If you are on the lookout for a new boiler at the moment, then the chances are you are being steered towards buying a combination boiler. They account for a high proportion of all boiler sales, with fitters and engineers loving them because they’re easy to install and home owners liking their efficiency and ease of use. They’re not the only design on the market though and, contrary to what the adverts would have you believe, they won’t suit every person or every type of property. Serious alternatives to them are regular boilers, and I’m going to look at some of the reasons why these can be a better purchase than a combi boiler.
To begin with, many family homes these days have four or five bedrooms and a couple of bathrooms. It’s a very convenient arrangement and means that people can have a shower or bath at the same time with no need to queue for ages as they did before. To manage this effectively, however, you need to be able to push a lot of hot water through the system at the same time and for this job the regular boiler comes into its own. As it has a reservoir of hot water in an insulated tank, just waiting to be used, it doesn’t suffer from the same problem as the combi boiler design, as those don’t have any storage and can struggle to produce enough hot water to cope with several taps open at once.
Regular boilers are an older design, and the technology involved is pretty simple compared to the modern combi boiler. That means that they can be much more reliable, purely because there is much less to go wrong and the materials and design has been tried, tested and improved over the years. When they do go wrong, spares are usually readily available at reasonable prices and you won’t have to pay as much to fit them because, once again, it’s usually a straightforward job.
You also have an additional feature with a regular boiler, and it’s one that isn’t present in combi boilers. Most people don’t think about it until they really need it and by then it’s too late, but it can prevent an awful lot of hassle. What is it? It’s an immersion heater. Put simply, it’s a heating element that works independently of the boiler so you can have hot water even if your boiler breaks down.
If efficiency is a concern, then you can rest assured that many of the regular boiler designs on the market today reach the highest efficiency standards. Rated ‘A’ on the SEDBUK (Seasonal Efficiency of Domestic Boilers in the UK) scale, they are able to convert at least 90% of the fuel they burn into heat used to warm the water, so very little of it is wasted.
Regular boilers, then, are still a viable choice for many people and if you weigh up your needs n terms of the thoughts mentioned above, you might just find that they are the better choice for you.