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Unusually cold weather in the UK is starting to play havoc with boilers, with many of us waking up to no heating or hot water. If this is you, you may find that your boiler is flashing up an error message on its screen, or making strange gurgling noises.
As annoying as this is, with temperatures below freezing, the likely culprit for your problems with modern condensing boilers is a frozen condensate pipe.
Condensing boilers produce slightly acidic condensation as a byproduct, which is expelled via a pipe to the outside of your house via a polymer pipe. When the temperature drops, this pipe can freeze, eventually creating a blockage and preventing your boiler from working.
Although boilers are supposed to show an error message that helps you track this down, sometimes it’s not that simple. For example. my Glow-worm boiler has shown error messages F1, F9 and F13, even though the problem is the same.