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Discuss Combi conversion, is it right? in the Plumbing Forum area at

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  1. mrtibbs

    mrtibbs New Member

    Last year, having got a split coil in my loft based hot water tank, and with an operation planned 3 days later, I decided to use one of the large online firms to put a combi in the next day. They charged £2800 for the boiler, with "free fitting" but as I was going for a conversion from a system to a combi they charged £700 for a "conversion pack". They also supplied a magnet filter and a wireless "smart" thermostat.

    While I feel the boiler is great, I really don't understand what the conversion in the loft involved other than a bit of pipework and removing the hot water cylinder and the cold water tank. They simply did what looks like rough pipework in the loft to join the gaps left by removing the tanks. The only insulation they put on the pipes is lagging that was already in there on the pipes around the tanks. Because they have just joined the pipes up in the loft, it seems to me to be quite wasteful and means that the water to the taps has to go all the way from the boiler, through the house, into the loft and back into the house, taking around 30 seconds to a minute to get hot water in the bathroom (less than 3 foot from the boiler).

    My question is, is the price I paid fair or too high, and would you expect them to do more for the pipework during a conversion. It really seems like a waste to have the water go all round the house for a 3 foot trip to the tap?

    i also feel that charging £700 for a conversion that involved a lad in the loft for 2 hours and a bit of pipes seems too much, when my mum had hers done by a local fitter all the pipes were altered, it took 3 days and it seems a much better job. My job took 2 lads less than 4 hours.

    Thanks in advance.

  2. ShaunCorbs

    ShaunCorbs S. Mod Trusted Plumber GSR Top Contributor!!

    You waited a bit long to question it since you had the work done last year ???

    Also nothing's free there would be the installation in that 2.8k

    What boiler did you get / have
  3. Rob Foster

    Rob Foster Top Contributor!!

    It sounds to me you know the answer already if your not out of time legally and paid by credit card then have a go
    • Agree Agree x 1
  4. mrtibbs

    mrtibbs New Member

    My gut tells me it was too much and a ropey conversion, but I have know idea if I am correct or not. Is there anything you could add, do the building regs or gas rules say anything that would help me? Any advice or opinions would really help me. Thanks :)
  5. king of pipes

    king of pipes Trusted Plumber GSR

    Bit late now I am afraid it all works you paid in full far as they are concerned your satisfied , time and time again I have been behind the big boys and cringe at what I see. Kop
    • Like Like x 1
  6. mrtibbs

    mrtibbs New Member

    I paid with a credit card and am happy to sue the card and boiler company if I have to. By joining the pipes together in the loft and doing nothing much more have they broken any rules are regulations, or is it just something you'd consider "shoddy"?
  7. Rob Foster

    Rob Foster Top Contributor!!

    Look my mrs is a barrister and we see too many people go by that have maybe been wronged and loose months and even years trying to get back I would just leave it and walk on even we do when we are best placed to destroy an errant small business life is sometimes too short IMHO
  8. mrtibbs

    mrtibbs New Member

    I actually sue people as part of my work and as it is less than £10k it is a small claim meaning no costs other than the court fee. It wouldn't cost me a wink of sleep to deal with this, as it is my bread and butter.

    I guess, i'm just curious as to if they have done anything technically wrong rules wise?
  9. king of pipes

    king of pipes Trusted Plumber GSR

    It saves time the installation team will have had a set amount of time to install the system they are pushed to the limit so obviously corners will be cut, broken any rules hmmmm hard to prove if you feel hard done by complain but make sure you list the points your not happy about and why you feel it's below standard. Good luck kop
  10. mrtibbs

    mrtibbs New Member

    Thanks for the reply. At a rough guess, what would you expect the "fair" labour charge to be for a job at such a low standard. The boiler wholesales at £1200 and the add ons probably cost £200 in all.
  11. Rob Foster

    Rob Foster Top Contributor!!

    Then get a professional in to write a report pay them and go to court as you do it for a living I AM OUT
    • Like Like x 2
  12. rpm

    rpm Trusted Plumber

    Agree with Rob, a written report will help you.
  13. Ric2013

    Ric2013 Plumber

    What was agreed at the time? Was it reasonable to expect a complete new hot water system to best practice standards, or was your plumber clearly expected to do what was reasonable without ripping up all the floors and perhaps some walls too?
    Sometimes as a plumber you have to recognise what a customer needs and is willing to pay.
    To be honest, if a customer came back to me after a year and said actually they had wanted and expected a full new system and I'd only given a modification, my thought would be that a year ago they wanted the former and now the circumstances had changed and they were ready for the latter, but expect me to pay for it.
    How about you show us some photos of the work and we get a feeling of the quality or lack thereof? That would be more useful really.
    • Agree Agree x 2
  14. Rob Foster

    Rob Foster Top Contributor!!

    Disclosing info prior to court action can predudice a bona fide legal case so as advised get a proper report done as of course you should know being a professional legal eagle of course mr tibbs was in an American film from yonks ago when the heat was on
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2018
  15. king of pipes

    king of pipes Trusted Plumber GSR

    As above its hard to say, I would recommend you get a independent report done and go from there. Kop
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