Boiler Service: Why is it So Important?

We’re going to be looking at the importance of a boiler service. It’s important because without making sure it’s in full working order you put yourself in danger of a gas related accident, you risk needlessly wasting energy, and also find yourself unable to heat your home effectively.

Danger Zone

As we’ve already mentioned, it’s very important that you service your boiler regularly because a faulty one could cost lives. A boiler that’s working properly can be extremely dangerous, and it isn’t just because of a potential explosion, many people end up in hospital with carbon monoxide poisoning because of leaking boilers.

Wasted Energy and Money

We’ve also briefly mentioned how you can waste energy if your boiler isn’t working properly. If you have a faulty boiler then it may not run as efficiently as you’d like, which means that you’re squandering energy and losing money. Also, consider the carbon footprint you’re leaving behind.

Have Your Boiler Serviced and Save Money

If you have a fully qualified engineer to service your boiler to make sure there are no faults, and that it's running efficiently, you’re protecting not only your home but your purse. You’re likely to save money in the long-term by making sure your boiler is in tip top condition. You’ll reduce fuel bills and make sure you do something to help the environment by reducing your carbon footprint.

Insuring Your Boiler

If you have insurance on your boiler, then you need to make sure it’s still valid. Most boilers have warranties and if you run a business on commercial premises will require a boiler warranty so you can ensure the boiler’s safety. If you have your boiler service carried out annually then this should be sufficient for most insurance policy requirements. Always check that this is the case with your insurance provider.

When should you have your boiler serviced?

The best time to have your boiler serviced is usually during the summer months. You’ll be using your boiler a lot during the autumn and winter months due to the cold weather, so during the warmer months is probably best. You’ll need to turn off your boiler before a service, usually about an hour before, so this will leave you with no heating, so warmer weather is best.

Hometech Plumbing & Heating – Boiler Service in Edinburgh

Don’t put your health, your family or your home at risk, make sure your boiler undergoes a thorough servicing at least once a year. Here at Hometech Plumbing & Heating we have a team of professionally, trained and qualified heating engineers who are amply qualified to carry out a boiler service. Get in touch today and we can arrange a visit to your home or business.

Case Study: Linlithgow Cross 19th Century Well Restoration

The Brief

The Linlithgow Cross Well is an important heritage feature in the town but had been suffering from many years of neglect. The Well has existed on the site in some form since 1535, having suffered damage and restoration a number of times. The Cross Well's design is an elaborately carved crown with a stepped base and distinct decorative features, including animal heads and other ornate carvings.

This most recent work included restoration of stone works, floodlighting and the water supply for the return of the water works, with this final aspect being undertaken with pride by Hometech.

The Work

We created a detailed plan of the work required to restore the water works to their former glory as you can see in the images attached. We carried out extensive work on the piping underground and leading into the Well as well as using a modern pump system to ensure it works perfectly for many years to come.

The Result

The entire project, including all other aspects of work such as stone-work, took 8 weeks to bring the Well back to life and make it a feature the town can be proud of. The chamber below the well had a time capsule installed with contributions from local organisations and schools for future generations to discover and enjoy.

Questions to Ask When Choosing a Heating Engineer to Install Your Boiler

If you’re having a new boiler installation to replace an old one, it’s important you choose a heating engineer that is fully qualified to install it. It isn’t simply a question of sticking it in and then bingo, your boiler is working. There are certain considerations to make, such as, how do you choose a new boiler, and does it even need replacing at all? Seek a second opinion, not just because one person has told you that you need to change it doesn’t mean it’s true.

Are They Gas Safe Registered?

Before you choose a heating engineer you need to make some checks first. Make sure you confirm whether or not they are Gas Safe registered, and if you’re having an oil boiler installed, check that they’re OFTEC registered. You don’t want someone working on your boiler who isn’t qualified to do it or is unaware of current safety requirements. You’ll need to find out what the efficiency rating of your new boiler is, so make sure you ask your engineer.

What Type of Boiler Will You Receive?

It’s important too that you find out what type of boiler you will be getting, forewarned is forearmed as they say and it helps if you know as much as you can about your new boiler. It could be a condensing, combination or conventional boiler, the type you get will largely depend on the type of house you live in, how many bathrooms you have and the capacity and space for a water tank.

Ask About the Heating Controls

Heating controls need to be adequate for the job, and of course suitable for your new boiler. You may already have controls in place, but they may need replacing so you can make the most of any new efficiency benefits with your new boiler. Make sure you ask about this.

Does Your Boiler Come With a Warranty/Guarantee?

Does your boiler have a warranty in place? It should and it should be guaranteed against repairs and on the installation, itself, it should include parts and labour, so check this with the engineer. What type of boiler does the heating engineer use and why? It pays to ask this as you don’t want a faulty and unreliable boiler, or a boiler that comes with expensive parts should it need repairing.

Ask about whether your system needs flushing first before installing the boiler. This will be with a power flush, this is sometimes recommended because there’s a build-up of rust and sludge that may cause future problems if you are having a condensing boiler installed. Check whether this is included with the guarantee/warranty, it may even be a requirement prior to the installation of the boiler.

Are You Entitled to Help Paying For Your Boiler Installation?

You may be entitled to a grant for your boiler to help you pay, to be eligible you’d need to be either on benefits or on a low income, or a combination of the two. There is a scheme where you can get your new boiler paid in advance and you pay it back through your energy bills, this is known as The Green Deal, you can find out more about this online.

Hometech - Plumbing & Heating Experts

Are you thinking of having a new boiler installation? Hopefully, you will have checked with family and friends and asked them for their recommendations. We rely on recommendations for work, we’re good at what we do and we’re all experienced, qualified and trained to do our jobs. We prioritise customers service and we always listen to what our customers want. Get in touch and let us know your requirements. We’re Gas Safe Registered so you’re in capable hands. 

What is a Power Flush?

A powerflush removes rust, debris and sludge from your central heating system by thoroughly cleansing it. You should care because if you don’t clean your system regularly it can become less efficient.

How can you know when your heating system needs a powerflush?

If your boiler is making loud noises and they’re little different to the usual noises you’re accustomed to, then you may have a problem. Excessive noise, dirty or cloudy water and a heating system which takes a long time to warm up could mean it needs a thorough cleanse. You may also notice a build-up of limescale.

The Powerflushing Process

The purpose of powerflushing is to help circulate the water around the heating system successfully with no noise, and to help eliminate the contaminants which cause the cloudy, dirty water.

What Happens With a Powerflush?

One of our heating engineers will use a powerful pumping unit capable of high to low pressure, which can either go to the circulation pump or pump head, depending on which type of boiler you have.

What Chemicals are Used?

The chemicals we use will include something powerful enough to break the sludge and remove it successfully, usually a descaler and corrosion inhibitor which will put a stop to further rusting. Both crust breaker and remover will be acid-based, and will be powerful enough to put an end to any particles which may have settled in the boiler, pipes or radiators. Don’t worry about the acid, there will be none left in the water once the process has come to an end.

How Long Does a Power Flush Take?

The estimated time for a power flush is around 6 hours, but it could take longer depending on the state of your central heating system. It could even take less than 6 hours if your system isn’t too badly affected.

Save Money Long-Term

A power flush can help you save money in the long-term, because if your heating system is working properly, your heating bills will reflect that. An inefficient central heating system will work out more expensive, so having it flushed will give you better results.

Hometech – The Heating Professionals

At Hometech we only use trained professionals to carry out the power flush process, making it safe and clean helping you to eliminate noisy boilers, pumps and radiators. If you’re having problems with your central heating system and you suspect it’s not working as well as it should be, get in touch with us here at Hometech and we’ll be happy to talk it through and take a preliminary look.

Benefits of Underfloor Heating

If you’re toying with the idea of having underfloor heating, then perhaps we can persuade you of its benefits. After all, the winter approaches and we believe underfloor heating is something you could really benefit from during the frosty mornings ahead. Read on to find out why we think underfloor heating is a really good investment for your home.

The Advantages of Underfloor Heating

Underfloor heating can work seamlessly with heat pumps so that concentrated heat travels via a heat pump to give you hot water, while at the same time, creating a warmly heated room at a low temperature.

Lower Heating Bills, Better Control, Environmentally Friendly

It helps you to have renewable energy heating, and it delivers controlled heat to your home so you can control your heating bills better and reduce your carbon footprint. This is good news, as we’re all increasingly concerned with the impact we’re having on the environment.

Easy to Maintain

You may be surprised to learn that underfloor heating is easy to maintain and once it’s been fitted, it’s rarely in need of repair. It’s a great source of energy whether it’s water or electricity based heating.

Water Based Underfloor Heating

Please make sure that if it is water based underfloor heating, it’s installed to BS EN 1264 standards so it’s safe to use. They can guarantee 25 years at least from a water based underfloor heating system if it’s installed to these standards.

Consistent Heating

Another clear advantage from underfloor heating is that the whole floor area is heated, which gives you consistent room temperatures and it generates more heat than conventional radiators.

Design Your Rooms Without Restrictions

What you also might want to consider is that an underfloor heating system gives you ample opportunity to design your room layout as you wish. You can place your furniture where you want without having to consider where the heating supply is, and you won’t lose space due to radiators.

The Varied Benefits of Underfloor Heating

Underfloor heating is controlled with a thermostat and gives you the flexibility to control the heat in each room. It can be controlled in such a way as to heat only the areas of the house which need heating, avoiding energy and money wastage. There’s also less risk of injuries to small children e.g. burns, as the heat source is out of sight. For allergy sufferers it’s a real source of comfort, because unlike with other types of heating using convection currents, there’s no airborne dust to worry about. 

Hometech – The Home of Quality Underfloor Heating

Get in touch with one of our professional team members and ask us about underfloor heating, once you have it installed, you’ll never look back. Our team are all professionally trained and we’d be more than happy to show you the work we’ve done before.

Choosing a Gas Safe Engineer

Why is it so important to choose a Gas Safe Engineer? It’s important because gas can be dangerous, and you need someone who knows exactly what they’re doing. In order to avoid hazards and accidents which can cause harm and even death, a gas engineer needs to be in control ,and know exactly how to do their job effectively.

Is Your Gas Engineer Qualified and Trained?

Usually, any gas engineer worth their salt will have had training to ensure he/she is fully trained and qualified to do the job in a safe manner. However, when you hire someone to inspect your boiler and carry out a service check, you won’t know whether they’re qualified or competent enough to do the job, well not unless you ask.

They Should Be Gas Safe Registered

Any good gas engineer should be gas safety registered. And any good gas engineer should be busy with a healthy client base that are happy to provide glowing testimonials. A good gas engineer won’t be cheap, their training and qualifications will have been hard won, and then there’s the quality materials they use and their insurance (yes they should be insured). They shouldn’t charge you over the odds, but they should charge you a decent honest price that’s clearly set out on your bill, so you understand what you’re paying for.

Ask For Their Gas Safe ID

How do you know that the person you’re hiring is safe to do the job and that you can trust them? Firstly, make sure they are Gas Safe Registered, do this by asking for their Gas Safe ID, and then you can check this against the Gas Safe Register. There are two ways of doing this, one by phone and the other is by doing it online.

For a gas engineer it is a legal minimum requirement to have Gas Safe qualifications. There are other things you should be looking out for too, such as experience. How long have they been in the gas industry, do they have a website, if so, go check it out.

We mentioned insurance earlier, are they insured? You need to have peace of mind and that any potential damage to your property will be taken care of by a reputable insurance company.

What you’re looking for is someone who can offer superior workmanship using quality tools and parts, a gas engineer who is experienced, well qualified and always committed to giving you a reliable and trustworthy service.

Gas engineers from Hometech

Here at Hometech all of our gas engineers who are Gas Safe Registered, because we believe that in order to provide a quality service you must be qualified, trained and registered engineers. If you have need of a gas engineer, then get in touch with us here at Hometech, and we can provide you with someone honest, reliable advice. Hometech is the home of quality and expertise, and you’ll always get a job well done.

Choosing Plumbers in West Lothian

Plumbers provide service that almost everyone will use at one time or another, so it's important to know what you should be looking for to ensure you hire a plumber in West Lothian that is up to the job.  

Here at Hometech we consider ourselves the perfect choice for anyone looking for a plumber in West Lothian. We have a team of fully qualified and experienced plumbers and provide ourselves on providing a consistently excellent service.

How Do You Go About Choosing a Plumber in West Lothian?

A good place to start is by asking your friends, neighbours and your family who they’ve used in the past, as well as checking their online reviews and testimonials. You’re looking for  first hand accounts of what their previous clients think of them.

Guilds and Trade Associations

Perhaps they’re part of a guild, in Scotland check for SNIPEF (Scottish and Northern Ireland Plumbing Employers’ Federation). When your plumber is a member of this Federation then you know you’re getting qualified and trained plumbers you can rely on.

There are other trade associations to look out for to ensure you hire reliable plumbers. There’s the Association of Plumbing & Heating Contractors (APHC), and also look out for membership of the Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering (CIPHE).

Is Your Chosen Plumber Gas Safe Registered?

If you’re going to be needing help with your gas supply, then finding someone who’s registered with the Gas Safe Register is essential. This way you’ll be using someone who’s qualified and safe to work with gas.

Ask the Right Questions

Your questions should include the following, but do ask as much as you think you need to before making a decision.

  • How long have they been in business?

  • Do they have references, testimonials, examples of past work?

  • Do they offer a guarantee, and is the guarantee backed by insurance?

  • What type of insurance do they have, will it cover your property?

  • What additional costs are there apart from parking, travel and possibly waste disposal?

While you are asking these questions take note of whether they explain things clearly without jargon and are transparent about their prices.

Paying Your Plumber

When you come to play your plumber you want to ask how he/she wishes to be paid. This may be via instalments, or perhaps an upfront deposit followed by the full balance once the job is completed and you’re happy with the work.

First Class Plumbers West Lothian

Please consider Hometech on your shortlist of potential plumbers in West Lothian. We have developed a fantastic reputation for quality work and customer service with our team of qualified and experienced plumbers. Get in touch today to arrange a free consultation and quote.

Air Source Heat Pumps: The Benefits

If you’re unaware of what an air source heat pump is then this post is going to help you to find out. What’s more we’re going to explain the benefits too, because air source heat pumps are a great way of heating your home.

An air source heat pump absorbs heat from outside air. The heat, once it’s been captured by the heat pump is then used to heat underfloor heating systems, radiators, convectors and hot water.

How Does it Work?

Well, what it does is extract heat from the air outside, using methods not dissimilar from the way a fridge extracts heat from the inside. They do use electricity, so they have an impact on the environment. However, the extracted heat comes from the ground, and water or air is renewed naturally.

Should I Invest in This Type of Heating, is it Suitable For Me?

You will need to ask yourself some questions first to ascertain whether or not this is right for you.

Do you have somewhere where you can put it? - it’s going to have to go outside, on a wall or on the ground.

Your home needs to be well insulated, is yours? - Your home needs to be draught proof as well as well insulated so this type of heating system works.

What type of heating do you have currently? - It needs to be replacing either coal or an electric heating system. If you’ve been using gas, then a heat pump may not be an ideal choice.

What type of heating will you use alongside your heat pump? An underfloor heating system is better than a radiator based system.

What are the advantages of a heat pump?

They can save you money and they’re cheaper to run than both oil boilers or traditional electric heating. They save on carbon emissions and save on space as there are no storage requirements. They’re safe too, as there are no emissions or combustion involved, and there is no need for a flue. They require very little maintenance and are cool in summer as well as warm in winter.

How much money will I save?

Naturally you’ll still have to pay bills because it’s powered by electricity. If you were having problems with your old heating system prior to this one, then you will see benefits in money saving with having a heat pump. The controls will help you to have power over what you’re using, you can have a lower setting on the thermostat so you save on energy bills. When it’s installed, you’ll find out more from your installer on how to use it.

Hometech - Safe & Reliable Air Source Heat Pumps

If you like what you hear, then get in touch with us here at Hometech heating and plumbing, and we can talk you through what needs to be done in order to get your air source heat pump installed. We’re here to help and all the members of our team are helpful, fully trained and knowledgeable on all aspects of heating and plumbing – get in touch today.

Choosing Bathroom Fitters

Your bathroom is out of date both aesthetically and functionally and now you’re ready for a new one. It’ll be a slight disruption, but it’s worth it because once it’s all done and dusted you’ll have a beautiful bathroom, and that’s great, right?

However, it’s not always as easy as that, you’ve got to choose the right type of fittings for your bathroom, taking into consideration the size and shape of the room. And then to top it all, you’ve got to consider who you hire to install it.

Find Bathroom Fitters That are Trained and Qualified

If you choose wrong, you could have a disaster on your hands and a lot of wasted money on your part. Choose poorly and you may as well flush your money down the toilet. But don’t do that, because here at Hometech, we excel in bathroom fittings and we’ve spent many years honing our skills and making sure that every one of our professional fitters is trained and qualified.

Today, in our guide we’re going to talk you through what to expect and what you should look out for when choosing bathroom fitters, and while we sincerely hope you choose us, we’d like to think that wherever you go for your bathroom installation, you choose well, so we’ve come up with a few pointers.

What Do You Want From Your Bathroom Fitters?

Do you want them to fit an entirely new bathroom, or do you just want a few changes? Make sure that if it’s just one or two things you want replacing that you make it clear to your bathroom fitters. Of course what you get done to your bathroom will largely depend on your budget, and it’s a good idea to have a clear idea of what it is and stick to it.

Bathroom Fitter Recommendations

Always ask for recommendations from friends and family. If they’ve had a bathroom fitted recently, how was it? Would they recommend them to you? It’s worth doing some research on who is most suitable, are there pictures from previous work and do they have testimonials from previous clients? All of this will help you make a decision.

Free Quotes, and Comparing Like With Like

Any company worth their salt should send someone round to give you a free quote after they’ve taken a good look at your bathroom. If you want something fairly ostentatious in the way of bathroom furniture, or you want all mod cons with a technically sophisticated bathroom, choose someone who’s expertise or specialism is in that very thing you want.

Once you’ve chosen your bathroom fitters be prepared for a little disruption. It’s only temporary, and any good bathroom installers should clear up after themselves and make the process as smooth as possible.

Hometech Heating & Plumbing – Bathroom Fitters Edinburgh

If you’d like someone to come and look at your bathroom and give you a free quote, then get in touch with us here at Hometech. We are the best bathroom fitters Edinburgh has to offer that deliver on quality workmanship and fantastic customer service.

Boiler Replacement – What are the Benefits?

Thinking about replacing your boiler? It might be a good idea when you consider how beneficial it will be in terms of lower heating costs, efficiency, improved heating control and cost savings. If you’ve been struggling with an old boiler, then perhaps now’s the time to have it replaced while the summer weather’s here, and before the colder climates arrive. In today’s post we’re going to be talking about the benefits of boiler replacement and why you should consider it.

Lower Heating Costs

Firstly, let’s look at the benefit of low heating costs. If your boiler is quite old, then a new one can not only be more efficient, but also more cost effective. You can choose a high-efficiency condensing boiler which comes with a complete set of heating controls. This in itself can help with energy saving, giving you more control over how much heat you use and how little you waste.

The good news is that most boilers you buy today are extremely energy efficient being between 88% and 90%. If you move from a fairly recent boiler that is 88% efficient, and change it to a boiler that’s 98% efficient, won’t really show you much in the way of savings. It’s only if you’re changing from a really old boiler to one of the new energy efficient boilers.

Better Heating Control

Comfort levels can be improved exponentially with better heating control, this means that rather than have a room too hot or cold, you can control the thermostat much better and have the room at an ideal temperature for you.

You won’t always want rooms heated that are not in use, or if you’re heating the room solely for guests, you can keep it low until they arrive. This helps avoid unnecessary heat in the room, keeping the energy bills low.

Long-Term Savings

In the long-run, it will take time before you see the benefit of any cost savings, it’s not easy to see how long it will be before it starts to pay for itself. However, what is certain, is that you will make savings on a new boiler if you’re changing from an old one to one of the newer efficient boilers. What’s more, your boiler could add value to your property should you decide to sell in the future.

Environmentally Friendly

If you’re concerned about the environment, then you’ll be pleased to know that a more modern boiler can help bring down carbon dioxide emissions considerably, which means you get to make your contribution to the environment - simply by replacing your boiler.

Hometech Heating – Boiler Replacement

If you’re thinking of changing from an old boiler to a new one, get in touch with us here at Hometech Heating and one of our professional team members will be more than happy to talk you through it. We offer a first rate boiler installation service that guarantees reliability and safety for all our customers. Give us a call today.