It’s Been a While…

It’s been a while since my last blog, I don’t know why, maybe there were too many other things to do?
Anyway, what shall I blog about? Ah, got it!… New Customers

sootyWhenever I get a new customer on the phone asking for a service on their oil fired boiler, I always try and get as much information from them as possible. The history of the boiler i.e. what make/model it is, how old it is, when it was serviced last and is it running OK at the moment. You might think that is a lot of questions, but the answers I get help me decide whether to take on the service (there are one or two boilers that I do not cover), if the boiler has been regularly serviced and if it is a service or a breakdown. You would be surprised at the number of new customers that try and get you to service their broken boiler without telling you that something is wrong with it, so you get there, do the service and can’t get the boiler to run. I am wise to this now and always ask if it is running OK and when I get there I make sure that the boiler starts and runs OK before I start the service.
Another thing is that new customers are shy to tell me is if the boiler has not had a service for several years or if at all since it was installed. It does make me wonder why if you have a nice new boiler installed, that you would then not bother having it serviced each year? Not doing so will often invalidate your manufacturers warranty and cost you more in running costs. Would you buy a new car and not have it serviced?
coverI always allow extra time to do a service for a new customers and you really do not know what you will find when you get there. It could be that the external boiler has been hidden/covered by a structure that you can’t figure out how to get into or you find out that it has not been serviced last year…. or even the year before as the customer told you, but it could have not been serviced for several years. All this adds time to the service.
With new customers I always make sure that I check, clean or replace all the oil filters as I have been asked “why was I checking the oil tank…” as the last guy had never looked at it, I could clearly see that from the oil filter… dirtyFuel flexible pipes may need replacing, the combustion chamber and secondary heat exchanger (if a condensing boiler) may need an extra time to clean off the years of neglect. The burner may also need extra time to strip down and clean, all this plus any other part that need replacing all adds up time wise. Once I have spent the extra time (which may add extra cost on top of the standard service labour cost) getting the boiler into a serviceable condition I know that at the next service I should only need to allow the standard time required and that things that need to be done, have been done.
All in a days work for a busy oil boiler engineer.
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