In times of rainy days and snowy nights, the atmosphere creates a perfect snuggle weather. However, not all of us have somebody to cuddle up with and warm us up in the creeping cold.
Thank goodness for condensing gas boilers. Here is how to find the best ones out there.
Types of Condensing Gas Boilers
Condensing gas boilers come in three types: the combination boiler, the system boiler, and the regular boiler.
Regular boilers are also called conventional boilers, or traditional boilers. These feature a cold water cistern stored in the loft; a copper hot-water cylinder where the water is stored, usually in the airing cupboard; a feed and expansion cistern; and the boiler itself, with the extended controls.
Combi boilers are the most common form of condensing gas boilers available. These boilers heat water as needed, by directing the water from the main supply to the boiler and heating it, without stocking the water in a tank. Because it is tankless, this type of boiler takes up less space is usually ideal for small homes.
The disadvantage of this type of gas condensing boiler, however, is that the water usually takes a short time to heat, and the flow rate of the water depends on how quickly the boiler can heat it. So it might be difficult - if not impossible - for two people to use the hot water at the same time. Make sure you do not wash dishes while somebody in the shower if you are using a combi boiler!
System boilers form a sort of middle way between regular boilers and combi boilers when it comes to space requirement and heated water supply. It does not have a storage tank for cold water, however it does have one for hot water. The result is (1) you can have hot water running in multiple faucets at the same time, but (2) you still need to have ample space for the water tank.
The Best Boiler for you
Because they use an elevated water storage system, regular boilers are good for maintaining water pressure in areas where the water pressure may be low. Also, since there is a tank for storing water, this type of boiler is capable of supplying hot water to multiple taps running all at once.
If you live in a big house with a loft that you do not use very often, we would recommend you get a regular boiler, especially if there are a lot of people in your household who might want to use hot water at the same time.
However, since the tanks take up space, this is type of boiler is out of the question for small single-story houses (even if you also have people who might want to use the hot water simultaneously).
For small apartments and condominiums with very limited space, the combi boiler is practically decided on for you. Even though the system boiler needs less space than a regular boiler, it still needs some space, which is usually absent in very small living spaces.
If you have no choice but to use a combi boiler but wish to avoid "hot-water lag," which is characteristic of these types of boilers, you can look for boilers with a "keep hot" feature, which is a small compartment for storing heated water, just enough to supply your faucet with it until the newly heated water from the main water pipe arrives.
If you live in a two-story house, or even if you live in a really large one but you want to save your loft space for more interesting things than water tanks, you might want to consider a system boiler.