulty pilot light
- Leaks in radiators
- Closed dampers (valves)
How to stop boiler short cycling
If you’ve ever experienced a boiler short cycling, then you know how frustrating it can be.
Boiler short cycling is when the water in your tank starts to boil and overheat instead of staying at an even temperature. This causes your boiler to turn off and on again rapidly, which only makes the problem worse.
Short cycling also wastes energy, increases wear on your equipment, and can cause problems with freezing pipes if left unchecked for too long.
The average time a boiler is short cycling is 12 minutes. Short cycling can lead to higher energy costs and cause higher CO2 emissions.
Fortunately there are three simple ways that you can stop boiler short cycling.
Install a timer system– A timer system will allow you to set predetermined times for periods of time where your heating system will not operate (like during the night). This way, when the designated temperature is reached, your heating system will switch off and remain off till the temperature drops significantly.
Using Showers – Reduce the number of people using hot water at one time by taking shorter showers or baths with less water in them, or use cooler water for washing dishes and clothes.
Insulate Hot Water tank – Insulating your hot water tank is a great way to save money and time. In the winter, you’ll be able to enjoy warm showers without having to wait for your hot water heater. In the summer, it will help prevent heat from escaping when you’re showering in cool climates or during high-energy bills months.