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English Households Spend £32m Annually on Boiler Repairs

Recent research conducted by Fair Fix, specialists in boiler engineering, has uncovered that English households collectively spend approximately £32.1 million every year on boiler repairs, despite a relatively low failure rate of just 5% over a decade.

Fair Fix’s analysis, which examined boiler breakdown statistics in England from 2009 to 2019, aimed to understand the frequency of boiler repairs or replacements and the associated costs for the nation’s households. The findings show that among the 20.8 million households depending on boilers for heating and hot water this winter, about 5.1%—equivalent to just over 1 million boilers—experienced breakdowns requiring repair or replacement over the ten-year period.

This data translates to an average of 107,108 boiler breakdowns annually. Given the average repair cost of £300 per boiler, the total yearly cost of boiler failures in England amounts to £32.1 million.

The research also delved into regional disparities in boiler failures. London emerged as the area with the highest likelihood of boiler breakdowns, with an estimated 6.1% of boilers failing over a decade, impacting 18,661 households and resulting in an average annual repair cost of £5.6 million. In the West Midlands, 6% of boilers fail over ten years, leading to 12,861 annual breakdowns and repair costs amounting to £3.9 million. The North East sees a 5.6% failure rate, translating to 5,943 breakdowns annually and repair costs of £1.8 million.

Tye Ekrem, founder of Fair Fix, emphasized the importance of regular maintenance to prevent boiler breakdowns. “Boiler breakdowns are, more often than not, the result of lacklustre or irregular checks and maintenance,” Ekrem stated. He noted that modern boilers are efficient and reliable, which explains the low percentage of breakdowns. However, he advised that the cost of repairs, even for a small percentage of failures, can lead to significant expenses.

Ekrem recommended annual servicing by a licensed boiler and gas engineer as a cost-effective measure. “The cost of a service visit is significantly less than a repair job and certainly a replacement boiler,” he said, adding that regular servicing can significantly reduce the likelihood of being part of the 5% who experience a total breakdown, thus contributing to the annual national spend of £32 million.