I need a new CH boiler

I need a new Hot Water/Central Heating boiler. I currently have a Worcester Bosch gas combi, 15 years old now leaking. I like it or used to like it, would buy another Worcester Bosch but is gas CH the way to go? Wasn’t there talk recently, following Greta’s actions, of phasing out gas boilers, going electric or some other tech?

What would you do?

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I’d sign up to a service contract and pay the extra hit to get it fixed. It should last for a few years yet.

As for electric boilers, you need to take into account the cost of running them as gas is still cheaper. They are only really worthwhile in new buildings which have a considerable amount of insulation. So, for the time being, get your old boiler fixed and spend as much as possible insulating your house (don’t forget the different types of glass which are far more thermally efficient)

My Baxi Boiler is on it’s last legs (not 10 years yet!) and I am waiting for some follow ups for after the lockdown.

One thing I have noted, however, is the price of boilers at (e.g.) Screwfix type stores.

Assuming that I have good, cleaned out system, I reckon to buy a boiler for, around, 5-600 squids.

After that there’s a day’s work, installing/setting up for the fitter/plumber.

That’s way below the 2,500, sort of, average to have the whole job done as a package!

The package will include contingencies for many other aspects, including cleaning the system, new flue, possible new and different sized pipes, cleaning the system, indeminity insurances etc etc etc.

We’re already systematically replacing gas heated hot water radiators with electric storage equivalents, initially in our spare rooms but with the intention to have the whole house electrically heated by mid next year.

The running cost will be a little higher but with differential billing not horrendously so.

Anyway it’s the right thing to do.

Agree. When upgrading to an electric system, it’s important to consider not only the cost of the installation but also the running cost. Although “the right thing to do”, one has to think about whether one will ever reap the financial rewards for doing so:-)

As for hot water to taps, IMHO localised electric water heaters are a better option than a single point of heat source running the whole house. Less wastage, unlikley that you’ll ever be entirely without hot water (subject to no power cuts, which would prevent many a gas boiler from functioning too!), cheaper to replace/upgrade etc etc.

Over the last 15 years, boiler technology will have advanced so, in answer to your question, I’d buy a new one.

Not much. The main development would be in condensor boilers which are more efficient. Not sure what model the op has.

Thanks for the input guys, all food for thought. :023:

I guess the kind of big picture I was hoping to see was this …

which is a year old and possibly blx anyway, but an indication of the urgency of the climate emergency. :wink:

Sod Screwfix and the like. Phone around various plumbing suppliers for quotes and when you find one you like offer to buy it at 20% less and there’s a chance they’ll accept or at least offer a lower price especially now.

As for £600 for a boiler, personally I wouldn’t go for the cheapest.

Worth trying a deal with your preferred plumber too. They can often get a lower price than even the cheekiest Joe Public.

Remember NEVER just pay the first asking price without a try-on other than in supermarkets and the like.

Service contracts are a massive waste of money (esp with Brit Gas) imho. Better to have your boiler serviced once/yr and save the difference between that and the cost of a contract in case anything does go wrong.

Hi, yeah, I never go in for stuff like service contracts, or insurance. I don’t do boiler servicing either, I’d rather take my chances. If a top-of-the-range boiler costing less than £1K plus another £1K for installation and all the other bits, runs for 15 years before going wrong, then I’m happy. Service contracts or annual servicing can cost you another £2K over that 15 year period.

I wouldn’t rely on anything the greenies are pushing, especially if supported by the Grauniad. As far as I know there are no viable options to the traditional heating methods which wouldn’t cost an arm and a leg.

I wouldn’t touch electric heating either, whether for space heating or water heating. Electricity is far more expensive than gas in relation to the heat produced.

When we moved into this house around 10 years ago, there was a Worcester-Bosch boiler which was on its last legs, as it had probably been there for some years before we arrived. We struggled for a few years paying for a service and maintenance contract, which actually paid off because we had several parts replaced in addition to the annual service.

However, we finally got fed up with the regular breakdowns and went for a new boiler, of higher output than the old one. Worcester-Bosch again. This has been well worth it: the shower has a better output and the house heating is much warmer too. We took out an annual service contract, as an annual service was a condition of the five year guarantee.

…and potentially save you the same or more in terms of parts and labour within the same period.

Do you not bother to ever have your car serviced and simply wait for a potential big bill or are happy to jack it in for scrap and buy a new car? No filter/oil/coolant change? No new spark plugs, etc? Give over!!

Yeah … the above mentioned lefty journal says nothing really about government policy on the future of gas CH, so I guess I’ll just go ahead and do it. :wink:

I have a car … 13 years old, I’ve had in 10 years and do very low mileage. My local mechanic decides what needs doing every year, which is very little. And cost me about 1/10th the authorised Merc dealer would charge. :wink:

Exactly. BG service charges might be high, but there are plenty of much cheaper ones around which will keep your boiler going for a fair old while and which cover the cost of any replacement parts. Apart from an annual checkup, they’ll also do any repairs at short notice.

Just like maintaining a car, and probably for around the same price as an annual MOT and service, and probably for less than having to pay for a couple of (eg) new tyres!!

But, each to their own. If you want to buy a new boiler and run it into the ground over the next decade or so without ever paying for its maintenance, that’s up to you;-)

Without wishing to plug a different forum, I’d be inclined to seek advice from full time pros on diynot about the pros and cons of boiler replacement and maintenance contracts. They’re more up to speed, and should be able to give a ball park figure of current installation costs.

I agree with you, the PV.

If you add up the service charges and shove in the very large fee for Flushing, which BG always seem to demand, you could, probably, replace the Boiler every two or three years and be in pocket.

As for the quality of the BG plumber, I got rid of my contract, some years back, because it took 3, or 4, visits to establish the reason for my system not working.

Here’s the clue, which my 3 year old grandchild would shout the answer to:-

Yes, I had hot water running fine, but no heating to the radiators.

I assume you mean BG and not BT??

It is true that BG engineers do not have the greatest of reputation and that their service contracts are excessive. They also have to push for sales of “flushing” (unless this has changed), in the same way that some roadside car assistance companies had a propensity to push for sales of new batteries.

As said, there are plenty of other companies who can provide service contracts for far less.

Part of the difference in cost (compared to an annual service) involves the element of a gamble from both sides in terms of replacing worn/broken parts as well as multi-callout costs.

You might be lucky in that your boiler remains working pretty well, but unlucky that you’re paying more than is needed in terms of keeping it working via a service contract.

Or, you might be unlucky in that your boiler keeps developing a range of faults, but lucky that the cost of repairing these is more than covered by a service charge.

As said, it’s a personal choice and you pick your own horse to back.