The Ultimate Guide to Back Boiler Replacement

Apr 27, 2023 | Heating Measures and Technologies

– The article was updated on 16 October2023

If you’re contemplating replacing your dated back boiler, this article is your indispensable guide. We cover everything from the historical context to the financial implications, helping you make an informed decision.
back boiler upgrade scheme

What is a Back Boiler?

A back boiler is a type of heating system cleverly situated behind a fireplace, generally accompanied by either a gas fire or a wood-burning stove. Utilising the heat generated by the fire, it produces hot water for domestic use. Initially popularised in the 1960s and 1970s, the usage of back boilers has waned due to advances in heating technology.

The History of Back Boilers

Emerging in the UK in the 1960s, back boilers offered a compact solution for homeowners desiring both heating and hot water without the need for separate units. Despite their initial popularity, their use gradually declined from the 1980s onwards, supplanted by more efficient and versatile boiler systems.

Why Replace Your Back Boiler?

Energy Efficiency

Traditional back boilers often suffer from subpar energy efficiency, sometimes rating below 70%. Modern alternatives, however, boast efficiency ratings upwards of 90%, affording you considerable savings on your energy bills and reducing your environmental impact.

Safety Concerns

Many older models lack contemporary safety features such as flame failure devices and thermostatic control valves. Moreover, back boilers, frequently tucked away behind fireplaces, pose an elevated risk of carbon monoxide exposure.

Availability of Parts for Back Boiler Replacement

Due to the discontinuation of back boilers, obtaining replacement parts has become increasingly difficult and expensive. As a result, upgrading to a new system is often the more sensible option.

Comparing Back Boiler Replacement Options

Combi Boilers

These units offer both heating and hot water on-demand and are known for their compactness and energy efficiency. They are particularly well-suited for smaller homes.

System Boilers

These boilers are another viable replacement choice. They require a separate cylinder for hot water storage and are especially useful for homes with high hot water demands.

Conventional Boilers

Appropriate for homes with traditional plumbing systems, these boilers are less space-efficient but offer advantages for homes with multiple bathrooms or lower water pressure.

For homes not connected to the national gas grid, considering an alternative heating system might be beneficial. With off-gas property grant you can make the transition to a more efficient heating system that is more affordable. It’s essential to research and understand the available grants and incentives when considering your British Gas boiler replacement options or any other energy supplier.

The Costs of Back Boiler Replacement

The costs are contingent on several variables, but a typical range is £2,500 to £4,500. However, you may be eligible for a free replacement via the ECO4 Scheme if you meet specific criteria. The back boiler removal grant can fully subsidise your boiler replacement, leading to significant savings.

Finding the Right Installer

Choosing the right installer is crucial to ensuring a smooth and successful back boiler replacement. Look for a Gas Safe registered engineer with experience in back boiler replacement and a solid reputation for quality work. Don’t be afraid to ask for references and read online reviews to help you make an informed decision. It’s also wise to obtain multiple quotes to ensure you’re getting a fair price for the work.

As a certified installer, we have the necessary qualifications and experience to not only replace your back boiler but also help you apply for the ECO4 grant. Our team of experts can guide you through the application process, ensuring you have the best chance of receiving the funding you’re entitled to.

If you’re eligible for the grant, UK Energy Support can replace your boiler and carry out any additional heating measures upgrade you qualify to receive for free. This can include improvements such as insulation, electric heating replacement, and smart heating controls to further enhance your home’s energy efficiency and comfort.

By working with a certified installer like us, you can have peace of mind knowing that your back boiler replacement and any other eligible energy efficiency improvements will be carried out professionally, safely, and to the highest standards.

Top Tips for Maintaining Your New Boiler

To keep your new boiler running efficiently and prolong its lifespan, follow these top tips:

  • Schedule an annual boiler service with a Gas Safe registered engineer.
  • Check your boiler’s pressure regularly and top up as necessary.
  • Insulate your pipes to prevent heat loss and protect against freezing.
  • Install a carbon monoxide detector near your boiler to ensure your safety.
mother and daughter talking over tea

Case Study: Christine’s Journey with the ECO4 Scheme

Christine, a resident of Kent, decided to move in with her husband and son to her mother’s quaint, old cottage. Realising the heating system was a relic, she recalled a TV segment about the ECO4 Scheme — a government grant available to those claiming pension credit. Intrigued, she assisted her mother in checking their eligibility for this opportunity on our website. To their delight, they qualified! Not only did they upgrade the obsolete back boiler for free, but they also received brand new storage heaters just in time for winter.

Impact of the ECO4 Scheme: A Comparative Table

Metric Before upgrade After Upgrade Difference
Heating Costs (per month) £150 £90 Saved £60
CO2 Emissions (per month) 300 kg 180 kg Reduced 120 kg
Heat Usage (per month) 2000 kWh 1200 kWh Saved 800 kWh
Christine’s family now enjoys not only a warmer, more efficient home but also significant savings. Switching to storage heaters has allowed them to reduce their electricity bill substantially. If you’re in a similar situation, it’s well worth looking into the ECO4 Scheme. It’s a real game-changer!

Final Thoughts

Are you tired of constantly battling rising energy bills? Want to make a change that benefits both your wallet and the environment? A back boiler replacement could be the answer you’ve been searching for. Why continue to struggle with an outdated heating system when you can upgrade to a modern, efficient solution that puts you back in control of your energy usage?

Don’t let the chance to apply for a back boiler replacement grant pass you by – It’s a game-changer, offering financial relief and a chance to join the green revolution. Take the leap and transform your home’s heating experience, all while easing the burden on your budget.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take to replace a back boiler?

The time required to replace a back boiler varies depending on the complexity of the installation and the type of boiler being installed. On average, you can expect the process to take between 2 and 3 days.

Preparing for the Installation

Before your back boiler replacement, there are several steps you can take to ensure the process goes smoothly.

Clear the area around your fireplace and boiler, and make sure your installer has easy access to your property.

It’s also a good idea to discuss any specific requirements or concerns with your installer in advance, such as the need to relocate your new boiler or make changes to your existing heating system.

Will I need to replace my radiators when I replace my back boiler?

In most cases, it’s not necessary to replace your radiators when replacing your back boiler. However, if your radiators are old or inefficient, it may be worth considering an upgrade to improve your home’s overall energy efficiency and that too can be done at no cost to you under the ECO4 scheme if you qualify.

How do I dispose of my old back boiler?

Your installer should remove and dispose of your old back boiler as part of the replacement process. It’s essential to ensure that your old boiler is disposed of in accordance with local regulations and environmental guidelines.

Article written by
Abbie Hall

Abbie Hall

Abbie is an ECO4 specialist helping homeowners to enhance their home’s energy efficiency using government funding. With her guidance, many have adopted sustainable living practices and reduced their energy bills.
Government backed scheme

Are You Eligible for the government initiated ECO4 Grant?

The energy efficiency of your home may be improved for free if you own a property and receive the correct income-related benefits or tax credits.

Find out if you qualify for the ECO4 scheme by starting your eligibility check below.

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Find out if you’re eligible to receive the grant below

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Our Energy Advisor will book a no obligation survey followed by installation appointment if you qualify

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Start saving £££ while keeping your house warm & cosy