Buying and installing a new boiler is one of the largest single expenses UK homeowners and landlords ever have to face and it can seem impossible to do so cheaply.
For a new boiler, you're typically looking at a bill of over £2,000, according to the Energy Savings Trust, but the good news is you can take steps to slash your new boiler costs.
In this guide, we'll take a look at how much you should expect to pay for a new boiler, getting an engineer in for the installation.
We'll then explain how some people can save hundreds, or even thousands, of pounds on their new boiler and installation through a boiler grant.
Seriously, this could wipe up to 90% off your total costs so this will definitely be the cheapest way to get a new boiler in the UK.
We've also looked at whether you should ever consider a pay monthly finance option for your new boiler, which are offered by the likes of British Gas and Eon.
Finally, we've chatted to someone who tells us how she slashed the cost of her new boiler.
If you're not yet sure what kind of boiler would be best for your home, read this guide comparing conventional, system and combi boilers.
How much will a new boiler save me on energy bills?
There are two key ways that an old boiler could be costing you dearly.
First, if it's become unreliable then you'll be wasting money on regular engineer callouts *(New boiler not an option? Consider getting boiler cover).
Second, boilers tend to become more inefficient the older they get, and so will drive up energy bills over time.
Heating specialist Heatinghub.co.uk says you're unlikely to save much if you replace a boiler that's less than 10 years old, but getting rid of a 20-year-plus boiler would save you a fortune.
It keeps the figures broad as a lot obviously depends on your specific home and boiler model, but it says you can generally expect to save between 14 and 34% on your energy bill.
With the typical annual energy bill coming in at £2,500, you could save more than £800 in the next 12 months alone - and the figure will be even higher if your energy bills are above average.
Moneysupermarket research suggests that some 1.5 million UK boilers are more than 20 years old, so there are an awful lot of people who could save by buying a new boiler.
Which brings us on to the next point: the cost of fitting a new boiler.
Cheap new boilers: how much does a new model cost?
Boiler prices vary based on brand, size and type (combi, system or conventional).
A while back, Which? magazine rated 370 boiler brands including Worcester Bosch, Viessman, Baxi and Vaillant and found prices can range from £600 to more than £2,400.
But when looking for a new boiler a hefty price tag doesn’t necessarily mean you get a top boiler. So it’s important to read reviews and find the best boiler to fit your budget.
If you don’t want to buy a boiler separately, your installer may be able to quote you a price for the boiler plus installation.
Want to find out how much it'll cost you? Enter your postcode below and get three free quotes from local engineers.
New boiler installation costs: what's the price for fitting a boiler?
The cost of boiler installation can vary significantly depending on how much work is required, the parts, where you live and who you get to do the job.
You can expect to pay from £540 for a straightforward replacement of a combi boiler in the same position as the old one up to £1,440 to install a new combi system in a new location, according to figures put together for Which? by the Association of Plumbing and Heating Contractors.
However, it also warns you may also need to set aside money for a chemical flush (£200) or mechanical flush of your heating system (£510) and also moving pipes (£200-£300) on certain jobs.
These prices don’t include the cost of the boiler discussed above, so as you can see the installation can cost more than the boiler itself.
Combined the figures suggest the cost of a new boiler and installation can set you back from £1,040 to £4,250.
Save on a new boiler and installation
The best way to save money on the cost of a new boiler and the installation is to shop around.
When it comes to installation you might want to start with energy companies like British Gas for a quote but you should also look at independent traders too, who typically charge up to a third less.
Have a look at the Competent Person Register, SNIPEF, Worcester Bosch or the Heating and Hotwater Industry Council. These sites list certified and approved installers so you'll be in safe hands.
When comparing prices also bear in mind any guarantees that are offered on the work but be wary of having to pay more for a warranty that may already be included by the manufacturer on the equipment.
UK boiler grants: cheapest way to get a new boiler
Most of the tips we cover in this guide are open to everyone, but unfortunately, this one isn't (which is why we've included it a little lower down).
But if you are among those lucky enough to qualify for an Energy Company Obligation (ECO), effectively a boiler grant, you could save hundreds or even thousands of pounds when buying and installing a new model.
Personal finance site Moneysavingexpert estimates that, on the cost of a typical £2,300 bill, you could end up paying as little as £200 so this really is the cheapest way to get a new boiler in the UK.
So, who qualifies? You can find more information about boiler grants and general home energy grants here, but in short, you need to be a homeowner, qualify for certain benefits (such as Child Benefit, Pension Credit) and your boiler must be at least five years old.
You can learn more about boiler grants on this Entitled guide page.
Pay monthly new boiler plans from British Gas, Eon etc
Most energy suppliers will offer to install a new boiler and allow you to spread the cost over a few years.
These pay monthly options offered by the likes of British Gas can be an attractive option in some circumstances.
To start with, you need to do some research to see how the price of the new boiler the supplier is offering compares to other providers out there.
When doing so, pay close attention to whether the price includes installation, as some will charge a separate fee for this.
If it still looks competitive, then you need to ensure they're offering an interest-free (0% representative APR) loan.
The rate you might get varies from one supplier to the next but, generally speaking, you are more likely to get an interest-free boiler loan if you can repay the loan in two years or less.
Longer periods could see you charged an interest rate of anywhere up to 10%, which could add hundreds to the total cost of your boiler.
If you do need to borrow over a longer term, you'll be far better off paying for the boiler with one of the various new purchase 0% credit cards out there. You can learn more about your options in this article on the 6 ways to borrow for free.
Case study: ‘How I saved £1,200 on a new boiler’
A few years ago, Donna Ferguson went through the process of replacing her boiler.
She needed to install a new boiler in a new location in her flat and she wanted it to be done right – she didn’t want to face any further boiler-related expenses for a good few years afterwards. And, of course, she wanted to pay as little as possible.
In her own words, she talks us through how she saved a whopping £1,200 on the cost.
Obviously, some of the figures will be out of date as she did this a while ago, but we've kept this in the article as it still shows first-hand the steps you can take to save on your new boiler.
1) British Gas was my starting point
As British Gas is the market-leading boiler installer in the UK, I decided to get a quote from them as a starting point.
I was advised I would need around three metres of new pipes to change the location of my boiler, despite the fact that there were existing pipes much closer to the new location (which my builder did point out to the British Gas ‘heating sales adviser’ who came round).
This extra pipework also meant I needed to pay a materials delivery charge, a waste collection and disposal charge, and spend around £400 on some very minor electrical and building work. All of which, I was assured, was absolutely necessary. In total, this came to £900.
On top of this, I was told I needed to spend a further £350 on a system water treatment and powerflush. Connecting the boiler and testing it would cost a further £1,625, while the boiler itself (a Worcester Bosch Combi) would cost £1,000.
So, in total, I was quoted £3,770 to get a £1,000 new boiler installed in my flat.
The British Gas salesman stressed several times that I would get one year’s ‘complimentary’ Homecare cover (Homecare is a British Gas insurance policy that protects you from any boiler-related problems).
But he cannily failed to mention the boiler is covered by the manufacturer’s warranty for the first year anyway.
What angered me the most was how much pressure I was put under to make a decision that day. The salesman offered me a discount of extra £150, but only if I signed on the dotted line immediately.
2) I shopped around on the internet
I decided to shop around for a few more quotes to see whether £3,770 was competitive.
First on my list: Pimlico Plumbers, which had been recommended by a friend.
But when I called up, I was told that a quote for a boiler installation would cost £100 plus VAT! OK, so the money would be taken off the price of the installation if I went ahead, but I still put down the phone pretty sharp-ish.
Instead, I opted to get a quote from Northern Gas Heating. Despite the name, this is a nationwide boiler installation company.
I liked the look of it because it has won some industry awards. It also offers £100 cashback if it can’t beat a quote from British Gas, E.ON or npower.
So far, so good. But again, a 'technician' who worked in sales – not then the engineer who would be installing the boiler – was sent round to give me a quote. Again, I pointed out the existing pipes nearby to the new location of the boiler.
This time, I was told the pipes could be connected to the new boiler, but Northern Gas Heating “would not be responsible for any leaks”.
Hardly music to my ears. The salesman also incorrectly identified some new pipes as old pipes, saying they needed to be changed (they didn't, as they had only been installed the month before).
In total, the quote for the boiler installation came to £3,170. So, a £600 improvement on British Gas, and it included an excellent five-year warranty on the boiler.
But the sales-like nature of this visit put me off. Could I save more elsewhere?
3) I looked for a qualified independent installer
I noticed that Worcester Bosch provides a local accredited installer search on its website, and underwrites a guarantee of up to seven years on the installer's work (so long as you get it serviced once a year).
The independent nationwide firm I found using the Worcester Bosch search, Mikey’s Plumbing & Heating*, could not have been more knowledgeable, professional and polite.
Mikey himself – the engineer who would be carrying out the work – came round to do the quote. He said it wasn't a problem to reconnect the existing pipes to the new boiler and he could still guarantee the labour and parts for six years.
He then offered to carry out the entire job for just £2,550. This included the six-year guarantee underwritten by Worcester Bosch and two years’ free servicing, a chemical flush, a wireless programmable room thermostat and all the ‘make good’ building work.
I jumped at this offer and Mikey came round and did an excellent job that very week.
I saved £1,200 on the British Gas quote, got six years of peace of mind about all parts and labour relating to the boiler, and found an excellent plumbing and boiler firm to boot.
It still works!
I am glad to say that I haven’t had to spend a single penny on the boiler since Mikey installed it. It works like a dream and never causes me any bother. And our fuel bills have been noticeably lower since we installed it.
I would highly recommend the Worcester Bosch accredited installer search as a result.
When I think of the extra cost I could have ended up paying British Gas, not only for the boiler but for unnecessary boiler cover, my blood really starts to boil.
Tell us your tips
What are your experiences of installing a new boiler? How much did you manage to save? Let us know!
Also, feel free to leave details of good local plumbers/boiler installers in your area if you know of any, to help other readers. No advertising by firms, please.
More ways to save
If you're looking to save even more money around the house, why not have a read about the simple things you can do to slash your energy bill and the top tips for cutting your home insurance costs. Seriously, these changes can save you hundreds of pounds a year!
*We have recently been informed that Mikey, the plumber who replaced Donna's boiler, has sadly passed away.
**This article contains affiliate links, which means we may receive a commission on any sales of products or services we write about. This article was written completely independently.