British Gas have a very enviable business model, they are by far the largest of the big six, providing gas to over 11 million homes in the UK. This massive customer base gives them a huge advantage in the boiler installation business since they already have that customer relationship in place – this allows them to suggest replacement boilers and encourage people to sign up to their Homecare service almost on a weekly basis through their various marketing streams.
If you go on to their website, they do make the offer enticing – £400 trade in for your old boiler, and they even have an article on 8-reasons to choose British Gas for your new boiler installation including things like ‘You’ll have one of the most energy-efficient boilers’ and ‘Know exactly what you pay’.
One thing they fail to mention is the cost.
Local is usually cheaper when it comes to boilers
When I replaced my boiler many years ago (well before TheGreenAge came about), I had really no idea what to look for in terms of boiler and no idea of how much they might cost. I had obviously seen British Gas and I think I was getting my gas and electricity from them at the time, so it was logical to get them in for a quote. The quote they provided was over £4,000 to replace a regular floor standing boiler with a wall mounted boiler.
I went back to my folks for a bit of parental advice – namely, how the hell was I going to pay for it! They immediately suggested choosing a local installer, provided they have the necessary qualifications (the requirement now is for an engineer to be ‘Gas Safe’) as they were likely to be cheaper.
Taking that on board, I did end up choosing a local installer to do the job, it cost me £2,600 to do the job all in and my boiler is still in perfect working condition today.
Get multiple quotes for a new boiler!
It is not only me that gets quoted these prices though; you would be amazed at the number of our customers have also first gone down the British Gas route, but if you don’t believe me, simply type in ‘British gas expensive boilers’ into Google and look at some of the forums out there!
The issue is that many people just don’t know where to start, so they go with British Gas having seen the advertising messages everywhere.
Our advice would be to get British Gas round to quote for a new boiler – you then have your top end quote. We would then suggest ringing local installers to see what price they would charge to do for works. You can also take a look at this article to give you bit of help if you are completely new to all this and need to know estimated guide prices for new boilers!
As for British Gas Home Care – with prices starting from £8.50 per month, we suggest looking elsewhere, especially if your boiler is new, since it should already come with a sizable warranty. We appreciate there will be some people who want that peace of mind of always having the ability to get someone in if they have an issue, but at over £100 a year, if you have a nice local plumber then we recommend just paying them a one off fee.
As a final note though – beware any gas engineer who isn’t gas safe! This is the recognised mark of quality in the heating industry, so any engineer worth their salt should have it!
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