Purging a hydronic system is a routine maintenance task necessary to keep your home heated efficiently. Although hydronic systems are closed, the make-up water that occasionally enters the pipes from the municipal supply or your well will contain air. This air will settle together as the water heats up and form bubbles or pockets.
You'll know you have too much air in your system when your pipes start to bang around and sound unreasonably noisy. You can wait for the sounds of your heating system to become intolerable, or you can purge air as part of a routine maintenance schedule. Whichever option you choose, here are three good reasons you may want to consider hiring a professional for this job.
1. It's Time Consuming
If your home has multiple heating zones, you'll need to purge each one individually. This process generally involves running a hose to a drain and allowing the system to fill quickly as you remove water. You'll need to monitor the water that comes out to determine when you've successfully purged all of the air from the pipes.
While not complicated, it can take a substantial amount of time to do this for each zone in your home. You may also need to repeat the process multiple times if you can't tell when you've fully purged the system. Hiring a professional contractor means you won't need to waste time standing around and watching the water rush out of a hose.
2. You May Run Into Problems
Purging procedures seem straightforward at first glance: connect a hose, turn some valves, wait. Unfortunately, it's easy to run into trouble, especially if you're dealing with old pipes. Valves can stick and you may even cause small leaks by opening shut-off valves that have gone untouched for many years.
None of these issues are catastrophic, but it can be frustrating to stop in the middle of an easy maintenance task to buy a replacement valve or some other part. A professional HVAC technician will typically have these components available on their truck, letting them repair the problem and continue with the task at hand.
3. You Can Combine It With Additional Maintenance
All HVAC systems require routine maintenance, and your home's boiler and hydronic system are no exception. You should schedule a routine service visit, and this visit is the perfect time to purge air from a noisy system. You can often save a significant amount of money since your technician will already be at your home.
While purging air is a simple task that nearly any homeowner can perform, there are still good reasons to leave it to a professional. Next time you notice your pipes banging around, consider calling in an expert to get things quiet again.
For more information about residential heating repairs, contact an HVAC contractor near you.