A big enough news story to get on BBC TV last night and on Radio 5 this morning. They are a modern, sophisticated, supposedly energy efficient form of boiler that have been in use for about three years now. When in use they send out a cloud of steam so goodness knows what they do for global warming.
Ours has failed twice so here are a few tips on what to do:
1. Contact a registered gas fitter: Gas safety
2. My gas fitter said to me on the phone 'The whole country's going down.'
3. If you can't get a gas fitter, read the manual for your boiler.
4. Very often the problem is that the external condensing outlet pipe has frozen. You should get this lagged, but the lagging used in the UK cannot cope with the very low temperatures we have been having.
5. At your own risk, apply hot water to the outlet pipe (it should not be boiling or it will crack the pipe). Make sure you are standing on a non-slip surface and that there is no risk of scalding yourself.
6. Make sure that no other connected pipes are frozen: our system was shut down yesteday by our washing machine outlet pipe.
7. Check that the boiler is dry before re-starting it (then take cover).
8. In very cold weather keep the central heating overnight although at a lower thermostat setting (depending on your control system).
9. If you do not have an annual overhaul by a registered gas fitter, make sure you arrange one.
My experience is limited to my own boiler and what you do is at your own risk. Ideally, this work should be done by a registered professional.