Boiler Service Guide: What to Expect and How to Prepare

Boiler Chat

You may have heard about the all-important annual boiler service but what does it actually entail in oil heated homes? We’ve gathered this handy oil boiler service guide to answer all your burning questions. Here we take a look at what happens during your boiler service and why it’s so important to stay on top of boiler care. You will also find out how we can help with your boiler maintenance through our boiler services and boiler care plans.

We will answer all of the following questions about oil boiler servicing:

  • What is a boiler service?
  • How often should you get your oil boiler serviced?
  • Why do you need a boiler service?
  • What does an oil boiler service include?
  • How long does it take to service an oil boiler? 
  • How to prepare for an oil boiler service?

What is a boiler service?

A boiler service is a manual inspection of your boiler carried out by a professional engineer. When arranging a service for your oil boiler, it is vital you check the tradesperson is qualified to carry out the inspection. All of our boiler services are completed by OFTEC registered engineers. During the service, our expert engineers will check your boiler for signs of wear, and identify any potential issues that may need fixing.

How often should you service your oil boiler?

Your boiler should be serviced annually, so every 12 months, even if everything seems to be working correctly. There may be issues that cannot be seen without further inspection. 

If your boiler is showing the following signs, it is likely that a service may be needed sooner than expected:

  • Delay in heating 
  • Increase in fuel usage 
  • Oil boiler lockout

Why do you need a boiler service?

When there’s so many things to get done these days, a boiler service might not be high up on the list of priorities. But, the consequences of a broken boiler can stop everything in its tracks and put a freeze on your finances too. So, it is important to schedule your service to:

  • Increase safety in your home 

If your oil boiler isn’t properly maintained or serviced, you run the risk of your boiler releasing poisonous fumes. These fumes can put you and your family at risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. So, the key purpose of an oil boiler service is to ensure your safety. During the service, our OFTEC engineers will thoroughly check for any potential leaks or repairs. 

  • Improve efficiency and reduce costs

Without regular maintenance, your central heating system could become inefficient, costing you more in heating oil and energy bills. Boiler servicing can increase your oil boiler’s efficiency and also prevent expensive repairs if issues are caught early enough. Without regular servicing, you could even run the risk of having to pay out for a new boiler if the damages cannot be repaired. 

Anyone who has experienced a broken boiler will no doubt tell you how bad it is. Think kettles and pans of boiling water to have a proper wash, or shivering under the duvet because there’s no heating to keep you warm. So, it is important to look after your boiler to make sure it doesn’t let you down.

What does an oil boiler service include?

Oil boilers in particular require consistent care and maintenance. During a boiler service our engineers will:

Check for any water ingress to the tank: Water in the oil tank can cause debris to be carried from the tank into the boiler. Soot build up will then make your boiler less efficient. Our engineers will do a dip test to check for signs of water ingress and carry out any remedial work.

Check for impurities: In cold weather, there is a chance frozen water will get into the oil line. This can cause your boiler to stop working. We will do a dip test to check for impurities and make sure no water is likely to freeze in the oil line.

Change the nozzle: A blocked nozzle will slow your boiler down. To ensure congealed oil does not cause problems further down the line, every boiler service includes a nozzle change (a new nozzle is an additional cost and not included as part of the service charge).

Check for soot deposits: Soot deposits on either the electrodes or photocells of your boiler can cause your boiler to turn on and off involuntarily, or not to light at all. A boiler service will make sure there are no soot deposits. If there are, the electrodes and photocells can be cleaned to avoid any issues.

Clean the trap: Condensation and dirt can collect in the trap. This will eventually cause your boiler to stop working. With a Certas boiler service, the trap is cleaned, meaning your boiler is far more likely to keep working all year round.

An annual boiler service is part of maintaining the health and lifespan of your boiler. You can find out more about maintaining good boiler health in our guide to boiler care and maintenance.

How long does it take to service an oil boiler?

An oil boiler service takes no more than two hours and helps to provide peace of mind that your boiler has been appropriately checked over and serviced by one of our dedicated team members.  

How to prepare for an oil boiler service?

There are a few ways that you can prepare for the boiler service to make the process easier and quicker: 

  • Research your OFTEC qualified engineer 
  • Book your service in plenty of time before the winter months 
  • Turn off your boiler beforehand to allow the appliance to cool down 
  • Clear the area surrounding the boiler
  • Remove any potential hazards such as pets or obstructive items 
  • Check for any water ingress
  • Look for soot deposits
  • Clean parts and boiler components
  • Replace any damaged or worn parts
  • Check the system pressure
  • Carbon monoxide check

Let your friendly engineer know about any of your findings that they should be aware of.

Keep your oil boiler healthy with a Certas Energy Boiler Care plan 

The easiest way to stay on top of your boiler care is to sign up to a boiler care package that offers annual servicing and repairs. Certas offers two boiler care packages, Boiler Shield and Boiler Shield Plus, so you can choose which best suits you and your requirements.

Our network of local, OFTEC registered engineers can get to you quickly no matter where you are in the country. In many cases, a well-maintained boiler rarely presents any problems, precisely because it has been well looked after. If there is cause for concern, our engineers can repair the problem or replace any parts, meaning no huge financial surprises or long cold nights.

Our helpful payment plans allow you to spread the cost across the year. So, not only can you avoid boiler emergencies, but you can keep costs down too.

Call us today on 03457 620 620 to talk to one of our experienced team about the right boiler care package for you. 

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