Article for Progress Magazine by: Francine Wickham, Global Marketing Director – FERNOX

Francine Wickham, Global Marketing Director at Fernox explores theimportance of using a chemical inhibitor within a central heating system to ensure the boiler warranty remains valid.

Arguably, the most expensive household amenity, a new, energy efficient boiler represents a significant investment. As such, leading manufacturers offer warranties and even extended warranties to protect the customer against any unfortunate issues. These can typically range from two to 10+ years, depending on the manufacturer.

However, as with all warranties, it’s vital that homeowners are aware of and comply with the maintenance guidelines to ensure the warranty remains valid for its duration. Maintaining the system inhibitor levels, and topping up if necessary, will play an integral role in ensuring the warranty and householder remains protected.

This is because corrosion occurs when water comes into direct contact with metal found within central heating systems. There are of course different levels of severity and rates depending on the metal types and the water’s pH level (i.e. acidity or alkalinity). Once formed, corrosion debris and limescale can circulate within the system and reach the boiler’s narrow passageways, where blockages are created.

This causes the boiler to work harder to reach the desired temperature, consuming more energy and reducing overall system efficiency. This can eventually result in complete system failure.

The use of a chemical inhibitor has therefore been included within many boiler warranties, to ensure protection against the damage of circulating contaminants and prevent premature boiler replacements. If damage is caused and found to be related to the lack of effective chemical water treatment, a warranty can be invalidated.

Furthermore, chemical inhibitors are specified for use within Part L of the Building Regulations when commissioning a new boiler. This measure ensures new central heating systems remain energy efficient and debris-free, if inhibitor levels are maintained.

Offering superior protection, Fernox Protector F1 incorporates three inhibitor molecule types:

  • Organic inhibitors – which bind to the metal within the heating system to protect from debris.
  • Anodic inhibitors – these react with the system’s metal surface to create a protective layer.
  • Cathodic inhibitors – combine with hard water salts to form an insoluble layer.

In addition, this industry-leading inhibitor exceeds testing standards and reduces corrosion rates far above BuildCert certification requirements. Left permanently within the central heating system, Fernox Protector F1 is suitable for use with all boiler types, radiators and mixed metal pipework. Easily dosed into the system via a towel rail, in-line system filter or header the unique inhibitor provides protection to sealed systems. In addition, Fernox Protector F1 Express is the only solution that allows treatment via a filling loop in just 30 seconds with no need to drain down the system.

It is essential for householders that a boiler warranty remains valid to avoid unexpected and expensive system repair costs. By adhering to boiler warranty guidelines and using a tried-and-tested chemical inhibitor, such as Fernox Protector F1, both system efficiency and a boiler warranty can be maintained. It is therefore vital that inhibitor levels are checked at each annual service to maintain a high level of protection.

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