With the weather warming up and football fever kicking in, people generally spending more time outdoors, it’s easy to forget about the energy you use at home. But with the longer, sunnier days, summer is the perfect time to increase your home’s energy efficiency and save money on your heating bills.
Spruce up your boiler
A third of homes in England have an old and inefficient boiler. The Energy Saving Trust estimates that a new boiler could save you £210 on your annual energy bill, depending on your current house type and boiler. The best time to service or replace your boiler is when you’re not relying on it as much, so summer is the perfect time to take action and give your boiler some TLC.
Get smart about the weather
Did you know that smart thermostats can do more than simply control the heat in your home during winter; they can also play a useful role in summer. Smart thermostats can adapt to the local weather forecast to make the most of natural heat on a sunny day, meaning that you can save energy too.
The smartphone app that comes with smart thermostats also makes it easy to control your heating from wherever you are. So, there’s no need to panic if you forget to turn your hot water or heating off when you go for a day out or even more importantly when you go on holiday. Simply check your systems status and if necessary turn your water heating or heating off from the airport departure lounge or back on again when in arrivals.
Engineers are more available in summer
Because winter sees the highest use of boilers and central heating systems, it’s also the time of year when engineers are inevitably the busiest. Engineers are rushed off their feet installing new boilers and servicing old ones. By planning to buy your new boiler this summer, you can find the perfect, energy efficient boiler for you at the perfect price. Avoid the winter rush, and book an appointment that works for your busy schedule.
You can stay warm
A boiler replacement on average can take between 1-3 days but can take even longer if you are considering a complete overhaul of your central heating system. Not being able to rely on your boiler during winter isn’t convenient for any homeowner, especially if it involves an unexpected breakdown. A failure in the functioning of your boiler could cause further damage to the heating system such as frozen pipes.
Having work done in summer means you can stay warm and not face so much disruption to daily life. Facing a couple of days with no central heating is easily tolerated with sunshine and warmer temperatures.
So how can we save money on our heating?
By installing an ‘A’ rated boiler this summer, you could save up to £350 a year! Whereas older boilers lose about 25% of the heat they produce as hot air, an ‘A’ rated boiler is able to achieve astounding energy efficiency by catching that hot air and ‘condensing’ it. As a result, an ‘A’ rated boiler can convert over 90% of the energy it uses into heat for all your heating needs. By comparison, a ‘G’ rated boiler only converts less than 70% of the energy it expends, meaning that in effect it wastes 30p of every £1 you spend on your heating.
Over an ‘A’ rated boiler’s 15 year lifespan, you can save up to £5,250 compared to a boiler with a lower energy efficiency rating. Coupled with the fact that engineers are generally cheaper to call out in summer, now could be the time for you to make the switch to an ‘A’ rated boiler.
Buying a new boiler is an expensive and complicated process at the best of times – let alone against the backdrop of your old boiler breaking down suddenly in winter. To help make your boiler buy more straightforward, we have our guide on what to consider when deciding on a new boiler purchase.
The importance of a reliable new boiler It’s simple really – the more reliable your new boiler, the less money you will have to shell out on expensive repairs. According to our annual boilers survey, the average cost of a boiler repair is £210 – which is quite an incentive to pick a reliable brand. If you choose the most reliable brand of boiler, according to our survey, an impressive 63% are likely to still be fault free after six and a half years. Get unlucky and pick the least reliable brand, and this falls to a disappointing 45%. Don’t be left with cold showers in a freezing cold home – only pick a new boiler from one of the most reliable and best boiler brands.
2. WHAT TYPE OF NEW BOILER?
There are three main types of gas condensing boiler to choose from: A combi boiler which heats water as you need it and eliminates the need for a storage tank.
A heat-only boiler, sometimes known as a conventional boiler, means you will have a hot water tank or cylinder where hot water can be stored for later use.
A system boiler is just like a heat-only boiler, but more components are built in. This can make system boilers easier to install than conventional ones and they tend to take up less space.
If you live in a small home with only one bathroom, or live on your own or with only one other person, a standard combi boiler without a hot water tank will usually be the best choice. If your home is larger or there are more than two people living in it, then a heat-only or system boiler is usually a better option. Your heating engineer will be able to talk you through the different types of boiler and make a recommendation for the best choice in your home.
3. GETTING THE RIGHT SIZE NEW BOILER
When choosing your new sized boiler two things need to be considered.
• The heating and hot water capabilities of the boiler
• The physical size of your boiler and whether it will fit in the space you have it destined for.
The correct heating size of the boiler will be something unique to you and your home, as it depends on things such as how many bathrooms you have and how many people you live with.
If you are replacing an old-style boiler with a modern gas condensing boiler, the good news is you are likely to save a decent £1,705 amount on your energy bill. The latest savings estimates suggest that if you live in a detached home and are replacing an old-style heavyweight boiler with a modern condensing boiler, you will be swapping average fuel bills of for £1,053 – a £652 saving.
If you already have a modern condensing boiler and are simply looking for a replacement, the good news is that they are all very energy efficient.
5. THE LOWEST PRICE IS NOT ALWAYS THE BEST
The cost of installation of a new boiler can fluctuate greatly. Often people think that just because the boiler being installed is the same that the work involved is also the same. The work involved can differ greatly. To take one boiler off the wall and replace with another ‘a straight swap’ as it’s known in the trade, can be done within a couple of hours.
Many people will simply buy on price but remember this is what supplies you with heating and hot water for the next 10 to 15 years.
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