Plumbing Questions? Ask a Plumber for Answers ASAP
Hello and welcome to JustAnswer!This is James, I'm a Plumbing Technician with over 10 years of experience, and I'll be assisting you today
Sorry to hear your appliance is having issues, please stand by while I find the answer for you, this is not an immediate service however I will try and respond as soon as possible.
Has the actuator failed or the actual valve, since the actuator is just a motor which sits on top of the valve, so could be replaced without removing the valve (and hence not drain the system).
You can generally prove this by using the manual leaver on the valve, if when using it the valve opens and you get central heating then this rules out a valve fault and you just need an actuator.
All zone valves (well most) have the manual leaver on them, obviously the thermostat \ programmer will also need to be set to demand heat from the boiler, and if after 10 minutes radiators should start to get warm.
Once you know if they are getting heat to the radiators you can be confident if you need to ask the plumber to come and replace the actuator (or programmer if they haven't tested the programmer), or at least give you a quote for just replacing the actuator\programmer.
However if you do not get heat then a drain of the system would be reasonable but think its about 3 hour job.
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Yes if the actuator is only at fault this can be replaced without draining the system, it just unbolts from the valve and needs rewired, takes about 45 minutes. The the valve and actuator come as two separate parts, but normally if you change the valve you would change the actuator.