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AIBU?

Is this boiler engineer U, or am I?

65 replies

PeeAche2 · 04/10/2022 21:18

Today it was my boiler’s annual service and a British Gas engineer arrived as planned.
He was immediately so mardy with me that I thought I must be dreaming!!

2 things he said:

  1. He legitimately told me off for having my thermostat set at 17. He said it was “irresponsible” with kids. I have a 10yo, an 8yo and I was holding my 4mo at the time. He said babies need 21 degrees. Straight up cannot afford 21 degrees right now. Always kept it more like 18 anyway, and it’s never done any of my kids any harm. So I’ve knocked off a degree. Like, isn’t everyone making hard choices like this at the moment? Bought the kids a second hand Oodie each for extra 🔥
  2. He said we should get a newer boiler. Our old one has passed the service just fine but it is old. (20 years). We aren’t planning on getting a new one until it’s on last legs. Engineer pointed at my baby and said “if I were you, for the sake of her, I’d have bought a new boiler over getting that extension done”


We are in the midst of adding a granny flat for my MIL who has suffered a stroke and now needs to move in. It’s not like we’re putting in a bloody home gym or something!!

My husband who WFH overheard the second comment and came and threw the man out!!

Currently a like-for-like boiler replacement for our size house would be about £8k. So, although it would be more energy efficient, we’d like to wait.

We aren’t rich or poor. Just middle. Have zero leftover income each month at the moment and don’t know who TF he thinks he is telling me how to spend my money and care for my kids. Please vindicate me by telling me you think he’s an unreasonable tosser!!!
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Jmaho · 05/10/2022 11:50

Report him, ignore him then when you have the cash to buy a new boiler then don't go with BG! Get a local independent firm out
We bought our house 4 years ago it was built approx 24 years ago and still has original boiler
Had BG in for a quote they said it needed replacing immediately and quoted over 6 grand for a like for like, keeping hot water tank in loft. Not being moved very straight forward easy job 2 days max. I looked up the boiler they recommended and I could buy it for 2k I expect they get it cheaper so £4k ish labour bill
Has two other local firms in and they both quoted about half of BG but both said we were mad to replace the current one and described it as "bomb proof" said not to replace it until it goes wrong and that it would take years to recoup the cost of a new one with the energy we'd save so we haven't replaced it!

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GreenFingersWouldBeHandy · 05/10/2022 11:50

Report to BG. And then forget about it.

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GasPanic · 05/10/2022 11:55

Lol.

I had the normal to condensing replacement. Two independents just wanted to drain the waste water into the soakaway outside.

BG wanted to fit a pump which would have been - I don't remember exactly - £500 quid extra. I didn't want the extra moving parts and cost, so I insisted they moved it onto another wall so the condensate drained into the same as the washing machine drain. It works fine.

One of the independents insisted the main gas feed pipe wasn't wide enough (it was) and quoted me an extra 2K to have a new pipe fitted (nuts).

BG did the most thorough job on scoping out the install, seeing what was necessary to do by some margin. As I said, more expensive but ultimately their people were a lot better.

I had a gas fire replaced by an independent in another house and had a terrible time getting the certification. I know someone who had a load of work done and it turned out the guy didn't have the proper qualis or certification.

So yeah, you can get Bob to fit you that new boiler for £4.50 and a six pack of beer, but don't be surprised if that comes with some baggage.

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ChocolateCroissantCafe · 05/10/2022 11:59

Lullaby Trust advice is 16-20 degrees for babies, or it used to be? So your 17 degrees setting would be in the right bracket.

I'd not be keen to change a boiler that was safe and working well. To be honest, even if I was considering it, the rudeness woul

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ChocolateCroissantCafe · 05/10/2022 11:59

I'll try again... the rudeness would have lost this engineer a sale.

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roarfeckingroarr · 05/10/2022 12:57

He's right on the heating. Not ok about the extension.

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BigWoollyJumpers · 05/10/2022 13:03

Setting aside the BG man, who obviously is a tosspot.

We just got a new boiler to replace our 25 year old one. It wasn't broken, but it was coming to the end of it's life. We paid 2.5k all in for a new Worcester boiler, and my god the difference in efficiency. It's on for so much less time, and the rads heat up very quickly, and the hot water is steaming. We live is a large 5 bed as well, so it's a fairly large boiler.

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Blossomtoes · 05/10/2022 13:07

Shouldn't cost 8k either, if it's just swapping the boiler out. Should be able to get a whole new system for that sort of money

This. We’ve just had a state of the art new boiler fitted and all (13 of) the radiators replaced. That cost just over £6k, the boiler was about £2.5k.

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PixiesFeet · 05/10/2022 13:15

I would make a complaint to British gas. We had an incident with a British gas engineer. When my non verbal DC did not answer a question he asked DC he pointed at him and said whats wrong with him why can't he talk!

Tbf BG were very apologetic and refunded us for the bill for the boiler service.

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KittyEmK · 05/10/2022 13:17

YANBU!! What a prick. Will you complain?

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Irridescantshimmmer · 05/10/2022 13:27

Well that engineer was having a bad dogs' day.

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Elphame · 05/10/2022 13:35

Getoff · 05/10/2022 09:54

Shouldn't cost 8k either, if it's just swapping the boiler out.

If it's that old, it will be a swap to a condensing boiler, which might require hugely expensive work to lay a waste pipe.

Not necessarily. I replaced my 1970s boiler a year ago as it was finally clearly on its way out.

It cost about £5K mainly because it had to be resited as the old boiler location wasn't permitted any more and we had thermostatic valves fitted to all 19 radiators.

We went for a traditional boiler and kept the hot water tank.

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altmember · 05/10/2022 13:46

roarfeckingroarr · 05/10/2022 12:57

He's right on the heating. Not ok about the extension.

No he isn't. You can't just walk into a house and declare what the thermostat needs to be set at. It depends where in the house the stat is, the layout of the house, the quality of the insulation. If the stat is located in the coldest part of the house then 17 degrees should be fine. My stat never goes above that, 21 degrees would feel like being in a furnace to me. Obviously you keep a baby warm with appropriate layers of clothing.

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PeeAche2 · 05/10/2022 14:03

Ooh. Lots to digest here.

Forget the temp in my house, it’ll be a cool day in hell before I pay £8k for a new boiler. 😂 When he said that amount, I thought he must have been choking my chain.

17 degrees in my house translates to around 18-19 degrees in most rooms apart from the dodgy little room off the kitchen and the downstairs loo. I admit, I have a preference for cooler temps and I’m always telling my kids to just put a jumper on. But it’s not unreasonably cold.

We do also use log burners throughout the house.

I've turned it down a degree, that’s the truth. I hold my hands up to. But heaven help me, if you saw the bills I’m getting. I’m not made of bloody money. Everyone is just going to have to get used to a slightly cooler environment. Including the baby - who is nicely layered up and bonny as you like.

Lullaby trust advise 16-20 degrees and I’m happily within that target. Plus, she still shares a room with us, which means she’s toasty in with mum and dad. And besides, we have an open fire in the bedroom, if required.

Apart from during the boiler service, my heating hasn’t even been on yet. It’s positively balmy here in PeeAche-ville.

It’s unlikely I’ll complain. I have fantasised about it, but I have 3 kids and I don’t even get to take a shit on my own.

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Carlycat · 05/10/2022 21:41

Definitely complain to BG. He really overstepped the mark there. Prize wanker and CF

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