What is a Power Flush
A Power Flush is a mechanical and chemical flush to your central heating system which removes sludge and debris build up from within your Boiler, Radiators and Pipes (Central Heating System).
A Power Flush is carried out to improve efficiency, increase system lifespan, reduce heating costs and boiler repair bills.
Using a high volume, low water pressure machine and powerful chemicals to break up the sludge and force water through your system pushing all that sludge out and leaving a clean and healthy Heating System again.
Having a clean heating system means that it is running more efficiently, saving you money on heating bills. By clearing the sludge from your heating system, it also prolongs the lifespan of your boiler and radiators and reduces repair bills.
An infra red image showing the heat from the radiator only coming from the side due to a sludge build up inside the radiator.
When Do I Need A Power Flush
You will need a Power Flush in 2 cases.
1. The first one is that there is a build up of sludge in your heating system. Sludge is grimy substance which is formed from dirt, dust and debris which is corroded parts of metal from your heating system like radiators, pumps and valves which corrode as water flows through them causing rust (iron oxide). Over time this build up and forms a sludge like substance which begins to clog up your heating system by getting into your boiler, heat pump and valves and reducing the efficiency of your boiler or causing cold spots on your radiators, preventing warm water to flow freely. This means that your home or business is not heating up as it should and you are also spending more in heating bills due to the reduced efficiency.
2. The second reason that you would have a Power Flush for is that you are getting a new boiler or heating system installed. You may have sludge in your system as before and want to get this cleared out before installing your new heating systems. However, sometimes this is done as a matter of good practise so that once the new heating system is installed then it is running at maximum efficiency with the guarantee that there isn’t any sludge build up at all. Some Boiler Manufacturer warranties insist that a Power Flush is carried out as part of the new installation and your warranty will not be valid if this was not carried out during the initial Boiler Installation.
Sludge being poured out from a radiator as a result of a power flush.
Symptoms That I Need a Power Flush
Okay, now that we know what a Sludge Build Up is and why you need a Power Flush, what are the symptoms of a sludge build up so that you know when you need a Power Flush.
- Cold areas on radiators can be a sign of needing a Power Flush, especially if the cold areas are at the bottom or middle of the radiator.
- Increasing Fuel Bills Due to Reduced Efficiency of Boiler and Radiators with Sludge Build Up.
- A Noisy Pump or Central Heating System.
- Kettling/Banging Sounds From Boiler. The stuff of scary movies except this is real life!!! You don’t want to hear your Boiler banging. Annoying and potentially expensive to repair or replace. The Stuff of Real Horror Stories…..
- Black/Brown Sludge Coming From Radiators When Bled.
- Repeated Pump Failures. If you have had to repair or replace a boiler pump on more than one occasion, the chances are high that you need a Power Flush to get rid of the sludge in your system.
When you begin to notice any of these symptoms, it is a good idea to call in the professionals to get a Power Flush done as the longer you leave it the more damage which can be caused to your boilers and radiators causing potentially even more expensive problems to repair or replace. Also, your increasing heating bills will mean that it is costing you even more money to not get a Power Flush.
A magnetic filter attached to the boiler being used to trap sludge as it travels round the central heating system.
What Is The Power Flush Process
- Full Heating System Is Completely Drained.
- Connect the Power Flush Machine to Heating System. (Proflush Professional Thermal power flush producing an astonishing flow rate of 150 litres per minute from a 50 Gallon water tank!!!!!).
- Central Heating System is Refilled With Fresh Water.
- Strong Chemicals Added to System Breaking Down Sludge.
- One Radiator Is Left Open While All Others Are Closed.
- Agitate Debris in Radiator with Roller and Light Knocking.
- Boiler is Started and Left Running.
- Magnetic Filter Catches and Holds Sludge as it is Iron Oxide and Therefore Sticks to Magnet.
- The Filter is Then Cleaned Out.
- Procedure is Repeated For Each Radiator In Turn.
- The Whole System Is Then Drained Again.
- Water Is Reintroduced Along With an Inhibitor To Protect Against Scale and Corrosion. (Sentinel x100)
- Whole System Tested For Correct PH levels and Normal Running Functionality.
- All Documentation Is Signed Off.
- Certificate of Work Issued to Customer. (Sometimes required for Boiler Warranty etc)
What Are The Benefits of a Power Flush
Once you get a Power Flush done, your Heating System is free from the sludge that will block it and reduce its efficiency. This means that:-
- Your Heating Bills go down
- Your property is warmer
- You don’t have costly Boiler repairs
- You don’t have costly radiator repairs/replacement
How Long Does a Power Flush Take
A Power Flush is quite a lengthy and time consuming process. It will take several hours to flush out all the sludge in your system. This time will increase if there is more sludge to deal with or if it is a bigger system such as a big hotel or large office. For a small flat, you could allow for half a day and for an average size house, allow for 1 day in order for all the work to be carried out.
What Equipment Do We Use to Power Flush
Our very powerful equipment has the most advanced technology for Power Flushing. Our most powerful machine has a flow rate of 150 litres per minute with a 50 litre tank. That can do some serious flushing!!!!!
This forces water through at such a high rate that it agitates any debris and sludge and shoots it out the other end leaving you with a very clean system which then operates at optimal efficiency.
Power Flush or Chemical Flush (Chemical Cleanse); Which is Better
In short, the Power Flush is the Daddy of all flushes. A full Power Flush when done properly will get rid of all the debris and sludge in your system. When this is done throughout the system so that all your radiators and your boiler are all operating optimally with clean water freely flowing through, we then add an inhibitor to prevent the corrosion and rusting inside the system which leads to sludge. We will also add a magnetic filter which traps the sludge in it and prevents it travelling all round your system and getting caught up in the narrow pipes of radiators and leading to cold spots and radiators not working.
How Often Should I Get a Power Flush
As mentioned already, you should ideally have a Power Flush before installing a new Heating System which clears out any sludge prior to the new system going in. However, once you have your new Heating System up and running you should continue to look after it so that you don’t get the nasty sludge building up over time and causing problems. How often you get this done depends on the size of your system, the age of your boiler and the type of heat exchanger you have in the boiler. It also depends if an inhibitor has been used in your system to prevent the scaling and corrosion within your Heating System.
All that said, what does this mean to you. Well, we suggest that for optimal performance from your boiler and heating system, you should have a Power Flush or Chemical Flush (Chemical Cleanse) carried out every 5 years. If you are getting your Boiler Serviced on an annual basis then your engineer will assess your property and keep you informed about the need for a Chemical Flush (Chemical Cleanse) or a Power Flush.
What Precautions Are Taken After a Power Flush to Prevent Needing It Again
Once you have had your Power Flush, your engineer will put an Inhibitor into the Heating System to prevent scaling and corrosion of your system. This prolongs the life of your boiler and heating system and allows maximum efficiency so that your property is being heated as it should be and not having the problems associated with the build up of sludge.
Power Flush Cost
For a standard household, our price for a full Power Flush would be £500 including VAT. This would include 6 radiators. Any additional radiator would be an additional cost of £50 per radiator.
However, if you are getting a new Boiler Installation or Central Heating Installation from us, we offer this service for free as part of your boiler installation process.
As it involves gas, then it is paramount that your Heating System checked over by a Gas Safe heating engineer. In the UK, approximately one person a week dies from carbon monoxide poisoning. Carbon Monoxide is odourless and therefore very difficult to detect but you can easily fit a Carbon Monoxide detector in your home to alert you to this danger and it will raise an alarm in the same way that a smoke detector would. Also remember, if you do smell gas then call British Gas emergency number on 0800 111 999. Open all doors and windows and wait in a safe place away from the smell for the Emergency Gas Team to arrive.
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