Why We Fit A Magnetic System Filter With Every Installation
What is A Magnetic System Filter, and How Does it Work?
Magnetic system filters rise in popularity as power flushing becomes less and less popular.
Power flushing gets rid of debris that has collected in a system. And up until recently it was the best solution.
However, magnetic system filters catch most debris and it’s a great idea to have one fitted. Using one means that a power flush doesn’t have the impact that it used to.
As heating systems are built using various metal components, your radiators and copper piping will rust over the years. This rust breaks off and starts to circulate through your heating system.
This is combined with dirt and scale that is contained in the water in your system. Together, these particles form central heating sludge.
This is where big problems start to occur. The sludge settles in places that cause major issues. For example at the bottom of your radiators.
This may explain why radiators are warm at the top, but not at the bottom.
Have you had a recent pump failure on your boiler, or had to replace the heat exchanger? If you have, that’s going to lead to expensive repair bills.
These are common symptoms of sludge build up. We fit a magnetic system filter as they are designed to catch this sludge and prevent this from happening; saving your heating system, and saving your money!
Do You Need a Magnetic System Filter?
To be blunt……YES, yes you do
We never replace a boiler without fitting a sludge filter alongside it. And here is why.
Boiler manufacturers warranties. A lot of top boiler brands will insist two things for their warranty to be valid.
- The heating system should be correctly dosed with inhibitor. This helps break the sludge in the system down.
- The heating system should have a sludge filter installed. This ensures that any faulty components are faulty, and not just the victim of sludge.
So, it’s worth checking manufacturer terms and conditions to ensure that you warranty is valid if you don’t currently have a magnet filter installed.
One of the top brands is Adey (they produce MagnaClean filters). The brand was created by Chris Adey back in 2003 and the filters started coming to market.
It took a good few years for them to become popular so most boiler installations before 2008 won’t have one installed.
What Happens If a Magnetic Filter is Not Fitted
Sludge is an absolute killer when it comes to central heating systems. It doesn’t just affect one part of the heating system, but all of it. If you have sludge present, or it’s building up, you’ll experience things like:
- Radiators are hot at the top but not at the bottom.
- They don’t get hot at the top until you bleed them, and you must bleed them regularly.
- The boiler is making strange noises such as banging or gurgling.
- Some radiators don’t get up to the temperature you require, even when the stat is set to maximum.
- The boiler pump has started leaking, or you’ve had multiple pump failures.
- Pipes to a radiator get hot, but the radiator never seems to heat up.
- When broken parts from the boiler are removed, they are full of dirt.
- The return on the boiler is cold (or Luke-warm), even though the flow is boiling hot.
Problems from sludge build up quickly compound. Sometimes they get so bad that aspects of the heating system need to be replaced (such as radiators, the boiler pump, or rad valves).
The magnet filter will not act as a total cure, as it’s more of a prevention method.
How to Maintain a Magnetic System Filter
Like all parts of your central heating system, a magnetic boiler filter will need to be maintained on a regularly basis. We always suggest that the filter should be checked and cleaned every 12 months.
Luckily, this coincides with most boiler schedules. If you don’t have an annual boiler service already, I’d certainly suggest you book one in. When the Gas Safe engineer arrives, ask them if they can inspect and the clean the filter out.
If the filter is easy to access, this shouldn’t add much to the cost of your service, as it only takes 15-30 minutes to clean out. A quick inspection and clean is all the maintenance that a filter will need.