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Some Boiler Malfunctions You May Run Into

service-reminder-clockA boiler is a great way to provide warmth during a stormy and cold winter—and we’re in the middle of one of those right now! The heat coming from radiators and baseboard heaters is cozy and spreads evenly through a room, without having to blow around any dust from ductwork. A boiler also has a great advantage over a furnace, which is that it usually needs fewer repairs over its lifetime. A boiler contains fewer moving mechanical parts that can break down. As long as you remember to schedule heating maintenance for your boiler each year (do it now if you haven’t!) you should have reliable comfort through the season.

There’s no guarantee, of course, that your boiler will work without any troubles. Let’s look at some possible problems your boiler might encounter. Call for boiler heating professionals to check out the issue before it worsens and you end up with no heat at all!

Broken circulator pump

The circulator pump is one of the key mechanical parts of a boiler, and so it’s at a higher risk of failing during periods of heavy use. The pump is required to send hot water from the pump around the house and the various radiators and baseboard heaters. If the boiler is still running but you aren’t receiving heat in any of the rooms, the trouble may be a broken circulator pump. Professionals can fix or replace it.

Water leaks

You never want any leaks from your boiler! If you see water pooling around the boiler tank, it probably means trouble with a seal or valve. A water leak can create corrosion, and this is one of the worst things that can happen to a boiler; it may mean having to replace it early. It can also cause electrical shorts (and even gas boilers have electrical components). If the leaks are coming from valves, seals, or other components, they can usually be fixed. If the boiler is leaking because it already has corrosion, it’s time to have a new boiler installed.

Problems with the burners

Most boilers use natural gas power, and like a gas-powered furnace, they can have problems with their burners igniting because of dust and grime across their surface. The problem could also be a faulty igniter (either a pilot light or an electronic ignition system) or trouble with gas flow. You must have professionals handle all of these.


Kettling is when a boiler starts to make a rumbling noise. (It sounds like a kettle boiling, which is where the name comes from.) This can mean a number of problems, such as limescale building up along the inside of the tank or a layer of sediment along the tank’s bottom. This can cause the water to overheat and create the kettling sound. Even if you’re still receiving the heating you want in the house, the boiler is almost certainly over-working and draining power. A heating professional can flush out the system or de-scale the tank.

To schedule heating repair in Plattsburgh, NY for your boiler—or for any type of residential heating system—contact our team.

Red Rock Mechanical, LLC has served Northwest Vermont and Northeast New York for over 23 years.

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