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Combination boilers (also known as "combi boilers") have become more and more popular in the UK over the past few years, with over 70% of homes choosing to install a combi boiler, over regular hot water or system boilers.
Combi boilers are essentially high efficiency water heater and central heating units, which means that they can heat your home and provide hot water, without the need for a separate water tank. They tend to be more compact than other central heating systems, as they combine these two household functions into one appliance (hence the name "combi boiler").
Due to their small size and ability to heat water on demand, combi boilers are most suited to homes with limited space, or for couples or small families. It is possible to purchase an oil-fired combi boiler, however, gas and LPG models are more common.
If you are considering replacing your current boiler with a combi boiler, or moving into a house with one, it is important to know the pros and cons of these systems.
Pros: The Benefits of a Combi Boiler
There are a number of great features that have made combi boilers the most popular boiler type across the UK. In general, combi boilers are:
Combi boilers are highly efficient when compared to older boiler models. In fact, replacing your boiler with a newer combi boiler could help you to save up to £300 a year on your heating bills.
Combi boilers are far less complex than traditional heating systems, which means that installations tend to be cheaper. It is also easier to find replacement parts if a problem occurs.
With no water tank to heat up, combi boilers can provide an unlimited supply of hot water on demand. No waiting time!
As there is no need for a separate water tank, combi boiler systems take up much less space than conventional heating systems. This makes them ideal for homes that have limited room.
The cold water from a combi boiler system is always safe to drink as it is fed directly from the mains. However, this is not always true of traditional systems, which may store cold water in a tank before it is piped through the house.
Easier to Sell
As combi boilers tend to be more efficient than other boiler types, this can be a selling point if you are looking to rent or sell your property. This will also show on the Energy Performance Certificate (EPC).
Less Likely to Suffer from Pressure Issues
Combi boiler systems do not tend to suffer from air locks or low pressure, as the hot water is taken directly from the water mains.
Central heating systems with a combi boiler generally have less sludge build up, because the water is piped directly from the mains and not kept in a tank where it can accrue rust and debris.
Easier to Service
The popularity of combi boilers means that a majority of boiler engineers are trained how to repair and service them. This makes it easier to find qualified engineers in your area.
Cons: The Disadvantages of a Combi Boiler
Despite the popularity of combi boilers, there are several issues that you should bear in mind when considering replacing your boiler.
The disadvantages of combi boilers include:
Dependence on Mains Pressure
To ensure that your combi boiler is working properly, you need good mains pressure. If you are having a new boiler fitted, you should check what the mains pressure in your area is before you go ahead with the installation.
With a combi boiler it is not possible to run more than one shower or bath at a time, or to turn on the hot tap while showering. This may be an issue if you live in a large house with a number of bathrooms and en suites, or with lots of people.
No Immersion Heater
As there is no water tank, if your combi boiler breaks down then you will be left without hot water as well as central heating (unless you install an electric shower).
No Power Shower
You can't have a power shower with a combi boiler, as the water pressure is set by the pressure level at the water mains.
If you are experiencing issues with your combi boiler, need to book a service or want to know how much an installation will cost, simply click below to view instant, online quotes from reliable, Gas Safe registered engineers in your local area now!
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