A Central heating service in West Kent when done by me, is a real service. That means I treat you as somebody who deserves to be served like a client.
During the housing boom, you often couldn't find a plumber for love or money.
If you expect a real central heating service in stead of a rush job:
Many companies are doing the absolute minimum they could get away with. One example of this is the sheer amount of people I have come across who paid to get the boiler
serviced every year, but in fact only got a safety check.
You probably would not believe the amount of boilers I have seen that clearly had not been opened for years, although the owner assured me that the boiler had been serviced every year by a central heating engineer from a Big Gascompany. Were all these people in west Kent liars? No, of course they are not. In all likelihood, they genuinely believed what they told me. Are they all stupid or senile then maybe? No, not that either. The vast majority had simply fallen victim to something that is probably somewhere in the middle between confusion and outright deception. Maybe it is coincidence, or maybe it the sales sharks are trained to confuse people so they pay money for an annual safety check in stead of having the boiler properly cleaned every year.
You may wonder why a company would purposely create a system where people want one thing and end up paying for something quite different. It may sound a
bit like conspiracy theory, but I can see two clear advantages in carrying out safety checks in stead of servicing boilers.
For one thing, you can save half an hour to an hour per job. That can be the difference between one heating engineer doing six jobs per day or sixteen. The second reason is that when you maintain the boiler properly, it is bound to last longer. So as a result of only doing safety checks, you are likely to have more customers per year that need a boiler replacement. Now who would have the best chances of landing that job? Could it be the company that has "serviced" the boiler for the past five years and thereby got the foot firmly in the door?
How can this be when people are not silly? What happens a lot is that people call a company and enquire about service contracts and or breakdown cover. The answer is usually not a clear: "Yes, we can service your boiler every year." In most cases you get an elaborate sales spiel with a number of question and an even larger amount of options to choose from.
Not surprisingly, a lot of people easily loose sight of what they actually were after: a contract for an annual central heating service.
The difference is very easy to understand, even if you know nothing about the subject. A safety check is just that: a check. As long as nothing shows up as dangerous, no further work is done. A probe from the combustion analyser in the flue, a quick test for gas leaks and a peek to see if there is a likely chance of fumes coming back into the house. Nothing is cleaned. Nothing is lubricated. Nothing is adjusted from "kind of acceptable" to optimum. This kind can be done in around 5 minutes.
My central heating service in West Kent is a whole lot more than that. As every good central heating engineer should do, I start off with a safety
check, because safety is paramount. Once I have established that everything is safe, I start servicing the system.
First comes a visual inspection of all accessible important points to see if there is any sign of leaks or corrosion. A bit of a leak, or the beginning of corrosion in and of itself is not a great drama. Even very visible corrosion does not mean that the boiler is unsafe, it can be another 2, 3 years before that point is reached, or even longer.
Unfortunately, when that point is finally reached and holes are rotting through, many people find that their expensive insurance will not repair it. The boiler is condemned , and a new one at a cost of more than a thousand pounds, and frequently even more than two thousand has become the only alternative.
When I spot the beginning of corrosion or leaks, I nip it in the bud right there and then.
Preventive anti-corrosion treatment, should be done from the moment the new boiler is installed.
In the past decade when plumbers, gasfitters, heating engineers or whatever you want to call them, could get away with murder, anti corrosion treatment was often not done upon installation. Even when done to the extreme, it will only cost about about a hundred pounds for over a whole decade. If done at an average level, a fiver per year. This 5 to 10 pound may double the life expectancy of your boiler, as well as increase the reliability. This is only one of the reasons that our central heating service West Kent pays great attention to signs of corrosion.
The next standard step is to actually open the boiler. Take apart what should be taken apart. Clean what must be cleaned. Grease whatever needs to be greased. And before you put it all together again, a good central heating engineer inspects the parts that were previously hidden for leaks and corrosion. Once that job is done, I test the working of the boiler, and measure the heating and/or hot water output to see if it is as much as should be expected. It all depends on the particular make and model of the boiler, but doing it this way would typically take around an hour, not ten minutes.
If you would rather have a real central heating service, why not give me a ring to see what I can do for you.
When you live in west Kent where it is colder than in south east London, and possibly takes longer than in town for the roads to be cleared in winter, a regular ( annual ) central heating service reduces the chances of a breakdown.
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