Central Heating Sludge Problems & Cures
Have you got central heating sludge? In the picture to the right of you, there is a typical sludgy radiator and a magnetic cleaning machine getting ready to de-sludge the central heating system work in areas that are hard to get at. The image shows the areas the hot water that circulates the central heating system, where the blue area is where the radiator is left cold. Just below is where we will be answering question about sludge in your central heating system.
19 Central Heating Sludge Questions
- How do I know if I have central heating sludge?
- How does sludge in my central heating occur?
- What are the symptoms of central heating sludge?
- Is it normal to have dirty brown or black water in my central heating?
- Will sludgy water cause me central heating problems?
- Will central heating sludge cost me more in the central heating?
- Does having sludgy water cause my central heating to take longer to heat up?
- How do you get rid of central heating sludge?
- Do I require an emergency plumber if I have central heating sludge in my central heating system?
- What methods are required to get rid of central heating sludge?
- How much does it cost to have a power flush to get rid of my central heating sludge?
- How long does it take to get rid of central heating sludge?
- Can leaving a chemical in the central heating system cause damage?
- How often should I get my a power flush to prevent central heating sludge?
- What is the best way of preventing central heating sludge in the future?
- When getting a new boiler, should I have my central heating system de-sludged?
- What happens if my central heating system has not been treated from sludge when having a new boiler fitted?
- By draining down the central heating system and refilling can I get rid of my sludge?
- Does having a magnetic de-sludging filter cure or stop sludge from building up?
How do I know if I have central heating sludge
There are a few tell tale signs of sludgy water, but the main one being the colour, when bleeding the air vents to a radiator and finding that when the tissue has a dirty colour of water, then you have what may be the start of sludge in your central heating. The more darker the sludge, the more sludge you have in your central heating.
How does sludge in my central heating occur
Sludge occurs from dirt and rust found on radiators and other materials. If the central heating system is not treated, the sludge in the radiator will occur.
What are the symptoms of central heating sludge
The symptoms of sludge is, the central heating taking longer than normal to the warm up the house. Some areas of the house will be colder than other areas due the the central heating pump having a poor circulation problems. The poor circulation through the central heating is the sludge slowing down the flow or stopping the flow of water given the central heating pump more water pressure to fight against.
Is it normal to have dirty brown or black water in my central heating
There are two ways to the question of is ‘it normal to have dirty black or brown water in the central heating system’. First is that it is not normal as the water should be clear to allow full pump circulations without restriction. The second way of normal is, if you have had an untreated central heating system, then you would normally find that there is dirty black water.
Will sludgy water cause me central heating problems
Sludgy water will cause central heating problems and result in requiring an emergency plumber because, the sludge is heavier than water and there is more friction in sludge, than there is in water.
Will central heating sludge cost me more in the central heating
Due to the balancing of the central heating and the speed it heats up, there is more chance that more heat will be used, causing the cost of the gas and electric to go up.
Does having sludgy water cause my central heating to take longer to heat up
As mentioned in one of the above paragraphs, sludgy water moves slower than free flowing clean water, causing the central heating to take longer to heat up.
How do you get rid of central heating sludge
To get rid of central heating sludge, you will need to do a power flush either by using a magnetic power flushing machine or by using an heavy duty power flushing machine. When the power flushing machine is attached and running it’s cause, the emergency plumber or central heating engineer, will be using a special tool to get your sludge in the radiator moving. The cause of the power flushing machine will do it’s cause until the central heating water is clean and free flowing through the central heating system.
Do I require an emergency plumber if I have central heating sludge in my central heating system
The quicker you get the central heating system clear, the better, requiring an emergency plumber, however, as the central heating has been like this for some time, you are most likely going to save money if you booked in a general plumbing or central heating engineer.
What methods are required to get rid of central heating sludge
The methods to get rid of central heating sludge you will need to take are, use a power flushing machine. There are other ways such as draining the central heating system down and taking each radiator off. Once the radiator is outside the house in an area, it is ok to de-sludge, then putting a hose on one side of the radiator, turn on and clear for about 5-minute. This way works and is a great method for very sludgy radiators, but can be very messy and not good when it comes to other parts of the central heating system such as, the boiler and central heating pipes.
How much does it cost to have a power flush to get rid of my central heating sludge
Having a central heating system de-sludged can be very costly. There are some companies that take advantage due to the short fall of central heating engineer when it comes to power flushing. There are companies that will do a power flush on an hourly rate making it cheaper and there are companies that have rates that can work out expensive. An average cost for a power flush would work out at ££500. A small one man may charge about £400 on average depending on how many radiators there are, where a big company will charge about £750 + VAT.
How long does it take to get rid of central heating sludge
To get rid of central heating sludge and refilling the central heating correctly as advised will normally take on average 8-hours. Where if the central heating system is of larger, then this may take a couple of days. When there is more than one person working on the central heating system, this can help to take the timing of the central heating power flush down. Some companies prefer to use a central heating chemical and leave it in for a coupe of days before going though with the power flush, but this all depends on the age of the central heating system and how bad it is effected.
Can leaving a chemical in the central heating system cause damage
If you leave a chemical in the central heating system for over a week, this can cause damage depending on how long the chemical is left in for the more damage it can cause. The chemical is made to break up the rust particles and could also work on eating into the central heating materials also.
How often should I get my a power flush to prevent central heating sludge
There is always a big debate when it comes to having your central heating power flushed. We believe that a power flush is needed only if the central heating water is partly brown or black. A central heating system with clear water will show that there are no sludge in the system at all. As long as the chemical in the central heating system is doing it’s job and keeping sludge at bay, then there is no need for a power flush.
What is the best way of preventing central heating sludge in the future
To prevent sludge, it is always a good idea to use a chemical whenever you either drain down the central heating system or to run the central heating with new chemicals every 5-years, but always make sure to drain down and follow correct instructions guided by the chemical.
When getting a new boiler, should I have my central heating system de-sludged
Every time you have a new boiler, it is always a good idea to have the central heating system flushed out as guided by the instructions of the boiler manufacture or at least test by a device used to check if the central heating water passes a quality check.
What happens if my central heating system has not been treated from sludge when having a new boiler fitted
If your central heating system has not been treated for sludge, then the chance are from straight away will be that the rust particles will start to occur and may be dirty within a couple of years causing the central heating flow to slow down and become more costly in the future.
By draining down the central heating system and refilling can I get rid of my sludge
When draining down the central heating system, yes you will get rid of plenty of sludge however, the worst of the sludge will probably be left in the central heating system and radiators. Please keep in mind when draining the central heating system, you are not getting rid of the worse of the sludge and your not preventing it from getting worse in the future.
Does having a magnetic de-sludging filter cure or stop sludge from building up
Having a magnetic de-sludging filter helps circulation and collects and sludge that also circulates but is not a cure as there is a stubborn build up of sludge in the radiator that is not accounted for. By using an emergency plumber or a heating engineer to work on the radiator, there is a great change that you will get rid of the stubborn build up of sludge. It is also advice to use a chemical that stops sludge from occurring rather than just rely on the magnetic cleaning filter.
If you require a plumbing engineer recommended to you then please feel free to give us a call or if your an engineer that can work with power flushing then please visit the plumbing register.