Is it best to have your boiler repaired or replaced?
Having a boiler go kaput in the middle of winter can be stressful – and all the more so if you’re not sure whether to have it repaired or replaced.
There are certain scenarios when the former is the obvious option; others when the latter will be the best course of action. Here’s some advice on deciding which way to jump:
Clearly, if your boiler is old, it might be less safe. It might not meet modern guidelines and laws. So seek help and make sure the boiler can be safely repaired. It could be that even if a repair can be affected, the boiler still mightn’t be safe. For example, it might be at risk of producing carbon monoxide. Speaking to a professional will help you to decide which is the best course of action.
Like almost any piece of technology or equipment you can think of, boilers are increasing in reliability and also become more efficient. These days, combi boilers have efficiency ratings upwards of 90%, meaning that they can pay for themselves soon enough, and continue to save you money long before the warranty (usually up to 10 years) runs out.
So if the boiler that’s gone bang is getting on a bit, you should be able to get more bang for your buck with a new model. And if it’s already fairly new, then getting it repaired by a professional is probably your best bet.
Much like a venerable motor car, an older boiler will eventually let you down. Yet who loves a boiler in the same way? Where cars are concerned, the love affair is such that if spare parts are no longer made, they might instead be tooled in bespoke fashion. Now you might want to do the same with your older boiler, if you’re a dab hand with a micrometer, lathe and welding gear in your garden shed. Then again…
Consider the cost
If the cost of repair is low and the part is readily available, then it’s a no-brainer. Moreover, if your boiler is new enough to still be under warranty then the cost of the replacements (and sometimes the labour as well) will be covered.
Consider the frequency
Returning to the car analogy, if the breakdowns are happening a little too often, then it might be time to consider whether the constant cost of repair is turning into something of a false economy.
However, if a breakdown is a rare occurrence indeed then – particularly if it’s a newer model –getting a professional in to repair it will be the best course of action. And it could be the case that, since boilers tend to be used far less during the summer months, you might not have noticed any problem at all during this period. Autumn is invariably a busy time for us! The good news, though, is that the lack of use might mean the problem isn’t a particularly serious one.
Consider the future
In addition to the points made above, it’s worth considering in general any future costs you might incur on your boiler. A professional can help you consider the potential efficiency savings, not to mention the cost and (in)convenience of trying to get hold of obsolete parts as a consequence of more frequent breakdowns. Your current boiler might be approaching the end of its lifespan – and remember: if it’s out of warranty, then future costs are likely to be even more significant.
As we mentioned, boiler efficiency is only heading one way, and much the same can be said about reliability too. So if your boiler is new, or relatively so, and if it’s under warranty, then chances are that having it repaired is the best course of action. Yet if your boiler is old, potentially dangerous, and out of warranty then it’s worth considering a replacement.
That’s a simple rule of thumb. Yet every case is different: a boiler might, for example, be under warranty but potentially dangerous. Whatever the situation, it’s always best to consult a professional engineer before making a decision.
So why not speak to MV Plumbing & Heating? For advice, or a free, no obligation quote, contact us today.