There’s no right time for your boiler to break down, although winter is usually when we use it most and guess what? That’s when it’s more likely to conk out!
The temptation is to persist with a temperamental boiler that’s always breaking down, making funny noises and doesn’t even heat half the house, hoping that magic will happen, and it will suddenly regenerate itself and be like new again. The truth is it won’t. If you’ve had your boiler for 10 years or more, chances are it’s on its way out.
Five signs you need a new boiler
1.It’s making odd noises
Knocking, hissing, popping sounds are an indication that your boiler isn’t working properly. Yes an engineer will come out and more than likely be able to repair it but be prepared for this to happen again and again.
2.It’s constantly being repaired
If you’re canny you’ll be getting your boiler serviced annually, however if your heating engineer keeps having to replace parts and it’s needing constant attention then it’s time to think about investing in a new boiler.
This isn’t good news. Leaking can cause damage to your home and it can also develop into carbon monoxide which is a deadly poison.
4.Water temperature isn’t consistent
Have you ever run a bath only to find the hot water is now cold water (usually when you’re off to an important interview or date)? If that’s happening to you and you find your water takes time to warm up or is sporadically hot and cold when you’re running a bath or doing the washing up, it’s time to take action. If your heating engineer has fixed it and the problem recurs, then you definitely need to look at a replacement boiler.
5.You’ve had your boiler a long time
If your boiler is over 10 years old it may start playing up. Even if there doesn’t seem anything wrong with it, the chances of it breaking down will increase. But ask yourself, do you really want a boiler breakdown to happen in the middle of winter? Especially when heating engineers are flat out and can’t turn up immediately? The positives of installing a new boiler are huge. Not least that the modern boiler is more eco-friendly, much more efficient and can work out cheaper to run.
How much does it cost to install a gas boiler?
The cost of installing a boiler varies, however cheap is not always best. You need a boiler engineer who is qualified and has on the job training.
A diploma or NVQ in heating or gas utilisation, domestic natural gas installation and maintenance, or domestic plumbing and heating are the minimum requirements for your gas boiler installers as well as work experience with a registered gas company or engineer.
Even at its most straightforward, boiler installation can be complex and that is why costs are high. The actual installation can be more expensive than the boiler itself, as it is such a specialist job.
All boilers must be fitted by Gas Safe registered engineers and the cost of installation might also include other work, involving extra parts, updating radiators etc..
Once you have established that your gas boiler installers have the right credentials you can discuss your options. The price of a new boiler will depend upon its function. If you’re getting a heat only or storage boiler, there may be extra costs if a hot water cylinder is also required.
The brand/model is also a factor. Just as you can buy a cheaper design of washing machine from a known brand then most boiler brands will offer models at different price points.
However, the priority is getting a boiler that won’t let you down as this will save you money and stress in the long run. While we can’t say exactly how much you will have to fork out for your gas boiler until a proper assessment is made, a ballpark figure for the boiler and installation is around £1,500 to £2,000, depending on the type of boiler, the model you choose and its efficiency rating.
How long does it take to install a gas boiler?
If it’s a simple like-for-like swap, you’re looking at four to six hours. Basically, if you are upgrading your boiler because it’s inefficient and it will be in the same location, then your gas boiler installers should have few problems, as this is the simplest and quickest scenario.
Think of it as the “no frills” boiler installation option, involving no additional extras like a power flush, chemical flush, fitting of a magnetic filter or installation of a smart thermostat.
It’s a different story if you’re upgrading from an old, outdated boiler with a separate water tank to a modern combi boiler. You may be looking at two days for this kind of installation. This is because the water tank will have to be removed and there’ll be pipework, maybe flooring will have to be taken up and it is possible it will entail other remedial work.
If you want your boiler to be relocated to another part of the property this is likely to add at least another four hours or more onto the work. Again, this will depend upon the complexity of the job. If the boiler is relocated from one room to another location, you’ll have to move your gas pipe and that is certainly going to cause even more upheaval.
Can you install a second-hand gas boiler?
Of course a second hand boiler is an option, but be aware that it needs to conform to current regulations regarding Energy-related Products (The ErP directive was set by the European Union, to make sure heating and hot water products became more energy efficient).
Another consideration has to be the cost of installation. Even if you are installing a second hand boiler your gas boiler installers must be Gas Safe registered and as explained above, the installation costs can be a huge part of your outlay, so why would go to all that expense and upheaval to save a few hundred pounds? Plus, you have to ask yourself why someone would get rid of a boiler that was in good order. You might find you’ve gone to all that trouble to end up with a faulty product.
Where can a gas boiler be installed?
The kitchen cupboard is a popular location for a boiler and as today’s combi boilers are so much more compact and do not need water storage, they can be tucked neatly away.
The loft is also a popular place for the boiler although, if there aren’t proper stairs then access will be difficult. A way around this is to fit boiler controls in a more reachable part of the property. If the boiler works on a pressurised system, the filling point and pressure gauge may also be placed in the loft, however additional filling points and gauges can be fitted in more accessible positions.
Bedrooms probably wouldn’t be your first choice but if you’re living in an apartment and space is limited then this is also a viable option.
Boilers can be installed in the bathroom but in order for them to be safe they must be enclosed in a cupboard away from contact with water.
5. Airing cupboard
Accessible hot and cold water supplies make this a possible option.
6. Outdoor building
This might be a garage or space attached to the building. The downside is that it gets cold during winter so frost protection and pipe insulation are essential.
Our gas boiler installers are here to help you, so if you need to discuss your boiler needs don’t hesitate to get in touch with us for a free and friendly consultation by calling: 07872 105 094.