Boiler Types | Palace Plumbers

Boiler Types

Choosing the right type of boiler for your home is essential. Understanding which types of boiler best suit which types of homes is crucial to make the right decision.

Radiator Sludge Illustration
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Choosing the right type of boiler for your home is essential. Understanding which types of boiler best suit which types of homes is crucial to make the right decision.

At Palace Plumbers our goal is to make sure our customers end up with a highly efficient central heating system so that they will save plenty of money on their energy bills. We are very passionate about the environmental impact of carbon emissions and the educated homeowners are about energy efficiency the better off we will all be.

Knowing which factors contribute to finding the right type of boiler will depend on numerous factors including the size of your property, the number of bathrooms, your hot water requirements and your existing central heating system and it’s components.

If you’re thinking about installing a new boiler in your home or just want to know more about the the different types of boiler available as part of your central heating and hot water system.

Before deciding which boiler to go for we highly recommend seeking the services of a professional gas engineer to carry out an on-site survey of your current heating system. You can arrange a free ‘no-obligation’ boiler quote by calling our office on 020 3880 5666.

A note about condensing boilers

In 2010 the UK government introduced new laws requiring that all new boiler installations must be condensing or high-efficiency boilers. Condensing boiler technology reduces emissions by reusing some of the heat from the extracted gases to reheat the water returning from your central heating system. This means that the burners don’t have to work so hard to heat the water making the system highly efficient.

3 Main Types of Boiler

There are 3 main types of boiler installed in UK homes:

The 3 main boiler types are:

Boiler type Cold Water Storage Tank Hot Water Storage Cylinder
Regular boiler
System boiler
Combi boiler

What is a combi boiler?

A combination, or combi boiler, takes water directly from the mains supply and heats it up when you turn on your tap. it can provide unlimited hot water when you need it. However it can struggle to maintain a steady flow if more than one hot water top is running at the same time.

A combi boiler heats water directly from the mains supply. It doesn’t require a storage tank in the loft or a hot water cylinder in your airing cupboard.

A combination or ‘combi’ boiler is both a high efficiency water heater and a central heating boiler in a single compact unit. Combi boilers heat water directly from the mains when you turn on a tap, so you won’t need a hot water storage cylinder or a cold water storage tank in the roof space.

They are also very cost-effective and energy-efficient as water is heated instantly rather than being heated and then stored in a cylinder. An added benefit is that hot water is delivered at mains pressure, which means that you could get a powerful shower without the need for a separate pump.

Best for: 1 & 2 Bedroom properties with just one bathroom

Pros and Cons of a Combi Boiler

Pros:

  • Compact sizes make combi boilers perfect for smaller properties
  • Ideal where there is little or no loft space
  • No need for a hot water cylinder allows increased living space
  • No cold water storage tank frees up a loft for conversion
  • No risk of loft pipework freezing
  • Less pipework in the home makes installation typically cheaper
  • Water is heated instantly rather than being stored in a cylinder which means combo boilers are energy-efficient
  • economical – only heat the water you use
  • Space saving – no need for a cold water tank or hot water cylinder
  • a single unit delivers hot water at mains pressure to your shower and taps
  • Affordable – less components than other types of boiler means quicker and cheaper to install

Cons:

  • Not always suitable for homes with multiple bathrooms
  • Flow rate may get weaker if using multiple taps at the same time
  • Hot water usually takes a few seconds to heat up
  • No cold water storage tank frees up a loft for conversion
  • No risk of loft pipework freezing
  • Less pipework in the home makes installation typically cheaper
Combi Boiler System Diagram

What is a system boiler?

A system boiler works in a similar way to a conventional boiler, but comes with some key components built in. It’s great for homeowners after a bit of extra space.

System boilers require an unvented cylinder for storing hot water. In addition, its is fed directly from the mains supply, so there is no need for a tank in the loft, so it can be an option in a home with little or no loft space or where the space is earmarked for a conversion.

The major heating and hot water system components are built into the boiler itself, making it quicker and easier to install.

These boilers are also compatible with solar water heating systems, which deliver environmental benefits as well as lower energy bills.

Best for: 3 or more Bedroom properties with just multiple bathrooms

Pros:

  • Ideal for homes with more than one bathroom
  • Constant supply of hot water to any number of taps at the same time
  • No need for a loft tank, freeing up space and eliminating worries about leaks or frost damage
  • Economical to run
  • Built-in components makes installation quicker and neater

Cons:

  • Ideal for homes with more than one bathroom
  • Constant supply of hot water to any number of taps at the same time
  • No need for a loft tank, freeing up space and eliminating worries about leaks or frost damage
  • Economical to runBuilt-in components makes installation quicker and neater
Gas System Boiler Diagram

What is a conventional boiler?

Another option is a conventional, sometimes called a regular boiler. It’s the more traditional central heating system where the water is heated and stored in a hot water cylinder. It can deliver hot water to multiple taps at once, making it a good choice for larger homes with more than one bathroom.

Conventional boilers (sometimes known as traditional, conventional or heat only boilers) are ideally suited to homes that already have a traditional heating and hot water system which is linked to a separate hot water cylinder. These boilers also need a cold water storage tank in the loft to feed the hot water cylinder as well as a tank that maintains the water level of the central heating system.

A regular boiler may be the best option for replacing an existing boiler if the property has an older radiator system, as it might not be able to cope with the higher water pressure that is delivered by system or combi boilers.

Pros:

  • Perfect for homes where a lot of hot water is used at the same time
  • Ideal where there are two or more bathrooms
  • good for large homes with multiple bathrooms
  • A good option in areas where water pressure is low
  • Compatible with solar water heating systems for a lower carbon footprint and lower energy costs
  • deliver hot water to lots of taps at the same time and keep the flow rate the same

Cons:

  • Need space for a cold water tank and hot water cylinder and also a tank – usually in the loft space
  • If your cylinder runs out of hot water you’ll need to wait for it to heat up again
Regular Boiler System Diagram

Conclusion

There’s no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to choosing the best type of boiler for your your home. A new boiler is a considerable expense so it’s highly recommended that you seek some professional advice before making a final decision. We recommend taking advantage of our free home boiler survey to get the absolute best price and solution for your requirements.

If you are considering upgrading your boiler we’ll perform a survey of your home to assess your current central heating system and find out a little more about your heating and hot water needs. You’ll receive a ‘no obligation’ quote within 24 hours and if you’re happy with everything then we can arrange an installation date thats convenient for you.

Talk to our team for help and advice or to make a booking

020 3880 5666

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