Four common heating faults that are adding £100s to bills – and how to avoid them

YOU may not even be aware that these very common faults you might find around the house are adding hundreds of pounds onto your bills.

From leaky taps to finding limescale in your washing machines and shower heads, these fails might be preventing your heating and utility systems from running as efficiently as they should.

If they're not working properly, this could mean you're wasting energy – and driving up your bills.

But with energy costs soaring, households will want to avoid paying anymore than they should be.

Families could be facing eye-watering hikes in a matter of weeks and forking out £3,700 a year for their energy bills.

It's because the cost of wholesale gas is rocketing, and customers are paying the price for it.

A growing list of suppliers have gone bust as a result of the crisis – which has meant some households are being double charged after their provider has gone bust, with payments taken from both the old and new supplier.

You'll want to know all the ways of driving down your bills – here's how to spot and fix these common faults and save yourself some cash.

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Leaking appliances

Leaks in your appliances could be hiking your bills up considerably – but some quick fixes could save you hundreds.

A leaky tap could be driving your water bill up by as much as 6%, according to research from Direct Line.

Families are paying an average of £396.60 for water per year, according to Money Advice Service – meaning you could be paying nearly £24 a year because your taps aren't turning off properly.

But there's a number of quick fixes you can try to plug the drips.

You could try replacing the O-ring – which you'll find at the base of the tap – or the rubber washer, which is a rubber ring found underneath the valve.

It's not just leaking taps that could be adding money onto your bills – watch out for drips from your radiators and boilers.

This could signal that you have low water pressure, or that your appliances need replacing – or a fault needs fixing.

You should make sure to call an engineer out who can take a closer inspection – and see what's going wrong.

Limescale in appliances

Limescale isn't just pesky to clean – it could be adding money onto your energy bills.

It is that hard, chalky looking grime that often builds up in your water systems – you might spot it around your taps, shower head and around your kettle.

British Gas estimates the average bill for gas can cost up to £702.10, depending on how big your household is.

But Sunny Solanki, a services and repair engineer at the supplier, says that your bill could be increased by as much as 15% if there's limescale in your household appliances.

That means you could be paying an extra £105 per year.

Calling in an engineer to help you get rid of the issue – and prevent it from happening in the future – is one way to tackle the problem.

Sunny also added: "If you have a serious issue with hard water a Hydroflow could be the solution – a device that fits nicely into your water supply line, helping to break down limescale and protect your boiler, cylinder, pipes and pumps.”

Rust on radiators and boilers

That patch of rust you've found on your radiator or boiler could be the sign that your heating system isn't working properly.

Rust itself doesn't prevent your systems running smoothly – but it indicates that there could be a leak.

It can also upset the temperature balance in your boiler, increasing the water pressure and causing it to overheat.

This could be hiking your bills up by hundreds of pounds.

It could mean that you need to arrange some maintenance work to be carried out on these appliances.

Cold spots on radiators

Ever turn the heating on and notice there's cold patches on your radiator – even though you've whacked up the thermostat?

It's a sign that your heating system isn't running properly – again, it could be notching up your bill.

There's a simple trick to get them running more efficiently again.

Bleeding your radiators is one way of getting them to get back up and running properly – Uswitch said.

A spokeperson said: "Limescale in your radiators and pipes can cause circulation problems.

"The radiator may have cold patches, and you might struggle to maintain a warm temperature in the affected room."

There's three steps you must take to do bleed your radiators.

Firstly, you need to turn your heating on to make sure that the system is working properly – make sure the radiators are fully heated before doing anything else.

Check whether there are parts of the radiator which have cool spots – particularly at the top, as this means that there could be air trapped inside.

Switch off your heating before doing anything else – otherwise you might burn yourself or soak the floor.

You'll need a radiator key – available at DIY shops – to attach onto the radiator valve, which is located at the top of the radiator, and turn the key slowly anti-clockwise.

If you hear a hissing sound, it means the trapped air is escaping – once this stops, close the valve, and this should mean your radiators will run more smoothly.

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