Do you need to insure your boiler?

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If your boiler breaks down you could be left without hot water and heating, as well as facing a huge repair bill. We explain how boiler cover can help you pay for repairs without it costing the earth.
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What is boiler cover?

Boiler cover, also known as boiler care, is an insurance policy that can pay for the cost of repairing and servicing your heating system and boiler.

It means a gas-safety registered engineer will come out whenever your boiler breaks down, usually within 24 hours of you making the call. Your policy will cover the cost of the following:

  • The call-out fee

  • Repairs and replacement parts

  • Labour

What types of boilers can you cover?

There are three main types of gas and oil-fired boilers you can insure: conventional, condensing and combination boilers.

However, be aware that most boiler cover policies exclude boilers over 15 years of age, and you may find it harder to get cover for more obscure boiler models.

Do you need boiler cover?

Repairing or replacing a faulty boiler can cost thousands of pounds, so having a good boiler insurance policy in place could save you facing a huge bill.

That said, you may not need a boiler policy if:

  • You rent your home. That’s because the boiler should be covered by your landlord. Make sure you check your rental agreement to be sure

  • You have boiler cover as part of your home insurance policy

You may only get very basic boiler cover under your home insurance policy, however. If this is the case, it may be worth looking for a standalone boiler insurance policy.

What does boiler insurance cover?

A boiler insurance policy can cover:

  • Boiler and controls: this covers the cost of repairs if your boiler breaks down, including the thermostat and programmer. Some will replace your boiler if it cannot be repaired, provided it is under seven years old.

  • Central heating: this covers the cost of repairs to your gas central heating system including radiators and the hot water cylinder.

  • Annual boiler service: this covers the cost of an annual visit from a registered Gas Safe engineer who will check that your boiler and central heating are in good working order.

The most basic policies only cover your boiler and controls, but many boiler cover companies offer policies that cover all three benefits.

It’s important to check the cover levels each insurer offers, as there may be restrictions. For example, some policies have a limit on repair costs, often up to £1,500, or they limit the number of call-outs to, say, two per year. Others offer unlimited cover and call-outs, but you’ll usually pay more for this type of cover.

Most policies give you access to an emergency helpline you can call at any time if your boiler breaks down.

What is not covered?

As with most insurance policies, there are certain things that most boiler insurance policies will not cover, including:

  • General maintenance – for example, descaling central heating pipes or removing sludge

  • Non-gas appliances or dual-purpose boilers like AGAs or Rayburns

  • Faulty showers or taps

  • Any faults caused by someone other than your insurer's engineer repairing your boiler

  • Boilers over a certain age – for example, over 15 years old

Check the policy documents carefully before you buy cover because each insurer may set different exclusions.

What affects the cost of boiler cover?

The cost of your boiler insurance will depend on:

  • Age and make of your boiler

  • Size of your home

  • Amount of excess you choose to pay

If you have an old boiler it will cost more to insure, so it could be worth replacing your boiler with a newer model.

Some policies give you the option of waiving the excess you have to pay in the event of a claim. But be aware that if you choose not to pay an excess the cost of your cover will increase.

How to find the right boiler insurance

Your energy supplier may offer you boiler cover when you sign up to an energy contract, but this won’t necessarily be the most competitive option. Make sure you compare all policies first to be sure you are getting the best deal.

When comparing policies, also check cover limits and exclusions, and shop around again at renewal. You can compare policies using our boiler insurance comparison.

Protect your home and belongings for less by comparing home insurance policies to cover a range of property types and individual circumstances.