A combi boiler is a space-saving unit which has revolutionised the way which we generate heat and hot water within our homes. It does what it says on the tin, quite literally, and they are the most common type of boiler which are installed across the UK today.
Prior to the development of the combi boiler, a typical heating system would consist of a boiler which would be mounted on the wall, floor or even behind the fire (a back boiler). This boiler would generate heat, which in turn would be connected to a hot water cylinder which in most houses would be located in a cupboard on your landing, the airing cupboard. If you wanted to get a bath, you would have to heat all of the water in the tank, which is extremely in-efficient as you would end up with a surplus of hot water and no use for it.
A combi boiler combines those two elements, in to one. Hence the name, combination. With a combi boiler, you only pay to generate the hot water which you need and it does this on demand. When you run your tap, it heats up the water when you need it, when you put the shower on, a combi boiler heats the water instantaniously and provides power at mains pressure so there is also no need for an expensive pump.
In all honesty, the cost varies a vast ammount. Why? Because each individual property has a different heating system currently in place. Depending on how this system was plumbed in, can alter the overall cost of having a new combi boiler installed. If for example, your gas meter is 10m away from the actual boiler and is not a pipe which meets regulations (22mm), then this will need to be installed which will increase the overall cost.
However, to give you an idea, a typical "A" rated combi boiler should cost somewhere in the region of £1,000. This is a good average for a straight forward boiler instalaltion, with a high quality boiler from a manufacturer such as Baxi, or Ideal.
Typically Costs Between £500-£1,000
If you wish to have a typical, low'ish budget install and it is a simple case of removing an old combi boiler and installing a new one in its place, expect to pay somewhere in the region of £500-1,000. All prices vary depending on the boiler and materials which are used for the install. Get 3, free quotes from local, trusted heating engineers for a straight swap, combi boiler install.
A Not-So Straight Swap
Typically Costs Between £700-1,200
It is not always a case of just removing a boiler, and installing a new one in it's place. Sometimes, extra works will be required such as re-sizing of an area, moving pipework, filters etc. This will usually bump up only the cost of the labour, not necessarily the cost of extra parts.
Combi Boiler Install with Extra Radiators
Typically Costs Between £900-1,600
Installing a new combi boiler is a huge upgrade for any home, espeially if it is taking the place of an old, in-efficient model. However, in order to make the most of out your new system, it is reccommended that you replace any old, low-output radiators or install new ones where necessary. Expect to pay somewhere in the region of £1,300 depending on how many extra radiators are required and pipework.
A New Combi Boiler Heating System
Typically Costs Between £1,500-3,000
The prices stated are only to be used as a guide. For a whole new heating system, the costs will vary a great deal. This could be because of the size of the property itself, whether or not you choose to install your new combi boiler with copper pipework or plastic, how many radiators, type of combi boiler and type of controls.
As with any large purchase, it is highly reccommended that you get your hands on three quotes. This will help you to compare each deal, what is included and it also makes sure that you get the best deal. Use our system to get three quotes from local heating engineers.
New combi boilers are much more efficient than an old, conventional boiler system. However, the actually efficiency of boilers vary depending on the boilers age. All new boilers which are manufactured are "A" rated, this basically means, it's about as good as you can get with the technology which we currently have.
Understanding the percentages
To give you a better idea about how much different a higher rated boiler can make, the following should help you out. If you have a boiler which is G rated (70% Efficient) - for every £1.00 that you spend on your bills, 30p is wasted and can not be recovered. If you install a new, condensing combi boiler, they are 90%+ efficient, which means the savings can be up to 25p for every pound spend. This is a huge ammount of money when you spread it over a year. If you are looking to get a new A rated boiler installed, get three quotes from local engineers on our approved Gas Safe network.
What rating is your current Boiler?
Boilers are given a rating (A-G), this rating is determind by how efficient it is in a percentage calculation. This information is available via something called the SEDBUK database. This is a database of information which has details on every boiler which has ever been manufactured and its efficiency ratings. As a guide;
A Rated - Above 90% Efficient
B Rated - 86-90% Efficient
C Rated - 82-86% Efficient
D Rated -78-82% Efficient
E Rated - 74-78% Efficient
F Rated - 70-74% Efficient
G Rated - Below 70% Efficient
How does the efficiency effect me?
Obviously, the more efficient your boiler is, the more money you are likely to save on your energy bills. It can sometimes be confusing, so, to give you an idea we've set things out really simply. If you were to remove an old 'G' rated boiler, and have it replaced with a new 'A' rated boiler. You could expect to save up to £300 per year and around 1,220kg of CO2.
Combi boilers are great, in very many ways, however there are some times where a combi boiler might not be the best option for your home.
Do you have multiple bathrooms?
Combi boilers can only feed water out to your baths/outlets at mains pressure. This means that if you have several bathrooms which may all need water at the same time, a combi boiler may struggle to feed them all and you will see a drop in pressure. If your property has a low mains pressure, a combi boiler may not be the choice for you.
Want a power shower?
If you have, or want a power shower, you can not install one alongside a combi boiler. A combi boiler has a pump which is built in to the unit and feeds hot water out to your taps on demand. A power shower reauires a separate pump, which takes water from your 'hot water cylinder' and pushes out to your shower at a high flow rate.
Alternatives to a Combi Boiler
If you do have multiple bathrooms and your mains pressure is very poor, you may be better off installing a system boiler, or conventional system. These types of system have a boiler which sits on your wall, or behind your fire, and they then have a separate hot water cylinder which would usually sit on your landing in a cupbaord... the airing cupboard. This cylinder holds hot water and feeds it out to your radiators and multiple outlets.
When something expensive breaks down out of the blue, stomaching the large replacement cost in one hit can often be tricky. You wouldn't pay for a £30,000 car with cash (if you can, lucky you!), so, why do it with your new boiler?
Right now there are some very competitive rates and you could get a new combi boiler installed from as little as 76p per day! Plus, your monthly payments will also be getting you a longer than average warranty and extra peice of mind.
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