By Connie Osborne Friday 01 November 2013 Updated: 01/11 11:20
A PENSIONER has been left with no heating for nearly two months after being quoted more than £4,000 for a new boiler.
Margaret Garfitt-Jones has been using two electric heaters to warm her Matchborough home after her gas boiler was switched off by a British Gas engineer.
On September 5 the 82-year-old was visited by the engineer as part of an annual service, but was told although the 22-year-old boiler was working it needed a replacement part which was no longer made.
He then turned off the supply due to safety reasons and informed her she would need a new boiler along with a new shower. He also found asbestos which would need removing.
A week later she was quoted £4,500 for a combi boiler as a gas boiler would not fit under the water tank. The price was then dropped to £3,850 because of a discount for trading her old boiler in and free maintenance costs for the first year. A further £1,300 was quoted to remove the asbestos.
But the former midwife, who has been with British Gas for more than 25 years, said two other companies quoted about £2,500 for a boiler which could be either gas or combi and would fit under her tank.
"I thought the price seemed quite high so I thought it was best to find out how much other companies would do the work for," she said.
"I've been a valued customer for years and I chose British Gas because they are a trustworthy company and I would feel more comfortable with them in my home.
"But I feel like they have taken advantage of me because I'm a woman and because of my age.
"I don't want to feel like I've been taken for a mug but this has made me quite angry."
After the Standard contacted British Gas a spokeswoman for the company apologised to Mrs Garfitt-Jones.
Catrin Millar, from British Gas, said: "We have now fully investigated the situation. One of our managers has visited Mrs Garfitt-Jones’ home and we’re pleased we have now managed to fix her old boiler."
She added they had also made a payment as a gesture of goodwill.
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