Do gas boilers really need to be serviced every year?

In a bold step that could shake up the gas boiler service and maintenance market, the boiler manufacturer Intergas has announced the introduction of a new service protocol for its latest boilers which will be based on hours of operation rather than service intervals. All of the company’s Eco RF boilers installed from 1st May 2019 will now only need to be serviced after 1700 hours of operational use instead of every 12 months. The RF technology embedded in the boiler, together with the Intergas LAN Gateway, will enable the installer to track boiler performance remotely from a specially developed service dashboard. The installer will receive an alert when the boiler is approaching 1700 hours so that a service visit can be arranged. Once market uptake has been assessed, Intergas says that its Xclusive and Xtreme boilers could also become eligible for a 1700 hour service.

Speaking about this new servicing scheme, MD Stephen Zouch, explains: “It has never made sense to service a boiler based on an arbitrary date in the diary. If you don’t use your boiler for months at a time, why should you pay for a service at the end of 12? Using data from the Netherlands, where Intergas’s RF technology has been in operation for the past seven years, the optimum time to carry out a service is after 1700 hours’ usage. The motor industry has used this system successfully for decades, and we have the ability to do the same.”

The company argues that the change will not only cut down on unnecessary servicing, but will also provide installers with an opportunity to grow their business. The remote monitoring of boiler performance will enable them to update customers on potential maintenance issues and introduce new products or services where appropriate. Evidence from the Netherlands also shows that customers are happy to pay for this support.

To monitor the Eco RF boiler, installers will need to buy the LAN Gateway and install the service dashboard onto their tablet, laptop or PC. The service dashboard provides a detailed view of boiler performance in real time, and the facility to change parameter settings remotely where appropriate. There’s a free app too, so that installers can keep track of boilers while on the go.

If a customer doesn’t want to use the monitoring and maintenance technology to carry out the service at 1,700 hour intervals, then the boiler must be serviced annually. The Intergas servicing hours protocol does not apply to the private rented sector, as landlords are currently legally obliged to carry out a gas safety check every 12 months.

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