Category Archive: Uncategorized

  1. How to Find a Trusted Trader

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    Having any work done on your home can seem pretty daunting so employing a tradesman you can trust goes a long way in relieving some of this stress. The Warmer Homes Heating and Renewables team pride ourselves on our workmanship, professional staff and honest pricing, and this has been endorsed by our acceptance on to the Which? Trusted Trader scheme, the reviews we receive online and winning the Customer Service Award at the Thurrock Business Awards. But if you are employing a tradesman for any work around your home, how can you make sure you will get the best person for the job?

    Get recommendations from friends or family
    The best way by far to choose a reliable plumber, electrician or builder is by word of mouth. Ask family, neighbours, colleagues or nearby friends for referrals. You can also check out completely independent reviews of Warmer Homes Heating and Renewables on our Facebook page, Checkatrade, Which? Trusted Trader and Trustatrader pages and our website.

    Get a written quote
    Ask for written quotes from three separate traders to get an idea of cost for comparison. A quote is a tradesman’s offer to do work at a fixed price and will outline full costs (this is different to an estimate, which is just a rough idea of the cost). The price should be accurate barring any extenuating circumstances. We give all our customers written quote which outlines all the work we plan to do so there will be no nasty surprises once the work is complete.

    What are their qualifications?
    It’s worth checking what qualifications are recommended with the relevant trade association and what qualifications are compulsory. All heating engineers must be Gas Safe registered and you will find Warmer Homes Heating and Renewables on the Gas Safe Register.

    Check insurances
    Always ask your tradesman what insurances they have and ask to see their certificates.  Ask to see the their public liability insurance certificate. Any building work may also affect your home and contents insurance so check with your insurance company before work begins.

    What are their contact details?
    It’s still important to have a telephone number and address so you know they’re a genuine company and you can track them down if needs be. Our full address details, including telephone number, are all listed on our website.

    Agree working hours
    As well as agreeing the price in advance, it’s worth talking through some of the other practical details. Are you happy with your plumber turning up at 8am in the morning and leaving 6-7pm? Also, find out their daily/hourly rate: helpful if additional work is required over the agreed quote. Our team try, where possible, to fit in around the hours that best suit you and your family.

  2. Three New Years resolutions you SHOULD keep

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    We’re three days into the New Year and by now a number of resolutions have already been broken. Whether you’ve promised yourself you will go to the gym more often, stop spending money or give something up, resolutions can be hard to keep. But at Warmer Homes Heating and Renewables, we’ve got three New Year’s Resolutions that we think everyone should make, and keep, so as to stay warm, keep healthy and save money.

    Resolution One: Ensure you get your boiler serviced every year – We will service all our boiler installations for just £70 per year, and all our new boiler installations come with three years free servicing. If you aren’t sure why you should have one of our experts service your boiler, here’s four good reasons:

    • Cut your heating costs – The expert Warmer Homes Heating and Renewables team that services your boiler will make sure that it is working as efficiently as possible.  An efficient boiler will help to cut your heating costs, giving you more money to spend on your family.
    • Avoid costly repairs – A small, minor problem can often turn into a major boiler fault needing a repair or, in the worst cases, a boiler replacement.  During your annual service our expert engineer will examine your boiler and identify any faults or potential faults, helping you to ensure they are fixed before they become a problem.
    • Faulty boilers can kill – Although this may sound dramatic, boilers that leak carbon monoxide can kill – fast.  If your boiler isn’t correctly installed, maintained or ventilated they can produce carbon monoxide. Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning include headaches, drowsiness, nausea, breathlessness and stomach pains.  These signs are hard to spot and can be confused with tiredness or a cold, and carbon monoxide, known as the silent killer, can’t be seen or smelt.  An annual boiler service will go a long way in helping to avoid deadly faults.
    • It’s the law if you are a landlord If you own a property or properties that you rent out, you are legally obligated to get your boilers serviced and ensure each of your properties has an up-to-date Gas Safety Certificate.

    Resolution Two: Replace your old and inefficient boiler with a new boiler and save ££££ – Your boiler accounts for over half of your annual energy use, so installing an efficient boiler could make a huge difference to how warm your home feels and keeping your energy bills low.  Replacing an old gas boiler with no controls with an A-rated high efficiency condensing boiler and full set of heating controls will significantly cut your home’s carbon dioxide emissions, and could save you as much as £340 a year.

    Resolution Three: Install a Carbon Monoxide alarm ­- By installing one of these monitors in your home you and your family will be protected against the potentially fatal effects of Carbon Monoxide.

  3. Winterproof your heating system

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    Winter is creeping closer, and there is a definite chill in the air today. Although modern central heating systems are very reliable, extremely low temperatures can cause pipes to freeze and can also occasionally cause problems with condensing boilers. So what can you do to ensure your heating system copes with the winter, whatever the weather?

    Away from home? Leave the heating on
    If you are going away over the winter it is important that you do not switch your heating off. While turning the heating off will save money in terms of fuel bills, it will expose your home to sub-zero winter temperatures and the expense of repairing damage should pipes burst.

    Keeping the heating on will help prevent water still in the pipes from freezing, as water is continuously flowing. It is recommended to leave the heating permanently on (at least 13 degrees C), especially during cold snaps. By only having the heating on a timer, one hour in the morning and evening, pipes can still freeze as the property is not heated through.

    Service your boiler
    An annual boiler service is essential to ensure your heating system/boiler is running efficiently and prevent boiler breakdowns during cold spells.

    For as little as £70 our team will visit your home and service your boiler, giving you peace of mind that your boiler is fit for purpose and working efficiently.  But if you still need convincing that you should get your boiler serviced annually, here are four good reasons:

    • Cut your heating costs – The expert Warmer Homes Heating and Renewables team that services your boiler will make sure that it is working as efficiently as possible.  An efficient boiler will help to cut your heating costs, giving you more money to spend on your family.
    • Avoid costly repairs – A small, minor problem can often turn into a major boiler fault needing a repair or, in the worst cases, a boiler replacement.  During your annual service our expert engineer will examine your boiler and identify any faults or potential faults, helping you to ensure they are fixed before they become a problem.
    • Faulty boilers can kill – Although this may sound dramatic, boilers that leak carbon monoxide can kill – fast.  If your boiler isn’t correctly installed, maintained or ventilated they can produce carbon monoxide. Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning include headaches, drowsiness, nausea, breathlessness and stomach pains.  These signs are hard to spot and can be confused with tiredness or a cold, and carbon monoxide, known as the silent killer, can’t be seen or smelt.  An annual boiler service will go a long way in helping to avoid deadly faults.
    • It’s the law if you are a landlord – If you own a property or properties that you rent out, you are legally obligated to get your boilers serviced and ensure each of your properties has an up-to-date Gas Safety Certificate.

    Prevent condensing boilers freezing and breaking down
    If you have a condensing type central heating boiler take steps to prevent it breaking down in cold weather. In cold weather, the external condensate pipe that takes waste water from the back of the condensing boiler can freeze solid, shutting down the system. Lagging this pipe with water-proof and weather-proof insulation can prevent freezing.

  4. Why Summer is best when it comes to replacing your boiler

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    It may be summer but our team are as busy as ever installing new gas and oil boilers in Essex, Suffolk, London, Kent and the surrounding areas. We actually think summer is the best time to install a new boiler, and these are the reasons why:

    You will still be warm while your boiler is being replaced

    Take it from us, being without a boiler for any amount of time over the winter months is not fun. Although our team work as quickly and efficiently as possible, it sometimes can take a couple of days to fit a new boiler and not having use of a working boiler during this time can make life tricky. You can avoid this completely by choosing the summer months to upgrade your home’s heating system.

    Availability of heating engineers

    Although we try to respond to all enquiries as quickly as possible, winter months are obviously our busiest time. We tend to have more availability and flexibility around timings during the warmer weather.

    Avoid winter breakdowns

    If you suspect your boiler is past its best, don’t wait till the winter to do something about it as this is when it is most likely to breakdown. Replace it during the sumer months, or at the very least have it serviced during the warmer weather, and avoid the risk of it breaking down when you need it the most.

    Start saving money!

    We all dread the winter energy bills dropping through the letterbox, but many modern boilers will actually help you save money on your energy bills. Switch your boiler during the summer months to an energy efficient model and you will start to see the benefits on your winter fuel bill, as well as feeling the benefit of the extra warmth an energy efficient model will give to your home.

     

    If you would like to speak to the Warmer Homes team about replacing your old and inefficient boiler please give us a call today on 01375 489450. Our experienced team will arrange to visit your home for a no obligation, free survey and quote.

  5. Boiler breakdown? Have you checked the condensate pipe?

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    This is the time of year that we need our boilers the most, but while new condensing boilers are more efficient than older boilers, we often get call about breakdowns when the temperature drops. Although we are always more than happy to come and help our customers, we do recommend one quick check which could get your boiler back up and running without us having to pay you a visit. 

    If you find that your boiler has stopped working in freezing weather, pop outside and check your condensate waste pipe.  This is the white pipe running from your boiler, and carries waste water from your boiler to a drain on the outside of your house.  In very cold weather it is not unusual for this water and the pipe to freeze, and this can stop your boiler working.

    If you find your pipe has frozen, do the following:

    • Boil some water in a kettle and wait for it to cool slightly.  Provided the pipe can be reached without standing on a ladder / chair, pour this warm water over the pipe.  Don’t use boiling water before it cools as this may crack the pipe.
    • Pour the water over all of the exposed pipe, which should unfreeze the pipe and allow the water to run freely away
    • Find the reset button on your boiler and press it. Provided the frozen pipe was the cause of the problem, your boiler should start as normal.
    • If this doesn’t work, or you do not feel confident tackling this yourself, do give us a call on 01375 489450

  6. Join an Award Winning Team

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    Are you a fully qualified and experienced gas boiler installation engineer with high customer service standards? If so, you could be the person we are looking for. Due to an increase in demand we are looking to recruit someone who fits that description to support us with our boiler installations and help us to continue to grow as a very successful business.

    Warmer Homes are Worcester Accredited Installers, Which? Trusted Traders and have won awards for our excellent customer service. Candidates must be prepared to meet our incredibly high customer service standards, have exceptional timekeeping and be well presented, as well as having all necessary ACS Qualifications to install gas boilers.

    We are based in Wickford, Essex, but all candidates must be prepared to travel throughout Essex, London and the surrounding counties for work. In return we offer excellent rates of pay and benefits.

    Please contact Steve on 01375 489450 if you think you fit the bill.

  7. Gas safety advice for landlords

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    Warmer Homes Heating and Renewables is proud to be supporting Gas Safety Week 2016, taking place 19th – 25th September.

    Gas Safety Week is an annual safety week to raise awareness of gas safety and the importance of taking care of your gas appliances. It is co-ordinated by Gas Safe Register, the official list of gas engineers who are legally allowed to work on gas.

    Badly fitted and poorly serviced gas appliances can cause gas leaks, fires, explosions and carbon monoxide poisoning. Every year thousands of people across the UK are diagnosed with carbon monoxide poisoning. It is a highly poisonous gas. You can’t see it, taste it or smell it, but it can kill quickly with no warning.

    Landlords are legally responsible for the safety of their tenants. Landlords should make sure maintenance and annual safety checks on gas appliances are carried out by a Gas Safe registered engineer.
    If you’re a landlord, you are legally obliged to make sure:

    • Pipe-work, appliances and flues provided for tenants are maintained in a safe condition.
    • All appliances and flues provided for tenants use have an annual safety check. Set a reminder so you don’t forget at www.staygassafe.co.uk.
    • Maintenance and annual safety checks are carried out by an engineer registered with Gas Safe Register.
    • All gas equipment (including any appliance left by a previous tenant) is safe or otherwise removed before re-letting.
    • A Gas Safety Record is provided to the tenant within 28 days of completing the check or to any new tenant before they move in.
    • You keep a copy of the Gas Safety Record for two years.

    Before any gas work is carried out always check the engineers ID card and make sure the engineer is qualified for the work you need doing. Encourage your tenants to do the same.

    For more information and to find and check an engineer go to www.GasSafeRegister.co.uk or call 0800 408 5500.

  8. Warmer Homes Heating and Renewables supporting Gas Safety Week

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    We are proud to be supporting Gas Safety Week 2016, taking place 19th – 25th September.
    Gas Safety Week is an annual safety week to raise awareness of gas safety and the importance of taking care of your gas appliances. It is co-ordinated by Gas Safe Register, the official list of gas engineers who are legally allowed to work on gas.

    Badly fitted and poorly serviced gas appliances can cause gas leaks, fires, explosions and carbon monoxide poisoning.

    Every year thousands of people across the UK are diagnosed with carbon monoxide poisoning. It is a highly poisonous gas. You can’t see it, taste it or smell it, but it can kill quickly with no warning.

    By taking care of your gas appliances properly you are taking care of your home and your loved ones. Follow these few simple checks to keep you and your family safe.

    • Check your gas appliances every year. Gas appliances should be safety checked once a year and serviced regularly by a Gas Safe registered engineer. Tenants – make sure your landlord arranges this..

    • Check your engineer is Gas Safe registered. All Warmer Homes Heating and Renewables engineers are Gas Safe Registered.

    • Check your engineer’s Gas Safe Register ID card. Make sure they are qualified for the work you need doing. You can find this information on the back of the card.

    • Check for warning signs your appliances aren’t working correctly e.g. lazy yellow or orange flames instead of crisp blue ones, black marks on or around the appliance and too much condensation in the room.

    • Know the six signs of carbon monoxide poisoning – headaches, dizziness, breathlessness, nausea, collapse and loss of consciousness.

    • Have an audible carbon monoxide alarm. This will alert you if there is carbon monoxide in your home.

  9. What is Power Flushing?

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    If the water in your heating system is contaminated with debris and sludge your heating system could work less efficiently or even stop working altogether.  Scale and corrosion can collect in central heating system pipes, radiators, coils and heat exchangers, and the signs that this could be happening to your central heating system include:

    • Radiators taking a while to heat up
    • Noisy boiler
    • Cold spots on radiators, even after bleeding
    • Inefficient central heating system

    There is a way to prevent this though: power flushing.  Power flushing is a technique used to clear sludge from your central heating system.  Power flushing is carried out by a heating engineer who will connect a powerful pressure pumping unit to the central heating system and with the help of high strength cleansing chemicals will flush out anything in the system.

    Once a power flush is complete, you can expect the following benefits:

    • Pipes and radiators will get hotter quicker
    • More cost efficient system
    • Less stress on the boiler
    • Increased life of the boiler
    • Heat will be distributed more evenly throughout the home

    Warmer Homes Heating & Renewables recommend that your central heating system is power flushed as part of your new boiler installation, and while some companies will charge extra for this (anywhere between a couple of hundred to over a thousand pounds) Warmer Homes Heating & Renewables include power flushing in all boiler installations (excluding Government grant funded installations).

    You should also check the guarantee on any new boiler as most manufacturers will not accept a claim if the system hasn’t been recently power flushed.

  10. Solar Panel Myths Debunked

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    The team at Warmer Homes Heating and Renewables aren’t just experts in gas boilers and heating, but have also go a huge wealth of knowledge in all things relating to renewable heating and energy, with all our solar PV installers fully qualified.

    Solar energy is a fantastic way of producing power for your home and it’s also possible to earn money at the same time, thanks to the Government Feed-in Tariff scheme. But it often gets a bashing in the media, and solar panels are still surrounded by an aura of suspicion and many have doubts as to whether they are a viable solution for their homes. So our experts have spent some time debunking some of the myths surrounding solar energy.

    Myth 1: Solar panels only work in sunny climates.

    This is wrong. There is no need for the sky to be clear and cloudless for the panels to generate electricity. Clouds may lower the efficiency of solar panels, leading them to generate a little less electricity than they would in a clear summer day, but the panels will work anyway. In fact the leading European country for solar panel installations is Germany, which is not known for its sunny or warm climate.

    Myth 2: You can’t use solar energy at night, because the panels don’t produce any.

    While solar panels don’t work during the night, since there is no sunlight to catch, but most solar systems are tied to the grid, allowing you to use traditional energy sources when the panels stop producing electricity.

    Myth 3: Solar panels require maintenance and may damage my roof.

    Solar panels need hardly any maintenance once they are installed. They are also very durable (their average lifespan is of 20-30 years) and do not damage your roof as they are not mounted directly on it but lie on a metal structure.

    Myth 4: Solar panels are too expensive for an average house owner.

    This is no longer true, thanks to government incentives. By benefiting from the free energy produced by your solar panels you will see a reduction on your energy bills, plus you will receive regular payments from the Government’s Feed-in Tariff.

    Myth 5: I should wait to invest in solar, because it will become more efficient in the near future.

    Solar efficiency has certainly increased since their introduction in the 60s, but technological advancements are not as fast as it seems. It is likely the next generation panels will be able to do more, but innovation will come in small steps. With government incentives still in place, now is a perfect time to invest in solar panels.

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