Boiler broken? Important codes that could identify the problem quickly – what to do next

British Gas instructs consumers on how to solve boiler issues

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Boilers break down for a number of reasons, but during the cold weather getting it fixed in the shortest time possible is a priority. Depending on the type of boiler you have, generally, a fault or error code will appear on the display screen.

This can be crucial in explaining why a problem has arisen, as well as helping your engineer to identify and fix the fault as soon as possible.

However, understanding what each boiler code means and how it can impact your heating system might not be common knowledge.

Gregor Heating, accredited installers of the three of the UK’s main boiler brands, Worcester Bosch, Vaillant and Ideal, spoke to in a bid to help Britons better understand their boiler.

They talked through some of the most common error codes to show up during the winter months.

Gregor Heating pointed out that “different models have different fault codes”.

Therefore, before checking the code which shows up on your boiler’s display, it is important you know which make and model of boiler you have.

Here is a list of some of the most common fault codes, and the steps you should take with each.

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EA (Worcester) or F27 (Vaillant): This tends to signify a blocked condensate pipe.

According to Gegor Heating: “This usually appears in extreme cold weather when the outside pipe is frozen.

“You may have to wait for the condensate to defrost.

“If the pipe runs outside, pour hot water over the pipe to defrost it, or use your hairdryer.”

A1 or No code (Worcester) or F75 (Vaillant) F1 (Ideal): This error code represented low water pressure.

The experts said: “This usually requires you to top up your boiler.

“Follow your manufacturer’s manual to do this.”

EA (Worcester) or F75 (Vaillant): This error code means there has been a sensor change.

Gregor Heating explained: “This is common in older boilers and usually means the fault is most likely to do with the boiler’s sensor not being aware that the pump has started running.”

In most cases, an engineer call out is recommended for this type of fault.

There are also a number of error codes that typically show up on Worcester Bosch boilers.

Gregor Heating’s expert explained: “With most Worcester Bosch boilers, the first step is to consider the fault errors.”

Locking error: This will show a flashing fault code. A warning triangle is also likely to show up.

According to Gregor Heating: “You will need to press the reset button to stop this.”

Block error: In the event there is a blocking error, no data will be shown, but your boiler will stop working.

The expert said: “You will be able to find the cause code by pressing the spanner or return button.”

Cause code: This will show up as a three-digit number. According to the experts, you can find this by pressing the spanner or return button on your boiler.

Fault error: This will show up as an alphanumeric code. Gregor Heating states this code “will indicate the error by showing the fault group.”

These typically vary by boiler make and model.

Maintenance code: This begins with an H and “will tell you that there is an issue that will not stop the boiler working but will need the attention of an engineer”, according to Gregor Heating.

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What to do once you have identified your boiler code?

Of course, the boiler code that shows up will depend on the make and model of your boiler.

There are multiple boiler codes, representing all manner of errors.

Typically these will be shown in your boiler’s user manual.

In the event you do not understand or know the boiler error code, it is always advised you contact the engineer listed in the manual or the manufacturer’s website.

Gregor Heating said: “Both will be useful resources for helping you to work out what the code is as well as provide helpful tips on how to fix it.”

Most warranties and manuals should specify whom to call in the event of a breakdown or emergency.

However, if you are unsure, any registered Gas Safe engineer should be able to help with a gas boiler or a registered electric engineer for electric boilers.  

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