Central heating not working and other common heating problems to look out for

When you wake up to the central heating not working this can be a cause for a serious distress. Follow our expert advice for immediate peace of mind.

Woman on Sofa Drinking from Mug Wearing Winter Socks

When you find the central heating not working on a cold winter morning, it is surely a cause of despair. But it doesn't always have to be. While certain central heating problems can indeed come at a price, in a lot of cases you'll be able to roll your sleeves (if it's not too cold) and remedy the situation.

What to do when you find out your central heating not working partially or at all, will depend on the location of the problem. Once you know which part of the central heating system is at fault you can either do the smaller repairs yourself, or call a certified Gas Safe engineer, if the problem involves the boiler and dealing with gas.

And if you don't want your bank account to suffer when you find the central heating not working in the morning, Rightio's Care Club offers Boiler and Heating cover to guarantee your peace of mind.

The common heating problems which can cause your central heating to misbehave are:

Radiators cold at the top

If you've noticed your radiators are only warm at the bottom, and your room generally takes longer to warm up, bleeding the radiators is probably the easy solution to this common problem. Don't worry, it's not all that difficult, and you can do it yourself - find out how in our how to bleed your radiators guide.

Radiators cold at the bottom

This issue is a bit more serious, as it indicates that there might be sludge build up in the radiator that probably will need to be flushed out. This is called a Power Flush, and is performed by a professional - the radiators are taken off the wall, and the system is flushed with water. Thinking your radiators might need a power flush - our expert engineers can help.

Banging noises coming from the boiler

If your boiler is making strange sounds when turned on, the first step should be to switch it off. Once you do that, listen if the sound continues or stops. If the sound is caused by trapped air you'll just need to find the air bleed screw and vent the excess. If the problem remains you will need an engineer, as they might need to open and examine the boiler. You should not, in any situation attempt to complete gas boiler repairs yourself.

Loss of pressure

Your boiler might have lost pressure because of a water leak in the system or because the radiators were bled. If you notice a drop in the pressure, you can remedy it by adding water to the system using the "filling loop". Of course, if you don't feel confident to do it yourself, please call an engineer.

Frozen condensate pipe

On a particularly cold winter morning you might wake up to no heating and cold water - and usually the culprit will be the frozen condensate pipe. The majority of new boilers turn the waste they produce into water as it cools down, and is taken outside of the house by the condensate pipe. But a sudden cold spell can cause the water to freeze in the pipe and even potentially cause damage. Learn what you can do if your pipes are frozen.

Malfunctioning thermostat

If your heating is misbehaving it might not be an issue with your system but simply an overworked thermostat. Check if the thermostat settings are correct or if the thermostat is experiencing power problems.


Facebook icon - transparent F in white circle
Twitter icon - transparent bird in white circle
LinkedIn icon - transparent in with white rounded square background

Related advice

There are plenty of actions you can take to help keep your home in check. Take a look here for the latest guides, advice and tips from our experts!

View our latest advice
Niceic 1
Dand G Logo
Worcester Logo 1
Trustpilot Top100 1
Safe Contractor Web
Rightio Gas Safe E140595653129511 1