New boiler needed -what should I consider?

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  • New boiler needed -what should I consider?

    I need to put a new boiler into a house I let out. Is it best to go to a large company like British Gas or Swalec? I don't live near to the house, so do not know of any local contractors who could do the job for me. Any advice please?

  • #2
    Why do you think you need a new boiler ?

    Comment


    • #3
      Maybe it's knackered.

      My LL installed a Baxi boiler with a British Gas branded timer -- so I presume they did the work. More importantly, he has a service agreement with them so the boiler gets a yearly check, and faults are rectified quickly without his involvement.

      As the tenant, I can highly recommend this arrangement.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by tomcat View Post
        I need to put a new boiler into a house I let out. Is it best to go to a large company like British Gas or Swalec? I don't live near to the house, so do not know of any local contractors who could do the job for me. Any advice please?
        Get a couple of local plumbers to give you a quote. You may wish to compare their quote with a BG one, but I wouldn't bother. The boilers usually come with a 3 or 5 year warranty. But you must make sure you register it. So if any thing goes wrong with it, the T only needs call the service number and its dealt with. You could always take out a BG or Homeserve contract further down the line after the warranty expires.

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        • #5
          also, I know Combi boilers are more efficient however bear in mind that if immersion heater is removed then tenants wont have a back up of hot water
          should boiler break down - although in theory being new it should be fine

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          • #6
            Originally posted by tomcat View Post
            I don't live near to the house, so do not know of any local contractors who could do the job for me.
            If you're a distant LL, then get quotes from 3/4 local plumbers; by searching the Gas Safe Register (use the 'Find A Registered Gas Business' box in top right), to ensure that they are suitably qualified to carry out domestic gas work.
            The information in my posts is provided 'as is'. This is not intended to be legal advice. Legal or other professional advice should be sought before acting or relying on this information or any part of it. I will not be held responsible for loss or damage arising from errors in the information or the way in which a person uses the information on this . For more information on your query use the '' link at the top of this page. Agreements, Forms & Notices can be found .

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            • #7
              Combi is definitely favourite, but if property does not currently have a combi boiler, then there will be added works involved in removing the hot water tanks and if a shower works off the hot water system (rather than being a separate electric shower or pump) you may also have to have an equaliser installed to make shower work. By the way - what part of the country are you in?
              Mrs Jones
              I am not an expert - my posts are my opinion and should not be taken as fact!!

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              • #8
                For the hardware, I can attest to a Worcester-Bosch Highflow 400 combi boiler (now called Greenstar Highflow), which is a large floor standing boiler - quite a beast actually!

                I had one installed 9 years ago for a HMO, serving the demands of upto 6 people, 2 full bathrooms with showers, a washing machine and of course the central heating with 9 radiators.
                It manages all these demands very well and with only a small drop in pressure when both showers are being used simultaneously.

                Its still going strong today but I have made sure it gets serviced every year.
                Worcester offer a good service program for £10 a month.

                For someone to install the boiler, I would take the time and effort to go to the area and find someone local who could also repair/service the boiler if necessary (gas safety checks too), even if you go for a BG contract and they can advise you if your water pressure is adequate to feed the combi, which is quite critical.
                Its good to have at least one backup person in the trades, no matter what the setup.

                If being in the area of the property is a complete non-starter for you, consider getting help from a local letting agent and maybe pay them a fee to arrange the work through their gas fitter, who they know and trust and is properly certified.
                If you live too far and don't have anyone to look after the property if some maintenance matter needs attending to, the local letting agent may also offer you management service that includes this kind of work, without you raising a finger.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by subjecttocontract View Post
                  Why do you think you need a new boiler ?
                  I have the current boiler under contract with British Gas. They have been called out several times recently, partly because the tenant has had difficulties using it, but also because it has needed parts replacing. I have been told that parts for the boiler (it's a potterton) are difficult to source because of its age (10-15 years) and the recommendation is that I replace it.

                  I don't have a problem replacing it if it is needed. I'm just concerned about getting someone reliable and trustworthy to do the work.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Mrs Jones View Post
                    Combi is definitely favourite, but if property does not currently have a combi boiler, then there will be added works involved in removing the hot water tanks and if a shower works off the hot water system (rather than being a separate electric shower or pump) you may also have to have an equaliser installed to make shower work. By the way - what part of the country are you in?
                    Thanks for your reply.

                    The house is in Bristol and I live a couple of hours drive away. Not too far really, but with all other commitments on my time, I can't go over as often as I would like.

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                    • #11
                      Pottertons are excellent boilers. There is no problem with sourcing parts and I suggest you get more than just the one BG opinion before making a decision on replacing it.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by tomcat View Post
                        I have the current boiler under contract with British Gas. They have been called out several times recently, partly because the tenant has had difficulties using it, but also because it has needed parts replacing. I have been told that parts for the boiler (it's a potterton) are difficult to source because of its age (10-15 years) and the recommendation is that I replace it.
                        So assuming you've already got a hot water cylinder, I'd be inclined to replace like-with-like and not go for a combi... as has been said, combis are great until there's a problem and then you lose all capability for providing hot water, whereas with a conventional system at least you can turn on the electric immersion heater. I can attest first hand that having no hot water is an order of magnitude worse than having no heating - you can 'cure' the latter with another pullover or blanket, but a cold bath or shower is no fun at all. (My own boiler went down last week and shortly afterwards the immersion heater element failed too ) If you're on a contract that may not be an issue for you though.

                        Moving on...

                        British Gas have a certain reputation for advising customers that their old boilers need replacing because parts are too hard to obtain or whatever; they of course have a big vested interest because they also supply and fit new boilers, and be assured that any quote they give you for the job will be substantially higher than any independent outfit will. Would certainly reccommend that you get at least a second opinion on your current boiler, and maybe contact Potterton yourself to see what availability of spares is like for your model.

                        By the way, presumably you'll be aware that any new boiler now has to be a condensing model, whereas your existing one certaintly won't be? (It has implications for siting it; possibly the current location is inappropriate - eg due to the 'plume' emerging from the flue and the need to dispose of condensate).

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by HairyLandlord View Post
                          For the hardware, I can attest to a Worcester-Bosch Highflow 400 combi boiler (now called Greenstar Highflow), which is a large floor standing boiler - quite a beast actually!

                          Its still going strong today but I have made sure it gets serviced every year.
                          Worcester offer a good service program for £10 a month.

                          For someone to install the boiler, I would take the time and effort to go to the area and find someone local who could also repair/service the boiler if necessary (gas safety checks too), even if you go for a BG contract and they can advise you if your water pressure is adequate to feed the combi, which is quite critical.
                          Its good to have at least one backup person in the trades, no matter what the setup.
                          I agree with HL - I have had Worcester Bosch boilers installed in 3 properties and found the service to be excellent. I would also endorse the recommendation to use a local tradesman for installation (and for servicing and future gas certificates etc.) if you can. I believe someone has already suggested looking for local Gas Safe certified engineers in the area.

                          If you were in my area, I could have recommended someone. Perhaps a poster from the Bristol area might be able to give such a recommendation.
                          Mrs Jones
                          I am not an expert - my posts are my opinion and should not be taken as fact!!

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                          • #14
                            new boiler

                            Go for the most efficient grade. Cheapest initially is not necessarily cheapest in the long term. Vailliant have a very good record as do Worcester Bosch as others have opined.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by quarterday View Post
                              Go for the most efficient grade. Cheapest initially is not necessarily cheapest in the long term. Vailliant have a very good record as do Worcester Bosch as others have opined.
                              The buying decision as a landlord is different to that of an owner occupier... I'm afraid that as a landlord, the efficiency rating of the boiler isn't going to my highest priority as it isn't going to me paying for the gas it uses. That may sound harsh/unecofriendly, but when it comes to choosing a property, tenants have not the slightest interest in boiler efficiency. I've never been asked about it once; not even whether the boiler is a condensing or non-condensing type (which are substantially different in efficiency) never mind whether a particular model of condensing boiler is more efficient than another (which will carry a relatively trivial difference in efficiency).

                              Agree about W-B but wouldn't touch another Vaillant with a barge pole as my own has been condemned at just 6 years old, with a known issue.

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