Written By: JustBoilers.com Experts | Last Updated: May 2022
A boiler service is something that should always be left to professionals. Boilers use both electricity and gas, so if you don’t know exactly what you’re doing there’s a real risk that you could put yourself in danger. A misguided attempt to fix any boiler problems may also result in damage to your heating system, which can often be costly to fix.
A professional boiler service will usually cost up to £100, however, costs do vary according to the complexity of the system that you have installed. Bear in mind that corporations and franchises generally cost more than trusted local companies. If you’d like to book a boiler service with our team, our engineers will make sure your boiler is properly functioning for £85 +VAT.
Why a Boiler Service Cost Is More than Just a Grudge Expense
Broken down boilers can quickly cause trouble within the home, as the water runs cold and the family has to dress in winter woollies as they tuck up warm around the television. If a boiler breaks down in the winter it can be particularly difficult, especially when the night draws in and temperatures start to plummet.
Boiler makers and Gas Safe engineers recommend you have your boiler inspected once a year, to avoid a complete boiler breakdown ever happening. When you think about it, a boiler service is a good value compared to needing extra blankets at night and the potentially much higher cost of resolving a boiler breakdown.
Need a boiler service? Your trusty JustBoilers.com team is here to help.
How to Spot a Problem with Your Boiler
Boilers can develop problems at any time, although annual inspections help reduce this possibility. If your hot water system is not behaving as expected or the radiators don’t seem to be working properly, keep an eye out for other warning signs. Things to look out for include:
- Your energy bill has unexpectedly increased
- The pilot flame is not burning a steady blue
- Your boiler has started making strange noises
- The boiler pressure reading keeps changing
If you are experiencing any of these problems we recommend you call a gas safe engineer for advice as soon as possible.
What Happens at the Annual Boiler Service?
A gas safe-registered engineer visits your home by prior arrangement. The inspection takes approximately half an hour. Here’s what your engineer will do:
- Turn off the boiler so there’s no chance of electric shock
- Check carefully for any signs of rust or leaks on the outside
- Remove the outside cover and check everything is in good working order
- Give the inside parts a good clean and a detailed inspection
- Make sure the flue is intact, properly attached, and working correctly
- Replace the outside cover ensuring all the seals are intact.
- Restart the boiler and confirm the pressure is correct
After completing the work the engineer should hand you a checklist detailing what they did, and any faults they found requiring attention. This is your opportunity to ask any questions you may have about their report. Your engineer will talk you through any issues you may have, and resolve any further problems until you’re completely happy.
Choose a Trusted Company to Service Your Boiler
There are health and safety regulations in place regarding who may work on a boiler in the UK. If gas, you must use a gas safe engineer in order to comply with the law.
However, if yours runs on oil you need a technician approved by OFTEC, the oil and renewable heating technologies association. Whereas if you are using coal, wood or other biofuel you should contact a specialist with national HETAS registration.
It is very important that you comply with these requirements, to avoid possibly invalidating your home insurance policy.
How Much does a Boiler Service Cost and How Do I Pay?
The total boiler service cost depends on who does it, and whether they have to do any repairs. There are two ways to fund the exercise:
- Take out a boiler cover contract that includes annual servicing
- Pay as you go by settling a one-off fee after each inspection
A one-off boiler service cost should be up to £100. Larger national firms generally charge more than local shops, but it’s up to you to decide where to buy.
Boiler cover, on the other hand, costs more because it insures you against any boiler parts failing. Most policies include annual boiler servicing too. This makes sense because the inspections help prevent boilers breaking down. Expect to pay around £12.50 a month or say £150 annually.
It’s usually possible to add servicing and repairs to your home insurance policy by adding an emergency cover package. This can work out quite cost-effective, but we always recommend that you check the small print before taking out extra coverage. Check that you’re getting like for like, and make sure you have all the information you need to make an informed decision. We also suggest your check:
- Does the insurance cover your type of boiler
- Can you nominate the technician you know and trust
- Are there any deductibles or other exclusions
If you have an unvented boiler system, then ask the insurance company to confirm cover in writing.
How Much is a Boiler Service – Should I Get Cover with Servicing Instead?
Many of our clients prefer one-off annual servicing because boilers are generally pretty reliable. That said, it’s up to you if you prefer paying a monthly fee compared with the possibility of facing a hefty repair bill.
It should also be said that older boilers are more likely to fail because they do also have ‘use before dates’. If you have an older boiler, you might soon be feeling thankful that you took out coverage if it does happen to go wrong!
To help you run the numbers, you might like to know a typical boiler repair costs between £100 and £400 (average £275) including parts and labour. Of course, if your boiler is new and you complied with the warranty then that shouldn’t be from your pocket.
If you’d like an annual reminder to service your boiler, let us know here!
A Few Tips to Avoid Boiler Breakdowns
The fact that your boiler is tucked away in a cupboard doesn’t mean you can ignore it completely. Each time you fetch warm, dry towels listen carefully for strange clunking sounds and look for moisture or drips. If you spot anything unusual, make sure you get it fixed while the cost is affordable. You should also seek advice if the pressure is outside the normal range.
It’s important not to pack things around the boiler cover, or block airflow to any vents. Finally, do run the radiators in summer for at least a half-hour. Even the family pet needs occasional exercise so its joints keep working properly, and your boiler is just the same!