James Elston

Published April 9, 2024

Your boiler should be serviced once a year to check that it works properly and there are no gas or water leaks. An annual boiler service will ensure your system’s ongoing performance. 

Without regularly servicing your boiler, you could have a costly boiler breakdown, or your boiler’s warranty may be voided.

Read on for Eco Happy’s guide on when to service your boiler and why it matters.

When To Service Your Boiler

Knowing you should service your boiler at least once a year is a good starting point, but there are some other instances when a boiler service is advised.

It’s been a year since your last service

If a year has passed since your last boiler service, then it is time to book one. Having your boiler serviced at least once a year will allow you and your heating engineer to spot minor issues and prevent them from resulting in costly repairs.

You moved house

If the previous owner of the home was not able to provide you with the paperwork for the latest service, then you need to have someone service your boiler as soon as you move in. 

Rather play it safe and get it done, instead of waiting around and having the boiler break or malfunction.

Once you’ve scheduled the service, note the date and make sure to book a boiler service every 12 months from that date. 

Summertime comes around

Boilers work hardest in the winter, which is why it is a good idea to book your boiler service in the summer months. Any problems will be spotted and fixed before you need the boiler again when the weather changes. 

Your boiler is becoming less efficient

Even if you’re sticking to a regular boiler servicing schedule, you might notice that your heating system is not working as it should. Perhaps the water stays lukewarm or there is a gas leak, or you notice your heating bills are skyrocketing. 

When this happens, you need to schedule a service so someone can come out to check and repair your boiler. 

Why Boiler Servicing Matters

Having your boiler serviced guarantees your safety and saves you money in the long run. Let’s take a look at why this matters:

  • Safety risk (carbon monoxide risk): A regular boiler service is a proactive approach to detecting issues and addressing them. Carbon monoxide is a silent threat that can easily be avoided simply by servicing your gas boiler.
  • Keeping boiler warranty: Having your boiler serviced often is a warranty requirement. By keeping up with your service schedule, you are ensuring that your boiler stays under warranty. This is a very smart move as it offers financial protection.
  • Preventing expensive repairs: Having routine checks and implementing preventive measures during servicing helps to identify and resolve minor problems. This can stop minor issues from snowballing into major, costly repairs – and even avoid a replacement.
  • Prolonging efficiency and lifespan: A boiler service will help prolong your unit’s lifespan and improve its efficiency. This cost-effective, sustainable measure means you will save on your energy bills.

Legal requirements and obligations

When it comes to servicing your gas boiler, legal obligations between homeowners and landlords must be fulfilled. Here’s an explanation:

  • Homeowners: It’s not a legal requirement for homeowners to have their boilers serviced annually, but it’s recommended. A regular boiler service prevents breakdowns and ensures the safety and efficiency of your boiler. Your boiler warranty is also guaranteed in this sense, as some manufacturers may require annual servicing.
  • Landlords: Landlords are legally bound by the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations. In accordance with these regulations, landlords are legally obliged to ensure the safety of gas appliances, including boilers, when renting out to tenants. The key points include:
    1. Annual gas safety checks: Landlords have to arrange for a qualified heating engineer to do annual gas safety checks on all gas appliances and flues in their rental properties. A thorough inspection of the boiler is included to identify and address any safety concerns.
    2. Providing gas safety certificates: After the gas safety check has been completed, landlords must provide their tenants with a gas safety certificate. This document proves that all the gas appliances are safe to use and in good working order.
    3. Record-keeping: Landlords should keep track of gas safety checks, including service history and certificates. Within 28 days of the boiler service, tenants should receive a copy of the certificate. These records need to be kept for at least two years.

Neglecting these requirements can lead to dire consequences for both homeowners and landlords. For homeowners, overlooking the boiler service may result in a safety hazard, increased energy bills, and warranty issues.

Landlords, however, face a heftier punishment. Failure to comply with the Gas Safety Regulations may lead to:

  1. Landlords can face legal penalties such as fines and imprisonment.
  2. Neglecting gas safety can endanger your tenants because of carbon monoxide poisoning and other safety hazards.
  3. Landlords’ insurance policies may become invalid if they neglect their gas safety obligations. Property damage or accidents can lead to financial liabilities.

Sticking to these regulations is not only important for compliance but to also ensure the safety and well-being of people living in both rental properties and their own homes.

Who Should Service Your Boiler?

A Gas Safe registered engineer should conduct an annual inspection of your gas appliances to ensure their safety. This routine check does not only include boilers but extends to other gas appliances such as hobs and fireplaces.

Ensuring the proper servicing of your central heating system is crucial, and it should only be entrusted to a heating engineer. 

  • For gas boilers, it’s important to use a Gas Safe registered engineer, like Eco Happy
  • An oil boiler, on the other hand, should be serviced by an OFTEC-registered engineer.

You are allowed to ask for and verify the engineer’s identification before they start their services. This precaution ensures that the individual handling your boiler maintenance is qualified and authorised to do the job.

How To Find A Gas Safe Engineer

Here are some ways in which you can find a reliable Gas Safe registered engineer to perform your boiler service:

  • Use the Gas Safe register: Here you can find a list of qualified engineers for each postcode. 
  • Ask friends and family: They may be able to recommend someone they’ve used before. 
  • Ask people who work in the industry: If you trust their opinions, they might know someone who can help you. 
  • Read online reviews: Check Google Business reviews or Trustpilot to see what previous clients said about a company or engineer. 
  • Search local directories: If there are online directories for your area, look for reputable service providers.
  • Ask Eco Happy: We’ll be able to recommend a reputable engineer to help. 

What Does a Boiler Service Involve?

A boiler service involves checking several key components such as visual inspection, firing up, casing removal, gas pressure checks, additional checks, and the issuing of a report.

The specifics of these steps may vary based on the type of boiler and model, with a focus on components such as the burner, boiler flue, spark probe, main injector, and heat exchanger.

The earlier you can detect something is wrong during an annual boiler service, the sooner you can prevent issues from escalating. This means more cost-effective repairs in the end. Regular servicing can help to identify faults and resolve them before they lead to massive system failures.

Cost Of Boiler Servicing

Your annual boiler service costs can usually range from £65 to £300.

The total cost depends on several factors, such as:

  • Location: Your location can impact how much you pay. Rural areas usually have less expensive services on offer.
  • Size and condition of property: The condition and size of your property may affect the service price.
  • Make and model of the boiler: Reputable brands may charge higher service fees due to warranties and quality components.
  • Size and type of installation: Larger installations mean higher costs. An example of this is boilers in commercial buildings.
  • Services required: Having a leak, or needing to replace a part may result in additional costs.
  • Age and type of boiler: Older or smaller boilers may require more frequent services.
  • Fuel cost: The type of fuel you use can have a big impact on your annual boiler service cost.

Having your boiler serviced regularly ensures maximum efficiency, leading to lower energy bills in the long run. Nipping problems in the bud can help you avoid expensive repairs.

Quick Boiler Check Tips

Here’s a checklist for maintaining your boiler between services, as well as some signs that indicate your boiler needs a service. 

Yearly boiler maintenance checklist

Make sure you follow this checklist to ensure your boiler is being maintained correctly:

  • Check the pressure
  • Examine the flue
  • Search for leaks or drips
  • Check the thermostat
  • Check the radiator
  • Clean your boiler
  • Inspect the carbon monoxide detector

Signs indicating urgent boiler service needs 

In this case, it’s definitely better to be safe than sorry. When you see any of these warning signs, you will know it’s time to have your boiler serviced:

  • Unusual sounds
  • Leaks or drips
  • Pressure irregularities
  • Error codes
  • Heating or hot water failures
  • Pilot light challenges
  • Inefficient performance
  • Frozen condensation pipe
  • Carbon monoxide alerts
  • Thermostat malfunctions

FAQs

Is a gas boiler cheaper to run than an oil boiler?

While both oil and gas prices fluctuate, it’s safe to say that gas boilers are cheaper to maintain than oil boilers, as gas is cheaper than oil.

What happens if you don’t service your boiler?

The boiler’s internal components will start to rust or corrode due to use. Leaks may occur (gas and water) and the unit will eventually break down completely. 

Conclusion

Regular boiler servicing is vital for safety, efficiency, and long-term savings. By sticking to the legal requirements, making sure your warranties are safe, and keeping an eye out for a faulty boiler, homeowners and landlords can enjoy optimal performance and a longer lifespan of their heating systems.

Take the necessary steps and contact Eco Happy to prioritise the well-being of your boiler. Don’t delay – schedule to have your boiler serviced annually and make home heating a stress-free experience.

James Elston

Boiler Expert


James Elston is the top boiler replacement and heating expert at Eco Happy. He has over 20 years of experience in the industry, focusing on Gas Safe boiler installations and offering home-heating and energy-saving solutions to homeowners across the UK. From sourcing the most energy-efficient combi boiler to providing specialist heating advice, James ensures that Eco Happy maintains the highest standards and best customer service.

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