DIY tips

Worcester's combi boiler. Photo: PA Photo/HandoutWorcester's combi boiler. Photo: PA Photo/Handout
Worcester's combi boiler. Photo: PA Photo/Handout
If the current warm weather and the swathes of blooming flowers are any indication, spring is definitely here.

But does that mean you can put up with an old boiler? Can you just switch the heating off and forget about any problems until the nights draw in again?

No, it doesn’t.

A boiler that’s 15 years old or more is only around 60-70 per cent efficient, meaning as much as 30p-40p of every pound spent on heating and hot water is wasted. Many older boilers also have a standing pilot light, which can cost around £50-£60 a year to keep going.

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“Updating to an A-rated condensing boiler could make your heating system up to 90 per cent efficient, so it’s well worth considering,” says Martyn Bridges, director of technical support at Worcester, Bosch Group.

The size of your home, especially the number of bathrooms and shower rooms, and how much heating and hot water your family uses will largely determine your choice of boiler, of which there are three main types: system, regular, and combination (or combi). But which is right for you?

“You don’t have to replace your boiler like-for-like though,” continues Bridges.

“Replacing a dated floor-standing model is an ideal opportunity to get the boiler off the floor and free up some space for more cupboards or worktops. And if you choose a combination boiler, there is no need for a hot-water cylinder.

Also, with a combi, you heat water on demand, so you only pay for what you use, and get it at mains pressure.