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How to reset your boiler

In our easy to follow guide, we'll teach you why a boiler needs to be reset, why a boiler goes into lockout and how to reset a boiler. You’ll likely need to reset a boiler more than once in your life, so now’s a great time to learn how.

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When does a boiler need resetting?

Resetting a boiler may sound quite scary, as it’s often associated with a boiler fault, but don’t worry. It's a simple procedure to make sure your boiler is running efficiently & safely as possible.

Have you ever had computer issues and when you ring IT they tell you to turn it off & on again? Well, that’s the same principle, but with boilers. Sometimes you’ll need to reset a boiler after there’s been a fault in the system, so for safety, it will go into lockdown to protect from any serious issues. When you reset, it will reboot your boiler to make it run as usual. 

You’ll also want to reset a boiler when you’ve bled any radiators or changed the pressure within your central heating system.  

How to reset a boiler

Resetting a boiler sounds complicated, but more often than not it’s just a push of a button – but it all depends on what make and model of boiler you have. If you can’t see a button labelled “Reset” then check the manual your boiler came with, it’ll tell you exactly how to reset your system.

For the majority of systems here’s how to reset a boiler:

  1. Push the reset button and hold for up to 10 seconds
  2. Wait for the boiler to ignite (You’ll hear it starting up)
  3. Leave it for 5 minutes and make sure it’s working as usual

There you have it, an easy and simple way to reset your boiler.

After a reset, your boiler should be working as normal. If you’re still receiving any error messages you should consider getting the boiler repaired.

Why has my boiler locked out?

Sometimes your boiler may “lockout”, which means it shuts itself down when an error occurs to make sure the issue doesn’t become bigger & potentially dangerous. Think of it as a safety switch that only occurs when something goes wrong.

A lockout can happen for a number of reasons but the three main issues are usually:

Water Pressure

The pressure in your system is key to pushing hot water to where it needs to be, so if the pressure is too high or low it will cause a lockout to your boiler. Your pressure gauge is usually shown on the boiler, and you’ll want to keep it around 1-2 bars for optimal pressure. Find out how to change your boiler pressure.

Ignition Failure

When your boiler fails a few attempts to ignite, it will cause a lockout to the boiler. This is a safety procedure and the issue can be caused by insufficient gas pressure, blocked burner or you’re in need of a new part. This issue will need a gas safe registered engineer to come out and repair the boiler.

Heat exchanger blocked

 If your boiler is making a noise like a kettle when you use it, this is often a tell-tale sign of a build-up of limescale or sludge in the heat exchanger. “Kettling”, as it’s known, will restrict the flow of water in your boiler, the only way to fix this issue is to get a registered gas safe engineer to flush the system.

If you're interested in more reasons why your boiler could be locking out, here’s our guide on the most common boiler problems and how to fix them.

My boiler always needs to reset - what do I do?

If your boiler is low on pressure, making noises or constantly locking out, then it’s highly likely you have an ongoing fault within the boiler. This could be:

  • A leak in the system
  • Blocked heat exchanger
  • Faulty pump
  • Water pressure issues
  • A part needs replacing

If you have to reset your boiler on a regular basis, then your boiler is not working correctly and will either need to be repaired or replaced by a gas safe registered engineer.

My boiler is not turning on after resetting

If your boiler isn’t working following the reset and won’t reignite, a further investigation will be needed. Luckily your boiler’s fault code should have given you some clues about exactly what the problem is.

You may have to fix the boiler pressure, even if the original fault code didn’t relate to this issue. So, it’s worth checking the pressure gauge to make sure it’s sat around the 1 bar.

You can find out what the fault code means by consulting your user manual. Alternatively, you can check our fault code guides which apply to a number of different brands.

Vaillant boiler fault codes

Baxi boiler fault codes

Ideal boiler fault codes

Worcester Bosch boiler fault codes

While it may seem obvious, make sure that the boiler is being supplied with power. If it is, then the display screen will be lit. A lack of power can be caused by a power cut, so it’s a good idea to check your fuse box also.

If you still can’t get your boiler to turn on, it’s likely that you will have to call on the help of a professional engineer.

Having trouble with your boiler?

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