Boiler servicing

Boiler Servicing – An Essential Investiment

A study has found that watching spending has become an ingrained way of life that consumers will continue with, even when their finances improve.  It seems the recession has left behind a legacy of cautious consumers, with people needing a strong reason to part with their money.

VITAL BENEFITS

An annual boiler service, however, needs to be seen as essential spending.  In much the same way as a homeowner would regards a service and MOT for their car.  Most people anticipate there will be ongoing costs associated with their vehicles and budget for them accordingly.

An annual boiler service provides some important benefits; it will ensure the boiler is safe, is performing efficiently and reliably, and maintains the manufacturer’s warranty.

SAFETY

The number one reason for a homeowner to have their gas boiler serviced regularly is safety.

Unfortunately, consumer awareness of carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning is thought to be generally low across the UK.  It is important for heating engineers to explain to their customers that unsafe gas appliances – those that have been incorrectly fitted, badly repaired or poorly maintained – can produce this highly poisonous gas.

According to the Department of Health, 50 people die each year from CO poisoning and another 4,000 are treated in hospital.  It is thought the true number is likely to be much higher, as the early symptoms can easily be mistaken for flu or tiredness.

LONGEVITY

Another benefit of regular servicing extends the service life of your heating system and ensures reliable, trouble-free operation.  This is the only way to make sure that the energy from the fuel is used efficiently and cleanly, thus protecting the environment and saving on heating bills and the likelihood of breakdown, saving the homeowner money and minimising disruption without compromising high heating and hot water convenience.

Again, it is useful to draw on a car analogy.  A homeowner will understand that things like replacing filters and spark plugs are essential to keep their vehicle in top condition, and that avoiding a scheduled service may have a detrimental effect on the way the car works, leaving them out of pocket in the long run.  The same rules apply here, the boiler, burner and control unit form a system like that of a car engine which is essentially runs for many more hours than a car.  If your car was in operation for the same amount of time as your boiler, it would cover more than 60,000 miles in a year.  All car owners know that they need to have a service carried out at regular intervals.  Therefore your heating system should be serviced at least once a year, much like your car.

WARRANTIES

An annual service is usually a condition of a boiler warranty – which is another important reason why you as the homeowner should invest.  Today, boilers come with lengthy warranties, which should be seen as a sign of reliability, but the working parts still need to be checked annually.

Call us today to book your service on 01722 417873.

Sited: McCallum Layton study.  HVP Magazine May 2016.

Written by ‘The Girl in the Office’.

Gas Safety Week

About Gas Safety Week

Gas Safety Week is an annual safety week to raise awareness of gas safety and the importance of taking care of your gas appliances. It is co-ordinated by Gas Safe Register, the official list of gas engineers who are legally allowed to work on gas.

Badly fitted and poorly serviced gas appliances can cause gas leaks, fires, explosions and carbon monoxide poisoning. Every year thousands of people across the UK are diagnosed with carbon monoxide poisoning. It is a highly poisonous gas. You can’t see it, taste it or smell it, but it can kill quickly with no warning.

By taking care of your gas appliances properly you are taking care of your home and your loved ones.

Follow these few simple checks to keep you and your family safe.

• Check your gas appliances every year. Gas appliances should be safety checked once a year and serviced regularly by a Gas Safe registered engineer. Tenants – make sure your landlord arranges this. Set a reminder so you don’t forget at www.staygassafe.co.uk.

• Check your engineer is Gas Safe registered. You can find and check an engineer at www.GasSafeRegister.co.uk or call 0800 408 5500.

• Check your engineer’s Gas Safe Register ID card. Make sure they are qualified for the work you need doing. You can find this information on the back of the card.

• Check for warning signs your appliances aren’t working correctly e.g. lazy yellow or orange flames instead of crisp blue ones, black marks on or around the appliance and too much condensation in the room.

• Know the six signs of carbon monoxide poisoning – headaches, dizziness, breathlessness, nausea, collapse and loss of consciousness.

• Have an audible carbon monoxide alarm. This will alert you if there is carbon monoxide in your home.

For gas safety advice or to find and check an engineer visit the Gas Safe Register website at www.GasSafeRegister.co.uk. Alternatively call the free helpline on 0800 408 5500.

Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

Carbon monoxide is a poisonous gas that kills hundreds of people each year and injures many more. It is often referred to as the silent killer; it has no odour or taste and cannot be seen. Like oxygen, CO enters the body through the lungs during the normal breathing process. It competes with oxygen by replacing it in the red blood cells, thereby reducing the flow of oxygen to the heart, brain and other vital organs. In high concentrations, CO can kill in minutes. Many cases of reported carbon monoxide poisoning indicate that while victims are aware they are not feeling well, they become disorientated and unable to save themselves by either exiting the building or calling for assistance. Exposure during sleep is particularly dangerous because the victim usually does not wake up.

Symptoms of CO poisoning

The following symptoms may be related to CO poisoning which all household members should be made aware of:

  • Mild Exposure: Slight headache, nausea, vomiting, fatigue (often described as ‘flulike’ symptoms)
  • Medium Exposure: Severe throbbing headache, drowsiness, confusion, fast heart rate
  • Extreme Exposure: Unconsciousness, convulsions, cardiorespiratory failure, death

A CO detector monitors the level of CO as parts per million (ppm) in the atmosphere surrounding the detector.

35ppm The maximum allowable concentration for continuous exposure for healthy adults in any 8 hour period, as recommended by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

200ppm Slight headache, fatigue, dizziness, nausea after 2 – 3 hours.

400ppm Frontal headaches within 1 – 2 hours, life threatening after 3 hours.

800ppm Dizziness, nausea and convulsions within 45 minutes. Unconsciousness within 2 hours. Death within 2 – 3 hours.

Should you suspect CO may be affecting you or your family, open the doors and windows of your property to ventilate, turn off your appliances and evacuate the premises. At this time the authorities should be contacted to locate the source of the carbon monoxide before re-entering the building. Medical attention should be sought for anyone suffering the effects of CO poisoning.

Common sources of CO:
  • Oil and gas boilers
  • Portable generators
  • Oil or solid fuel cookers
  • Gas or paraffin heaters
  • Barbecues
  • Clogged chimneys
  • Gas, wood, coal or coke fireplaces
  • Cigarette smoke
  • Gas appliances
  • Any fossil fuel burning appliance

It is relatively inexpensive to have a CO alarm fitted in your home, so don’t hesitate to call us today to arrange for one of our engineers to visit your home.

Keep your family safe!

Written by ‘The Girl in the Office’