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Why is my central heating pump noisy?
If you reside in the UK and have central heating installed in your home, then it is likely that you have heard the noisy sounds produced by the pump. The central heating pump is an essential component of the system, responsible for pumping water throughout the heating circuit. As it moves the water, the pump generates noise. However, if the pump’s noise level suddenly increases, it can be concerning, especially if you don’t know the root cause. This article will take you through the common causes of a faulty central heating pump. If there is a problem with your pump, then it could lead to cold radiators and even leaks.
The noisy central heating pump may be a result of airlocks. Airlocks are pockets of air that form in the circulating water and cause the central heating system to make a gurgling sound, which may make the pump noisy. An excellent way to prevent this is to bleed the radiators. This simple procedure is about freeing trapped air from the system and takes only a few minutes to perform.
Pump shaft incorrectly installed
If a central heating pump has been installed incorrectly, it will result in a whole host of problems. The pump needs to be fitted horizontally at a specific angle, if not, then the pump’s performance will be negatively impacted. If you find yourself in this situation, then it is important that you contact a Gas Safe registered engineer, as a pump installed in the wrong position will wear out much sooner.
Naturally, when water circulates around the central heating system, it brings rust, sludge and other debris with it. As time goes on, this gradually builds up and can turn into a blockage.
Luckily, to fix this, the blockage can easily be cleaned away. To stop the central heating system from being blocked again, a heating engineer can perform a powerflush. This procedure sends chemicals around the system to clear it out.
You can also have a magnetic filter installed, to collect debris before it has a chance to form a blockage.
Speed set too high
Nowadays, central heating pumps come with settings, that allow you to change the flow rate. There are usually three different speeds. If the speed is set too high, you will have a noisy central heating pump. Instead of changing it instantly, you should contact a professional, because there might be a valid reason your pump is set to that speed.
Fan hitting other parts
Central heating pumps tend to have a fan fitted alongside them, to stop them from overheating. A metal clanking sound when the pump is in action indicates that there is a problem with the fan. The most likely cause of this is a loose blade.
Seized internal parts
If there is humming or vibration coming from the central heating pump, then this is a sign that certain parts have seized up. In some instances, a light tap could be enough to solve the problem, however, it is more likely a blockage or a sign that the pump has been installed incorrectly.
Another reason why your central heating pump is noisy is due to worn bearings. The pump contains small bearings that support the impeller that turns the water. Over time, these bearings wear out, reducing the pump’s smooth operation, causing it to make a humming or whining noise. Replacing the worn bearings will require a professional.
When the central heating pump is in motion, it is normal for it to heat up slightly. If the pump becomes too hot to touch, then there is probably a problem with the motor. Usually, a fault occurs when the central heating has been switched off for a long time. The reason for the motor overheating, can generally be put down to a part getting stuck. Quite often, this can be solved with a light tap, although, if this is a recurring issue, then it is probably time to have your central heating pump replaced.
The noisy central heating pump could be due to faulty wiring. This applies if the system has recently been installed or serviced, as a loose wire can cause an electrical fault that rattles the heater and makes it noisier than usual.
Foaming can also make your central heating pump noisier than usual. This is caused by old, corroded radiators and an accumulation of dirt in boiler pipes. The air bubbles that form are pushed through the system by the pump, making a loud noise.
Low fluid levels
Finally, low levels of antifreeze and water can cause the pump to run louder than normal. This is due to air bubbles in the system that make the pump work harder, resulting in an increased noise level. Topping up the fluid levels should help reduce or eliminate this problem.
Noisy central heating pumps can be a nuisance and make it difficult to relax in your home. If you have identified that the pump is responsible for the noise, then the above list may provide some insights into why it is happening and what corrective measures you can take to rectify it. However, if none of these solutions work, then it is best to contact a heating engineer for professional advice.
If you are planning to upgrade your central heating system, then it is essential to ensure that you choose a pump and other components that are suitable for the size of your property and its needs. The UK government is providing central heating grants to help people with the cost of replacing an old and inefficient heating system. Taking advantage of this scheme can save you money on your energy bills and keep your home comfortable and quiet.
Homeowners are still able to get a FREE boiler grant or insulation grant via the ECO scheme, which is still available to households that qualify. Warma UK are currently working throughout the UK helping privately owned and rented homes to improve home energy efficiency and save money on rising energy bills.
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