What is boiler cover?

Boiler cover or boiler insurance covers the cost of repairs if your boiler breaks down. Boiler insurance policies can include things like:

 

  • An annual boiler service
  • A 24-hour emergency helpline
  • The cost of repairs when needed

What are the different types of boiler?

There are three main types of boiler:

Conventional boilers

These are sometimes referred to as heat-only boilers.

They normally have an on/off switch so you can heat the water before you need it and turn the boiler off at other times.

Conventional boilers store hot water in a cylinder and use a cold water tank too.

System boilers

These boilers are popular in homes with more than one bathroom or properties where hot water is needed from more than one tap at a time.

Although the heating components are built into the boiler itself they need a cylinder to store hot water.

Combi boilers

These are the smallest boiler systems. Everything is packed into a compact unit that doesn’t need hot water cylinders or a cold water storage tank.

Water is heated directly from the mains when you turn on the tap - making it an energy-efficient system too.

Do I need boiler insurance?

If you own your own home, it's certainly worth considering taking out boiler insurance. However, it's worth checking whether your boiler is already covered by the following:

Your home insurance - Check your home insurance policy for home emergency cover. You might be able to add boiler cover to your policy or your provider may offer it as standard.

Your boiler manufacturer - Warranties on new boilers should cover call outs and repairs if your system breaks down within a certain period.

If you have Bronze, Silver or Gold Home Insurance from John Lewis it’s easy to add on Home Emergency & Boiler Servicing Cover. To request a change to your cover without admin fees or hidden charges, simply call us on 0345 608 9011.

With John Lewis Specialist Cover, Home Emergency assistance up to £1,500 (inclusive of VAT) is included as standard. This extends to include your primary heating system (please refer to the policy wording for full details of what’s covered).

Home emergency cover

If you have Home Emergency Cover with a Bronze, Silver or Gold policy from John Lewis Home Insurance, boiler breakdown is covered.

When faced with an emergency, all you need to do is call our 24-Hour Home Emergency helpline on 0345 608 9006.

We can cover:

  • Parts
  • The cost of repairs
  • Call-out charges for emergency work - up to the value of £1,500

 

If you’re with another insurance provider, check your policy as not everyone covers boiler breakdown.

Boiler cover for landlord and rental properties

Arranging boiler cover can give landlords and tenants peace of mind that a faulty boiler will be repaired quickly. 

If you’re renting, the boiler is your landlord’s responsibility. Although landlords don’t have to insure a tenant’s boiler by law, they are responsible for repairing a boiler if it goes wrong.

As a tenant, you should help to maintain the boiler and report any problems to your landlord. 

Simple steps for looking after your boiler include:

Turning your heating on regularly (even during the summer) to help clear any grit from pumps

Removing clutter from around your boiler so it’s properly ventilated

Is boiler insurance worth it?

Boiler insurance may seem like a needless expense while your system is working properly. However, the cost of repairs if things go wrong could be more expensive than you might expect.

Some surprisingly expensive costs can include: 

 

Labour

Boiler engineers usually charge around £60 an hour for labour.

This can rise to £90 an hour in the evening and on weekends, plus VAT.

Parts

Boiler parts can also be costly.

According to Which?:

The fan for combustion usually costs £229 including installation

A new circuit board could set you back £259 including installation.

Boiler checks

You’ll need to consider annual boiler servicing bills too.

Boiler checks start at around £75 and could cost £100 if your boiler needs cleaning or the pressure needs resetting.

When you add our Home Emergency & Boiler Servicing Cover to a Bronze, Silver or Gold policy from John Lewis Home Insurance this is covered because we include a free annual boiler service.

Does boiler insurance cover a replacement boiler?

Most boiler insurance providers won’t cover the cost of a replacement boiler but they might offer you a discount on a new system if:

    Your boiler has a major fault

    The cost of repair would be greater than the cost of a new boiler

With John Lewis Bronze, Silver or Gold cover, we offer £500 if your boiler is less than 7 years old, and £250 if it is over 7 years old.

How much does a new boiler and installation cost?

With so many brands and types of boiler available, prices can vary significantly. A new system could cost anywhere between £500 and £2,500.

Installation costs are a little more complicated:

Conventional (heat-only) boiler

If you’re installing a new conventional boiler in the same location you can expect to pay roughly £1,800.

Installing the same boiler in a different location will take more time and cost around £2,300.

System boiler

Replacing a system boiler with a new system boiler while keeping the hot water tank should cost around £2,100.

Replacing a conventional boiler and hot water tank with a new system boiler and water tank will cost around £5,500.

Replacing a combi boiler with a system boiler and hot water tank could cost £5,800.

Combi boiler

Replacing an existing combi boiler with a new one and in the same location will cost around £2,100.

Replacing a combi boiler with a new one in a different location will cost around £2,650.

Replacing a conventional boiler and hot water tank with a new combi boiler will cost roughly £3,250.

Boiler energy efficiency

You could make significant savings if you switch to an A-rated boiler. If you’re replacing a particularly inefficient boiler you’ll be able to recoup the costs on your new boiler fairly quickly.

Old boiler rating Semi-detached house (Annual savings)

Detached house (Annual savings)

Mid-terraced house (Annual savings) Mid-floor flat (Annual savings)
G £245 £380 £210 £100
F £170 £265 £145 £70
E £135 £210 £115 £55
D £105 £160 £90 £40

The savings you can expect to see when you switch to an A-rated boiler, according to the Energy Saving Trust.

Can I insure an old boiler?

Some boilers may be too old or in too poor a condition for insurance providers to cover. 

At John Lewis, we’re unable to cover boilers if they have an output of more than 60kW.

For our Specialist cover, your boiler will also need to be under 15 years old.

Older boilers are likely to have more problems, and parts needed for repairs might not be available. In many cases, a new energy-efficient boiler makes more financial sense.

Do I need to keep a record of my boiler service?

Some insurance providers will only cover your boiler if you can prove it’s been recently serviced by a professional.

John Lewis Home Insurance do not ask for proof of a boiler check. But it’s still a good idea to have your boiler serviced regularly and we do require Specialist customers to have boilers serviced in line with the manufacturer’s instructions.

A Gas Safety Record, or Gas Safety Certificate, is the industry standard for recording annual services. Whether you need to keep one depends if you’re a landlord or a tenant:

 

    Landlords are legally required to get the boiler inspected annually and keep a Gas Safety Record as proof.

    Tenants should be given a Gas Safety Record within 28 days of the boiler inspection.

    Homeowners do not need to keep a Gas Safety Record - but keeping one could reassure future house buyers that you’ve kept your boiler in good condition.

 

Boiler engineers should be listed on the Gas Safe Register – the official list of qualified gas engineers which replaced CORGI registration in 2009.

What do I do if my boiler breaks down?

First, check if there’s a simple fix. Has the power or thermostat been turned off? Turning your boiler off and then on could help the system work again.

If problems persist, it’s time to enlist the help of a professional. You can arrange for a Gas Safe Registered (GSR) engineer to come to your home by contacting one of the following:

    Your boiler insurance provider

    Your emergency home cover/home insurance provider

    Your boiler manufacturer (if you are within warranty)

    A GSR engineer directly

 

If you are a John Lewis Home Insurance customer, we will choose a Gas Safe Registered tradesperson and arrange this visit once you let us know.

Bronze, Silver or Gold customers can call 0345 608 9006 (24 hours, 7 days a week).

John Lewis Specialist Home Insurance customers can call 0330 134 8166 (24 hours, 7 days a week).

How to prevent a carbon monoxide leak

If your boiler isn’t burning fuel properly it could be leaking carbon monoxide. The gas is colourless, odourless and tasteless but you might notice other tell-tale signs. 

If your boiler struggles to stay alight or you notice dark stains around your gas appliances you may have a leak. You might also notice more condensation on your windows. If so, you should turn your boiler off at the mains and leave your house immediately.

The easiest way to detect a leak before it becomes dangerous is to install a carbon monoxide detector in the same room as your boiler.

NEED SOMETHING UNIQUE?

The Home Emergency and Boiler Servicing add-on is optional with our Bronze, Silver or Gold policies.

We also offer Specialist Home Insurance for unique homes and high-value contents.

This includes Home Emergency assistance up to £1,500 (inclusive of VAT) as standard and extends to include your primary heating system. Please refer to the policy wording for full details of what’s covered.

Not yet covered by John Lewis?

Insure your home today by calling us on 0345 608 9011 or get a quote online.

 

Choose other optional add-ons

With our Bronze, Silver or Gold Home Insurance policies, you can change your add-ons to suit your new circumstances at any time, without admin fees or hidden charges.

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LEGAL EXPENSES COVER

Get access to a legal helpline, plus up to £100,000 of cover to help with legal issues, like boundary disputes.

Learn more

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BICYCLE COVER

Add up to £15,000 of cover for your bikes while at home or out and about (up to a maximum of £5,000 per bike). We cover against loss, damage or theft.

Learn more

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ACCIDENTAL DAMAGE FOR BUILDINGS OR CONTENTS

Choose either or both add-ons to protect against accidental damage to your home or your contents respectively.

Learn more

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STUDENT COVER

Up to £5,000 of contents cover for your family while they're studying and living away from your home.

Learn more

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PERSONAL CYBER COVER

Get help with computer problems like restoring your home systems or removing viruses. We'll also help you if you fall victim to online fraud.

Learn more

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GADGET COVER

Expensive to buy, easy to drop. Add an additional £10,000 of cover for your gadgets (max £2,500 per item). Add items worth more than £200 specifically to your policy.

Learn more

John Lewis Finance, John Lewis Home Insurance and John Lewis & Partners are all trading names of John Lewis plc. Registered office: 171 Victoria Street, London SW1E 5NN. Registered in England and Wales (Registered Company Number 233462). John Lewis plc is an appointed representative of Munich Re Digital Partners Limited, a company authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority to carry on insurance distribution activities.

John Lewis Finance, John Lewis Insurance and John Lewis & Partners are all trading names of John Lewis plc. Registered office: 171 Victoria Street, London SW1E 5NN. Registered in England and Wales (Registered Company Number 233462). John Lewis plc is an appointed representative (Financial Conduct Authority no. 416011) of Covea Insurance plc which is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority (registration no. 202277). John Lewis Specialist Home Insurance is underwritten by Covea Insurance plc. Registered Office: Norman Place, Reading, Berkshire RG1 8DA. Registered in England and Wales (registration no. 613259).

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