Boilers account for around 55% of what you spend in a year on energy bills, so an efficient boiler makes a big difference. A condensing boiler is more efficient than an old-fashioned non-condensing one because it recovers more heat and sends cooler gases up the flue. A standard boiler is one that has a separate hot water cylinder (unlike a combi boiler). You might choose a standard boiler if you need to use a lot of hot water.
Standard boilers are relatively easy to replace in old-fashioned heating systems without too many pipe-work changes. However, they take up more space than a combi boiler would, due to the separate hot water cylinder.
Because a standard boiler has a large tank of stored hot water, you can use several taps at once, and these boilers are suitable for larger houses with higher hot water demand. However, the amount of hot water you can use is still limited by the size of your cylinder. For instance you might run a bath, then need to wait for the boiler to heat up the water in the cylinder again before you can run another.
The costs for replacing a boiler will vary, but a straightforward gas boiler replacement will typically cost around £2,300. The amount you could save depends on how old and inefficient your existing boiler is. A typical household (gas-heated 3 bed semi) could save around £300 per year by upgrading from a G rated boiler, to an A-rated condensing boiler with a full set of heating controls.
The installer must be Gas Safe registered. Your registered installer will ensure that your system complies with Building Regulations and will make sure you get all the documentation to prove this. Keep these documents safe – you will need them if you sell the property. Other types of efficient boiler are also available, including a gas combi condensing boiler. If you need to replace your boiler anyway, it is a very good idea to get the most efficient boiler you can. However, even if your old boiler does not immediately need replacing, this may still be a good option.
The appearance of your home
A standard boiler will take up more space than a combi boiler.
Why not also consider…
Another option to consider alongside a new boiler is to improve your heating controls. The right controls will let you set your heating and hot water to come on and off when you need them, heat just the areas of your home you want, and decide how warm you want each area to be. You could also consider buying an efficient hot water cylinder. These come already highly insulated and ready to be installed. Upgrading your hot water cylinder can save you around £45 a year. Other types of efficient boiler are also available, including a gas combi condensing boiler.