System Flush FAQ

Man installing radiator valve close up

Central heating systems are largely easy to maintain and cheap to run. However, to keep them that way, some maintenance is necessary.

What is a system flush?

A system flush is one name for the process of ‘flushing’ your central heating system in order to remove residue, known as radiator sludge.

Why carry out a system flush?

Radiator sludge is caused by a build-up residue within the system, mostly due to corrosion. This causes your central heating to work less efficiently, sometimes preventing your radiators from
working at all. A heating system flush gives the system a thorough clean out, allowing it to function at its optimum capacity. A heating system flush:

  • Makes your system work more efficiently, saving money on your heating bills
  • Prolongs the lifespan of your boiler and central heating system
  • Will help save energy overall
  • Allow more even heat distribution, giving you a warmer, more comfortable home

How often should a system flush be carried out?

It is generally recommended to do a system flush every 5 to 6 years, to keep your heating system working as well as it should. However, many people choose to wait until a problem arises. The choice is yours, however the general consensus is that prevention is better than cure.

There are a few signs and symptoms that can be attributed to a build-up of radiator sludge:

  • Central heating system taking a long time to heat up properly
  • One or more radiators cold at the bottom, or not working at all
  • Radiators needing to be bled more frequently
  • Odd noises coming from the boiler

How can I do a system flush?

Although it is possible to remove each radiator individually to clean them, this is laborious and time consuming, and is very unlikely to offer the same effective clean as a system flush carried out by a professional. Radiator sludge also builds up in the piping of the heating system, and this won’t be removed with this method. We would always recommend investing in a professional system flush, to ensure that the job is done well – and to save you the stress!

A professional system flush – a power flush – is carried out with specialist equipment by central heating system engineers. The system is flushed through rapidly with water, taking the radiator sludge with it and leaving clean water behind. There is also a chemical added to the water that helps to prevent further build-up of radiator sludge. The whole process can take a few hours to be completed properly.

Gas Services provide power flushing, along with any other gas central heating works, at fair and competitive rates. All of our engineers are highly qualified and RGI registered, for your safety and peace of mind. Call us today for a no obligation quote!