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Nellie Knows : 4 March 2021

For the shortest month February certainly packed some punches with the boiler stopping and my exhaust hanging off.

Delighted it’s now March and my favourite month which has firm fixtures like Mothering Sunday on the 14th, my birthday on the 16th and the arrival of lighter and brighter mornings. I had my first vaccine and despite feeling like I had been hit by a hangover and run over by a steam roller I am pleased to say that 48 hours later I was back to normal.

On the day the boiler stopped we contacted our insurers who sent out a contractor who after a cursory glance it needs a new part but to be honest you need a new boiler. I wasn’t happy with this so asked an ex Police Scotland turned plumber friend who said that doesn’t sound right, surely they should have tried to get it working so get a second opinion. I asked around, contacted 4 plumbers, 2 responded - 1 saying she’s no longer corgi registered and 1 who said he’d be with us within the hour. He was indeed with us within the hour and said it needed a new pump. The contractor rang and told me that my insurers said it’s beyond economical repair at but they have given us the ok and we can fit a new one for 3 times the amount of the repair. I explained we’d had a second opinion and he said "if your plumber thinks it’s that then that’s his opinion, our opinion is different, I can look at a boiler and tell you in seconds what the problem is".

I then rang our insurers and asked what was going on. Funnily enough they didn’t know what the contractor had said and raised a complaint, furthermore we don’t have a beyond economical repair on our policy. The independent plumber provided a quote and the insurers said they would ask the contractors for evidence that a new boiler was needed. Funnily enough, again, they were unable to provide sufficient evidence and had also told our insurers that as the boiler is 15/16 years old it’s not worth it, the boiler is 8. The insurers gave us permission to go with independent boiler man. 4 days after first reporting the problem to our insurers and 3 hours after the independent arrived we had hot water and heating.

A reminder that if it doesn’t sound right it’s probably not, so get a second opinion. I feel sick thinking about people’s unnecessary spends on new boilers. We’ve now found a plumber who is polite, well mannered, clean, tidy, honest and we would have no hesitation in recommending him.

The garden is bursting into life with new shoots popping up everywhere, the blossom is out and it feels somewhat different in many ways.

It’s been the weirdest year but here’s hoping the vaccine will bring a more positive change and we can start to enjoy life in a more relaxed way.

If it’s your birthday this month, many happy returns.


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