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Central heating advice: How long should a boiler last ?

guilbert53 Avatar
7y, 10m agoPosted 7 years, 10 months ago
I had a whole new central heating system fitted in my house about 16 years ago (new boiler, pipes, radiators etc)

We had a Potterton Prima F50 boiler fitted and overall it has performed very well (even though we have NEVER had anyone in to maintain it, it just worked day after day.

It is now starting to "play up" (gas burner flame often wont come on, or goes off after a few minutes). Sometimes the boiler "sounds" as though it is working, but no flame.

Is it worth repairing, or is it about time to get a new one. I have no idea how long boilers are supposed to last.

Note also the "timer" (Danfoss FP15) next to it is also now playing up, the various buttons often do not work, and the "red light" will go out, but gently pressing the "box" brings it back on again.
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guilbert53 Avatar
7y, 10m agoPosted 7 years, 10 months ago
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#1
Sounds like thermocouple is burning out, replacements can be had from plumbers merchents for a fiver, fitting them can be a bit fiddly tho. Replacement timers are £30 ish, so all in all it shouldn't cost too much, even if you get a plumber in :-D
#2
10 years is the average according to my engineer. Mine is 15 years old and now playing up.
banned#3
i know new boilers now they recommend lasting about 8 yrs i think
#4
Please get a Corgi registered heating engineer in to sort this as it very dangerous to attempt any repairs yourself. Boilers can last 15 years if maintained well but i would recommend for a full system survey for piece of mind and of course your health!
#5
mikebike
Please get a Corgi registered heating engineer in to sort this as it very dangerous to attempt any repairs yourself. Boilers can last 15 years if maintained well but i would recommend for a full system survey for piece of mind and of course your health!


(Sorry OP!) Mikebike, do you live on the Isle of Man?
#6
Banana79
(Sorry OP!) Mikebike, do you live on the Isle of Man?

No why do you ask?
#7
mikebike
Please get a Corgi registered heating engineer in to sort this as it very dangerous to attempt any repairs yourself. Boilers can last 15 years if maintained well but i would recommend for a full system survey for piece of mind and of course your health!


Dont worry, I would not dream of touching my central heating system.

I can build a PC and maintain computers because I know what I am doing, but have no idea how central heating works and would not dream of touching it.
#8
guilbert53
Dont worry, I would not dream of touching my central heating system.

I can build a PC and maintain computers because I know what I am doing, but have no idea how central heating works and would not dream of touching it.

Thats ok i was just a bit worried as a previous reply suggested fitting a thermocouple. For me PC stuff is a bit of a mystery!
#9
I servive boilers for a living and i hate it when people ask how long they should last, how long is a peice of string?

Some boliers could last for years, some i go to have been in for around 30 years, others can go after 5.

As long as the main heat exchanger is in good condition then most parts are servicalble and can be repaired/replaced.

There is no answer to how long a bolier should last

Oh and thermocouples are very easy to fit, if you now what you are doing ;-)
#10
souljacker
I servive boilers for a living and i hate it when people ask how long they should last, how long is a peice of string?

Some boliers could last for years, some i go to have been in for around 30 years, others can go after 5.

As long as the main heat exchanger is in good condition then most parts are servicalble and can be repaired/replaced.

There is no answer to how long a bolier should last

Oh and thermocouples are very easy to fit, if you now what you are doing ;-)


I agree with everything you say and myself have fitted many thermocouples over the years as i have been in building repairs for 20 years.

My point was that each to his/her own trade!
#11
mikebike
I agree with everything you say and myself have fitted many thermocouples over the years as i have been in building repairs for 20 years.

My point was that each to his/her own trade!


yeah, i wouldn't recommend anyone fitting one who didn't know what they were doing, that was sort of my point. :)
#12
My boiler is 23 years old and works as well now as it did when new. I've had 2 minor repairs to it over the years and that's all.
#13
souljacker
I servive boilers for a living and i hate it when people ask how long they should last, how long is a peice of string?

Some boliers could last for years, some i go to have been in for around 30 years, others can go after 5.

As long as the main heat exchanger is in good condition then most parts are servicalble and can be repaired/replaced.

There is no answer to how long a bolier should last

Oh and thermocouples are very easy to fit, if you now what you are doing ;-)



Sorry to butt in on this thread, but I would value your advice, souljacker.

Our house was built in the 1970's and the original Concord cast-iron gas boiler is still going strong.

However, friends keep advising us to replace it before it does go wrong.

When I asked a plumber, he told me that it was essential to drain and thoroughly flush the whole central heating system and do all sorts of other things, besides just replacing the boiler. He said the whole job would probably take all day and cost megabucks.

Is that true? If so, please can you give a rough figure of what would be a reasonable cost? (We live near Southampton.)

And as the good old boiler seems to be perfectly OK, even after approx. 30 years of loyal service, would you advise us to change it anyway?

(Hope you don't mind me asking these questions. :))
#14
renard
Sorry to butt in on this thread, but I would value your advice, souljacker.

Our house was built in the 1970's and the original Concord cast-iron gas boiler is still going strong.

However, friends keep advising us to replace it before it does go wrong.

When I asked a plumber, he told me that it was essential to drain and thoroughly flush the whole central heating system and do all sorts of other things, besides just replacing the boiler. He said the whole job would probably take all day and cost megabucks.

Is that true? If so, please can you give a rough figure of what would be a reasonable cost? (We live near Southampton.)

And as the good old boiler seems to be perfectly OK, even after approx. 30 years of loyal service, would you advise us to change it anyway?

(Hope you don't mind me asking these questions. :))


With a bolier and system of that age it would be neccesary to drain and fully flush the system and possibly even change the rads if they are the original ones because rads tend to corrode from the inside and unless you have had fernox added to the system on a regular basis they could be in poor condition , I presume it is a tank fed system due to the age of it?

With regards to the bolier,of it was mine i would look at having it replaced as you are very unlikely to get most parts for that due to it's age so if something did fail you would be stuck with no heat at all.

A bolier change usually would take a day or so, but again it depends on the type of flue etc..

Cost of it could vary quiet a lot depending on what sort of boiler you replaced it with, combi, conventional or condensing.
#15
Thank you very much indeed for your advice, souljacker. I really appreciate you taking the trouble to respond.

It sounds as if we could be in for considerable expense!

Looks as if it's estimate time . . . :cry:
#16
MrGrumpyman
Sounds like thermocouple is burning out, replacements can be had from plumbers merchents for a fiver, fitting them can be a bit fiddly tho. Replacement timers are £30 ish, so all in all it shouldn't cost too much, even if you get a plumber in :-D


get it repaired, they just don't build them like they used to (more efficient= slightly, more reliable= nowhere near)

As for the timer it may just be some loose wires.

CORGI gas engineer would be needed specifically for dealing with GAS COMPONENTS not electrical components, and if from a company will not be INDIVIDUALLY qualified as such but working "under license" for the Firm who is CORGI registered

AFAIK a thermocouple is NOT a Gas component, and they are extremely easy to fit (cost £5 approx for a Universal type), the guy at the merchants can show you the process

renard
Sorry to butt in on this thread, but I would value your advice, souljacker.

Our house was built in the 1970's and the original Concord cast-iron gas boiler is still going strong.

However, friends keep advising us to replace it before it does go wrong.

When I asked a plumber, he told me that it was essential to drain and thoroughly flush the whole central heating system and do all sorts of other things, besides just replacing the boiler. He said the whole job would probably take all day and cost megabucks.

Is that true? If so, please can you give a rough figure of what would be a reasonable cost? (We live near Southampton.)

And as the good old boiler seems to be perfectly OK, even after approx. 30 years of loyal service, would you advise us to change it anyway?

(Hope you don't mind me asking these questions. :))


If it ain't broke don't fix it!
Start a "savings" fund for a new boiler and c/heating system for when it does die.
Contrary to popular belief the economic benefits of a new replacement c/heating systems take a good few years to kick in 15+

expect to pay £2000+ depending on boiler/radiator manufacturer, for a fitted system.
#17
I think you all should wise up as an heating Engineer the boilers are becoming like computers more efficient, and any thing over 10 years still working is a bonus! Go out and find a plumber to fit you a Worcester Condencing Combi boiler, the latest, not only will it heat your system up quicker you will reduce your Gas bills no end! William
#18
souljacker
I servive boilers for a living and i hate it when people ask how long they should last, how long is a peice of string?


Perhaps I should have said "EXPECTED my bolier to last".

If I asked the same question about a car most people would say around 10 years was a resonable life of a car. If you bought a brand new car, and it gave up on you after 4 years you may be a bit annoyed.

That is the case with my bolier. It is 16 years old, so I am prepared to replace it if that is "end of life". If I should expect a few more years then I will just get it repaired and maintained.
#19
bargain surfer

expect to pay £2000+ depending on boiler/radiator manufacturer, for a fitted system.


OMG!!!!!!!! :shock:
#20
bargain surfer
get it repaired, they just don't build them like they used to (more efficient= slightly, more reliable= nowhere near)

As for the timer it may just be some loose wires.

CORGI gas engineer would be needed specifically for dealing with GAS COMPONENTS not electrical components, and if from a company will not be INDIVIDUALLY qualified as such but working "under license" for the Firm who is CORGI registered

AFAIK a thermocouple is NOT a Gas component, and they are extremely easy to fit (cost £5 approx for a Universal type), the guy at the merchants can show you the process



If it ain't broke don't fix it!
Start a "savings" fund for a new boiler and c/heating system for when it does die.
Contrary to popular belief the economic benefits of a new replacement c/heating systems take a good few years to kick in 15+

expect to pay £2000+ depending on boiler/radiator manufacturer, for a fitted system.



spot on advice ,

my system is a 25 year + old back boiler system, works perfeclty , gets serviced every year , just had main jet, pilot jet, peizo igniter and thermo coupler replaced , parts came to under £20 posted , plumber fitted for £45

It was nearly binned 6 years ago , when my EX plumber said

" oh they dont malke parts for that anymore you will have to have it replaced now"

6 years later and a new plumber, its still going strong !!!

Oh and spare parts are still rife !!

:thumbsup:
#21
Just had an electrician to look at our Baxi boiler both fuses keep blowing he stated that 10 years is about how long they last prior to being problematic so we are after quotes to replace it.
#22
I hope that they last longer than the 6 years of this thread..oO
#23
regular servicing should last you until spares are hard to find.
#24
ssc1
regular servicing should last you until spares are hard to find.
hopefully after 6 years, they have had it repaired oO
#25
chocci
ssc1
regular servicing should last you until spares are hard to find.
hopefully after 6 years, they have had it repaired oO

i was replying to how long a boiler should last. (_;)

Edited By: ssc1 on Feb 26, 2015 13:37
#26
We have been living in a house with new radiators, but an old boiler which is at least 20-30 years old. We never added the corrosive inhibitor when we did our renovations and everything is still going well. Maintenance? We hoover out the space where it sits and make sure there is enough air to the cabinet. Think I'm living on borrowed time, but it is a Potterton.

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