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British Gas Boiler Cover - Complete Guide for 2020

Boiler next to British Gas logo

Confused about British Gas boiler cover? Not sure if the energy supplier is the best option to provide your boiler cover? Read on to find all the details you need to determine if British Gas boiler cover is right for your home.

British Gas boiler Cover- What is it?

First off, what exactly is British Gas’ boiler cover service, and going even further, what even is boiler cover?

What is boiler cover?

Although it may seem self-explanatory, if you’ve come to the UK from abroad or have recently moved into your first property, you may be confused by exactly what boiler cover is. In short, boiler cover is an insurance policy covering maintenance and repair costs for your boiler.

Contracting boiler cover is vital. Without one, if your boiler needs repair at some point you may face devastatingly high costs and weeks of waiting in the cold while you arrange and contract repairs.

Boiler cover is often not included in home insurance, or tenants insurance, meaning without contracting a separate boiler cover policy, you may end up with a high repair bill. If you’re a landlord in the UK, you are responsible for providing working utilities to your tenants, making contracting boiler cover a necessity for landlords.

What about British Gas Boiler Cover?

British Gas boiler cover is actually one part of their British Gas HomeCare service. Boiler cover is included in all four tiers of the company’s homecare offerings, which we’ll cover in more detail below. The supplier also offers progressively more services in their pricier HomeCare options.

What’s covered with British Gas boiler breakdown cover?

What exactly is covered depends on which of the company’s four tiers of HomeCare you purchase, simply named 1, 2, 3 and 4. As the numbers increase, so do the number of services included in the package, as does the corresponding price.

HomeCare tier Coverage
HomeCare 1 Annual boiler service
Boiler and controls breakdown cover
HomeCare 2 Annual boiler service
Boiler and controls breakdown cover
Central heating breakdown cover
HomeCare 3 Annual boiler service
Boiler and controls breakdown cover
Central heating breakdown cover
Plumbing and drains cover
HomeCare 4 Annual boiler service
Boiler and controls breakdown cover
Central heating breakdown cover
Plumbing and drains cover
Electrical cover

As you can see in the table above, British Gas’ most high-end option, HomeCare Four, provides much more coverage than its most basic option, HomeCare One. Four can be seen as a comprehensive cover for your home, including central heating breakdown cover, plumbing and drains cover and electrical. Meanwhile, Homecare One only provides coverage for your boiler.

British Gas homecare plans and boiler cover are also appropriate for landlords. Compare the different options available for landlords in our complete landlord boiler cover guide.

Boilers and heaters

As we’ve stated above, all four of British Gas’ options cover both annual boiler service and boiler and controls breakdowns. But what does that mean exactly?

Annual boiler service refers to an annual boiler check. A Gas Safe registered engineer will check your heater for leaks, disturbed connections and any other possible issues with your boiler. This check can help you avoid more grave (not to mention expensive) problems in the future.

Boiler and controls breakdown cover is exactly what it sounds like. If your boiler or controls break down, British Gas will provide the repair services and parts to get your boiler back into ship-shape condition. With any of British Gas’ HomeCare options, you’ll receive this service.

Keep your boiler in tip top conditionAvoid costly callouts by following these boiler maintenance tips.

What isn’t covered by boiler cover with British Gas?

It’s important to realise that Boiler and controls breakdown only covers repairs to your boiler, not to a central heating system! If you do have central heating you should look into the HomeCare 2, 3 or 4 options.

Beyond that, focusing solely on boiler cover, all standard services are included in all four of the HomeCare options. If you’re looking for a more comprehensive plan that covers more elements of your home, you should look into HomeCare 3 or 4, or contracting with a different boiler cover provider altogether.

Excess payments

Two guys happily embracing holding money

Another factor to keep in mind regarding what is and isn’t covered are “excess” payments. If you’re not aware, the excess is a minimum spend that customers must pay from their own pocket when they file a claim.

That means if you have an excess payment of £60, and you receive a bill of £45 (e.g. maintenance fee), this bill will not be covered by your boiler care. Conversely, if you have a bill of £150, you would pay £60 yourself and the remaining £90 would be covered by your insurer.

All four of British Gas’ HomeCare policies offer the option of having an excess of £60 or £0 (no excess payment, which means that you won’t have any costs to incur yourself before you can claim the remainder). Why would anyone opt into a policy that includes an excess payment? Choosing the £60 excess lowers your monthly bills, which may save you money in the long run. We’ll discuss all this in more detail further on in the price section.

British Gas boiler coverage reviews

You can find even more specific information on what is and isn’t covered by British Gas’ boiler cover policy in the table below. This information refers to the annual boiler service and boiler and controls breakdown cover, which is available across all HomeCare options. Options 2, 3 and 4 have additional coverage, but here we’re focusing on boiler cover.

Covered Not covered
 Repairs to natural gas/liquid petroleum gas boiler or warm-air unit (designed for home use and up to 70kW capacity)  Repairs for limescale, sludge or debris damage if you were advised to carry out repairs or a power-flush and did not do so
 Repairs to flues, up to one metre in length  repairs to showers and shower pumps
 Repairs to boiler controls  repairs to underfloor heating controls
 Repairs to gas supply pipe  Repairing or replacing a flue that is greater than one metre, unless it was installed by British Gas
 Replacement boiler if unable to repair and it’s less than 7 years old or less than 10 years old and installed and serviced by British Gas  Repairing any smart equipment such as a smart thermostat
 Replacement of gas supply pipe, flue (up to one metre) and boiler controls if unable to repair  Repairing boiler and controls that supply a swimming pool
 First or annual service  Replacing a system inhibitor unless it was removed by British Gas
 Accidental damage  Resetting controls or replacing batteries
 Up to £500 in costs of alternate lodging/travel if your home is unfit to live in because of boiler problems  Repairing or replacing a central heating system or air/ground source heat pumps (remember, this is HomeCare 1)

Boiler cover vs HomeCare - what’s the difference?

If you’re confused as to why we’ve mentioned several times in an article about boiler cover, fear not, you haven’t accidentally clicked over to our British Gas HomeCare page. We’ve mentioned HomeCare because British Gas boiler cover is actually one of the services offered as part of HomeCare.

Contracting boiler service outside of HomeCare

You can, however, get an annual service for your boiler outside of a HomeCare contract. Be aware that this only covers the annual check on your boiler, controls and accessories, and does not include any repairs you may need.

This service starts at £96.50 per year. Given that it doesn’t include any repairs you may need, we think that’s a high price for an annual service. That’s why we at Selectra don’t recommend contracting Annual Boiler Service outside of a HomeCare plan.

British Gas boiler cover reviews

One crucial factor in evaluating any utility provider is what their customers have to say about the company. However, because British Gas is primarily an energy supplier, it is difficult to separate customers’ boiler cover reviews from reviews pertaining to its energy services.

Overall, British Gas reviews lean towards the negative. Some of their customers have great things to say about their 24/7 customer service phone line. However most aren’t thrilled with long waiting times, less-than-stellar treatment given by the supplier’s customer service professionals and the confusing array of complaint and contact pages where you can also find the British Gas boiler cover phone number.

British Gas boiler cover prices

For all four of British Gas’ boiler options, customers can choose between paying a monthly bill or a one-time yearly cost. Paying for your HomeCare upfront will save you a (tiny) bit of money: £12 per year, or £1 per month, regardless of which option you’re interested in.

Additionally, be aware that boiler prices vary quite a bit depending on which option you choose. For example, between the cheapest and most expensive options, HomeCare 1 and HomeCare 4, there is a full £204 difference in cost per year.

You can see both monthly costs of each of British Gas’ boiler cover options in the table belowwith both a £60 excess and no-excess rates.

HomeCare tier Cost
HomeCare 1 Monthly price £60 excess - £14
Monthly price no excess - £20.50
HomeCare 2 Monthly price £60 excess - £17
Monthly price no excess - £24
HomeCare 3 Monthly price £60 excess - £21
Monthly price no excess - £33
HomeCare 4 Monthly price £60 excess - £23.50
Monthly price no excess - £38
A man posed in thought looking unhappy

We’ve already mentioned that customers who opt for the excess pay cheaper monthly prices, and as you can see in the table above, there is a notable difference. When looking at the most expensive option, HomeCare 4, customers who opt for a £60 excess will save as much as £178 compared to the no excess prices. That means that they’d need to make three separate claims above £60 in one year (3 x £60 = £180) for the no excess prices to be worth it.

Meanwhile, looking at HomeCare 1, the numbers tell a slightly different story. The difference in price between the no-excess option and the £60 excess option is £78. That means that filing only one claim, which would charge customers another £60, would eliminate the majority of savings (£78 - £60 is only £18 in savings). If you file two claims (costing £120 in excess) you would actually pay £60 more than if you had gone with the no-excess option. That means there’s a very good chance that with HomeCare 1, you’re better off choosing the slightly more expensive no-excess plan.

Whether or not you should choose to pay an excess or not depends on which of the HomeCare options you’re interested in. With the more expensive options of 3 or 4, opting for £60 excess is a no brainer, but with HomeCare 1 or 2, you may be better off with no excess payments.

British Gas boiler cover prices compared to the market

How do British Gas boiler prices compare to those of their competitors? While not as overpriced as British Gas’ energy tariffs, the company’s boiler cover does land on the higher side of the market. For example, customers with cheaper boiler cover suppliers could save up to £154 per year, while still receiving comparable coverage.

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Our verdict

Pros: 24/7 customer service line, numerous options in coverage levels.
Cons: Somewhat high prices, low customer reviews.

British Gas’ boiler cover has some strong advantages/benefits, and certainly deserves higher marks than British Gas energy offerings. It sports a 24/7 customer service line, various options that allow customers to purchase just the amount of coverage they need for their home, and a fairly comprehensive boiler option across all HomeCare options.

That being said, there are some mitigating factors that leave us less than thrilled. The company’s prices for its packages are quite high. Also remember that reviews from customers who purchased a HomeCare package are a mixed bag, but lean towards the negative.

With all this in mind, British Gas boiler cover has earned 3/5 stars from us at Selectra. It’s not the worst on the market, but it’s certainly not the best.

British Gas boiler cover Selectra Score - ★★★

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