How often should your boiler be serviced?

1 July 2024

When it comes to gas boilers, the straightforward answer to the frequency of servicing question is “every 12 months”. But why is this so important? In this article, we’ll delve into the multiple reasons why annual servicing should be a priority for every homeowner and landlord.

In short, your gas boiler is an essential component of your home, ensuring warmth during the cold months and providing hot water all year round. The easiest way to think about it is to first imagine what life would be like without it. Having no hot water or warm radiators would be a miserable time, and failing to service your boiler makes that more likely to happen. But there are also ongoing reasons, too, which can affect your bank balance, your peace of mind and even your legal status. 

Why regular servicing is essential

If you’re wavering on getting a service, here are nine very good reasons why you should plump for a service. It might only cost around £100, which is peanuts compared to the potential costs of not having it serviced. 

1. Safety

The safety of your household is paramount. Gas boilers, if not properly maintained, can pose serious safety risks. Without doubt, the most pressing risk is carbon monoxide leaks. Carbon monoxide is a highly toxic, odourless and colourless gas that can cause serious health issues and even fatalities. Sadly, people do die every year from this silent killer, so it’s not something to be played with.

Annual servicing includes checking for leaks and ensuring all components are functioning safely and correctly. Regular inspections can identify and fix issues before they become dangerous, safeguarding your family from potential harm. The engineer will use special tools to detect carbon monoxide, and will ensure all your pressure release valves and flues are clear and safe.

The boiler poses other risks, too. Just think about it – there’s gas, boiling hot water, high pressure mains water and electricity all in close proximity to each other. The potential for injury or damage from a malfunction increases as time goes by without a service. 

2. Legal requirements for landlords

If you’re a landlord, an annual gas safety check is not just advisable – it is a legal requirement. The law mandates that all rental properties must undergo a gas safety inspection every 12 months by a Gas Safe registered engineer. Non-compliance can result in hefty fines and even imprisonment. Providing tenants with a Gas Safety Certificate is not merely a legal formality but a demonstration of your commitment to their well-being.

Fortunately, most landlords do take this very seriously. It’s not just legal risk and the safety of tenants at stake – it affects the viability and profitability of your property too. 

3. Efficiency

A well-maintained boiler operates at peak efficiency. Over time, boilers can accumulate deposits and debris that hinder their performance. Your regular service involves cleaning and fine-tuning the boiler to ensure it runs smoothly. An efficiently running boiler burns less fuel, and that translates into lower energy bills. It’s a win-win situation where you save money while enjoying a warm and comfortable home.

4. Warranty requirements

Most boiler manufacturers include a warranty that covers certain repairs and maintenance for faults. They can be quite lengthy, often passing the 10-year mark.

However, this warranty often comes with a stipulation: the boiler must be serviced annually by a qualified engineer. Failing to stick to this requirement can void your warranty, leaving you liable for any repairs or replacements. By booking your annual service each year, you ensure that your warranty remains valid, providing financial protection against unexpected breakdowns and repairs.

5. Peace of mind

Knowing that your boiler has been serviced and is in good working condition provides peace of mind for you and your family. Regular servicing reduces the likelihood of unexpected breakdowns, which are the last thing you need, especially during winter. Annual maintenance checks mean you don’t have to worry about the boiler’s reliability or safety, as potential issues will be addressed quickly.

6. Extending the life of the boiler

A boiler is a solid, hard-wearing piece of kit, but it does come with moving parts, electronics and metres of pipework, all of which can cause potential issues. Your engineer is trained to identify issues and fix them safely, so your boiler will go on heating for years to come.

7. Nipping issues in the bud

One of the key benefits of regular servicing is the early detection of potential problems. A qualified engineer can spot partly worn-out components, leaks and other issues that may not be immediately apparent. Addressing these problems early prevents them from becoming major, costly repairs. This proactive approach saves money and guarantees your boiler remains reliable and efficient.

8. Environmental reasons

An efficiently running boiler is not only good for your wallet – you’ll be doing your bit for the environment. A well-maintained boiler burns fuel more cleanly and efficiently, reducing your carbon emissions. By ensuring your boiler is serviced regularly, you contribute to a greener environment, helping to combat climate change. The fact that you’ll save money is just a bonus to some people.

9. Value of your property

A well-serviced boiler can add to, or at least maintain, the value of your property. Potential buyers or tenants are more likely to be attracted to a home with a well maintained heating system. It’s one of those things that people don’t want to have to think about when they move into a home. Keeping up with regular maintenance – and having the service records freely available – shows that the property has been well cared for, making it more appealing in the market. 

Get it serviced

As you can see, having your gas boiler serviced every 12 months comes with a host of benefits. Some affect your safety and emissions, others affect your bank balance. And in some situations, they can keep you on the right side of the law.

If it’s longer than 12 months since your last service, your warranty may indeed be voided, but that’s no reason to put off a service. In fact, there are eight other very good reasons, so please take your gas boiler’s condition seriously and have it serviced.