A Guide to Boiler Servicing
Boiler Servicing is one of the most important things you will ever need to do with your boiler. It ensures that your boiler runs efficiently thereby extending its lifespan while keeping you safe and secure.
In this guide, we will look at what you need to consider when servicing your boiler, as well as offer some tips and hints to help you maintain your boiler's vitality.
What is Boiler Servicing?
Boiler servicing refers to the regular checking of all boiler components which ensure proper operation from the equipment. It can be done by a qualified individual but it is also advisable to get a professional engineer to take care of the servicing, especially if you wish to ensure your boiler is operating safely.
The main thing to check in this process is your equipment's flue gas analyser readings which determine how efficient your appliance is while indicating any potential problems with it at the same time. Other factors you should keep an eye on are the water pressure, safety controls and gas safety.
How regularly should boiler servicing be done?
There is no fixed duration for boiler servicing, however, it should be done regularly to maintain normal function. This can be done every month or at least once every six months depending on your appliance's age and performance.
Boiler servicing is not a one-time thing – it needs to be done regularly because the condition of boiler components change as time goes by, especially those that are exposed to high heat such as flue gas valves. This will help prevent unexpected problems from occurring, allowing you to continue using your appliance for years to come.
Why should I service my boiler?
Boiler servicing is required for multiple reasons, one of which includes checking the flue gases' temperature and pressure. This will help ensure that your appliance's safety mechanisms are not compromised. It also includes cleaning the existing components of any debris or residue build-up, clearing air vents if needed, and making sure all those connections are secure and any sections showing signs of wear are replaced. Finally, it's a good idea to carry out boiler servicing near the start of every season. This will help remove any debris which could have fallen into your appliance through drains or vents.
What should happen during a boiler service?
A boiler service includes checking all components to make sure that they are working properly, giving the appliance a deep clean, and ensuring that it's safe for you to use.
The first thing your engineer will do is inspect the appliance so they can check whether any parts need replacing or repairing. This generally takes about half an hour.
Next, the flue will be checked to make sure that it's installed correctly. Then, they will clean out any sludge or debris in the boiler itself, using a special high-pressure jet that is designed not to damage its inner parts.
Once this has been completed, your engineer should carry out several tests to make sure that the works have been successful.
They'll also add any anti-scale to your system if needed. If you want a service done at a time when you're not around, this is possible - but be careful. This means that the engineer won't need access to all parts of the boiler, but is still responsible for making sure that they've done the job correctly.
Do not attempt to do this yourself unless you're very confident in your abilities - it is extremely dangerous and can lead to serious injury. You have to be Gas Safe Registered to do this type of work.
How long would a boiler service take?
This depends on the installation and the size of the boiler, but a service should last between two and four hours. Larger boilers can take longer than this, so if your installer suggests it might be more involved than usual they'll probably have a good reason for thinking so.
If you're unsure whether your boiler needs servicing, just ask. A professional installer should be able to tell you whether it's due a service and if so, how often.
When is the best time to service my boiler?
Although there isn't such a thing as 'the best time' to book your boiler in for servicing, some companies will offer discounts or free stops if you arrange a service when your boiler's still in warranty. So if you're not in a rush to get it serviced, it might make sense to do it at the same time as getting any repairs done.
What will they do when they come out?
You can ask your installer what tasks are involved in servicing your boiler and how often they need to be done.
When you book a boiler service, the engineer who comes to your property will check out your heating system for any signs of problems and make sure it's operating safely. This means he'll carry out different checks depending on whether you have a gas or oil-fired boiler, so it's best to ask him what he plans to do once he arrives. If your boiler is gas-powered, the engineer will check the appliance for any signs of corrosion and erosion, as well as carry out a carbon monoxide test. If you have an oil-fired system, he'll inspect the tank and pipework that links it to the boiler.
The engineer will also examine your boiler flue to ensure it's safe and in good working order. A safety check is one of the most important parts of a boiler service because it ensures your appliance is operating safely. If there are any problems with your system, you'll be alerted by your engineer so that you can have them resolved before they become major problems.
Who should I allow to service your boiler?
The person you ask to service your boiler must be Gas Safe registered. All Gas Safe registered engineers are fully trained and qualified to carry out boiler installation, repair and maintenance.
Once your new boiler is installed, it's covered by a warranty (the length of which varies depending on who supplied it) for any defects to the parts and workmanship.
This should cover you for any faulty valves, pumps or pipework. However, it usually doesn't cover general wear and tear. This means that if a part fails due to ageing or constant use, your installer won't be able to claim on the warranty to have it replaced for free. So it's sensible to plan and budget for an annual servicing of your boiler.
Without annual service, the efficiency of your boiler can decrease by up to 50% over five years. This is because it's not receiving any safety checks or maintenance. So not only will you end up paying more on your energy bills, but you're also likely to need more repairs. An untended boiler is likely to deteriorate over time, which may lead to a breakdown or at worst, a gas leak.
So how much will an annual service cost?
That depends on the make and model of your boiler as well as the size of your home. The average price for an annual service falls somewhere in the region of £80-£120, but it's always worth shopping around for the best price because prices can vary significantly.
Boiler servicing costs vary depending on where you live and who carries out the work, but most companies will offer a discount for booking an annual service. If you take out a service agreement with your installer, this will usually be included.
What is the difference between boiler repair and boiler service?
There are only two reasons that you'll need boiler repairs - either your boiler has broken down or isn't heating up your water properly. The latter is often caused by undiscovered problems with the thermostat, circuit boards and sensors. These issues tend to be less serious (and therefore cheaper to fix) than a complete breakdown, which usually means that your boiler will need repairing or replacing.
With a boiler service, the most common reason you'll need one is that your boiler heats up water inefficiently and therefore uses more energy than it should. This can be caused by an obstruction in your flue, problems with your boiler's airflow or a build-up of sludge in the bottom of your system, all of which are factors that can be detected with a boiler service.