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Boiler Types

boiler types

If you’re in search of an efficient and budget-friendly home heating solution, boilers stand out as an excellent option. While renewable heating systems such as heat pumps offer sustainability benefits, they often come with a hefty price tag. However, with various boiler options on the market, you can still effectively heat your home while maintaining energy efficiency without breaking the bank.


In our comprehensive guide below, we’ll assist you in determining the most suitable boiler for your specific needs. Additionally, we’ll explore how these boilers can be optimized to minimize environmental impact, providing both comfort and eco-consciousness.

Understanding How Boilers Work?

The landscape of home heating presents three fundamental boiler types—combi, system, and conventional, each boasting unique functionalities tailored to diverse household needs. While these variants exhibit nuanced differences in their operational mechanics, they share a common underlying process for efficiently heating both water and central heating systems.


Let’s delve deeper into the operational intricacies of the combination boiler, widely regarded as the most prevalent boiler type due to its versatility and compact design.

diagram of how a combi boiler works

The operational dynamics of your boiler depend greatly on its type, leading to distinct processes tailored to meet specific requirements. For instance, while a combi boiler seamlessly draws in cold water directly from the mains, a regular boiler operates with a large tank positioned in the loft, storing cold water that gradually flows down to the boiler unit.


Despite these variations, modern boiler technology has undergone significant advancements, resulting in heightened energy efficiency compared to previous iterations. Both manufacturers and governmental bodies are at the forefront of promoting innovative solutions aimed at future-proofing boiler products. An exemplary measure in this regard is the legal mandate, since 2015, for combi boilers to incorporate condensing technology. This integrated system effectively recycles waste heat generated by the boiler, which would otherwise dissipate through the flue pipe, thereby optimizing the boiler’s overall efficiency.


Furthermore, manufacturers are leveraging new technologies to enhance boiler longevity and minimize waste. One notable approach involves the inclusion of magnetic filters with boiler purchases, facilitating the maintenance of clear and efficient internal pipework. Many leading brands also offer extensive warranties and service packages, ensuring optimal performance and reducing the likelihood of efficiency degradation over time.


If you find yourself uncertain about the most suitable boiler for your requirements, seeking advice from a professional engineer is highly recommended. To streamline this process, we offer assistance through our free online boiler quote tool. By utilizing our quote tool you can get a fixed quote for the correct boiler type and boiler size. Our quote tool enables you to secure the best new boiler deal without the hassle of navigating through extensive research or waiting for potential contacts.

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Understanding Different Boiler Fuel Options

The versatility of most boiler types extends to their compatibility with alternative fuels, catering to diverse consumer preferences and environmental concerns. For instance, if you’re inclined to minimize reliance on natural gas and opt for a lower carbon footprint, electric boilers offer a viable solution by producing zero emissions. However, it’s essential to acknowledge that a significant portion of electricity generation by major suppliers still relies on fossil fuels, presenting a caveat to the apparent eco-friendliness of electric boilers.


Fortunately, certain boiler brands offer the flexibility to integrate with renewable energy sources such as solar panels or air source heat pumps, mitigating environmental concerns associated with traditional fuel sources. Nonetheless, the decision regarding boiler fuels entails various considerations beyond environmental impact, including cost-effectiveness and suitability for your geographical location and property specifications.


Furthermore, it’s crucial to ensure that your chosen power source aligns with the power requirements of both the boiler and your household. This necessitates a thorough evaluation of fuel input options and an accurate assessment of the appropriate boiler size to meet your heating demands effectively. By carefully deliberating these factors, you can make an informed decision that balances environmental responsibility, affordability, and practicality for your home heating needs.

Gas Boilers

In the United Kingdom, natural gas stands out as the predominant and favoured fuel for boilers, owing to two primary factors. Firstly, the majority of households are seamlessly connected to the national gas grid, rendering it the most straightforward logistical choice for heating. Secondly, historically, gas has maintained its status as the most economical option compared to alternative fuels.


While global dynamics may introduce fluctuations in fuel prices, the convenience and affordability of gas have cemented its prevalence in residential heating systems. However, in light of evolving environmental concerns and the pursuit of greener alternatives, exploring options beyond gas boilers is increasingly pertinent.


Looking towards the future and embracing eco-friendly solutions, it’s noteworthy that many gas boilers are already designed with adaptability in mind. Most modern boilers are engineered to be hydrogen-ready, anticipating potential shifts towards utilizing hydrogen and gas blends as a more sustainable fuel option. Although the implementation of hydrogen-gas blends is still under development, it holds promise as a transformative step towards greener heating solutions for UK households.


The beauty of this transition lies in its seamless integration with existing infrastructure. Homeowners with boilers connected to the gas grid need not fret about costly upgrades or service disruptions. These boilers can effortlessly accommodate hydrogen gas blends, ensuring a smooth transition without additional expenses or interruptions to service continuity.


For those intrigued by this environmentally conscious option, it’s advisable to keep an eye out for boilers labeled as ‘20% Hydrogen Ready.’ This designation signifies readiness for potential future adaptations, aligning with the ongoing efforts towards sustainable heating solutions in the UK.

Oil Boilers

For homeowners residing in rural areas or those without access to the gas grid, oil emerges as a viable alternative for boiler fuel. Particularly in such circumstances, where gas is inaccessible, oil stands out as the preferred choice for heating purposes.


However, opting for oil-fired heating systems necessitates careful consideration of certain factors. Unlike gas, oil requires storage in a dedicated tank located on the property premises, and regular manual refueling is essential to maintain uninterrupted heating.


Despite these considerations, integrating an oil boiler with renewable energy sources presents an opportunity to enhance sustainability and reduce reliance on fossil fuels. Depending on your specific heating requirements, it’s feasible to combine an oil boiler with a renewable fuel source, such as a solar or wind-compatible hot water storage tank. This synergy enables homeowners to harness the benefits of both conventional and eco-friendly heating technologies, thereby promoting energy efficiency and environmental responsibility.

Electric Boilers

Electric boilers are often lauded for their environmental friendliness due to their lack of harmful gas emissions. However, it’s essential to recognize that their reliance solely on electricity means they indirectly draw from fossil fuel sources, detracting from their appeal as a renewable option.


Nevertheless, the landscape is evolving, with numerous energy suppliers in the UK actively striving to transition towards generating electricity from entirely renewable sources. Once this shift is fully realized, electric boilers hold the promise of becoming a more sustainable heating solution. However, in the current context, their environmental impact is somewhat mitigated by the fossil fuel component of the electricity supply chain.

If you find yourself grappling with the decision-making process of selecting the right boiler for your needs, we strongly advocate reaching out to a reputable company such as Master Gas London for expert guidance. Instead of spending countless hours scouring the internet in search of reputable professionals, allow us to streamline the process for you!


Take advantage of our free instant online quote tool to discover the perfect boiler type and size for your property or business, as well as explore a range of options tailored to your needs. With multiple quotes at your fingertips, you can easily compare rates and secure the best deal without overpaying. Plus, rest assured knowing that these quotes are provided free of charge, and there’s no obligation to accept any of them, offering you peace of mind throughout the decision-making process.

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Understanding Different Boiler Types Available

There are three primary boiler types, each catering to varying home setups and offering distinctive advantages.

Conventional Boiler

These boilers are commonly referred to as ‘conventional,’ ‘traditional,’ or ‘heat only’ boilers. They represent the oldest boiler style and are typically found in older houses. The term ‘heat only’ accurately describes their function, as their primary role is to provide heat for radiators.


A distinguishing feature of conventional boilers is their reliance on an additional hot water tank to supply domestic hot water. This means that while the boiler unit heats the radiators, a separate tank is necessary for producing hot water for household use.


The installation of a regular boiler requires considerable space, as it comprises three distinct components. Firstly, space is needed for the boiler unit itself, followed by additional room for the hot water tank. The largest element is the cold water feed tanks, typically installed in the loft, which supply water to the regular boiler. Due to these spatial requirements, regular boilers are not the preferred choice for most homeowners, and tend to opt for a combi boiler conversion.


Regular boilers are best suited for large homes with ample space and a high demand for hot water. However, it’s worth noting that they are generally recommended only as direct replacements for existing regular boilers. This is because their installation involves extensive pipework and takes considerable time, resulting in additional costs for homeowners.

System Boiler

System boilers emerge as the optimal selection for homeowners with medium to large-sized residences and a substantial demand for hot water, particularly those with multiple bathrooms and a bustling household.


Compared to regular boilers, system boilers represent a modernized and preferred alternative, offering equivalent capabilities while occupying less space and requiring simpler pipework. Unlike regular boilers, system boilers draw water directly from the mains, eliminating the necessity for a feed tank in the loft.


However, to accommodate the increased demand for hot water, system boilers still necessitate a hot water storage tank. This tank ensures a steady and reliable supply of hot water to meet the needs of larger households.

Combination boiler

The combination, or ‘combi’, boiler stands out as the overwhelmingly preferred choice among homeowners. One of the primary reasons for its popularity is that a combi boiler eliminates the need for a hot water tank, efficiently heating both your hot water and central heating from a single unit.


This unique feature renders combi boilers compact, easy to install, and space-saving. Additionally, they are renowned for being the quickest and most cost-effective option for installation. However, it’s worth noting that combi boilers may not always be sufficient to meet very high hot water demands. As such, they are best suited for small to medium-sized homes with fewer than two bathrooms.

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Top 4 Boiler Brands in the UK

When searching for a new boiler for your home, it’s beneficial to begin by researching the top manufacturers in the UK. To assist with this, we’ve compiled a list of the top 4 boiler brands below:

Each of these brands Vaillant, Worcester Bosch, Glow Worm, and Baxi boasts decades of experience in the boiler production industry, demonstrating a commitment to innovation and efficiency enhancement.


Their inclusion in the top 4 is attributed to several factors, including product reliability, exceptional customer service ratings, generous warranties, and recognition through excellence awards.


With a diverse range of boiler types and models on offer, these manufacturers ensure that homeowners can find a suitable solution tailored to their specific requirements. 


To streamline the process and alleviate the burden of locating reputable engineers and comparing prices, use our free instant online quote tool or contact us for expert advice.

Domestic Boiler Prices in the UK

Boiler prices can fluctuate significantly based on several factors unique to your home, such as the required boiler type, its power output, and the chosen fuel type. It’s essential to consider that boiler installation costs are not incorporated into the unit price. Additional expenses for installation can range from £700 to £1500, on top of the boiler price and any necessary supplementary parts or system services.


For your reference, here are some prices from the top manufacturers in the UK. Please note that these prices exclude installation costs and are based solely on gas boilers.

Boiler Brand Combi System Regular
£1180 - £2270
£1190 - £2050
£1015 - £2030
Worcester Bosch
£1010 - £1710
£1340 - £1830
£1035 - £1690
£780 - £1485
£900 - £1650
£715 - £1380
Glow Worm
£665 - £1260
£720 - £1320
£715 - £1380

These figures serve as a general reference point, but for the most competitive all-inclusive new boiler deal encompassing everything from additional components to installation, we strongly advise utilizing our free instant online quote tool. This ensures total transparency and allows you to secure the very best price tailored to your specific requirements.

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FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)


We believe Vaillant stands out as the best boiler brand due to its exceptional build quality, innovative design, unwavering reliability, and user-friendly features.

Boiler options span across a diverse range of models, but topping the charts in popularity is the gas combi boiler. Renowned for its compact design and exceptional efficiency, it stands as a favorite among homeowners seeking both space-saving solutions and optimal performance.

The duration of a boiler installation project depends on various factors, including the type of boiler, the condition of your existing heating system, and any additional work required. On average, the installation process typically takes between 1 to 3 days to complete.

Yes, it’s a legal requirement in the UK to hire a Gas Safe registered engineer for any gas-related work, including boiler installation, servicing, and repairs. Hiring a qualified professional ensures compliance with safety regulations and guarantees a high standard of workmanship.

Smart thermostats and heating controls offer greater convenience and energy savings by allowing you to remotely monitor and adjust your heating system. While they may involve an upfront cost, the long-term benefits often outweigh the investment.

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