How often do I need to get my boiler serviced and who do I call when there's a problem?

The risks of leaving boilers unchecked range from carbon monoxide poisoning to weeks without heating and hot water.

Now winter is here and the temperatures are starting to drop, the last thing you want is for your central heating to pack it in.

By getting your boiler seen to every year, you can reduce the chances of a breakdown and a more expensive pay out in the long term.

Why should I get my boiler serviced and how often do I need to?

Energy companies recommend servicing your boiler at least once a year to make sure it's operating properly.

Regular services can also cut costs in the long-run because it helps you avoid the need to fork out for expensive repairs.

If you don't have boiler or central heating cover then you could end up forking out over £100 for an emergency call-out.

Should I insure my boiler?

So for most people it's going to be more worthwhile to pay for the one-off repair.

But the benefit of boiler insurance is peace of mind and if your boiler does break down then you are covered all year round.

Most energy companies offer boiler insurance that can also cover your radiators and pipes.

You may also be able to get coverage more cheaply as an add-on to your home insurance.

Who should I call if it breaks?

If you have boiler insurance, you should be covered if yours breaks.

If you don't, you're going to need to fork out for repairs.

One option is ask your energy provider  to fix it but this can end up being quite expensive.

Homeowners without insurance can expect to pay upwards of £75 to have an energy provider do boiler repairs.

Here are a few other options to check out before picking up the phone:

  • Check the warranty on your boiler as you may be able to get it fixed for free. The Heating hub has a guide on boiler warranties if you are unsure whether you are covered.
  • Check to see if your boiler is covered on your home insurance, it's usually an add-on for most policies.
  • If you live in rented accommodation it is your landlord's responsibility to pay for any repairs to your boiler.
  • Call a local engineer to find out if they will give you a better offer than your energy supplier. Use the Which? Trusted Trader site to find a reputable tradesman.

Make sure you know how much you should be paying. You can find the average cost for the most common boiler repairs here.

British Gas customers are outraged after being charged up to three times more than new customers for boiler breakdown insurance.

If you are a pensioner or on low income you can get a helping hand paying off your winter electricity bill. Here's everything you need to know about warm home discount.

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