Getting a boiler service is an essential home maintenance task. But how much is a boiler service and why is it so important to get one?
If you're wondering how often a boiler should be serviced, know that a professional should give them a look at least once a year. And that's whether you’re experiencing problems with yours or not.
'People often don’t give much thought to their boiler until something goes wrong with it,' says Joanna Flowers, a British Gas service and repair engineer. 'But getting your boiler serviced regularly can prevent problems from arising and help keep it running safely and effectively.'
During a boiler service, engineers will check that your boiler is both working efficiently – to ensure your home stays properly heated – and that there aren’t any potential issues which could cost you money or pose serious issues to your health. Ultimately, this isn’t a cost you can avoid. But how much is a boiler service anyway?
How much does a boiler service cost?
The answer to how much is a boiler service depends on a few different factors. Generally, however, a boiler service will cost on average between £50 and £100.
The price will change depending on the type you have, for example electric vs gas or oil boilers. Matthew Jenkins, heating expert at MyJobQuote, says that a gas boiler, which is more common, will generally set you back around £50-£65. While an oil boiler - a less popular option - will be slightly pricer, at around £60-£85.
Combi boilers are also generally cheaper to service, as they tend to be less prone to issues and therefore, breakdowns. However, this price will increase a fair bit if any repairs are necessary, with most experts estimating that you could fork out up to £200 for any replacements of parts.
For the price, Louise Murton, Customer Service Director at Baxi Boilers, notes that 'the service should be carried out by a Gas Safe registered engineer. It should include a thorough safety check, inspection and testing of components, check for leaks and corrosion, and completion of the Benchmark service record.'
Why do I need to have a boiler service?
A boiler service might seem like just another tiresome item to tick off of the life-admin to-do list. But it’s important to schedule in, to avoid any safety or financial repercussions that could arise if you put it off. During a service, your engineer will check the general health of your boiler. They’ll ensure it’s working efficiently, and assess whether any parts need to be repaired or replaced.
Even if your boiler appears to be working fine, having a check-up from a Gas Safe registered engineer could help you to avoid bigger problems that could cost you more to fix later down the line.
Even more seriously, a service can help you spot early issues that could potentially affect the health of you and your family. 'Without a service, faults may go unnoticed which could lead to preventable breakdowns which cost money,' says Matthew from MyJobQuote. 'And, more seriously, those faults might cause carbon monoxide leaks, which can be fatal.' Even when fully serviced, do make sure that your home has working carbon monoxide alarms, which are available from Amazon, in order to ensure your family's health and safety.
If not serviced regularly, boilers are also at risk of packing in altogether - a situation which could leave you without hot water and/or heating. And an unexpected replacement boiler cost is never welcome.
An annual service can even help you cut down on your heating bills. 'A well-maintained and regularly serviced boiler will work more efficiently' says Louise from Baxi Boilers. 'This means you are using less fuel and reducing your energy bills.'
Getting regular boiler services is also vital for ensuring you don’t invalidate your warranty, as many are only valid as long as you are having yearly checks.
What can impact a boiler service cost?
1. Your location
If you live in a more expensive area, expect to pay more for your boiler service due to the higher labour costs.
'If your property is located in London, then you can expect to pay around £10-£20 more for the cost of labour than in the North or rural countryside,' says Matthew from MyJobQuote.
2. The type of boiler
As mentioned, the type of boiler you have can affect how much is a boiler service for you, with more common types costing less to service.
3. The time of year
If you're concerned about how much does a boiler service cost then it’s best to get yours serviced in the summer. Why? Nick Paulson, heating expert at PlumbNation explains... 'Engineers are often busiest during the winter due to boiler breakdowns, as people start using them more frequently when temperatures drop.'
By scheduling your boiler service to take place in summer, you’ll find that engineers are less in demand, which means they don’t command as high of a fee for a call-out. Getting your service done in summer also means it’ll be ready to go for winter, when you’ll inevitably use it more often.
4. How long you’ve had your boiler
If you’ve had your boiler for years, and/or it’s been a long while without a service, the cost of your service will likely rise, as there may be more repairs to do to get it running efficiently and safely again.
Find out how old your boiler is so you can prepare.
5. If you call out of hours
Calling an engineer out of hours in an emergency - if for example, your boiler has stopped working - will likely set you back more too. Generally, out of hours counts as weekends and nights.
How can I reduce the price of a boiler service?
A boiler service is one of those essential costs you can’t just skimp on. However, there are a few simple ways to shave precious pounds off of the yearly price.
1. Take out an annual service plan
Many gas/boiler companies offer an annual service plan that you pay for monthly, which can often work out cheaper in the long run if you have the recommended one service a year.
'There are different plans on the market for different levels of cover, so make sure you do your research,' says Vic Wheeler, Operations Director at Gregor Heating. 'Lots of smaller companies offer good cover for a competitive price.'
Nick from PlumbNation explains that a plan can really pay for itself if your older boiler needs repairs. 'If your boiler is older than 10 years, it is usually better to take out an annual servicing contract, because it will be more prone to developing problems.'
2. See if any local tradespeople will do it cheaper
'It is always a good idea to shop around and see if any local gas safety certified tradespeople will do the job cheaper,' says Matthew Jenkins.
Oftentimes they can perform the service at a lower rate than an engineer from your boiler company. But as mentioned, make sure that they are Gas Safe registered. You can check their credentials on the Gas Safe Register.
3. Check if the price is covered under warranty or insurance
If your boiler has been recently installed, how much is a boiler service may not be a concern as the price of a service may be covered under your warranty. 'If this is the case, get in touch with the manufacturer and they should be able to help,' says Nick from PlumbNation.
You may also be able to shave off some of the cost if your home insurance covers boiler care. 'If it does, then contact your insurance company and they will be able to send an engineer to come and fix it for you, covering the cost partly.'
4. Get a newer boiler installed
Knowing when to replace a boiler can be tricky. But even though it’s not a short term saving, installing a newer boiler now can save you a lot of money in the future. A new heating system is unlikely to need major repairs, whereas boilers that are over 10 years old tend to develop costly problems.
That’s why most boiler companies advise that you replace your boiler after 10-12 years.
Get a free quote for a new boiler
Ideal Home has partnered with boilerguide.co.uk to provide a free quote for your new boiler.
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Amy Hunt is an experienced digital journalist and editor, now working in a freelance capacity specialising in homes and interiors, wellness, travel and careers. She was previously Lifestyle Editor at woman&home, overseeing the homes, books and features sections of the website. Having worked in the industry for over eight years, she has contributed to a range of publications including Ideal Home, Livingetc, T3,Goodto, Woman, Woman’s Own, and Red magazine.
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