When Should I Replace My Boiler?

Most boilers, if well maintained and properly serviced, can last 15 years before needing to be replaced. As most boiler’s efficiency slowly decreases overtime, sometimes it can be hard to determine when it is best to replace your boiler. However, we have seen in our line of work boilers less than 3 years old not work due to poor quality and illegal installations.

There are a variety of reasons to replace your boiler, including for efficiency or potential health threats. Boiler replacements are not the cheapest, which means they are a long term investment and should be maintained well to maximise the lifespan of the boiler. If you are unsure why your boiler should be serviced, check out our blog explaining the benefits of servicing your boiler here. Below are a few indicators that you should look out for to know when to replace your boiler.

Age

If your boiler is getting old, you should be considering replacement in the future. Your boiler will start to become less inefficient and unreliable, which will affect your energy bills and how quickly your house warms up. Due to the efficiently decreasing overtime, boiler repair costs will increase, which could be more financially straining than replacing the boiler.

Frequent breakdowns

If your boiler keeps breaking down regardless of any issues being fixed, you should stop paying for new parts or repair, and instead buy a replacement boiler. Long term, this will be cheaper than paying for boiler damages more than once a year. A good analogy for this scenario is an old car. At a certain point, an old car will just keep having issues when it goes in for it’s MOT or servicing, and eventually it will then no longer become viable to keep the car due to the cost of maintaining it. You would then rightly start the process of looking for a replacement. This is how you should see your boiler; you should consider whether financially it is worth paying for the repairs, or whether it is worth replacing your boiler.

Sounds

During the normal operation of a boiler, it will make sounds, but should not create loud, regular clunking, hissing or humming noises. If this is the case, you should get Bradford Boiler Installation Company to come and look at your boiler and find the issue. If the problem persists, you should consider replacing your boiler.

Flame colour and soot

A boiler producing a blue flame is perfectly normal for a working boiler. If the blue flame turns yellow, you should call Bradford Boiler Installation Company urgently for an appointment to come and inspect your boiler. A yellow flame is caused through the process of incomplete combustion of natural gas. Large amounts of carbon monoxide will be produced whilst your boiler is running, which can be fatal if exposed to. Black soot marks around the boiler can also be a sign of a carbon monoxide leak, so it is essential to contact a boiler repair expert and replace your boiler if you see signs of a carbon monoxide leak. To see the full list of signs of a carbon monoxide leak, please click here.

Temperature

If your house or radiators are a lot colder than the normal temperature, or take longer to heat up, this could be caused by the inefficiency of the boiler. If this is the case, you should replace your boiler. Not only will this normalise the temperature in your house, this will also reduce energy bills as it will take less time to heat up.

Lack of parts

As a boiler becomes older and newer models are released, parts can become discontinued, which makes it harder to replace the older parts of your boiler for newer ones. This means it is often safe to replace your boiler as parts become more scarce to prevent an unfixable boiler.

Energy bills

One reason why energy bills increase overtime without an explanation is due to the efficiency of the boiler. As the boiler gets older, it becomes less effective at heating up a home, which means the homeowners have to pay more to heat the home. Long term, the additional money paid in energy bills could be used to help replace the inefficient boiler.

Leaks

A leak from a boiler may not require a replacement, but will require a boiler repair expert to analyse the damage and suggest how to fix it. Leaks can lead to corrosion and rusting, so it is best to fix the problem as soon as it is identified. If this becomes a regular occurrence, it is recommended to get a replacement boiler.

Bad odours

This mainly applies to gas boilers, but if a bad odour is lingering from the boiler, you should contact a boiler repair expert immediately as this could be a dangerous leak. If this problem persists, it is essential to replace your boiler.

Corrosion

If there is visible corrosion on the boiler, then it is best to replace your boiler. Corrosion in boilers is often caused by broken valves and leaks, or caused by the reaction between the heat exchanger and burners. Corrosion can occur at any point, but is more common the more the boiler is used.

Additional Considerations

These suggestions do not require you specifically to replace your boiler, but may influence your decision:
Space/sizing – Older boilers tend to be larger and take up more space in comparison to more recent models. Replacing your boiler with a newer model may provide you with more space.
Control – Some newer models allow you to control the temperature and the time the boiler starts heating. This is very convenient for homeowners who are out of the house a lot and only need the boiler heating at certain times of the day.
Energy efficiency rating – Newer boilers are rated based on their energy efficiency from A – G, with A being the most efficient boilers at over 90% efficiency, and G being the least efficient boilers at less than 70% efficiency. If your boiler is lower on the energy efficiency scale, you may consider replacing your boiler with a more energy efficient one to save money on bills.
Safety – If the boiler is very old, there is a chance that it may not meet newer safety guidelines. It is essential to check whether your current boiler matches the newer regulations.

If you have any concerns regarding your boiler or would like to replace your boiler, please contact us at info@bradfordboilercompany.co.uk or at 01274 317169.

Can My New Boiler Be Fitted Outside?

Boilers are typically found on an interior wall in a house, typically near gas or oil appliances. They are often found in a kitchen or a utility room, but is it possible to have a boiler fitted outside?

Can My Boiler Be Fitted Outside?

Boilers can be fitted outside by a boiler specialist, providing that the area has enough space and will not need additional pipes. There are boilers created specifically to be outdoor, as these will need to be able to tolerate the weather and reduce the time taken to rust.

Benefits of an External Boiler

There are a variety of reasons someone may consider installing their boiler outside of their house, including:
-No carbon monoxide poisoning risk: When a boiler is poorly installed, this can lead to the boiler leaking carbon monoxide, which can be deadly when exposed to. As the boiler would not be in a tight space or room, this removes the risks of being poisoned. Find out more about oil boilers producing carbon monoxide here.
-Easier access for servicing: As the boiler will be placed outside of the house, it will be easier for the specialist to access it during an annual service.
-More indoor space: Having a boiler outside increases space indoors from places such as your kitchen or your utility room.
-Less noise: This might not be applicable to all boilers, but some can produce a lot of noise with clanging or vibrations.

External Boiler Considerations

Despite the benefits of an external boiler, there are multiple concerns and issues:
-Outdoor maintenance: Despite being in a case, the boiler can be subject to the weather, which can lead to rusting, freezing and overall damage.
-Space: Certain houses may not have enough outdoor wall space to install a boiler on.
-Energy efficiency: Boilers naturally produce heat when burning, which is useful when it is inside of a house. However, if the boiler is outside, the heat is wasted, reducing the energy efficiency.

Examples of External Boilers

There are a variety of boilers that can be installed outside. A few examples include:
-Worcester Bosch Greenstar Heatslave II External boiler
-Grant VortexBlue
When purchasing a boiler, you should research the boiler to check if it can be installed outside. This can be done by checking for key phrases such as “outdoor” or “external”, and checking the manufacturer’s website.

If you have any concerns or would like a boiler installed, please do not hesitate to contact us at 01274 317169 or at info@bradfordboilercompany.co.uk.

Do Oil Boilers Produce Carbon Monoxide?

Carbon monoxide (CO) is a poisonous gas that is produced through the incomplete combustion of oil. This occurs when there is not enough oxygen to burn, producing carbon monoxide as a waste product. Carbon monoxide is odourless and colourless, meaning it is very difficult to detect.

Why Is Carbon Monoxide So Dangerous?

When carbon monoxide is breathed in, it mixes with the bloodstream to stop the blood from being able to carry oxygen. As a result, cells, tissues and organs do not have enough oxygen to function, causing them to fail and die. Breathing in small amounts of carbon monoxide can make you unwell, but being highly exposed to it can be fatal. Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning include:
-Headaches
-Nausea
-Stomach pain
-Feeling and being sick
-Shortness of breath
-Feeling tired and confused
-Loss of consciousness
These symptoms usually occur when the brain is starved of oxygen. If you show any symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning, you should immediately contact emergency services and seek medical advice.

What Are The Signs of Carbon Monoxide Leaks?

There are multiple clues that could suggest you have a carbon monoxide leak. If you notice these signs, you should immediately start to evacuate the property and call the emergency services:
-Other people in the building fall ill with the same symptoms
-Pets fall ill
-Symptoms disappearing when you are away from the building
-Smoke buildups
-Yellow flames instead of blue flames
-Sooty or black/yellow stains around appliances such as boilers, stoves and fires.

Oil Boilers and Carbon Monoxide

Oil boilers, like all boilers that burn fossil fuels, produce carbon monoxide. Boilers, when working properly, produce very small amounts of carbon monoxide, but this is carried out of the boiler and your home by the flue exhaust. If the flue is blocked, then carbon monoxide will be leaked into the house.

Your oil boiler cannot produce carbon monoxide if it is switched off, due to being unable to burn the fossil fuels. However, if you are concerned about a leak, you should switch all appliances off at the mains. As you will not be aware of which appliance is leaking, it is the safest option to switch every appliance off and call an oil boiler specialist to check the appliances.

What Should I Do If My Boiler Might Be Leaking?

If you start to show signs of carbon monoxide poisoning, the first thing you should do is turn off all appliances, to prevent more gas being produced. To reduce the amount of carbon monoxide gas in your home, you should open all doors and windows, and evacuate everyone from the building.

Even if your exposure to carbon monoxide was minimal, you should still contact emergency services and seek medical advice. Once all appliances have been checked and the oil boiler specialists deem the house as safe, you can then go inside the building.

How Can I Prepare Myself For A Carbon Monoxide Leak?

Carbon monoxide leaks can occur at any point, but there are multiple factors that can reduce your chances, and help you stay safe.

Homes or buildings should have a carbon monoxide alarm installed to detect high amounts of carbon monoxide. This alarm will let you know that there’s a high chance of a leak, and you should begin to turn off all appliances, open windows, and evacuate quickly. A carbon monoxide alarm should be located at head height, near oil appliances, in every room that has an oil appliance. The alarm should not be placed too near the appliances, or the alarm will detect the natural gases produced. For example, if the boiler and the oil appliances are at one side of the kitchen, the alarm should be placed at the opposite side of the room.

Just having a carbon monoxide alarm is inadequate; you also need to regularly service your boiler to identify leaks, and prevent any chances of future leaks. An oil boiler specialist will check the flume to ensure it is not blocked or damaged. It is recommended to service your boiler before the winter season, as you will need to use your appliances more in the winter to heat your home. If you have not recently serviced your boiler, take a look at our blog covering why you should annually service your boiler here.

If you have any concerns or would like to service your boiler, please contact us on 01274 317169 or at info@bradfordboilercompany.co.uk.

Find out more about how Bradford Boiler Company can help with your oil boiler here.

Why Should I Get My Boiler Serviced?

Boiler servicing is often forgotten about by property owners, which can have devastating results for those who do not regularly request a service. Whether it’s forgetting to book your next service, or simply thinking that your boiler doesn’t need a service, we have listed reasons why you should book your next boiler service.

What Should I Expect From A Boiler Service?

A standard service looks at the efficiency of the boiler, checking for any faults, or any parts that need repairing. As lots of different parts are checked during a service, you should expect it to last at least 30 minutes. Typically, the following will be seen in a boiler service:
-Checking safety devices.
-Cleaning boiler parts, if necessary.
-Internal and external flue checks.
-Checking the operating pressure and heat inputs.
-Check case seals.
-Checking for any working faults.
-Removal of boiler casing to check the main boiler components.

At the end of a service, landlords and businesses will receive records and certificates, in line with the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations (1998). It is important to ask the gas safe registered engineer any questions that you may have about your boiler or the service to ensure that you can maintain the condition of the boiler as much as possible before the next service.

Detect Issues Before They Happen

Having a boiler breakdown is inconvenient but by regularly servicing your boiler, potential issues can be detected and amended before they become serious problems. Regardless of how minor the fault might be with the boiler, it is best to address the issue before it causes physical and financial damage.

Safety

When servicing a boiler, a gas safe registered engineer will check your boiler for leaks or potential threats. Any faults, especially if the boiler is not burning correctly, could lead to a leak of carbon monoxide. With carbon monoxide being a colourless, odourless gas, this means that it could be leaking from your boiler without you knowing. To ensure the safety of your occupants and to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning, it is essential to regularly have your boiler serviced.

Save Money

By servicing your boiler, any issues or faults can be identified and fixed to help maintain the boiler. By fixing the faults instead of replacing the boiler, this can save money. An average boiler service is around £80, but boiler repairs can be from £100+, depending on the extent of the repair. In addition to this, you can save money on your gas bills since the engineers will be ensuring your boiler is working effectively.

Extend The Lifetime Of The Boiler

When faults are identified and fixed, this causes the boiler to work more efficiently as any faulty parts have been replaced with new parts. In return, this expands the lifetime of your boiler as you will not have to replace the entire boiler.

A Legal Requirement For Landlords

Due to the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations (1998), landlords have a legal requirement to maintain and provide gas appliances. When a boiler service is conducted, landlords and businesses will receive gas certificates and gas records for proof of the safety of all gas appliances; it is a legal requirement to have access to these documents. Please be aware that if the gas appliance is owned by the tenant and not the landlord, it is the tenant’s responsibility to maintain the appliance, not the landlord’s. For more information about what a landlord’s legal responsibilities are for boilers, please click here.

Staying Under Warranty

If your boiler is under warranty, there is a high chance that your warranty includes a clause that means the contract will be voided if the boiler is not serviced annually. It is best practice to keep track of when your last boiler service was so you can book the next one just before a year has passed. This good practice will reduce the chances of your warranty being voided, so you can get money if your boiler breaks down.

How Often Should I Have my Boiler Serviced?

As a standard, it is common to service boilers every 12 months. If you have any concerns regarding your boiler, you should book a servicing early to ensure that there are no faults. You should keep track of when your boiler has been serviced, so you know when to book your next annual service.

If you are concerned about your boiler or you need to complete your annual service, call us today on 01274 317169 or email us at info@bradfordboilercompany.co.uk.