Heating expert urges Scottish homeowners check their boilers before ‘arctic’ April 

29/03/2023

HEATING AND installation experts at Compare Boiler Quotes have warned Scottish homeowners against heading into ‘arctic’ April without checking their boiler. 

The end of winter signals the need for a boiler MOT, which spots warning signs of issues exacerbated by cold weather – including freezing pipes, a loss of pressure, radiators packing in, boiler leaks, or a full boiler breakdown.   

This review typically coincides with the date that the average household turns their heating off to save money – previously scheduled for Sunday, March 26th this year.   

However, with the Met Office revealing that the nation’s recent “arctic” blast will continue into April, many are expected to forgo an MOT in favour of keeping their heating on and avoid ‘arctic’ temperatures – an oversight which could result in costly repairs. 

Temperatures are predicted to be at least 2°C colder than average in the first week of April, whilst Scotland could drop as low as -10°C as the country exits winter and heads into spring. 

Throughout April, Scotland is predicted to experience longer periods of rain, moderate cold winds, overnight frost and fog, according to the Met Office’s long-range forecast.  

And with temperatures expected to again drop below freezing, it’s essential that Brits take the time to check their boilers and identify any issues before the weather worsens – or else face their boiler breaking down and incurring expensive emergency repair fees.  

Compare Boiler Quotes says: “March is generally considered to be the best time to check your boiler and identify any warning signs that have arisen over winter. If you’ve noticed your pilot light going out, excessive gurgling sounds or delays in heating over the past month, now is the time to check that there’s not a bigger problem at fault. 

“Although many of us will be tempted to skip boiler checks for now and keep our homes warmed against the arctic weather, this can be the difference between spending a couple of hundred and shelling out thousands on repairs, as dropping temperatures can exacerbate existing problems and even cause a full boiler breakdown.  

“Being vigilant with your boiler can be key to minimising costly repairs, as it’s significantly cheaper to repair your existing boiler than it is to organise a new installation. Skipping your MOT could also see you sadly going without heat for up to four days during the cold snap – depending on how long it takes for your new boiler to be fitted.”  

According to the latest figures, a boiler supply and installation ranges from £2,000 to £4,000 in 2023, whilst the average repair costs £60 an hour – rising to £90 for emergency callouts.  

Prices can skyrocket further depending on the issue – with the Association of British Insurers revealing that the cost of insurance claims for a burst pipe totals a huge £7,500.  

Despite energy bills support having been extended for an extra three months to help combat the April chill, many Brits are still worrying about the cost of heating their homes – and can’t afford an expensive boiler repair on top of high monthly energy bills.    

So, what are the warning signs that Brits should look out for this April? Compare Boiler Quotes reveals how you can prevent your boiler breaking down in cold weather, and when you need to call for expert help.  

They said: “The most common problem boilers experience due to cold weather is frozen pipes, characterised by bad smells from your drain as odour can’t escape, no water coming from the pipe, and condensation or visible frost on the pipes’ exterior. You may also notice gurgling sounds, caused by thawing ice beginning to move within the hot water system.  

“Whilst it’s possible to rectify frozen pipes without calling an engineer, prevention is cheaper (and easier) than the cure – and getting your boiler serviced before the temperature plummets further will avoid you losing central heating when you need it. Turn your heating on a couple of times a day to prevent the pipes from freezing and eventually bursting.” 

Shutting the water off may also help avoid frozen pipes for those heading off on holiday this Easter, as it draws all water from the line and ensures it can’t freeze in the system.  

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