Gas fire servicing – What is it and how much does it cost?
If it is your first time trying to service your domestic gas fire, you’ll probably want to know what is involved and how much the service cost.
This guide explains what to expect both in the amount of work to be done and how much the bill may be. However, if you have a maintenance package or have taken out cover, the policy may extend to gas fire servicing, so you don’t have to worry too much about the cost.
What is Gas Fire Servicing?
Not to be confused with annual gas safety checks or a boiler service, a gas fire service usually involves a series of inspections and cleaning of a gas fire to ensure everything works efficiently and safely.
Generally, the service entails checking the functionality and safety of a gas fire. It may also include analysing the risk of carbon monoxide and identifying potential issues with the gas appliance that require fixing.
Unlike the annual gas safety check, which is mandatory for landlords or letting agencies, a gas fire service is not legally required. Nevertheless, regularly servicing your gas fire can be very beneficial whether you are a landlord or homeowner.
Why Gas Fire Servicing is Important
Indeed, the law does require you to service a gas fire. But this service is not only popular among homeowners and landlords because they are necessary; they also ensure your safety and peace of mind.
If you’re wondering why it is important to service your gas fire, here are some vital reasons you should consider making gas fire servicing a regular thing.
Prevents Potential Health Hazards
Gas appliances in the home aren’t something you install and forget. While they should meet your heating needs for a long time, leaving them to work almost daily for months on end without servicing can be very risky.
No matter how expertly a gas appliance is installed, there is always the risk of health hazards after using the appliance for a while. A common example is the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning, which can be fatal.
Unfortunately, not servicing your gas fire for a long time can make the appliance burn gas incorrectly and produce carbon monoxide. If this happens, everyone in your home or property risks inhaling excess carbon monoxide.
Reduces the Risk of Safety Hazards
Gas leaks can occur if your gas appliances are not serviced for too long. A gas leak is a significant safety hazard, as it can lead to fire outbreaks or even explosions. In turn, this can cause damage to your household, which can end up costing large amount including boiler replacement for your old, damaged one.
Thankfully, regular servicing will make your gas fire and other gas appliances work at their optimal efficiency. Any potential leaks or faults are quickly identified and fixed during the service.
What Is Involved in Gas Fire Servicing?
The entire process ensures efficient gas fire operation. Usually, a Gas Safe engineer will perform the service by inspecting the overall condition of your gas fire, including any wear and tear on the flue. A gas safety check is carried out on the pipework to ensure it is installed correctly. The engineer will also ensure that there is adequate ventilation.
Here are the detailed steps involved in a gas fire service:
- Visually inspect the external of the gas fire: The engineer will inspect the gas fire to make sure the installation complies with applicable laws. The condition of the appliance, such as ventilation, is taken into account.
- Turn on the gas fire: Next, the gas fire is fired up to see whether it is working as it should. If there are faults, the engineer will note them.
- Check the internal parts: The external casing of the gas fire casing is removed to check the main internal components. These parts include the spark probe, burner, primary injector, and heat exchanger.
- Clean the internal parts: The main internal components are taken apart and thoroughly cleaned. Any faults or defects are noted, after which they are re-assembled.
- Check the flue: The flue is checked to make sure the terminal is not blocked and that it can safely and efficiently carry waste gases outside the property. Also, the flue seals are checked for leaks.
- Perform a flue analyser test: The Gas Safe registered engineer will adjust the valve on the gas to see if the burner burns efficiently.
- Test the gas tightness: This test ensures that the entire system is completely sealed. Any leaks are detected during the gas tightness test.
- Replace the gas fire casing: The engineer will cover the gas fire after all the checks, cleaning, and testing, making sure that it fits nice and tight.
- Complete a service report: At the end of the inspection and tests, a Gas Safe registered engineer writes a service report, detailing the components checked and any recommended remedial action.
- Give the owner a copy of the report: You will receive a copy of the service report from the engineer when the service is completed.
These seem like a lot, but a Gas Safe engineer should complete the service within an hour or less.
How Often Should You Do a Gas Fire Service?
Typically, you should have an engineer over to service your gas fire once every year. However, if you think something is wrong with your gas fire, you don’t have to wait until 12 months have elapsed before you call a gas engineer to look at it.
Be sure to contact a Gas Safe engineer if you notice any of the following signs, even if it hasn’t been up to a year from the last gas fire service:
- The gas fire stops working
- There are soot marks around the burners of your gas fire
- The colour of the flame is dull yellow instead of bright blue
- There is higher condensation in the room where the gas fire is
- The pilot light doesn’t stay lit
Your gas fire may shut itself down and refuse to work if the gas pressure is way off. Most gas fires are designed this way to protect the appliance from further damage. If your gas fire suddenly stops working, it is best to call a Gas Safe engineer to look at it.
How Much Does Gas Fire Servicing Cost?
Now that you know the importance of servicing your gas fire as well as what’s involved, it is time to get a fair idea of what the service will cost.
The cost of servicing a gas fire is within the range of £45 to £60, but the actual cost will depend on the extent of work done and the company providing the service. You might be lucky to find gas suppliers who also offer gas safety checks at a discount, or you might be eligible for a free gas fire service as part of your home or property insurance.
Benefits of Gas Fire Servicing
Although you are not legally required to service a gas fire, having the appliance serviced offers the following benefits and make the boiler service worth the cost.
You’ll have to pay for gas service whether or not you have a cover. However, ensuring that you have your gas fire serviced can save you a lot of money in the long run.
A Gas Safe engineer will identify small issues with your appliance during the service and nip them in the bud before they become bigger and more expensive problems.
Keeps Your Appliance Under Warranty
It is now common to find manufacturers offering extended warranties of up to 15 years. But to enjoy this offer, most manufacturers will require you to service the gas fire annually.
Even if your manufacturer doesn’t offer an extended warranty, it is important to service your gas fire at least once a year so that the warranty will remain valid.
Gives You Peace of Mind
Nothing beats the peace of mind that comes from knowing that your gas appliances are working as they should. You can rest assured that you are safe in your warm, cosy home without the fear of inhaling poisonous gases, accidentally starting a fire, or spending money on frequent boiler repairs.
Keep Warm and Save Money with Gas Fire Protection
If you have an existing home insurance cover, you might want to check if it includes a free gas fire service. If you’re not entitled to a free check, consider taking out a boiler cover plan, as many of these policies often cover annual gas appliance service, including gas fire servicing.