How to become a boiler engineer

Being a boiler engineer is a fantastic job if you are someone who enjoys meeting new people, experiencing a different challenge each day and problem solving.

It is a job that means you get to help homeowners, landlords and tenants like few other jobs are able to.

In recent years, with the UK Government’s Green Home Grants and other green measures, there has been an increase in the demand for boiler engineer, with more people than ever turning their attention to improving the energy efficiency of their homes and properties.

There are already swathes of requirements such as sound testing in the UK and other requirements for property owners, developers and landlords to be aware of and maintaining a healthy boiler is one of the most important considerations, so there is rarely a shortage of demand for boiler engineers.

This includes looking after your boiler all year round; servicing and repairing it when needed, without delay.

But what do you need to become a boiler engineer, and how do you get started? We’ve got everything you need to know.

What makes a good boiler engineer?

Becoming a boiler engineer could be the ideal job for you if you enjoy new challenges everyday but don’t mind getting your hands dirty. You will need a good level of practical skills and enjoy meeting lots of new people regularly. If this sounds like you and what you enjoy, then being a boiler engineer could be a perfect job for you.

A key benefit of being a boiler engineer is that you will get the chance to be the hero who swoops in at a time of need and saves families and homeowners when boilers and radiators break down in the middle of winter. You will certainly feel as though you’ve saved the day when the heating or hot water finally returns. This really can be a very rewarding job.

A good boiler engineer will also need:

  • A high level of attention to detail
  • Good technical skills
  • Good physical fitness because of the level of physical and manual work
  • Good problems solving skills
  • The ability to work quickly and efficiently
  • Good communication skills
  • Maths skills
  • Ability to work well as part of a team, but also on your own

Becoming a boiler engineer is also one of the few jobs that you can do at any age, whether straight out of school or later in life as a career change. To become a qualified boiler engineer you need to pass the necessary exams and be physically able to carry out the work.

There are also specific areas you may wish to branch out to. For example, with increasing numbers of people having air source heat pumps installed, there is increased demand for engineers that can work on and install them.

What qualifications will I need to be a boiler engineer in the UK?

A diploma or NVQ in heating or gas utilisation, domestic natural gas installation and maintenance, or domestic plumbing and heating will be needed to be a fully qualified boiler engineer.

Work experience with a registered gas company or engineer (you’ll need at least six months’ experience before you take formal gas training and assessment qualifications.)

However, there are other routes into becoming a boiler engineer. If you don’t currently have a lot of practical experience, there is the option to take a one-day-a-week course for 14 weeks. After completing this you will need to take the Domestic Gas Safety CCN1 course, with the course needing to be completed before you apply for further gas-specific qualifications.

Once you are qualified, via whichever route, you can then apply to be on the Gas Safety Register. The Gas Safety Register is the official gas safety authority for the UK. Once you’re on the Gas Safety Register, you can work legally as a boiler engineer.

What do boiler engineers do on a day-to-day basis?

On a day-to-day basis, working as a boiler engineer, you can expect to repair, install and service boilers, radiators and other gas appliances. Jobs will come in all shapes and sizes and in a variety of locations; two jobs are rarely the same.

You may also be called on to check and test for gas leaks, service and repair heating systems, join, bend and cut fittings and pipes, give quotes and talk about available products to customers and make sure safety standards on appliances are met. This will apply to all nature of properties.

Interestingly, with increasing amounts of property development and building in the UK, there are more opportunities for boiler engineers to find work, ranging from developments offering opportunities for co-living in London, to residential apartments and commercial premises and more besides.

If this sounds like a job that could work for you, why not get qualified and become someone's hero? Saving families from cold nights and putting a smile on customers faces!

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