Reasonable price for a replacement CH boiler?

My mother's central heating boiler is a bit on the old and temperamental side (a bit like her), so I was happy that she went to get a quote for a replacement. I was shocked, however, at the price quoted by British Gas of 2,700 for a Potterton Promax. The work quoted for is minimal, just replacing the boiler in it's existing location, no alterations to the controls or the cylinder.
Unfortunately, my mother is from the old school of, "Well, if that's the price the Gas Board have said, then that's what I have to pay", and she's given a deposit. I intend to have words with the salesman, but what would be regarded as a fair price for this work?
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Hugo Nebula
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A Google search reveals a Potterton Promax 24 HE costs about 750.00, so 2K for installation looks a bit steep. My own experience recently for a CH system was BG 10500 +VAT, local company 5800 including VAT. Guess who got the job and indeed did a good job.
Peter.
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Christ almighty - how big was the premises ?
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That's way over the odds, however heating engineers are in short supply at present and they're pretty much in a position where they can exploit that to hold their customers to ransom.
My floorstanding Potterton recently died, it had had its day, and the installation was an obvious deathtrap. I had a hell of a job finding somebody to replace it. A initial quote was 2600 from a fly by night cash in hand council guy. I was later quoted 1500 plus vat by a highly regarded CORGI registered business. They got the job!
1900 inc. got me a new boiler (Worcester) re-siting to a cupboard at the other end of the bungalow - The previous boiler had been on the kitchen floor. Also included were electronic valves to modernise the pipework, a modern flue instead of the chimneystack, and plumbing to account for the move.
Essentially, 2700 is daylight robbery in my opinion. If it's 5 hours work, 360 per hour seems a bit steep for fitting! http://tinyurl.com/v8hg
Andy
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Oh, it included fitting thermostatic valves to the rads too...
Andy
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wrote in message

Ah yes, those expensive (at 5 each) TRVs.
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wrote:

Oh dear. This is the second of these situations in a week just among a relatively small community of this newsgroup. One wonders how many thousands of other identical cases of people being ripped off by BG are happening per week - must be thousands.
It is particularly repugnant that they are taking advantage of an elderly person who has basically trusted the "Gas Board" probably for all their life. It's one thing to use a brand to justify a higher price, but this is ridiculous.
You don't say which model of Promax it is, but at Discounted Heating, which in itself is going to be above BG's buy prices, these range from 687 inc. for the basic 15kW model to 879 inc. for the larger 32kW system model.
There is presumably the provisioning of a condensate drain, but even then this is not a big deal. Are there really no additional controls required to comply with part L1 etc.?
Hopefully Mr. Sirett or Mr. Stumbles will be along shortly to give an indicative price.
Do you not know any CORGI fitters by virtue of your BCO activity? Surely they would be a good option in comparison to Dick Turpin, PLC.
Certainly I'd take this up with the salesman, although I would also check how much price discretion that they and their management have. In most large organisations, each level has limits in terms of this, so there may not be any point in trying to pursue a lower price with the foot soldier. Cancellation, if you can, and finding an alternative would be better commercially. However, I do know that diplomacy is often required with the elderly who on the one hand value independence while on the other are vulnerable.
.andy
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On Sun, 16 Nov 2003 19:08:18 +0000, Andy Hall wrote:

Most of the replies have said it all. The only thing I would argue is the 5 hours work. Let us assume that they make no attempt to bring the control systems up to part L compliance, which then makes it difficult to complete the Benchmark Log Book. Even so the minimum to comply with the manuafacturer's instructions is likely to require flushing twice. Also the flueing arrangements are likely to be diferent and some making good ought to be done?
I suspect that 1500 ought to see the job through fine and a bit more if there is something awkward.
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Ed Sirett - Property maintainer and registered gas fitter.
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On Sun, 16 Nov 2003 19:08:18 +0000, a particular chimpanzee named Andy

Even going on the more expensive one (for a vented system) of 749, that leaves 2000 for labour. My mum's said that the salesman has said there will be two fitters required for a total of 16 hours. Assuming their entire day is taken up with the work (doubtful), this is a rate of over 125 per hour.

The existing system has a programmer, cylinder 'stat and TRVs, so it complies with the minimum needed.

Unfortunately, I live 200 miles away.

I've just been told the quote by my mother tonight, so I intend to press the salesman (sorry, Technical Sales Advisor) tomorrow to lower the price substantially, or cancel the whole deal.
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Hugo Nebula
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wrote:

Of which the lion's share is margin for BG.

Ah. Maybe you could call the Building Control people at her local authority, explain who you are and see if they have any ideas? Just an idea.....

From scenarios of boiler installations that have been posted in the last few months it seems that the target price ought to be at around 1500 - 1800. It would seem to me that if you can get the price to under 2k, that would not be too unreasonable, bearing in mind your mum's perceived sense of peace of mind.
.andy
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I got a boiler fitted (Ideal Icos) in a slightly different location for 1100, with an additional 100 cashback, making it 1000. I've never seen anyone work so fast. He replaced the boiler, pump and hot water cylinder. He turned up at 8.00 and was gone just after lunch. I think he intended to fit another boiler in the afternoon.
Christian.
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On Mon, 17 Nov 2003 09:55:05 +0000, Christian McArdle wrote:

This is impressive even if he failed to flush the existing system & fill out the benchmark log book (to vaildate the guarantee).
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The benchmark was filled in. The empties were left behind. (X100 and X300, I think, but not entirely sure).
The pipework was faultless and very neat.
To watch him work was breathtaking. I've never seen someone who can cut, flux and solder a pipe in the few seconds that he took. He claimed he personally had done the most installs on the Big Green Boiler scheme in the country. I believed him.
Christian.
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Hugo Nebula wrote:

If your mother is elderly, whatever that means, you could probably get the deal cancelled by playing on this. Probably is a cooling off period anyway, if she was sold it in her own home.
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wrote:

Also, how old is your Mum (if you are 20 and your mum is 40 this does not apply), there are grants available through help the aged for old folks to cover this sort of situation (i.e. duff heating) up to 2500.
I am looking into it for my own mum.
Paul D
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Did you manage to get hold of Slippery Sam, and if so what was the outcome?
cheers Richard -- Richard Sampson
email me at richard at olifant d-ot co do-t uk
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On Tue, 18 Nov 2003 15:37:26 -0000, a particular chimpanzee named

"People say to me, 'look, Dave, all I want is a price to change my boiler'. They don't want to know the ins and outs of how much each little thing costs".
He faxed me a 'breakdown' of the costs, which seemed to amount to 1645 to fit the boiler, then 600-odd for 'extras' such as installing a condensate drain, wiring it in, flushing the system, etc. Apart from some earth bonding and a couple of valves, I would have regarded everything on his list as essential to replacing a boiler.
I tried to get him to negotiate on lowering the price, but he wasn't willing to do so, so my mother's cancelled it.
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Hugo Nebula
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wrote:

That's the awful thing. He doesn't need to lower his price - there will always be another customer tomorrow.
.andy
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randomly hit the keyboard and produced:

outcome?
Excellent. Hopefully someone will now be questioning why the installation was cancelled, but somehow I doubt it.
Did you try just asking for the installation, and not bothering with the "extras" then? :-)
Sad really, but I doubt that BG will ever get out of it's mindset about being "The Gas Board" and the lack of free market accountablility that goes with it.
-- Richard Sampson
email me at richard at olifant d-ot co do-t uk
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