Plumber needs to fix the boiler (again) but how much is too much money?

9
Found 13th Mar
Calling all plumbers/heating engineers!

I've had no heating or hot water for over ten days now thanks to my Vaillant Ecomax combi boiler. It keeps throwing out different error codes.

Long story short - plumber said last week it needed a new automatic air vent. Billed me £180. After 45 minutes the boiler died again and the plumber came back to have another look. This time he said the pump has gone and that it'll cost another £360 to fix, on top of what I've already paid.

Two questions - how do I know the pump has really gone (without paying £80-£100 for a second opinion) and how do I know he's not charging me more than he needs to? I am recovering from a critical illness and have just come out of hospital after a 4 month inpatient stay so he knows I can't cope any longer without heating and hot water (especially with another freezing snap coming this weekend).

Does this seem like a fair price to you?

ANY advice much appreciated. Thank you!
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Just tell him that will be fine, but you are deducting the 180 for the misdiagnosis first time around. Try another plumber.
9 Comments
Just tell him that will be fine, but you are deducting the 180 for the misdiagnosis first time around. Try another plumber.
Hi, I was in a similar situation not so long ago where I was messed about with boiler engineers throwing different repair options (none solved the issue). I recommend contacting Vaillant as they have an emergency repair insurance which covers nearly all repairs (parts and labour). It costs £300 (paid in £50 instalments for 6 months). If they are unsuccessful on first visit they don't charge. Despite the other engineers changing all sorts of sensors, the Vaillant engineer said it was a PCB (usually £200 for the part and an hours labour (circa £60). He also mentioned the pump was sounding iffy and would probably fail in the next 3-4 months. When it does, I have peace of mind the existing insurance policy would cover its replacement.
Edited by: "ChrisKaru" 13th Mar
Tthank you both!

I'm going to get in touch with them tomorrow and say either I pay half now then half next month when I know the problem is fixed, OR I say I'll pay it providing they deduct the £180 for misdiagnosis. I haven't decided yet but will sleep on it and heed your advice!
I had the same boiler some years ago and it gave me no end of trouble. It was a very expensive boiler, which i bought for my own home as i thought you cant go wrong if you buy an expensive boiler. Expensive equates to quality and reliability right? So wrong was i with this one. I will never touch another vaillant boiler again.

luckily i had it insured with british gas so they kept on fixing it and fixing it, one fault after another. It made me appreciate the value of boiler insurance with a reliable insurer. It costs british gas more to fix that boiler than they got out of me from the annual fee. It is the reason why i am still with british gas now as i know they dont give up when a boiler continually breaks down.

get someone reliable like british gas or vaillant to fix it, otherwise you will keep paying the engineer to replace everything until the boiler needs replacing. When a boiler keeps developing faults, it may be time to bite the bullet and get a new boiler. It will work out cheaper than getting the banger fixed all the time. At least get it insured when it does work again
Ring up Vaillant and book one of their engineers?
If you do not have British Gas breakdown cover you can call them out for a £99 fee and they will fix your boiler if they can. You then have to commit to stay on the breakdown service for 12 months @ £23 per month. It will be the least hassle for you and will end the possibility of dealing with rogue traders.

£99 + (12 x £23) = £375

Here are your options - Repair and ongoing cover for peace of mind

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Edited by: "OllieSt" 14th Mar
mutley114th Mar

I had the same boiler some years ago and it gave me no end of trouble. It …I had the same boiler some years ago and it gave me no end of trouble. It was a very expensive boiler, which i bought for my own home as i thought you cant go wrong if you buy an expensive boiler. Expensive equates to quality and reliability right? So wrong was i with this one. I will never touch another vaillant boiler again.luckily i had it insured with british gas so they kept on fixing it and fixing it, one fault after another. It made me appreciate the value of boiler insurance with a reliable insurer. It costs british gas more to fix that boiler than they got out of me from the annual fee. It is the reason why i am still with british gas now as i know they dont give up when a boiler continually breaks down.get someone reliable like british gas or vaillant to fix it, otherwise you will keep paying the engineer to replace everything until the boiler needs replacing. When a boiler keeps developing faults, it may be time to bite the bullet and get a new boiler. It will work out cheaper than getting the banger fixed all the time. At least get it insured when it does work again

Trust me BG make the money back on the customers that don't call out
Gave up on BG years ago. Apparently being without hot water or heating for almost 3 weeks is not considered an emergency. This was with the monthly cover. They had all the the parts required but no-one available to fit them. I avoid them like the plague.
Gollywood1 h, 22 m ago

Trust me BG make the money back on the customers that don't call out


obviously, else they would not stay in business for long! however, if they were cowboys, they would say after the 2nd repair in the year say, that the boiler is no longer repairable and so i needed to install a new boiler. this way they save themselves money fixing it and give themselves the possibility of making extra money out of me if i accepted their quote to install a new boiler, but they didn't do this, which i found quite impressive and honest of them.

it showed that although they were in the market to make money, they were not rip off merchants.
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