Boiler maintenance - fix or buy new?
Boilers are one of the most important items in your property to maintain well. The question is, when it breaks, should you fix it or bite the bullet and invest in a new one?
In terms of lifespan, a boiler today should last anything from around 10 to 15 years. However, it can need replacing quicker in rented properties, as having lots of tenants in the property over this period of time can mean it’s not always maintained as well on a day to day basis. Even though tenants should pay for any damage they cause, it’s not always easy to prove who’s done what.
So, to help keep ongoing costs under control and make sure the boiler remains in the best possible working order, it’s worth considering insurance or a service contract. That’s where you pay a monthly premium in return for cover for call outs, repairs, parts and labour, as well as the annual service.
Fix or buy new?
When it comes to deciding whether to repair or replace an older boiler, you’ve got three things to consider: the financial cost, future breakdowns and tenant’s utility bills.
If the boiler is within its 10-15 years and the ‘fix’ is fairly straightforward, it’s just replacing a part and costs a few hundred pounds, then it might be worth fixing it, however if it’s worked well for the last 10 or more years or the cost to fix is £300 or more, then it may be better investing that money in a new boiler, likely to cost anything from £1,500 to £3,500.
The key benefits of ‘new’ vs ‘repair’ in this case is that a new boiler can be more cost effective to maintain as it comes with warranties and for tenants, it can mean they pay lower utility bills – so have more money to afford your rent.
For the future, there is an interesting initiative to help both the environment and consumers. European environment ministers are considering legislation to ensure manufacturers who create large home appliances, do so, so they last longer and can be fixed more easily. This may even become law, meaning new appliances like boilers could be easier and cheaper to fix in the longer term.
If we manage your property, we know, especially at this time of year how important an efficient boiler which is in good working order can be and if something does go wrong, contractors we trust can advise on whether to fix or invest in a new system. For help with any maintenance decisions you have, call into your local branch or get in touch via our website.