No one wants to have to get their boiler repaired or replaced. However, boilers wear out, crack, or break down resulting in eventual replacement or repairs. Boilers are one of the more expensive items in your home. Sometimes it's more cost-effective to replace and sometimes it's more cost-effective to repair. Keep in mind that even an old boiler that works well is going to be much less efficient than a new unit. See below our recommendations on whether you should repair or replace.
Some people will run into situations where rooms in their homes or buildings seem too hot or too cold all the time. They might be constantly adjusting the thermostat as a result. In some cases, these temperature fluctuations could signify a problem with the boiler and its ability to regulate temperature. This could be a problem with the electronics that govern the cycling of the boiler, or it could be a larger issue like a crack.
Boilers shouldn't leak. Your boiler probably has lots of valves, piping, and other parts hanging off it. Some of these parts will leak after sitting unused over the summer then being put to use again in the winter, but this is normally not a problem unless the part is old. Rubber and plastic parts often get hard or lose their seal with age. Circulator pumps, valves, and leaky pumps are fairly easy to repair or replace. One leak that is a big problem is a cracked boiler. This will result in water puddles and higher energy bills and requires a replacement boiler.
Homeowners should research the brand of the boiler in question. If it's a low-quality or poorly-regarded brand, they should at least be prepared for the boiler to experience more problems than average. While even cheap boilers can still work, they usually will not have the lifespan of more expensive boilers. A decent boiler can be the difference between yearly or monthly service intervals.
Gas burners and oil boilers should not have random patches of black soot as that usually indicates incomplete combustion which will result in higher energy costs. Boiler gas flames should be a nice blue color, not yellow or orange. This may indicate a problem with the gas valve or some of the gas plumbing on the boiler. Just like with [appliances that use gas] [ag], this should be tackled by a pro plumber. Combustion problems can result in too much carbon monoxide in your breathable air, so you should make sure that your CO detector is functioning and that it isn't going off.
The lifespan of a boiler will vary. Some of them can last for fifty years. However, few of them will last longer than thirty years in practice. Even at the ten or the twenty-year mark, it's a good idea to get a boiler inspected in order to make sure that it is still working properly.
Boilers will start to use more and more energy as they get older which costs you money. People who want to reduce their energy consumption in order to be more environmentally conscious should consider getting new boilers as a matter of course. A new low-energy boiler may pay for itself fairly quickly by drastically lowering your energy bills through increased efficiency.