Help and guidance for boiler, electrical and general maintenance issues you may experience in your property

Boiler photo indicative

Boiler pressure - Issued by British Gas

Boiler pressure systems differ, so it is always best to check your manual, to see if you can re-pressurise it yourself. Your boiler may also have instructions on the rear of the control panel. (If you need any tools to remove this panel, do not touch it!

Top tip!

Visit your boiler brand’s website, to see if they have helpful tutorials and videos about topping up pressure on their systems. Re-pressurising your boiler means allowing more water to enter the system, from the water mains supply, via the filling loop. The two main types of filling loop are 'built in' and 'external'.

Filling loops may vary in design, but here is the basic re-pressurising process:

  • Switch off and allow your boiler to cool
  • Double-check that both ends of the filling loop are securely attached
  • Open both valves, to allow cold mains water into the system (you should hear it)
  • Wait for the pressure gauge to read 1.5 bar
  • Close both valves, one after the other
  • Switch the boiler back on and, if needed, press the reset button
  • Undo both ends of the filling loop and remove. Be careful to catch any water spillage and keep the filling loop in a safe place!

If you are in any doubt about how to re-pressurise your boiler system, or you have already done so according to the user manual but are continuing to have pressure problems, please contact us and we will arrange a heating engineer to attend.

Other Tipics

If you think you have a gas leak or can smell gas, leave the house, and phone the National Gas Emergencies number immediately on 0800 111 999.

If you are at home, and you can do it safely, turn off your gas supply. The gas mains tap should be beside your gas meter. Move the handle a quarter turn until it is at 90 degrees from the pipe to shut off the gas supply.
Information and choices for customers on how to deal with a blockage in your drain.

First response:
  • When we receive a call about a problem, we will try our best to establish if it is in a public or private pipe by asking you some specific questions.
  • If, together, we still cannot find the root cause of the problem, we will visit your property to investigate.
  • If the blockage is found to be on the private drain, we offer to try and clear it if we can do so quickly – within 30 mins of arriving.
  • We will ask you to sign a consent form to allow us to work on your private drain before we start any work.
  • If this is the first time we have been called to your property, we will not charge you. If, however, this is a repeat visit, and the blockage is found in the same place we may have to charge you. We will explain all the options before we make the visit.

Southern Water contact: 0330 303 0368.
  • Find The RCD
  • The RCD will usually be in an RCD ‘domestic unit’. The RCD domestic unit will contain about 10 RCDs.
  • The RCD domestic unit will usually be in an ‘out of the way’ place, for instance next to the electricity meter, at the back of a kitchen unit, in an airing cupboard, the cupboard under the stairs.
  • The RCD will be about 2 inches (5cm) by 1 inch (2.5cm) and will have a ‘standard’ toggle switch (the ‘main’ switch) and a push-button ‘push-button’ (test) switch. The RCD domestic unit will have thick (large diameter) cable going into it – this cable is the ‘main ring’ cable.

How To Reset An RCD
To reset an RCD move the main toggle switch to the other position; if down move up, if up move it to the down position.
  • Look at the RCDs.
  • Is one main toggle switch in a different position to the rest? Is one main toggle switch up and the other RCD main toggle switches down or down when the rest are up?
  • If one RCD main toggle switch is in a different position to the rest move it to the same position. Moving the main toggle switch is called ‘resetting the RCD’.
  • If the RCD stays reset, the main toggle switch does not go back to the other position, the problem is solved.
  • If the RCD does go back to the other position this is called ‘a constantly tripping’ RCD – see below.
  • Homeowners should be aware that some RCD domestic units have their own ‘trip switches’, some domestic units have their own isolation switches (on\off switches).
  • These switches may be standard ‘toggle’ type or ‘push button’ type. Are the domestic unit switches in the correct position?

How To Investigate A Constantly Tripping (Resetting) RCD
An RCD that trips again (and again) after reset is a ‘constantly tripping RCD’. The problem is unlikely to be the RCD. The problem is most likely an electrical appliance causing the RCD to trip; the RCD is ‘doing its job’; the RCD is removing the supply to an unsafe electrical circuit.

What Causes An RCD To Trip
The approach is to remove (disconnect) as many electrical appliances from the circuit as possible and then connect them back into the circuit one at a time. The faulty appliance will cause the RCD to trip; the shows the homeowner which appliance is faulty (causing the RCD to trip).

The homeowner should remove (unplug) all electrical appliances. If it is not possible to unplug an appliance, turn the appliance off. After unplugging all appliances, or turning them off, see if the RCD will reset. If the RCD will reset, the fault is with one of the appliances; if the RCD trips again the fault is with the electrical circuit – call a qualified electrician.

Plug each appliance in one at a time. After plugging the appliance in, or turning an appliance on, reset the RCD; keep plugging the appliances in, and resetting the RCD, until the RCD trips. Connecting the appliances one at a time, and resetting the RCD in-between, shows the homeowner which appliance is causing the RCD to trip. The homeowner should repair, or replace, the faulty appliance. Plugging each appliance in one at a time is not a100% guarantee of finding the faulty appliance; it is the best way, but not a 100% guarantee. Certain ‘cause\effect’ situations can suggest a, say, faulty kettle when the real problem is, say, a faulty cooker.

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