Prevention Plus Protection Against Central Heating Problems - Because Unexpected Costs Can Hit Hard

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Annual Boiler Service added by Homeserve.

Homeserve, specialists in home emergency insurance and repairs, have recently added an Annual Boiler Service to compliment their Gas Boiler and Central Heating Insurance. This means customers can not only insure themselves against heating breakdown emergencies, but also opt for an annual service to keep their gas boiler from malfunctioning in the first place.

All boiler manufacturers recommend an annual service to ensure they function safely and efficiently. With many homes in the UK using boilers for both their hot water and central heating, breakdown worry is not confined to the winter months, but all year round. Since a boiler is one of the most expensive items in the home to replace, the option of a preventative maintenance service provides added peace of mind against expensive unforeseen repairs.

A Capibus survey has revealed that 62% of homeowners have had a gas central heating problem at some point. Emma Harvey, Director of Public Relations at Homeserve UK, stated: "Our tradesmen attend a gas emergency every 12 minutes - this makes it clear that an annual prevention service in addition to protection cover is a sound choice to make."

Average cost for central heating gas boiler replacement parts if not covered by a policy:

  •     Air pressure switch         £193.52
  •     Burner                £283.22
  •     Expansion vessel         £322.10
  •     Fan                 £305.70
  •     Flow switch            £186.04
  •     Gas valve             £330.04
  •     Main heat exchanger         £545.59
  •     Printed Circuit Board         £332.71
  •     Pump                 £276.23    

Average cost for a replacement of a home boiler:

  •     Condensing combination boiler installed in the same place as the old one: approx £600
  •     Non-condensing boiler replaced by a condensing model in the same position as the old one: approx £800
  •     Condensing boiler in a different location with upgrade of radiator valves and control changes: approx £1700
  •     Condensing boiler to replace a heat-only model: approx £2100

Choosing the right tradesman
Whatever the problem, if a gas boiler repair is required, it's important to select a trusted tradesman, the Gas Safety Watchdog warns up to 1 in 5 gas fitters are cowboys who don't have the relevant qualifications. Gas appliances are subject to legal regulations - only a registered CORGI engineer is competent to carry out safe repairs.
To learn more, see CORGI.

Essential know-how for boiler problems
Click on the following links to learn how to maintain a home boiler in between a regular service and how to diagnose the problem before calling for a repair:

Looking after the gas boiler can save money and energy consumption, not to mention protect against life threatening malfunctions.

If home radiators feel colder at the top than the bottom it probably means there is trapped air in the system and the radiator needs 'bleeding'. Bleeding just means releasing the trapped air.

If there is a suspicion there's something wrong with the central heating system, read the list of nine common symptoms and find out what might be causing the malfunction.

Quick Checklist:

  • Electric supply is on
  • Gas supply is on
  • Pressure gauge on front panel of boiler is between 1 to 1.5 Bar
  • (Pilot boilers) Pilot Light is lit

If yes but there is no main burner flame, check the room stat and time clock are set for heat

  • (Non-pilot boilers) There is a spark during electronic ignition (look through the eye view on the front casing)

There's no foolproof way of avoiding life's unexpected emergencies, but it's important to guard against them as much as possible.

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Melissa Fletcher
Homeserve
020 3148 5406
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