It’s pretty much the law of the land that boilers break down during a cold snap. In reality, this happens because boilers are either turned back on after a summer of relative inactivity or turned up as the mercury goes down. This puts stress on the system and before you know it, your Old Faithful has gone kaput and you’re shivering.
Don’t try to repair your boiler yourself
If you’ve tried all the troubleshooting and diagnostics in the manual and you’ve had no luck, then it’s time to call in the emergency boiler repair people. You must never attempt repairs yourself because this is dangerous and you may invalidate any warranties on your boiler. Thankfully, there are lots of same-day boiler repair services so the chances are that you won’t be cold for long.
Staying warm without your boiler
If you can’t get a boiler repair technician out immediately, or if it’s particularly cold and you have to wait for a few hours, there are lots of things you can do to stay warm.
Prioritise the areas you’ll be occupying
By concentrating your heating efforts to the rooms you’ll be using most, you won’t have as much space to keep warm, making life easier. This is especially important if you’re using fan heaters or free-standing electric radiators, as these can become expensive to run.
Light a fire
If you have a wood-burner or working fireplace you’ll really appreciate it, so light it up.
Go retro with extra layers and a hot water bottle
We forget how much difference an extra blanket on the bed can make, as well as a hot water bottle. If you have plush covers for your hotties, you can carry them around the house for extra comfort.
Donning an extra jumper and a pair of fleecy socks works well too.
Exclude those draughts
If you have secure double glazing then just make sure your curtains are closed once the temperatures drop at night.
If you have any draughty windows or doors, then a makeshift draught excluder from masking tape or similar, as well as rolling up towels and placing them at the bottom of closed doors.
Heating your water
A major annoyance when your boiler breaks down is being unable to heat water. If you have an immersion heater then you’ll be able to get hot water for baths, showers and washing up, but remember this is an expensive option. An electric shower is a bonus in these circumstances too, as you can use it to fill the bath or washing up bowl.
You can also use a kettle or a pan to heat up water, but if you’re using these methods to fill a bath or a washing up bowl, take care to put cold water in first to avoid scalds.
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