Should You Turn Your Boiler Off Before Going on Holiday?

A simple Google search reveals that everyone and their dog has a differing opinion on whether or not you should turn your boiler off before going on holiday.
This is because the answer depends on the type of boiler you have, your boiler’s age, and the time of year you’re going away.
Let’s take a look at some common scenarios to help you decide on a plan of action:

Should I Leave My Boiler on During my Summer Holiday?

During the summer, virtually all types of boilers can be turned off safely. Hot weather means pipes will stay relatively warm, with little chance of damage to your heating system.
If you’re going away for a long time in the summer, turning your boiler off can be beneficial as you’ll save money and energy on your heating bill. Besides, you won’t need access to your hot water whilst you’re swanning around on a beach in somewhere in Spain.

Should I Leave My Boiler on During my Winter Holiday?

Turning your boiler off during the winter can be questionable, and downright dangerous if the weather is below freezing.
Many modern boilers come with a frost protection setting. This allows the boiler to run at a low operating temperature whilst you are away to prevent freezing. This staves off damage and heating issues due to freezing weather whilst keeping bills low.

Should I Switch Off my Old Boiler During Holidays?

Older boilers are typically more temperamental than newer ones. Whilst modern boilers are perfectly fine with being switched off for a while, older boilers may experience seizing of pumps and valves.
In order to prevent this from occurring, an annual boiler service is essential. Of course, it’s not just old boilers than require annual servicing, but a check-up from a professional can give you the peace of mind to switch off your older boiler without issue.

Is It Cheaper to Switch my Heating Off on Holiday?

Various advice threads online would have you believe that switching your heating off whilst going on holiday is more expensive in the long run. They claim that turning your boiler on after prolonged inactivity results in more strain on the system, and therefore costlier bills.
Unfortunately, this is a myth. Switching your boiler off during long holidays is always going to be cheaper – as a running appliance is still an energy-consuming one.
City Plumbing recommends you turn your boiler off anytime you go on holiday for a week or longer – unless it’s during a freezing winter.
Turning your boiler off during those cold winter months could result in icy fixtures and frozen pipes, which may lead to leaks, bursts, and other boiler-related unpleasantness.
Boiler display

Is It Dangerous to Keep my Boiler Turned on Whilst on Holiday?

Another common misconception is that leaving your boiler on whilst on vacation is dangerous. Many homeowners worry about returning home to find pipe leaks, carbon monoxide poisoning, or Michael Bay style explosions stemming from their unsupervised boiler.
Yet the chances of anything remotely bad happening is slim to none - as long as your boiler is regularly inspected by a certified professional.
Modern boilers are incredibly reliable, with robust safeguards to prevent any kind of disaster. Whilst older boilers should be fine as long as they’re regularly serviced, you may want to turn it off anyway to cut costs – especially if it runs with a pilot light.
Whilst we generally recommend turning off your boiler if you’re going away for an extended period in order to save energy, it’s reassuring to know that boilers can be safely kept on whilst you’re away.

Key Points

  • Your boiler must be serviced annually
  • As long as your boiler is serviced regularly, it’s safe to turn off when you go on holiday
  • Do not turn your boiler off if you go away during freezing winter months (unless your boiler has an antifreeze setting)
  • Turning off your boiler can save money on your heating bills whilst you’re not home
Looking to upgrade your boiler ahead of your vacation? City Plumbing stocks a wide range of contemporary boilers and heating solutions to improve efficiency and reduce your energy bills.

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