Britain’s erratic weather is causing mayhem with our boilers

Britain’s erratic weather is causing mayhem with our boilers

The weather: it’s our favourite subject here in Britain! Despite our long history of extremely changeable weather, we still love a good moan when it rains cats & dogs, is boiling hot, or blowing a hooley – and the country practically comes to standstill when the snow arrives. Our weather is becoming increasingly unpredictable and we need to start doing more to ensure we are prepared for it.

Research shows that hot spells are lasting longer and extreme cold snaps are becoming less frequent, which is altering the way we use our central heating systems. These longer warm spells interspersed with sudden cold snaps are putting added stress on our boilers as they are suddenly turned up high following long periods of being switched off. This is driving an increase in callouts for emergency boiler repairs. According to, during the notable cold weather events of the past two years, they have seen increases in emergency callouts of up to 278%:

“We find that more and more people are turning off their boilers for long periods of time when the weather is warm or mild, and then suddenly cranking them up to high when these unexpected cold weather events hit. The problem is, the cold weather already means heavier boiler use and the potential for frozen condensate pipes, so putting the heat on full blast after lots of inactivity puts sudden added pressure on systems components, making a breakdown more likely to occur.”

Here are three top tips to keep your boiler running:

  1. Turn on your central heating once a month throughout the Summer to prevent it from seizing and briefly check it’s still working, so that you aren’t suddenly left with a broken down boiler when you need it most.
  2. Prepare your external pipes to prevent them from freezing and potentially bursting during cold snaps, causing boiler failure. Invest in some insulation, or get a FrostSentry device fitted to your condensate pipe which will automatically heat the pipe during cold snaps to prevent it from freezing, while you sit back and enjoy a warm and cosy home.
  3. Don’t overwork your system. Start with your heating on low if cold weather is forecast, to prevent frozen pipes, and gradually turn it up as it gets colder to avoid putting pressure on your boiler.” concludes: “The most important tip you could receive ahead of the winter is preparation. Proper planning involves checking your central heating system in advance of the winter for any faults that could cause an issue. You also want to make adequate preparation to keep the home as well as pipework warm enough through the season. The frustration of a frozen or broken pipe is worth the little effort you put into advance preparation.”

Find out where you can buy a FrostSentry device to prevent your condensate pipe from freezing here:

Update – 31st March 2020.

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