Boilers and combi-boilers are present among many houses, being the source of heating and providing regular hot water. Since nothing is indestructible, there will likely be some sort of major repair or breakdown associated with your boiler. Boiler’s play a huge role in our everyday activities, especially during the winter months. Below you will find a few tips and tricks for how to cope when your boiler is out of service.

Use a space heater 

Prepare yourself for the inevitable boiler breakdown by purchasing space heaters before it’s too late. When your central heating system is down and the weather is cold and nasty, you will be thankful to have these secondary sources of heat. Electric heaters are a great way to keep certain rooms warm, especially if you aren’t living in a home with a gas or wood fireplace. While space heaters will not be as effective as your normal heating system and they will usually cost more if used frequently, they are still a way for you to stay warm. When using a space heater you may find these tips useful:

    • Layer up – wearing more clothes will keep you warm and comfortable when your heating system is not working
    • Make sure your home is not drafty – check all windows and doors to ensure there are no cracks that will let cold air through. You can even tape windows or use a towel at the bottom of the door if it is an emergency
    • Close your curtains – this will act as a blanket, keeping the heat in and the cold air out
    • Use an electric blanket – this will enable you to turn off the space heater in your room, saving energy and still keeping you nice and cozy
    • Only heat the rooms you need – putting a space heater in every room will be costly, and dangerous, so it is better to concentrate on heating the rooms you will be occupying
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Other types of electric heating

  • Fan heaters – these are ideal if you need the room heated quickly and for a short period of time
  • Halogen heaters – these work if you can stand right in front of them, as they don’t put out much heat
  • Convection heaters – these will heat the air in the room more slowly, but they have thermostats that enable you to keep the room at an even temperature
  • Oil-filled radiators – these will slowly heat the whole room up, and will also keep the room warmer for longer
  • Electric fires – these put off directional heat but also take longer to heat up and are quite powerful

Gas fires 

If you have the option, gas fires are a great way to heat up a home because they are typically cheaper than electric heating options. There are also portable gas fires,but these are not recommended to use in your home because they put off toxic fumes hat may build up

Log or coal stoves 

These can also be cheap to run and will heat a room effectively and efficiently. However, they typically only work to heat the room they are located in, so may not be a good option for larger homes

Water heating

Depending on your type of hot water heating system, you may have a hot water cylinder and an electric immersion heater as well. If your boiler is no longer working, you will still be able to use the immersion to create hot water. However, this will not do anything for your radiators. Ask a professional or look at your cylinder for an electrical cable leading to the top of it. There will also be one or two switches next to the space your cylinder is kept with a red light on it. Turn them on and wait about a half hour to see if the water has heated up. If so, you are good to go. If not, it is best to contact your local electrician or hot water supplier for more details.

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