Has your old boiler packed in? Is it no longer powering the heating system, or perhaps the supply of hot water is hit and miss? Maybe it’s still ticking along well enough for now, but you’re worried it might fail you just when you need it most, in the depths of winter.
Whatever your situation, replacing your boiler can give you that all-important peace of mind and it’s certainly advisable to do so before the famous UK weather hits and we’re plunged into a cold snap. If you have decided to trade up for a newer model, you’re certainly not alone, with 1.7 million units installed every year across the country, but there’s plenty you need to consider before you make your choice.
What are the different types of boiler?
Boilers tend to be fuelled by gas, electricity, oil or liquefied petroleum gas, so it’s important for you to know which of those applies to your existing unit before you decide on a new one.
They also vary in terms of how they work in your home:
Combi boilers heat water directly from the cold mains via an integral exchanger, which means you receive hot water straight away. These tend to be the most popular forms of boiler as they provide both hot water and heat to the radiators in one unit.
Heat only boilers provide heat to your radiators, but work with a cylinder to deliver hot water. These tend to be cheaper but there are fewer components covered by the warranty as more parts of the system are situated outside the unit itself.
System boilers are similar to heat only boilers in that they also heat water via a cylinder. However, they tend to work without a tank situated in the loft and more of the components are located inside the unit, so a manufacturer’s guarantee offers a greater level of protection.
How much do they cost?
Boilers can vary in price depending on their type and brand but to give you an idea, units from the likes of City Plumbing can cost anywhere between a few hundred pounds and a couple of thousand.
Who should install it?
When it comes to installing your new boiler, you should always call on a fully qualified professional. They will be able to give you a quote for the unit itself as well as any parts and labour. Their services may vary, but every boiler technician should be able to remove the existing unit, carry out a power flush of the system, fit the new boiler and install any associated parts including pumps and thermostat.
Are you eligible for a grant?
It’s also worth checking if you qualify for the government’s Affordable Warmth Obligation scheme, which was launched in January 2013 and is designed to offer grants to low-income households in the UK. The idea behind the initiative is to improve the energy efficiency of homes across the country, and a new boiler could help you to do exactly that.