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Types of Central Heating Systems

There are lots of important things to think about when working out how to heat your home. When thinking about the right boiler size, you need to consider hot water usage as well as the number of radiators in your home. If you live in a small flat, a smaller boiler system is going to be preferable, but if you live in a large family home, you’re going to need a much bigger model.

If you live somewhere in the middle, there are a number of options that are worth considering. It’s also important to remember that there can be a difference in price when comparing different methods of heating your home. Let’s take a look at what options are out there.

central heating

Electric

While gas has been the number one choice for a long time now, electric is slowly taking over as people realise that it’s slightly more efficient. While you may prefer gas if you live in a smaller home, if you live in a bigger house electric could be your preferred choice. This is because when it comes to heating larger homes, electric is more efficient and runs at 100% efficiency, compared to 90% efficiency of gas.

Electric boilers, however, are still relatively new to the central heating market, which means you would typically only find them in rural areas that don’t have access to gas connections. It’s worth noting here that it can cost a bit to switch over to electric from gas.

Advantages

We recommend electric if you don’t have easy access to the gas connection in your location. Plus, electric can be an affordable alternative as well. This is because electric heating systems have on-demand heat, which means that if you’re looking for convenience this is the option to go for.

You'll also find that you'll have to service your electric heating system a lot less. Not to mention that electrical heating systems are 100% efficient.

Disadvantages

If you’re not already on an electric heating system, it can end up costing quite a bit to switch over.

Gas

boiler for central heating

It’s not often that you’re going to be caught thinking about the central heating system that you have in your house. This is because in this day and age it’s easy to take our central heating for granted, especially when it’s a cold winter morning and you’re reluctant to go outside. If you are thinking about the central heating, you may be wondering whether electric or gas is better, and which one is going to cost your less in the long run?

A gas boiler can help to save you a lot of money. In fact, some people think that you can save up to $250 per year when you use gas compared to other methods of running a central heating system. Some gas systems are so efficient that they can convert 90% of the fuel they consume into heat. They also produce a lot less carbon dioxide, which means not as much heat is going to be lost as a result.

Advantages

Gas can be a great way to heat your home, because it’s incredibly efficient and easy on the wallet. What’s more, you don’t have to find anywhere to store the fuel for the gas, which means that it’s a great option if you’re limited on space. It’s also nice and easy to replace a boiler that uses gas when you compare it with other options out there.

Disadvantages

The price of gas is pretty high right now and is showing no signs of slowing down. Because gas produces carbon dioxide when used, it’s also not seen as the cleanest way to heat your house regarding energy use. They also need to be serviced every year by a gas safe engineer who has a safety certificate to make sure they are running efficiently and safely. It may also cost a bit to connect your home to a gas network if it’s not already connected.

thermostat

Popular Central Heating Systems

We’ve covered the two main ways to heat your home – now, let’s take a look at the four most popular central heating systems.

Combi Boiler

This is easily the most popular central heating system in use today. A combi boiler doesn’t require a feed tank or a hot water cylinder because they only heat the water when it’s needed. This also means that they need a lot less space in your home, making them incredibly economical.

A combi boiler is also known for convenience as well because it allows you to control the system from a distance – you don’t need to access the boiler to adjust the settings, a modern convenience that many people are partial to. When it comes to a couple of factors like shower heating and space saving, a combi boiler is a great choice.

Wall Mounted Boiler

A wall mounted boiler is intended to be more compact and lighter. The heat exchangers are used with stainless steel, aluminum, copper or cast iron.

Free Standing Boiler

A free standing water boiler is intended to fit nicely within a kitchen unit just like other kitchen appliances can. Freestanding boilers can be installed in many other locations around the home as well, making them adaptable. This was a popular choice roughly 40 or 50 years ago and are still a great option if you don't have the wall space to mount your boiler.

Condensing Boilers

This type of boiler comes with a heat exchanger that allows heat to be re-used and re-circulated, making it incredibly energy efficient. This is the type of boiler you want if you're on a budget and don't want your heating bills to be too high. Pluming can be a problem with this type of boiler, however, which is when water droplets form as a result of the flue terminal. While it's not dangerous, it can be frustrating for some.

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