Plumbers Derby Blog: What type of boiler should I get?


What type of Boiler should I get?

There are various types of boilers for homes, each with their own advantages. From the old to the new, find out more about these different sources of heating and get a clearer picture which one’s right for your home.

The Different Types of Boilers, How they work, and their Pros and Cons:

Combi Boilers

Combination boilers connect directly to the mains cold water supply, providing hot water on demand. They are a great choice for many homes, especially those that have only one bathroom.

Pros of combi boilers

  • Take up less space
  • Looks neat and compact
  • Easier to service
  • Instant hot water

Cons of combi boilers

  • Only one shower at a time
  • Limited by mains pressure 
  • Moving parts

Heat-only boilers

A heat-only boiler is a type of water boiler where the only function is to heat the water in a central tank supply. The hot water is then piped throughout the house for use by heating radiators or showers. They are usually set up with an electric pre-heater, which means they can be installed in even the smallest and loftiest spaces – however, this means that if your electricity should fail you will be without heating.

Pros of heat-only boilers and central tanks

  • Good for larger households
  • Can use multiple showers at the same time
  • Often better flow of water in the showers

Cons of heat-only boilers

  • Doesn’t give hot water on demand
  • Temporarily run out of hot water
  • Takes up space with a storage tank
  • Less efficient compare to combi boilers
  • Installation costs

System boilers

System boilers are unique in their own right. The boiler is relatively self-sufficient because it doesn’t need to rely on tanks and valves that are external, such as in conventional boilers. A closed-vent system boiler is a solution for people who have no intention of ever using the heat produced by their boiler if they’re renting out a property or if they know they will have limited use for the heat provided by the boiler. System boilers can also be a cost-effective solution for homeowners who don’t necessarily require all of the additional features and components that would come with a conventionally-tied water coupled system like hot water and pressure relief tanks or further ancillary components.

Pros of system boilers

  • Good for larger homes
  • Takes up less space than a regular boiler

Cons of system boilers

  • Take up more space than a combi boiler
  • Temporarily run out of hot water
  • Doesn’t give hot water on demand
  • Less efficient than combi boilers

Storage combi boilers

In rare cases, a storage combi boiler system may be your best option. It’s a combination of an open-vented system and a closed-vented heating system in that it draws air directly from the outside or through a duct and burns gas for heat in the furnace burner. The advantage is that you don’t need ample amounts of space for a hot water cylinder – but it also means that you should not use this type of boiler if you live in an apartment where it could potentially affect your neighbours.

Pros of storage combi boilers

  • Benefits of a combi and system boiler in one 
  • Takes up less space than a system boiler
  • Cheaper to install than a system or heat-only boiler
  • Solar thermal panel compatible

Cons of storage combi boilers

  • Uses more space than a combi boiler
  • System boilers can meet larger hot water demands
  • Less choice
  • Engineer knowledge

What is a condensing boiler?

A condensing Boiler is an energy efficient replacement for your old boiler system. They are known for being more cost effective and efficient. The savings you’ll make will be considerable. For example, with a new condensing boiler the yearly bills might go down by between £45 to £300 per year (Energy Saving Trust, 2021). If you have an existing non-condensing boiler then during the annual boiler service check it’s worth calling them to see if they can install a condensing boiler in its place at no extra charge and keep any energy saving payments that are going unused on your old installation (Energy Saving Trust, 2014).

How does a condensing boiler work?

A condensing boiler is a combination of a regular boiler and a heat pump. As such, it captures some of the heat from these gases and uses it to heat water returning from your central heating system. This means that not only does it heat your house, but it also uses the heat that would otherwise be wasted to heat water. This means you can save up to 30% on your heating bills!

Pros of condensing boilers

  • More efficient
  • Safer

Cons of condensing boilers

How do biomass boilers work?

Biomass boilers are pretty simple machines, but there’s a lot going on. To boil water you need to burn fuel. What kind of fuel? Anything from wood chips, wood pellets, wood logs, pallets or even food waste – the list is endless. When you burn the fuel, you need to burn it at a high temperature for a long time. The heat from the burning fuel gets transferred to the water and boils it, turning it into steam. The steam then turns a turbine and generator, making electricity. The steam is then cooled and condensed back into water. The water is returned to the boiler and it is ready to be heated up again.

Low carbon heating systems

The carbon emissions from gas boilers will be gradually reduced over the next few decades as they are phased out. This is because many homes are not connected to the gas grid and so will be forced to use other forms of heating. It is expected that over the next few decades most homes will be forced to use low carbon heating systems. Along with this transition, the way we use heating systems will be changing for the better. The best way to learn more about this is to understand how gas boilers work.

How do Low carbon heating systems work?

Low carbon heating systems are pretty much the same as your gas boiler. They have the same basic components and work in the same way. However, the technology behind these systems is different. The difference lies in the heat source. These systems are fueled by natural gas, oil or other renewable fuels. Instead of being powered by gas, the heat is sourced from the sun, the earth or the air.

Contact Us Now

Whether it’s a boiler installation, a repair, a replacement, we do it all. We’re registered with the Gas Safe Register (GSR) – which means we can install, repair, or replace gas appliances in your home. We’re also equipped to work with a wide range of plumbing and heating services including central heating systems, bathroom fitting and installation, smart thermostats, and other plumbing repairs and installations. Call us on 01332 215555 and get your No Cost, No-obligation Quotation!