Radiator Flush – Why and How

Radiator FlushCentral heating is a clean and efficient way of heating your home. However your central heating system needs maintenance to ensure it is working at maximum efficiency. Along with central heating servicing and repairs, we can also carry out a radiator flush to help keep your radiators in tip top condition.

What is radiator sludge?

Radiator sludge is a build up of rust and dirt in your radiators. It sinks to the bottom and creates a thick sludgy layer that can stop the hot water from circulating effectively. You may have radiator sludge if your radiator(s) are warm at the top and sides but cold at the bottom. Radiator sludge can also stop radiators working completely.

Having sludge in a radiator doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with the central heating system, however sludge can cause further problems and even boiler breakdowns. So, if it’s been a few years since you’ve had the radiators cleaned – or you haven’t ever had them cleaned – it is worth thinking about organising a radiator flush.

What is a radiator flush?

A radiator flush is the process of cleaning out your radiators and the central heating system – ‘flushing’ it through. This can be done by manually removing the radiators to clean them, or by organising for a professional to carry out a full flush of your central heating system.

Can I carry out a radiator flush myself?

Yes, if you are confident removing a radiator and manually flushing it out yourself, you can do this at home. However, it is strongly recommended that you hire a professional for the job. Although you would make significant savings by removing individual radiators and performing a radiator flush, this will not sufficiently clean the entire system and your problems may well still persist.

If you do decide to perform a radiator flush yourself, please remember the following:

• Turn your central heating off for a good few hours before attempting to remove the radiator. The water in radiators can be dangerously hot.

• Protect your flooring with plastic sheeting and/or a lot of old towels to soak up any water

• Make sure you know how to close and open the valves before you attempt it

• Have a bucket ready to catch the large amount of dirty water from the bleed valve

Flushing through a radiator with a hosepipe will remove a lot of the sludge, but it’s unlikely to be as efficient as a power­flush.

What can the professionals do?

We can carry out something called a ‘power flush’ – we do not just flush your radiators, we flush through your entire system, making sure it is fully clean and working at maximum efficiency. A power radiator flush involves pumping clean fresh water into the system, forcing dirt and debris out without the mess or hassle involved in removing individual radiators. The water is pumped inat low levels of pressure, but high speed. Additionally, we add a corrosion inhibitor to the system
to help prevent sludge occurring again.