Is your boiler adding 40% to your energy bills? How to avoid it | The Sun
AN old or inefficient boiler could be adding hundreds to your energy bills – here's how to avoid it.
Your boiler is a key piece of kit in your home for keeping you warm, but if you don't look after it properly it could cost you dearly.
Energy bills are set to rocket by £693 in April when the new energy price cap comes into effect.
A brutal cost of living crisis is pushing many households to the brink.
It means it's more important than ever to keep costs down where you can.
And a dodgy boiler could be doing just the opposite.
One of the key things to check to determine whether your boiler is adding to your bills is how old is it.
Boilers that are 10 years or older are much more likely to be inefficient, according to energy comparison site Bionic.
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Les Roberts of Bionic told the Express: "If you have an old, inefficient boiler that's maybe 10 to 15 years old, you'll almost certainly be overpaying for energy.
"Old boilers might only reach 60% efficiency, which effectively means that 40% of the money you spend heating your home is unnecessary."
That compares with a modern combi boiler, which will typically be 90% efficient or more.
Wear and tear on an older boiler could mean it's running inefficiently, using more energy to fire up and heat your home.
In the worst cases, it could even lead to a dangerous gas or carbon monoxide leak.
Having a regular boiler service will make sure it's running safely.
Sarah Broomfield, energy expert at Uswitch.com, said: “An inefficient boiler could pile extra pounds onto your energy bill – as it will likely burn more gas to produce the same amount of heat for your home."
Getting a heating engineer to have a look once a year should cost around £80.
It might sound a lot, but leaving any problems to get worse could mean a repair bill of hundreds – or a whole new boiler.
And not doing so could mean your warranty doesn't stand if something does go wrong.
What else to check on your boiler?
One thing to check on your boiler is the pressure.
Experts typically say the pressure should be between one and two on the gauge.
Any lower and it might mean the boiler can't fire up properly, which means it's working harder and less efficiently.
And just as your kettle gets a build up or grime and limescale, so can your boiler.
Broomfield said: "Over time, boilers can build up deposits inside them that make them less efficient, and that’s why it’s important to have your boiler serviced every year.
"This will ensure both that your boiler is running efficiently, but also that it is safe."
Experts say you should switch your boiler on intermittently, even in the months you don't use, it to help prevent the build up.
And remember, your boiler doesn't do all of the work by itself – don't forget your radiators.
Regularly bleeding your radiators will get rid of trapped air and make sure they're heating up properly.
Can I get help with a new boiler?
Buying a new boiler might be the best solution in some circumstances, but it's not cheap.
The Energy Saving Trust estimates that families in a detached house can save up to £315 a year by upgrading from a G-rated boiler to a new A-rated condensing boiler.
There is some help available though, which can help bring down the cost.
Some struggling households could even get a new boiler worth up to £2,500.
Under the Affordable Warmth scheme, some energy firms like E.on are offering boiler replacements.
Many schemes have closed for the year however, so you'll have to check with your supplier.
You could also get help through your council's Household Support Fund.
You can find your local authority using the government checker and find out what assistance is available in your area.
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