Boiler expert gives five tips for preventing a frozen condensate pipe this winter

With winter just around the corner, many of us worry about the health of our boilers. The last thing anyone wants is a boiler breakdown during the coldest months.
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Fortunately, Mark McShane, a top gas engineer and the owner of Boiler Cover UK, is here to share his expert knowledge. Mark from Boiler Cover UK provides 5 simple tips to keep your boiler's condensate pipe from freezing this winter.

Five Expert Tips

1. Insulate the Pipe: Mark suggests wrapping the pipe in good quality insulation material. "It's a bit like giving your pipe a warm winter coat," he says. This helps in keeping the cold out and the warmth in.

Simple tips to keep your boiler's condensate pipe from freezing this winter. Photo: Boiler Cover UKSimple tips to keep your boiler's condensate pipe from freezing this winter. Photo: Boiler Cover UK
Simple tips to keep your boiler's condensate pipe from freezing this winter. Photo: Boiler Cover UK
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2. Regular Checks: “Make it a habit to check the outside pipes, especially during very cold days,” advises Mark. Ensure they are not blocked by snow or ice.

3. Keep Heating On Low: Instead of turning the heating off when you're out, Mark recommends keeping it on a low setting. "This keeps some warmth circulating and reduces the risk of freezing," he explains.

4.Re-route The Pipe: If the pipe is in a place where it gets very cold, think about moving it. "Sometimes, a simple change in position can make a big difference," Mark adds.

5.Seek Expert Help: If you're unsure about the condition of your condensate pipe or how to protect it, it's always best to call in an expert. Mark notes, “A quick professional check-up can save a lot of trouble later on.”

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Encountered a Frozen Pipe? Here's What to Do:A frozen condensate pipe is a common winter problem, but fear not, as Mark offers a step-by-step guide:

Spotting the Issue: An error message or flashing light on your boiler and a gurgling noise might suggest a frozen pipe. “The most common place for freezing is the outdoor section of the pipe,” Mark comments.

Gently Thawing: If you can access the pipe, pour warm (not boiling) water over it. “Use a jug or a hot water bottle and be patient. It might take a little time to thaw,” explains Mark.

Re-start Your Boiler: Once the pipe seems thawed, try resetting your boiler. If it’s still not working, it’s time to call in the professionals.

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Call for Help: "If at any point you're unsure or the boiler isn’t re-starting, call a qualified engineer," Mark emphasises. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.

About Mark McShane:A qualified gas engineer with years of experience, Mark McShane is passionate about helping UK households keep warm and safe. As the owner of Boiler Cover UK, he’s committed to offering top-notch boiler services and expert advice.

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