Top Tips for Avoiding Boiler Breakdown March 01, 2017 A boiler breakdown is many homeowners’ worst nightmare – not only could you face a chilly house with no hot water, but also a potentially shocking repair bill. Whilst being prepared for a breakdown is important, ensuring you own a quality boiler and are taking steps to keep your central heating system healthy can reduce the risk of it happening in the first place. Here’s some easy ways to keep your heating in top shape to help avoid boiler breakdowns. Have a high quality boiler installed One of the best ways to ensure your boiler stays working efficiently is to invest in a high quality model to begin with. This may sound costly, but in fact many new boilers feature premium components without the premium price tag and are designed with reliability in mind. The best things to look out for when choosing a boiler are a lengthy guarantee period, long lasting components and a high energy efficiency rating. Have your boiler serviced every year You should ensure your boiler is serviced every year by a Gas Safe professional (you can check if an engineer is registered on the Gas Safe Register website). Not only will they be able to look for indications of existing or potential boiler problems, but they will also make sure your boiler is not putting you or your family at risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. An annual service will likely cost around £70 (but can vary) – just a fraction of the price of a repair if your boiler breaks down. In fact, the average UK boiler repair costs a huge £314, as reported by Boiler Guide. In the worst case scenario, a boiler breakdown could result in you needing to buy a new boiler entirely, so the cost of an annual service, which could spot a potential problem early, is minimal in comparison. Have frost protection for when winter strikes When the weather gets cold enough, you can run the risk of parts of your heating system freezing up and becoming damaged. A frost protection feature will kick in once the temperature drops to a certain low level, turning on the heating to a very low (but warm enough) temperature for a short period. This massively reduces the risk of damage caused by freezing, but shouldn’t have a big impact on your energy bills as it runs at such a low temperature for a very short amount of time. Most modern boilers, will feature built-in frost protection. Switch your boiler on occasionally in the summer. Turning your boiler off in the summer can be a great way to cut back on your heating bills. However, if you do decide to do this, it’s important to turn your boiler on for a short period (around 15-20 minutes) every few weeks to keep everything running smoothly and prevent any parts from seizing up. This also means that if your boiler has malfunctioned, you could discover the problem before you need to turn your boiler back on properly in the colder months when it’s needed most.