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Expert heating system and boiler powerflush
What is powerflushing?
Powerflushing is the action of removing the rust and dirt accumulated in a wet heating system over the years. We do this by using the power of a circulating pump. This procedure is done more effectively by using the action of a chemical agent at a normal system working temperature.
We powerflush in two ways:
- A close loop circuit. In this way dirty system water and chemicals are circulated through a filter. The filter catch most of the rust and dirt and is regularly cleaned. This is a very effective method of cleaning a system. This method allow for chemicals to be added and the system to be heated up speeding up the process. After the filters are clean and there is no more rust or dirt in the system, we add a neutralizer to the system to neutralize the acid solution. We then circulate the water with neutralizer for at least 10 minutes. Then we dump the solution and rinse the system with clean tap water until the system water is clear and clean. We then measure the cleanliness of the water to make sure the system water match the tap water used.
- A open loop circuit. In this way we use only clean water to flush the system. This method is used for fairly clean systems. Instead of running the water through a loop, we use clean tap water and mains water pressure to clean the system. Like that, one end of the system is connected to water supply and the other end is on a drain. We then constantly measure the cleanliness of the system to make sure is matching the tap water used.
Why we need to powerflush the system?
Rust and dirt accumulated in a central heating system block the circulation of heating agent. In most of UK homes, the heating agent is water. Untreated water is rusting the radiators over the years if they are made of steel. This rust created get deposited on the pipework and on the bottom of the radiators. In return ,this restrict the passage of the water making the radiators inefficient in heating the space. Another consequence of rust in the system is blocking system vital components. That is why the new condensing boilers who have very efficient heat exchangers get blocked by rust. The circulation pumps can get blocked with rust and sludge. Diverter valves and automatic air vents get blocked as well. As a conclusion, we need to protect the investment in heating systems.
The first line of defense is cleaning the existing system. This is called powerflush. The next important thing is installing a good magnetic filter. Third and very important is to treat the system water with corrosion inhibitor. Forth and maybe last one is to service the system yearly. This should include measuring the level of inhibitor or dosing the system with another bottle of inhibitor.
How we actually do the powerflush?
To be effective in our powerflushing we apply one out of the two method described above. Then using a battery powered hammer drill with a special tool attached, we agitate all the radiators. We do this so the deposited sludge is moved and carried by the flow of water circulated. We do this on every single radiator. By closing the valves on all radiators excepting in one at the time, we make sure that the power of water flow and agitation will remove the dirt effectively. Then after we are done with the cleaning process and happy with the results, we start rinsing the system.
How we are rinsing the system?
The first stage of rinsing is neutralizing the system if we used a chemical. Then after around 10 minutes of circulating the neutralizer with all the radiator valves fully open we drain the system fully. We then drain the system at the lowest point, with a drain hose and vent all the radiators to make sure all the solution is drained. After this, we connect the system to clean tap water and refill it. Same as on powerflush, we then close all the radiator valves excepting on one radiator and allow clean water to pass through one radiator at a time. Water discharge at the other end and we measure its properties and make sure is clean and no dirty solution is left over. We are doing this on all the radiators and hot water cylinder or plate to plate heat exchanger.
Like that we ensure that the whole system is clean. Not only the radiators but the hot water cylinder coil or the plate to plate heat exchanger and pipework under the floors as well.
What long lasting protection we recommend?
There is a very easy and affordable way to protect the system for very long time. We insist that powerflush to be done only once and system protected by a good magnetic filter. System water to be treated with corrosion inhibitor and corrosion inhibitor levels to be maintained. I cannot stress enough how effective this is. Only like that, we can guarantee that a heating system will never suffer again due to rust, sludge and blockages. Only doing this steps the system will never need another powerflush!