As a resident of the United Kingdom, your boiler will be one of the most utilised appliances within your household. It heats up both your home and your water. Unless it stops working completely, you may not even realise when your boiler may be having some functional problems. Imagine suffering a boiler issue right in the heart of winter! No access to warm water or a cosy environment at home! You can prevent this by servicing your boiler regularly and upkeeping its maintenance. However, there will be a point when its lifecycle will come to an end and you may have to consider investing in a new one. Here are some signs that will indicate such a scenario:
- Your boiler is emitting a strange odour
An effectively functioning boiler will never give off any smell much less a distasteful odour. If your boiler is giving out such a smell, you need to immediately call in a professional to get it assessed and serviced. There could be a carbon monoxide leak. Yes mate, you are right. The carbon monoxide itself will emit no smell – that will be created as a result of the boiler not being able to burn properly due to the presence of carbon monoxide.
Keep a watch out at the flame: it should be a nice blue in colour and not yellow. If there is dark soot gathering around your boiler, that is also an indication of carbon monoxide. This can be lethally dangerous for your household. If anyone starts suffering from nausea, shortness of breath, or headaches, get everyone out of your home immediately and go to the doctor to get your health evaluated.
- Your radiator is taking time to warm up
Contemporary boilers are brilliant at heating up quickly and effectively. Is your radiator taking a long time to warm up? Your central heating system could be full of sludge that creates dirty water and will not let your boiler function properly. Your bills will be high whilst you will be sitting in a semi-warm environment with your boiler turned all the way up. What’s the point? You might as well invest in a new boiler and make sure you get some boiler insurance with it to protect your new acquisition. Find out more here.
- Soaring energy bills
Speaking of energy bills going up, up and away…
Then mate, it can mean only one thing – that your boiler has become inefficient! It is natural that when a heating system ages, it loses its efficacy and costs more to switch on.
Just take a look at the scale on its Erp energy label. You will observe that there is a seven point colour spectrum that commences from dark green (A-rated) on towards red (G-rated). The most efficient boilers hover around green. Take your pick and decide if it is time to go shopping for a brand new boiler.
- Your boiler is contributing to sound pollution
If you hear your boiler making any sounds such as gurgling, kettling or banging – then it means something is wrong. And it’s time to take action!
- Your boiler is causing puddles
If your boiler is leaking and creating puddles around its perimeter, you must take immediate action. This could be caused by any of the following: such as flawed internal constituents or its components are starting to erode. Your house could suffer from structural damage due to any rust or corrosion caused by this. You will just end up paying higher bills, nothing else.
How can you choose a new boiler?
You can choose between a combi boiler or a system boiler. The former are the most popular in the country as they are small in size and easy to install. These babies can give you hot water immediately and warm up your property rapidly as well. There is no water storage cylinder required for them to operate and hence take up much less space. If you live in an apartment or a small property, this is the perfect choice for you!
System boilers may suit larger properties better as there maybe multiple water taps operating simultaneously. Maybe your daughter is helping her mother with laundry, your son is taking a shower and you are running the dishwasher. The basic rule of thumb is to allow twenty-five litres of water per person on a daily basis. The flow rates are strong water is delivered from the main pressure pump and you do not have to wait for the water to get hot. Wicked, isn’t it? However, keep in mind, that if there is over-utilisation, you may run out of hot water. Moderation is key!
You could also just go for a regular boiler. If your home has an open vented heating system, this is a great option! You will enjoy access to warm water immediately and not have to wait for it to warm up either under this kind of boiler option. However, conventional boilers tend to be a bit more costly to install as they require more parts and pipework. Conventional boilers also tend to be bigger in size and take up more space. The water pressure may become low if the cistern is not situated high enough. This implies that extra shower boosters may be required to give them extra power. After all, you do not want to run out of hot water on a cold December morning whilst getting ready for work.
Of course, you will have to see what the right boiler size is for your household as well. There was a historic trend for boilers to be oversized by thirty percent – but those days are long gone. It is perceived as being wasteful and unnecessary now.
Our recommendation? Take your time in buying a new boiler and make sure to do your homework. Go window shopping and check out different brands. Do not forget that the most expensive boiler is not necessarily representative of the best quality in the market. Talk to their sales people and get them to share all the features of the different boilers that you are considering. Best of luck with your search!