What is heating cover?
If you're looking to protect your boiler, controls and central heating, central heating cover may be just what you're looking for. Unlike boiler cover, heating cover protects your boiler, controls, pipework, hot water cylinder, and any other components of your central heating system that is connected to your boiler. Heating cover will also include engineer call outs and labour as well as the parts needed to resolve any issues with your heating. Some companies will include call outs in their monthly or annual price, while others will offer cover with an extra cost for call outs.
Do I need heating cover? Is heating cover worth it?
Heating cover is suitable for either homeowners or landlords looking to protect their central heating system. If you're renting, it'll be your landlord's responsibility to take out cover. As a tenant, you can ask your landlord for permission to take out cover while you're living in their property. If you're a homeowner, you may already have heating cover in place as part of your home insurance policy. Simply double check your buildings and contents insurance.
If you're wondering whether you need cover if you have a warranty for your boiler, you may want to look into the terms and conditions to see what is and isn't covered. Your boiler's manufacturer warranty is only there in case the boiler runs into a fault or breaks down within a certain number of years. The warranty is unlikely to cover any physical damage or breakdowns if this was caused by other areas of your central heating system. For example, if your boiler breaks down due to limescale build up, this may not be covered under warranty. With that in mind, you'd have to pay a considerably large amount to repair your boiler, not to mention paying extra for your annual service visit. Boiler cover, in turn, keeps you protected against boiler faults and breakdowns, without the need to pay for an annual boiler service and the added bonus of repairs to your controls should they develop a fault.
Central heating vs Boiler cover
It's quite common for people to be confused between boiler and heating cover. The key difference between the two is the fact that boiler cover will only cover your boiler and controls, and not the rest of your central heating system. If you're looking to cover your boiler, controls and central heating in one package, you'll need to take out heating cover. Heating cover will also include your pipework, cylinders and tanks.
Some providers offer insured plans to look after your Boiler and Heating and other home services like plumbing, drains and electrics, whereas other providers offer non-insured plans. An insured plan will be underwritten by an insurer and also regulated by the [Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)](https://www.fca.org.uk/). Non-insured plans are not backed by an insurer and are not regulated by the FCA. Often non-insured or maintenance plans include an annual service of the equipment covered, whereas these may or may not be included in insured plans.
What heating cover do I need?
If you have a combi, system, regular or back gas boiler installed, you should look out for heating cover that covers all or some of the following criteria:
- Annual boiler service to keep everything in check
- A number or unlimited numbers of claims that can be made in a year
- Repairs to your boiler and central heating system (including parts and labour) should a fault breakdown
- Accessibility to a 24/7 helpline
Before you choose to take our cover with a provider, we recommend that you double check the number of call outs you can make in a year and any extra costs that may come with that. Some providers will provide a limited number of call outs as part of their cover packages, while others will have everything included in their monthly or annual price.
What is an annual service visit?
Looking to keep your boiler in full working order all year round? An annual service is precisely what you need. Servicing your boiler will extend the life of your boiler and prevent components from ageing too quickly. Most providers will offer an annual service free of charge as part of their cover. An annual service is only needed once a year and will require a Gas Safe certified engineer to carry out the service. The service will include a visual check of the boiler and controls, as well as an inspection of the internal components of the boiler to ensure it's firing correctly and not in poor condition.
What is excess? And do I have to pay for it?
An excess (also known as a call out fee) is an extra cost that you may have to pay on top of your monthly or annual cover costs to pay for a visit by an engineer. The price will also include the cost of repairs and parts to complete the work. Some providers will include the excess as part of their monthly cost. Excess can range in price from £30 to £50.
Can I switch to a different cover provider?
If you're looking to switch to a different cover provider, it's actually a lot more straightforward than you may think. What's best is that you don't need to stick with the same provider every year. By switching, you could save money and gain access to more features such as 24/7 helplines and more call outs. Before you cancel, you may want to check whether you'll have to pay an extensive cancellation fee. While you're in a contract with the provider have, your policy will usually last 12 months from the date you signed up for the plan. To opt out immediately, you can pay the cancellation fee and spread your wings. Otherwise, you can check whether you're out of contract already and switch straight away.