When it comes to investing in a new boiler, we know that the cost can be quite high. One of the questions that we are often asked is 'how long does a boiler last?'
Unfortunately the answer to this question isn't that simple as it can depend on a number of different things. When it comes the various manufacturers that supply heating systems the first thing to note is that the warranties offered on the different boilers and central heating systems can vary depending on both the model and manufacturer.
The Low Down on Boiler Warranties
Most boiler manufacturers offer at least a five-year warranty, but in some instances, this can be much longer. For example, the Ideal Vogue Max boiler has a warranty of a whopping twelve years and the Baxi 800 series has a warranty of ten. One thing that is not always apparent when it comes to boiler warranties is that many manufacturers also offer an extended warranty on top of their standard warranty. This means you can increase your warranty length to ensure that your boiler remains covered. This is something to consider when working out the budget for your new boiler.
Even though the warranty can give you an indication as to how long a boiler manufacturer might expect a boiler to last without fault, the warranty itself isn't the only factor involved in terms of life expectancy. Perhaps one of the more important aspects is the way a boiler is looked after and serviced. This can have a major impact on the life and health of the boiler.
An annual service is a must if you want to have both an efficient boiler and a long lasting boiler. Even a well maintained older boiler will continue to run well for many years. A new boiler that is never serviced will likely fail much sooner than it should, this can also void your warranty so a boiler replacement might be on the cards sooner than you think if you cut corners on maintenance. So the boiler with the longest warranty doesn't automatically mean it will make it the right boiler for you.
Since the cost of a new boiler and boiler installation is a quite high then it is not the best idea to overlook the cost of maintaining your boiler.
Tips to Prolong Your Boiler's Life.
It doesn't matter if you have a combi boiler or a system boiler There are a number of ways to prolong the life of your boiler. Some tips include:
The Annual Service - This is one of the most important things you can do to prolong the life of your boiler.
Maintain Radiator Performance - Power flush and bleeding your radiators can clean up the system, and will reduce the stress on your boiler since it will not have to work as hard. This is more important on an open system using a regular boiler.
Install a magnetic filter - This can help reduce the sludge in the system and pipework.
Add Inhibitor - This can reduce scale in the system, which can be important in high limescale areas. This is a bit of postcode lottery but limescale can be a real problem for some people.
Run the boiler regularly - especially in the summer months. This may seem counter-intuitive but equipment can fail when it is not run regularly. So it's worth running your boiler regularly to keep it functioning correctly.
Lag Pipework - Especially external pipework such as the condensate pipe that can freeze up in the colder winter months. This can be a common problem and frozen pipes make plumbers and heating engineers in high demand in the winter months. You can avoid the problem altogether with some basic preventative maintenance.
When should I replace my boiler?
If you have an old boiler that is over ten years old then you should start to consider replacing it. Older boilers are less energy-efficient and the running costs of an inefficient boiler can mount up. You'd be surprised how much lower your energy bills will be with the latest A-rated boiler technology. This is because newer boilers are designed with energy efficiency in mind and all modern boilers need to meet certain energy ratings.
The downside of a new boiler installation is if you're changing significant aspects of your central heating system then the installation costs can quickly mount up. You should ensure that you have fully factored this into the new boiler cost. The reason the installation costs can be quite high is that you need a qualified heating engineer such as a gas safe installer to do the work. This is one task that you can't do yourself.