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BOXT Review

Get a new boiler faster with the BOXT next-day boiler installation service, which can also get you additional smart home products

Verdict

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With excellent pricing and the option for next-day installation, BOXT's clever use of local installers and suppliers helps you get a replacement boiler installed fast. With smart controls fitted as an option using the modulating interface, installs are completed to give you the best energy savings, too. The service is simple to use, although if you're recommended a higher-power boiler than you have now, a quick call might be in order to confirm exactly what you need. Overall, BOXT's service is quicker, faster and more reliable than the competition that we've previously used.

Pros

  • Well priced
  • From next-day installation
  • Modulating smart controls fitted

Cons

  • Doesn't work as well for complicated installs

Typically your boiler fails right at the point that you need it most. Finding someone who can give you a replacement quickly at the right price can often be nigh-on impossible, which is where BOXT steps in.

A new service, BOXT gives you a fixed-price quote for a new boiler installation, offering next-day installs in many cases by using a network of local suppliers and installers. Even better, the installers are all smart home savvy, so will wire up smart controls properly. You get a choice of Nest or Hive controls fitted, although you can pay to have either thermostat reconnected if you have them attached to your old boiler.

BOXT is the easiest service I’ve used to find the right boiler. Starting out with the simple wizard, you answer a few simple questions: the number of baths, showers and bedrooms you have, and where the boiler flue is located. At the end, if the installation is straightforward, BOXT offers up a selection of boilers to choose from, each with a fixed-price install next to them.

If the answers to your questions show that the installation is a bit trickier – say, you’re moving a boiler and need the flue to come out of the roof – you’re asked to call BOXT as it can’t recommend a boiler based on your information.

For my house (a three-bedroom, two-bathroom house), prices started at £2440 for a Worcester Bosch Greenstar 36CDi Compact combi boiler. Using British Gas’ online quote tool with the same options, the quote was £3245, although the online quote didn’t say which boiler would be installed.

Having a list of boilers to choose from allows you to research reviews for each model and pick the one that best suits you. I went with the Greenstar 36CDi, as it said that it would fit in a kitchen cupboard, just like the current boiler.

Before you make any decisions, it’s worth checking the type of boiler you have installed and seeing what size it is, rated in kW. Based on the answers to the questions that you put in, BOXT can recommend a larger boiler than you currently have, but you may not strictly need it.

For example, if you have a spare bathroom that you don’t use, a smaller boiler may be adequate for your needs; if you want simultaneous use of multiple bathrooms and taps, a larger boiler will generally better.

Once you get your list of boilers, if you find that they’re much larger than you have now, it’s worth giving BOXT a ring to discuss installation.

As well as choosing your boiler, you need to pick the controls you want. You can have basic controls, provided by the boiler’s manufacturer, but you can go smart with a Nest Learning Thermostat (£180) or Hive Active Heating (£295). If you have either smart thermostat fitted already, then you can pay £5 to have them reconnected to your boiler. It’s worth noting that during my installation the plumber asked if I wanted my other-brand smart heating to be reconnected, although I changed for Nest.

BOXT now offers additional smart devices, which will be fitted and installed in your home. You can choose to have the Nest Mini (£49), Nest Hub (£79.99), Nest Protect (£109) and Nest Cam Indoor (£129.99). All are good devices in their own right, but with the Nest Protect, make sure that it meets your needs, as it can’t be installed in a kitchen, so won’t comply with some building regulations.

Once you’ve picked your boiler, you get a list of possible installation dates on a calendar from which to choose, starting with next-day delivery. Just go with the one you want, and you get confirmation about who will come to your house, plus how they like their coffee and even their favourite biscuit.

Order a BOXT boiler installation here

BOXT installer

It’s the personal touches that set BOXT apart from the competition

Before your boiler can be installed, BOXT may need some additional information, asking you to send photos of your current boiler. This ensures engineers arrive with all of the components they need. If you can’t get photos, then BOXT will phone you before the installation to talk through the install.

In my case, I could describe where the current boiler was fitted, where the flue exited the home: it’s a fairly straightforward install with plenty of room to work in. If you don’t give the right information or can’t send pictures, it could result in a delay to your boiler being fitted.

If you’re looking to move your boiler to a completely different location, for example, you may be better off calling a local heating engineer who can come and do a site survey and advise you on the best course to take.

Related: Best smart thermostat

On the day of installation, the BOXT engineer is scheduled to turn up from 7:30am, although you’ll typically get a text the night before to tell you the arrival time. My engineer said he’d arrive at 8:30am and he was on time.

The actual boiler is scheduled to come by 9:30am, which means that the engineer can start work and remove your old boiler before the new one turns up. Having dealt with many couriers, this left me slightly worried: what would happen if the new boiler didn’t arrive?

Fortunately, BOXT reassured me over the phone that this hasn’t happened before and that the engineer would ensure that there was a new boiler working before he left. When the engineer arrived, he told me that the boiler was coming from a local company that he knows well, so in the worst-case scenario he’d go there in person to pick it up. The boiler turned up at 9:25am anyway.

From this point, it’s a standard installation, with your old boiler being replaced with the new one. My installer managed to fit the new boiler into the same cupboard as the old one, although the magnetic filter had to be placed underneath and I had to box this in myself – this isn’t covered by the installation.

Boiler comparison: Old boiler (left) vs new boiler (right) – move slider to compare

The only other minor issue was the flue requiring a cage around it, but this was fitted at the end of the installation with the engineer popping out to get the part and still fitting in on the same day.

One of the big differences with BOXT is that it fits and supplies smart controls as standard, opting to use the OpenTherm interface for modulating boilers for the most efficient use of gas. I had a Nest Learning Thermostat fitted, with the engineer wiring the Nest Heat Link up to the OpenTherm interface.

BOXT Nest Learning Thermostat

A Nest Learning Thermostat comes free with new combi boilers

I had existing smart controls on the old boiler, with the engineer asking if I wanted to keep them or swap them out for the Nest; I went with the latter. BOXT ships the Nest thermostat with the optional stand. If you want to wall-mount the thermostat, you’ll need to do that yourself or see if your installer wouldn’t mind drilling the holes for you. I also had a Google Home Mini for voice control of your new heating system, although you’ll now get the newer Nest Mini.

BOXT Google Home Mini

You get a Google Home Mini, too

Compared to the last two boiler installations I’ve had, using BOXT was far easier. I knew up-front which boiler I was going to get, when the engineer was coming, and I knew that the smart controls would be fitted properly without any confusion. Come the installation day, and everything went smoothly.

If you need a more complicated installation or are moving your boiler elsewhere, you may find that a local installer can talk you through the options more easily. That said, most boiler installs are a like-for-like swap, replacing a worn-out model with a new one. This is where BOXT excels, giving you a simple questionnaire online to find the model you want.

Far cheaper than its competitors with the customer service to back it up, BOXT has a TrustPilot score of 9.9/10 with the “worst” reviews being a couple of Great ratings. Given the ease of dealing with BOXT and an installation with smart controls, the service comes highly recommended.

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