Many New Jersey homeowners depend on boilers to heat their homes during the cold winter months. While proper maintenance will help you sidestep many common boiler troubles, time will eventually take its toll on your unit. If you’re willing to take the time to troubleshoot your boiler, you may be able to repair it yourself and save some money. Here are some tips to help pinpoint the source of your boiler troubles.

Check the thermostat – Confirm that it’s set higher than the room’s actual temperature; otherwise, it won’t kick on the boiler.

Verify that your circulator pump is running – Use your hand to see if the motor is hot. If your pump isn’t working and feels cool, check the breaker that supplies the power. If your breaker is extremely hot, the run capacitor, motor, or the pump itself could be the source of your boiler troubles. If it’s cool, the thermostat or circulator relay could be the culprit.

Check the temperature/pressure gauge – Most gauges have a red line. Your temperature/pressure reading should be above zero but less than the red line value. If the temperature and pressure are normal, you likely have air in your system. This is more common in older model boilers that have manual air eliminators. These eliminators can be replaced with modern, automatic, float-type components.

Inspect your main and/or pilot burners – Does your pilot ignite when the vent damper is open and/or your inducer fan is running? If not, a blocked vent pipe could be causing your boiler troubles. If the pilot lights but doesn’t stay lit, the problem could be a dirty pilot assembly or flame sensor, or the thermocouple or boiler control could be bad.

Loss of pressure – Look for water leaks. If you don’t find one you may need an HVAC professional to replace the pressure relief valve.

If none of these steps gets to the bottom of your boiler troubles, you’ll want to contact a trusted professional. For more expert advice on addressing boiler issues, please contact us at Pipe Works Services. We’ve been serving northern New Jersey for 15 years. Our goal is to help educate our customers in Chatham, NJ, and surrounding areas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about boilers and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide. Image courtesy of Shutterstock

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