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Boilers don’t last forever and there will come a time when you need to replace your existing appliance. However, this isn’t a bad thing. Newer models are becoming more energy efficient, making them better for the environment and meaning you could save money on your gas bill each month.
You may be concerned about what you can do with your old appliance. Whether you’re worried about disposing of it in a non-environmentally friendly way or just concerned about how to get rid of it, you can find information and advice below.
We’d never recommend that you try to remove a boiler yourself - this is a task that should only be attempted by a Gas Safe registered heating engineer. They will disconnect the gas and the power supply to the boiler before removing it. When the new boiler is installed, the heating engineer will test the system to ensure the appliance is working safely and efficiently.
It should take around one day for the engineer to remove the old boiler and fit the new one, so you won’t be left without heating for too long. The installation could take longer if it’s a more complicated installation, such as replacing a conventional boiler with a combi system.
In 2010, the government introduced an initiative known as the boiler scrappage scheme. It meant that old G-rated boilers (i.e. very inefficient models) could be scrapped and you’d receive a £400 voucher that could be put towards a new boiler. The scheme was introduced to reduce the number of boilers that were emitting very high levels of CO2. Unfortunately, the scheme finished in 2011, which means you’re unable to scrap your boiler in exchange for the voucher. So with this option off limits, what can you do with your old appliance? In September 2020 the Government introduced the Green Homes Grant Scheme which is geared to making homes more energy efficient and to help homes reduce their carbon footprint, unfortunately this scheme does not include boilers.
The first thing you can do is ask the heating engineer who installs your new appliance if they can take the old one with them. While you won’t get any compensation for this, your old boiler will be gone immediately without cluttering up your house for a long time.
You could also contact your local council to see if they will take it. This is also known as ‘bulky waste collection’. They charge a set fee in order to take your items away for you. This is generally around £15-£20 per item, but may be more. You can simply leave the item on the boundary of your property and the council may stop by to take it away. It’s worth checking with your local council first as some may not accept boilers.
Other options include taking your boiler to a scrap yard and having it recycled.
It’s likely that you won’t be able to take your boiler to the tip to dispose of it. This is because boilers are complicated appliances that may contain all sorts of different materials. Because of the above, boilers are generally seen as commercial waste and not domestic, so your local tip may not let you in to get rid of your appliance.
As mentioned previously, you may be able to take your boiler to a local scrap yard to see what they will give you in return for the appliance. It likely won’t amount to much, but you could get an extra £50 or so in your back pocket. The metal can then be reused for all sorts of things, making this a relatively eco-friendly way to dispose of an old boiler.
Don’t forget that it’s not just your boiler you can scrap, but any copper piping and even a copper hot water tank too. You may be able to get an additional £70 or so for the tank depending on the value of scrap copper at the time of disposal, which you could put towards a replacement boiler.