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help! boiler collapsed and probably needs urgent replacing. advice?

(15 Posts)
stilllovingmysleep Mon 02-May-16 07:07:17

As the subject says. Since saturday we are without heating and hot water (thank goodness its May!) A first heating engineer came, diagnosed a number of serious problems, which would add up to hundreds of pounds and recommended completely replacing as this is a very old, energy inefficient boiler (we recently moved into this house and had some idea about this from the survey). A second guy coming this morning to quote.

What should I be looking out for as this situation is a) urgent b) expensive and c) not helped by c) my cluelessness. I'm trying to learn as fast as I can but need advice.

stilllovingmysleep Mon 02-May-16 07:11:48

(and of course this happens on a bank holiday weekend!)

Ifailed Mon 02-May-16 07:38:51

oh dear, I know the feeling! Don't be rushed into buying the first boiler you are offered, if possible. In the meantime, do you have neighbours/family/friends who will let you shower etc? It is possible to live without constant hot water, though as we are so used to it now.
Get a few quotes from local firms, plus the National ones, (British Gas, AA, Baxi etc).
Does the existing system have a timer, thermostats etc? Are their individual valves on each radiator so you can adjust them? I only raise this because of you are going to fork out for an engineer to install a new boiler, it may make sense in the long run to get the whole system overhauled.
Are there similar properties nearby, if so could you talk to the residents to see what they have in terms of boiler - they can cost from a few hundred to well over £2k, but you shouldn't be pressurised into buying something you don't really need.
Good luck.

RobberBride Mon 02-May-16 09:30:05

Similar thing happened to us five years ago just after moving in. It was 2 Jan and DH was on a business trip....

Luckily we had a good local indie plumber that we trusted. He recommended:
Power flushing the system to get all the crud out
Getting a Valliant or Worcester Bosch boiler. He was a Valliant fitter and could get us a free 5 year warranty so we went with that. They both have approved fitters on their website.
Get a magna clean - helps prolong the life of your new boiler
Get a mid range honeywell thermostat, if you don't already have one
All of the above came to just over 2k.

Good luck!

RobberBride Mon 02-May-16 09:36:39

I should add, that was 2k inc labour. However that was five years ago! Really happy with the Valliant and the magna clean and Honeywell. Friends have Worcester B and they are also happy. Don't get a Baxi boiler!

Boleh Mon 02-May-16 09:37:11

I second going to an independent plumber - British Gas are insanely expensive.
My boiler broke down last year BG told me that although I had boiler cover they couldn't get this necessary part as it was too old and I needed a new one at a cost of £4k! Independent plumber (lucky guess out of the phone book) told me they could repair it or a new one including installation would be ~£2k...

PigletJohn Mon 02-May-16 15:20:12

Have you got a hot water cylinder?

ReachedTethersEnd Mon 02-May-16 15:24:26

Are you in receipt of any benefits op? There is finding at the moment for boilers for people who meet certain criteria. Have a quick look at You may qualify!

stilllovingmysleep Mon 02-May-16 17:50:24

Only child benefit reached. Does that qualify? (For what, I'm unsure)?

PigletJohn Mon 02-May-16 17:54:08


(this is important)

stilllovingmysleep Mon 02-May-16 18:47:04

It's a combi boiler piglet , quite old. I really don't know about the cylinder! We have been given 3 quotes so far. The cheapest for an ideal logic boiler which, however, the other 2 guys were negative about. We had a reasonable quote for a Main boiler and a more expensive quote for a Valliant one.

PigletJohn Mon 02-May-16 18:58:01

OK, thanks, if it is a combi there will not be a cylinder. Pity as you could have managed more easily.

Of the three, Vaillant is better.

stilllovingmysleep Fri 06-May-16 08:03:25

Hi all. Thanks for advice. We ended up changing boiler and putting in a really nice Valliant one. We did this rather than repair as boiler had all sorts of issues confirmed by everyone who came to give quote.

However 2 days later pressure fell to zero. Boiler man (who really knows his stuff) said to repressurise as this sometimes happens after new boiler installed. DH is doing that today.

However there is a dreadful part 2 scenario which is: if pressure loss keeps happening then this indicates a leak somewhere underground. confused. Could I tentatively ask any of you if you've been in this position and what then??!! Please go gently and don't scare me!

Believeitornot Fri 06-May-16 08:44:47

Put pressure stopped quickly on occasion - but the boiler was a five year old vaillant, not new. The leak was in the boiler itself - something was broken.
I would make the guy come out again and have a look.

stilllovingmysleep Fri 06-May-16 09:44:49

The leak had already been in boiler (this had been identified) hence we changed it.
They said its usual after installation of new boiler to lose pressure occasionally so fingers crossed its that. Can't face the idea of an unknown leak underground when we've recently changed all floors!!

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