Choosing a New Boiler for the Heart of Your Home

Choosing a New Boiler for the Heart of Your Home

A new heating system can seem daunting to think about, but as the boiler is at the heart of your home and can be with you for over a decade, it’s worth taking the time to make sure you get it right.

Martyn Bridges, Director of Technical Communication and Product Management at Worcester Bosch, understands how tough the decision of choosing the right boiler can be. “The boiler that is best for you depends on several things including the size of your home, number of bathrooms, your current system and your future home plans. It’s such a fundamental part of your home that it’s important the decision is made with care.”

To help you make an informed decision, Worcester Bosch have provided an overview of the various boiler types and whether they might be suitable for your home.

Combination boiler diagram

Combination Boilers: Instantaneous hot water on demand

Combination, or combi, boilers produce both heating and hot water on demand, without the need for a cylinder. They are called ‘combi’ because they ‘combine’ the functions of a conventional boiler, hot water cylinder and cold-water storage tank. When you turn on a hot water tap, this boiler will take in cold water from the mains, heat it up and filter it through your hot water tap, delivering hot water straight to you.

These boilers are compact in size, making them perfect if you have a smaller property that doesn’t have any loft space. Another great feature of these boilers is that they can often fit in a kitchen cupboard. There’s also no need for a hot water cylinder which means increased living space for you and whoever you share your home with. Less pipework in the home means that installation of these boilers won’t break the bank as they are typically cheaper than other options.

If there are a lot of people in the household, who are likely to need to use the hot water at the same time, then this boiler may not be for you. Whilst the higher output combi boilers available can provide hot water to multiple outlets in the home, a system or regular boiler with a storage cylinder system is often a better choice for homes with more than two bathrooms.

System boiler diagram

System Boilers: best for large homes

System boilers, rather like combi boilers, have many of the system components built-in. However, in contrast, a system boiler uses a separate cylinder to store hot water. This means that a constant supply of hot water can be provided to many taps and showers at the same time, saving you from a freezing cold shower in the morning.

These boilers, along with a storage cylinder, are ideal for homes with more than one bathroom as they can maintain a constant supply of hot water to several taps at the same time. With only two components, these boilers take up less space than a regular boiler, which allows for more living space and makes installation quicker and neater. With fewer parts, installing a system boiler in a new build tends to be easier than a regular boiler too.

Regular boiler diagram

Regular Boilers: best for replacing older boilers

Like system boilers, regular boilers work on the principle of stored water and require a hot water cylinder. However, they also tend to require a cold-water storage tank, usually in the loft space, to feed the hot water cylinder. These are a great replacement 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.

These boilers work well for homes where a lot of hot water is used at the same time, so are ideal for homes with two or more bathrooms. They’re also a great option if your home has low water pressure. If you’re energy conscious, these boilers are compatible with solar water heating systems, allowing you to have a lower carbon footprint and the benefit of lower energy costs.

However, these require more components and pipework than the other options which require more time and expense to install. With more components, these boilers also take up more space than a combi or system boiler. This makes these boilers suited for larger homes with loft space. If the cistern is not located high enough, additional shower boosters may be required for water pressure too, so it’s important to make sure you consult a reliable installer – as well as choosing a reliable boiler – who can help you make these decisions.

Other considerations

If you are concerned about space, or you are aware that your boiler is going to be on display, there are now boilers that meet modern style needs. With options, such as the Greenstar Lifestyle range from Worcester Bosch, you can now make your boiler a part of your kitchen design, so you can make the most of your living space.

It’s also important to consider how you can improve your efficiency, both for the good of your bank balance and the environment. You should consider investing in a smart thermostat to allow you to control your heating from anywhere with a smartphone app. This will allow you to monitor how much energy you use and how much money you are spending.

Whilst there many things to consider when choosing a boiler, it’s important to also remember that your installer is there to help you with this decision. Finding a qualified heating engineer to discuss your needs is important and having the system professionally installed is a must.

Visit Worcester Bosch – named Which? Best Buy boiler brand in the UK for the 10th time – to find the perfect boiler solution for your home: