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13 May 2019

Radiator not working? This may be the cause...

By Oliver
  • Read time: 2 minutes
When the weather outside is still cold, there is no better feeling than coming home to a warm house or getting out of bed in the morning and not having to shiver.

As the cold weather – unfortunately – continues, we are still relying on our heating systems to feel warm throughout the day or night. But what happens when you can hear your boiler working and your radiators just aren’t heating up? There could be problems within the system, such as blockages which could progress into more serious issues, or it could be something as small as trapped air.

Before calling into 50five and arranging a visit from one of our expert engineers, there are a few home checks you can carry out to see if the problem goes away.

Check your heating system is in working order

If your radiators are not getting hot, it is just worth checking whether your boiler or heat pump are on and working as they should be. Are they on the right setting, is there enough pressure, can you hear the pump or boiler working? Another thing to check, is if you have any running hot water?

Try the next step if all the heat pump or boiler appear to be working as normal. However, if you have determined there is a problem with the boiler or heat pump, give our expert team a call to arrange a visit with an engineer.

Check for air in the system

If you find one of your radiators not working, or maybe even more, this could mean there is air in the system. Trapped air gathers towards the top of radiators, which prevents even distribution of hot water to heat the radiators and your home.

Bleeding radiators will release any trapped air and redistribute the flow of hot water. To bleed your radiators:

  • Run your heating for 10 minutes, with all radiator valve’s (or the radiator setting on your boiler) turned to full

  • After 10 minutes, turn off your heating and wait for the radiators to cool (if parts of the radiators have heated up)

  • Use a bleed key, or a flat-head screwdriver, to turn the bleed valve releasing the trapped air. When water begins to trickle out, tighten the bleed valve to stop. Do this for each radiator throughout your home

  • Turn your boiler back on and check the water pressure – if the gauge levels are below 1 bar, top up the pressure until the needle sits between 1 – 2 bar

Power flush the system

When you have a radiator not working, it might be due a blocked system. Magnetite and sludge can often build up in a system which prevents hot water traveling throughout the pipes properly. Manually emptying and refilling radiators isn’t always enough, as the blockage may be bigger than a simple clean can handle.

In these circumstances, a chemical flush is required. Flushing the central heating system with a specialist chemical – at 50five, we use Adey MagnaClean MC3+ Cleaner – forces dirt, grime, rust and any other debris out of your system. Before refilling, another chemical is used to line the system and pipes to protect against future debris – we like to use the Adey MagnaClean MC1+ Protector.

A chemical power flush ensures any radiators won’t have to be removed, and your entire system will be cleaned at once. At 50five, we install state of the art Adey MagnaClean Filters, to accompany the chemical flush. The filter maximises the capture of magnetite in the system, to further protect against corrosion and the buildup of debris, extending the lifespan of your heating system.

To find out more on protecting your heating system, bleeding radiators or to discover more about the range of heating systems available from 50five, call our office on 0800 612 5050.


Written by Oliver

Oliver is a Content Specialist for 50five UK