Remember a year and a half ago we had a new boiler installed? Well, yesterday (my birthday!) we woke to find it had died. Completely. Not just a lack of hot water but the control panel and warning light were gone too. Doesn't take a genius to work out the PCBs have had it.
My first call was to the manufacturers, Glow-Worm, who, it appears, couldn't care less that it's winter and we're at home looking after a one month old baby with no heating and unable to wash either ourselves or his nappies.
Although I rang them on Thursday the soonest they could get an engineer out to look at it was going to be Wednesday. Six days without heating or washing?
So, I called the plumber who originally installed it and he offered to help out, as he knows people at Glow Worm and could probably get the bits off them. As far as I know he's doing the best he can to get this done ASAP. He's a nice bloke.
In the mean time I have a Glow Worm engineer booked in for next Tuesday (they managed to get one a day earlier in the end). The phone operator couldn't however give me any guarantee that he'd be able to fix it on the day or that he'd have the right PCB with him. This despite my telling them what model it is and that the problem is almost definitely with the PCBs. You'd think he might come with everything he might need and I live in hope.
The boiler itself is under warranty, but, as it's in the second year, only parts are covered and there's a £105 charge for labour! This to fix a £900 boiler that's less than two years old. Needless to say I'm a little pissed off about the whole thing.
If this were a Sky+ box on the blink I wouldn't be bothered about when an engineer could get out to see me. But this is a boiler. Something you take for granted until it's gone. Our well-being depends on it. It makes me wonder how many engineers Glow Worm have. Is it a team of dedicated people or one man who makes his way round the East Midlands as fast as he can!? You'd like to think that there'd be some urgency about matters concerning boilers in the winter where newborn babies are concerned. Obviously not though. You'd like to think the reply would be "We'll have somebody with you within the hour sir!" ala RAC-style roadside recovery. Instead you get a couldn't-care-less attitude from a company only to ready to make you wait and profit from it all in the end anyway.
The one blessing in all this is that we're saving a heap of money on the gas we're not using ;o)