Buying a new boiler is a very important purchase and one where you’re going to feel the effects for a long time. This is because it will affect the amount, flow, and quality of hot water that you get; it affects how efficiently your heating system will work; and, most importantly, it will end up affecting how much you pay on your energy bills every month. This is why it’s essential that you know the fundamentals of boilers for when picking one.
Here are a few things everyone should know before they decide on a new boiler.
How Much Hot Water Do You Need?
The first thing you have to do is look at the size of your household and how water is used. Do you often have to fight over the bathroom or use multiple taps at once? This will be one of the most important things when picking your boiler. Depending on your specific needs, there might be some models that will work and others you’ll have to scratch off.
In this example, it would be better for you to go with a conventional or system boiler. Both of these will have a regular tank, with the only difference being that all the mechanical elements are inside the tank with system boilers and outside the tank with conventional systems.
However, if you’re alone, a couple, or rarely use hot water for multiple applications at once, there is absolutely no need to use a tank system. Tank systems have to expend energy to keep water heated, even when you don’t use it. That means that most of the energy your boiler uses will be wasted on water you’ve never used.
In this case, a combi boiler could be a better solution. Combi boilers use a heating element to heat water directly from the water source, which means no energy is wasted on stored water. If that’s something that interests you, we suggest you follow Boiler Central’s guidance. They have listed the best combi boilers on the market, and some you should avoid as well. They rate them based on factors like value, efficiency, and size, among other things, and they also run down some of the most important manufacturers in the business to help you with your decision.
Note that combi boilers can also be used in conjunction with each other if you need more hot water at a time. For instance, you could have a combi boiler for domestic hot water, and one for the central heating system, or one for different areas of the house. This would allow for simultaneous use if you have a medium household with low to moderate needs.
Installation and Maintenance
When it comes to installation, there are a few things to consider. First, there’s space. Some people have limited space and need a solution with a minimal footprint. In this case, system or combi boilers could both be an option. Another factor is the ease of installation and cost. In this case, the combi system is the simplest to install but has its limitations as we mentioned earlier. System boilers, on the other hand, while being harder to install than a combi, are much easier to install than a conventional boiler as all the components are inside. Plus, you’ll get all the benefits of a conventional boiler as well.
Now comes maintenance. Again, as you guessed it, combi boilers are the lowest maintenance option. System boilers demand a bit more maintenance but have fewer parts than a conventional boiler, so fewer things can go wrong.
How Energy Efficient is It?
There are huge gaps in energy efficiency between different boiler models, and you have to know these before you make a purchase. When it comes to energy efficiency, you can’t beat a combi boiler. As a matter of fact, it has been estimated that you can save up to £652 per year in energy costs if you’re upgrading from an old G rated unit.
So, if you think that a combi boiler could fill the needs of your household, we strongly suggest you consider the option. If they can’t, choosing a system boiler with a good energy rating could be an option.
How Big of a Unit Do I Actually Need?
Here, you’ll have to consider many factors. First, you have to see how much size your house can actually handle. Then, you have to look at how much hot water you consume daily, and if it’s used simultaneously often. We suggest you listen to your heating engineers’ recommendations and don’t try to sacrifice efficiency for a few pounds.
Your boiler plays a central role in your home and has a direct effect on your quality of life. So, make sure that you learn as much as you can about boilers before you make your decision, and don’t be afraid to ask for a second, third, or fourth opinion.