News & Advice
The magic of a magnetic filter part 2
Any heating system made with steel radiators will always corrode as it is water and metal creating rust and in turn, sludge. Over time this builds up in the radiators, limiting their performance. This filter contains a magnet that catches this debris and only lets pure water through.
The benefits of a filter are:
Cleaner Water - Clean water also does not put as much pressure on the heating system or fill your boiler with a chemical mess that you will have to flush out later.
Better Efficiency - Cleaner water leads to better heating.
Less Maintenance - Filtering out debris means that you do not have to flush or bleed the radiators for a long time and also prevents damage to the boiler.
Fewer Breakdowns - Blocked pipes lead to breakdowns that can be costly or annoying, even with a warranty. No blocked pipes, fewer breakdowns to deal with! It can extend the life of your boiler.
Better Radiator Performance - Your radiators will not need cleaning as often and will not wear down in a matter of days as a result of being filled full of sludge.
Lower Energy Bills - Better heating efficiency leads to lower energy bills from your heating system since you have more water available and fewer blockages to slow the process down.
Faster Heating - Not only does your central heating become more efficient, but your radiators will often heat up faster.
Pro-Tect not only installs these filters but maintains them by cleaning the filter as part of your annual boiler service. Contact us to arrange a quote for a magnetic filter.
The Importance of an Annual Boiler Service
1. Gas Safety
It is important to keep you and your family safe and make sure the gas appliances in your home are safe. Boilers are fuel-burning appliances that can release carbon monoxide which is poisonous. Carbon monoxide is a silent killer as it's tasteless, colourless, and odourless, which makes it hard to detect. Having your boiler serviced on annual basis will give you peace of mind that it is working safely as the engineers will be able to raise any issues with you, if any, that need to be repaired.
2. Warranty Purposes
If you have a boiler that is still under warranty, it is a requirement by the manufacturer to make sure you have it serviced annually. Failure to do so will result in the warranty becoming void and you being liable to pay for the full repair by the manufacturer.
3. Maintaining the Efficiency of the Appliance
Regularly maintaining your boiler by a good quality gas safe company like ourselves can help your appliance live its expected life. During a service, we will be able to identify and fix any underlying problems before it’s too late. If you ignore a small issue it could lead to a more serious problem which could be much more costly to repair or lead to a safety issue. Choose Pro-Tect to service the gas appliances in your home, we have over 50 years of combined experience, we are experts on gas safety, and pride ourselves in quality workmanship.
4. It's a legal requirement for landlords
If you’re a landlord, it's is a legal requirement to present a gas safety record each year. See the post below for more details.
Contact us to get your annual boiler service booked.
Landlord Gas Responsibilities
The Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 (GSIUR) outline your duties as a landlord to make sure all gas appliances, fittings, chimneys, and flues are safe and working efficiently. If you’re letting a property with gas appliances installed, you’ve got these main legal responsibilities:
1. Gas safety checks
All gas appliances and flues need to have an annual gas safety check by a Gas Safe registered engineer. You'll be given a Landlord Gas Safety Record with details of all the checks that were carried out. Email us to get your checks booked with Pro-Tect and we can send you annual reminders for when it's next due.
2. Gas Safety Record
Following the annual gas safety check and receipt of your Landlord's Gas Safety Record, you’ll need to provide a record of this check to your tenants. By law, a copy of your Landlord's Gas Safety Record should be given to your current tenants within 28 days of the gas safety check - and for new tenants, you’ll need to provide this at the start of their tenancy. Our system sends this via email to you and your tenants.
You’ll need to make sure that all gas pipework, appliances, chimneys, and flues are kept in a safe condition. Check the gas appliances’ manufacturer guidelines to find out how often a service is recommended. If you haven’t got access to these, we’d recommend an annual service - unless your Gas Safe registered engineer suggests otherwise.
4. Carbon Monoxide and Smoke Alarms
As from October 2022, landlords are required to install carbon monoxide and smoke alarms in their rental properties. Carbon monoxide alarms are to be installed in all rented accommodation and new build properties, wherever there is a fixed combustion appliance, other than gas appliances, and solely for cooking. Smoke alarms are to be fitted on each storey of their homes, where there is a room used as living accommodation.
Landlords are to repair or replace smoke and CO alarms if informed or found that they are faulty. Alarms are to conform with BS EN 50291-1:2018 and be a 'Type A' alarm powered by a battery designed to operate for the working life of the alarm. Alarms with fixed wiring may also be used provided they are fitted with a sensor failure warning device.
5. Gas pipework check recommendation
Installation pipework isn’t covered by the annual gas safety check, but both the Gas Safe Register and the HSE recommend that when you request a safety check, you ask your Gas Safe registered engineer to:
Test for tightness on the whole gas system, including installation pipework
Visually examine the pipework (so far as is reasonably practicable)
There are no formal requirements for you to keep maintenance records, but you’ll need to be able to show that you have regularly maintained the pipework, appliances, and flues and completed the required repairs.
Choose Pro-Tect to keep your tenants safe in your rental properties.
Gas Saving Tips!
We are all feeling the strain of the continuous price increases at moment and as there’s no indication this is going to stop the best thing that you can do is be smarter with your gas usage. We’ve put together some advice on how we can help you can be smarter in your homes:
Install smart thermostats and radiator valves which can save around £75 a year. This will mean you only need to heat the rooms you are using and allows you to customise the temperature in each room to the degree which saves overheating other rooms. This is all easily controlled via an app on your smartphone.
Turning down your heating by one degree can save you up to £80 a year.
Install a new boiler. Upgrading your boiler is a high upfront cost however changing a low energy-efficient boiler to A-rated one can save you around £300 a year. If you are planning to stay in your home for over 5 years this is something to consider.
Remove poorly designed radiator covers. Covering your radiator blocks its airflow thus reducing its efficiency. Some radiator covers can actually trap heat and affect your thermostatic radiator valve (TRV) reading – confusing your entire central heating system. If you are trying to cover up an old radiator it may be worth swapping it for a new modern looking one that also has better efficiency.
Check your radiators are working efficiently by making sure there are no cold spots. Air can get into the system causing your radiators to not heat up as well as they should, by bleeding them to release the air can sort the issue out. Just be sure once you have bled all your radiators you check the pressure on your boiler, as this may need topping up after you have taken the air out of the system.
Pro-Tect are Supporting Gas Safety Week 2022!
Pro-Tect has pledged its support for Gas Safety Week (12 – 18 September 2022) and will be posting on social media to raise awareness about the importance of gas safety.
Gas Safety Week is now into its second decade of keeping people safe and organisations from across the UK are working together to raise awareness of the dangers of poorly maintained gas appliances, which can cause gas leaks, fires, explosions and carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning.
This year, Gas Safety Week focuses on the steps consumers can take to ensure they stay safe, including not attempting DIY on gas appliances and being aware of the warning signs of unsafe appliances, such as dark or sooty staining around an appliance.
To keep you and your family safe, follow Gas Safe Register’s top tips:
Know the symptoms of CO poisoning; headaches, nausea, breathlessness, dizziness, collapse, and loss of consciousness.
Look out for warning signs your appliance may be unsafe, such as dark or sooty stains around the appliance, increased condensation and pilot lights frequently going out.
Make sure you leave vents unblocked as these are there to help your appliance work safely and efficiently.
If you smell gas or think there might be a gas leak, call the free 24-hour national gas emergency number immediately on 0800 111 999.
Never attempt to work on a gas appliance yourself, always seek the help of a qualified Gas Safe registered engineer.
If you’re having your annual safety check, only employ a suitably qualified Gas Safe registered engineer to carry it out.
Always ask to see your engineer’s Gas Safe ID card. Make sure you check the back of the card, which will state which gas appliances they are qualified to work on.
Stay safe and don't DIY with gas. Call us to Pro-Tect your home!
@GasSafeRegister #GSW22 #GasSafetyWeek
Switch off, check on!
With energy prices soaring since the 1st April, more than a third of homeowners will, or already have, switched off their heating earlier than usual this year to save on bills. After the cold snap earlier this month, this may have left nearly 8 million households braving the cold at home due to increased money worries.
Gas Safe's new research suggests that as well as switching off earlier than usual, nearly a third (31%) will skip booking their annual gas safety check this year, due to the cost-of-living crisis. This is despite a majority (77%) being aware that regular servicing can help gas appliances run more efficiently, and in turn save money on household bills. Pro-Tect cannot stress enough the importance of having an annual service on all your gas appliances not only from a safety aspect but in preserving your appliance and making it more efficient. We all need to save on our energy bills right now!
Gas Safe Register’s and Pro-Tect's Switch Off and Check On top tips:
Annual gas boiler, and wider gas appliances servicing, can save you in the long run – left ignored, gas-related warning signs such as boilers making rattling and banging sounds, can add up when it comes to fixing them later down the line. Average costs are estimated at £2,333.
Only use a Gas Safe registered engineer to fit, fix and service your gas appliances. Using an illegal tradesperson can risk invalidating your home insurance. Pro-Tect are Gas Safe registered and you can ask to check our Gas Safe Register ID card when we arrive.
Struggling to remember when you last booked your annual gas service and safety check? Any customers we have serviced in the past will get a reminder from us to remind you to get your annual gas service appointment booked. If you are new to us, you get added to our system for future reminders.
If any of the following signs are spotted, immediate expert attention from us will be required; lazy yellow cooker flames, rather than flames that are blue and crisp, as well as sooty marks or stains and unexplained high levels of condensation in a room, are all definitive warning signs of unsafe gas appliances and, if left unchecked, can pose life-threatening risks such as carbon monoxide poisoning.
If you suspect carbon monoxide poisoning, get some fresh air and leave the house as quickly as possible. See a doctor and if you are very unwell call 999 for an ambulance. The National Gas Emergency Helpline is also available 24/7 on 0800 111 999.
Click the button below to contact us to get your spring clean check booked in!
Make sure it's just love that's in the air
This Valentine's day, make sure it is just love that is in the air and not carbon monoxide. Carbon monoxide is a silent killer and we cannot emphasise enough the importance of having the gas appliances in your home serviced on an annual basis. We pride ourselves in the knowledge of regulations and gas safety which is why we always give our customers the best advice.
Our Pro-Tect installations receive a £10 discount on their annual service checks and don't forget you need to make sure they are completed every year so you do not invalidate your boiler manufacturers warranty.
Get in touch with us if you need to book your annual service.
We met Baxter from Baxi!
We had a great day out at the InstallerShow 2021 and even got to meet our hero Baxter from Baxi Boilers. We are always looking at opportunities to improve our work and it's always exciting to meet current and new suppliers to see what new products/tools/supplies they have. Plus we just love tools!!!
Here is Connor and Mick with their hero! Our customers know we love a Baxi boiler!
Winter's coming...is your home ready?
Now is the best time of year to make sure your home is ready for the winter!
Have all of your gas appliances been serviced recently?
Is there a room that requires an extra radiator?
Are all of your radiators heating up correctly?
Is your boiler efficient enough for your home?
Get in touch if you need Pro-Tect to get your home winter ready.
The magic of a magnetic filter
We recently posted on our social media account a powerflush carried out at a house and how much sludge was on the magnetic filter. This caused a lot of questions about what they are and if you need them. See below to see the answers to the common questions we get asked:
"What should it look like?"
Here is a video of us cleaning the sludge from the magnet, from the powerflush machine, and as you can see it should just be the silver magnetic rod.
"How do they work?"
A magnetic filter works by the steel sludge (magnetite) being attracted to the magnet. As the corroded steel debris passes through the system, it gets caught in the filter, allowing the newly cleaned water to continue through your pipes.
"What are the benefits?"
It looks after your central heating system by stopping this debris from circulating in your system and clogging up radiators, pumps and other components. Thus making your boiler more efficient and prolonging its life. We fit these with all of our boiler installations, where possible, to Pro-Tect the boiler system from day 1.
"Will this solve my sludge problems?"
We recommend having a powerflush to give your central heating system a good clean through before having a magnetic filter fitted so you can really feel the benefits. You should then clean the filter every 12 months which is something we do as part of our annual boiler services, where possible*.
Get in touch with us if your central heating system is in need of a pick me up powerflush and magnetic filter fitting.
*Please be aware that not all magnetic filters can be stripped apart as they are not manufactured to the same design therefore we can only do a check on these filters.
Have you ticked a gas safety check off your annual spring to-do list?
For spring cleaning garden maintenance (29%), cleaning the windows (27%) and scrubbing the oven (24%) are ranked as the top three tasks that the nation is determined to tackle.
Worryingly, when it comes to gas safety in our homes, only one in 10 (10%) are hoping to book in a safety check/servicing this spring for their gas appliances, with a third (33%) also admitting that gas safety checks often slip to the bottom of their to-do lists.
Choose Pro-Tect to carry out your annual gas safety checks on your gas appliances.
Gas safety for caravans and motorhomes.
Gas Safe has issued guidance to people taking holidays in the UK this year in touring caravans, motorhomes and holiday homes. The useful tips remind holidaymakers that gas safety is just as important in their holiday home as their usual home.
Gas Safe Register’s tips to stay gas safe on a touring holiday are:
Hiring: Ask if the gas appliances in your leisure accommodation vehicle (LAV) have been safety checked and serviced. The hirer must do this by law and is required to provide an up-to-date landlord’s gas safety record
Buying a previously used LAV: Ask the vendor to provide any servicing and maintenance records. If these can’t be supplied, ask about having the gas installation checked by a Gas Safe registered engineer
Appliances such as gas cookers or gas fires will be different from those you’re used to at home. It’s a good idea to ask for copies of the appliance user guide or maintenance instructions
Ask for a demonstration on how to use the gas appliances/ installation, including the storage, positioning, and exchange of LPG gas cylinders
Gas cookers should not be used for heating, and require adequate ventilation when in use
Barbecues must only be used in open, well-ventilated spaces
Do not block any purpose provided ventilation
An MOT certificate for a motorhome is not a guarantee of the safety of the gas installation
Recognise the signs that a gas appliance may be unsafe. Black marks or stains around the appliance and lazy yellow or orange flames could be signs that it is not working properly. Do not use them until they’ve been inspected by a qualified Gas Safe registered engineer.
Our engineers at Pro-TectHP are LPG qualified and Gas Safe registered should you require any checks carried out in your own caravan or motorhome.
Pro-Tect's CO Alarm Advice
Reminder to check your carbon monoxide alarm(s):
Press the test button
Check the expiry date
Has it got a British standard symbol?
Is it fitted in the correct location?
(if in doubt check with the detector manufacturer's instructions).
Don’t take a chance...carbon monoxide is a silent killer. You won’t see, taste, or smell it.