Having a new boiler installed in your home is a major decision. Modern boilers can last for years, and you need to consider both your present and future needs.
When considering which boiler to choose give thought to the size of your family and how much hot water they will use, the size of the property and the types of fuel available to your property. You will also want to consider the boilers energy efficiency and how you can lessen your properties environmental impact.
In this post, we look at the key factors to consider when purchasing a new boiler and also explain the main types of boiler available to homeowners.
Selecting the Correct Size Boiler
Your usage and the property size will determine the size and possibly type of boiler you require. Small flats with a single occupant will need a much smaller boiler than a six-bedroom house with a large family.
Hot Water Usage
A key consideration in boiler choice is your hot water usage. For houses that have one bathroom that contains a standard bath and shower, then a combi-boiler ranging between 24-30 kW is recommended. If the house has an additional bathroom, then a slightly larger 30-35 kW boiler would be suitable.
For larger properties that have several additional bathrooms, then you may need to consider a system boiler. This type of boiler stores hot water in a cylinder. If multiple bathrooms are in use at the same time (such as first thing in the morning) creating a high hot water demand, then the stored water is used, so everyone gets a nice warm shower.
It’s also worth considering what your hot water requirements may be in the future. If, for example, you are a couple trying for a family, your situation is likely to change a lot. It’s best to plan for the future rather than having to change your boiler simply because it’s too small.
Likewise, if you plan on selling your home soon, make sure the boiler installed is adequate for the likely occupants. Buyers could be put off if they know a new boiler is required as soon as they move in.
The other main function your boiler performs is to heat your home. It’s vital that the boiler you select is large enough to provide enough heat output for the whole property. Boilers are measured in terms of their heat output which for domestic boilers ranges from 5 kW to 35 kW.
Heat loss is perhaps the most important factor when choosing the correct boiler. You can have the most effective boiler available, but if all your heat is escaping from drafty windows and an uninsulated loft you won’t feel the benefits. You can ask an expert to calculate heat loss in your property, or there are a number of tools available online.
Types of Boilers
There are three main types of boiler available for domestic properties.
A conventional boiler uses a storage tank which is usually placed in an upstairs cupboard. The storage tank holds gallons of hot water which is used when required by the occupants of the house. If the tank runs out, you have to wait for it to refilled and reheated before hot water is available again.
Conventional boilers require more space than other options as the storage tank is connected to a large cold water storage tank which is typically placed in the loft.
Combination Boilers (Combi-Boilers)
Combi boilers are by far the most commonly installed type of boiler in the UK. They provide hot water on demand and are connected to the mains. They don’t require a storage tank and so take up less space than a conventional boiler. As the hot water is mains pressured, you also don’t require separate shower pumps.
System boilers are only really required when there are several bathrooms in a property. They directly supply hot water to the heating system but utilise a storage cylinder for hot water. The hot water supplied by the cylinder means several showers/baths can be in use at the same time without losing pressure or hot water.
What Type Of Boiler Is Best for My Home – Summary
Choosing the best type of boiler can seem like a complicated process. However, if you spend some time thinking about your requirements both now and in the future, then the team at First 4 Plumbing can provide you with the perfect boiler solutions for your property.
Our engineer’s repair, service and install boilers in both domestic and commercial properties. For a free, no-obligation quote contact the Mansfield Boiler Specialists.