As a homeowner, it’s likely that you will need to think about replacing your boiler at one time or another, especially if you live in one property for a long period of time. No matter whether it’s lasted a few years or fifteen, all boilers need to be replaced eventually, so it’s well worth having some know-how on buying a new boiler ahead of having to do so.

In this guide, you can find plenty of helpful information surrounding a number of considerations you will need to make when buying a new boiler. Read on to ready yourself for the process of investing in a new boiler, to ensure you make the right choice for your home. Alternatively, you can find out more about the specialist heating and boiler services we provide here at TVM Plumbing, ready for when you invest in a new boiler that needs installing.

What type of fuel should your boiler use?

There are five different fuel types that boilers in the UK operate on. These fuels are gas, oil, solid fuel, biomass and electric.

Gas

Gas is the most common fuel that boilers in UK households use, and this particular fuel comes in two forms – natural gas and Liquified Petroleum Gas (LPG).

If you have a gas mains supply, then natural gas is a very convenient way to fuel your boiler, as it is easily supplied to your home via a specialist supply company and is in constant supply too. However, a mains supply can be rather expensive to put in place, so many homeowners choose to have LPG as a suitable alternative. With LPG, gas will be supplied to your property via two cylinders, and your new boiler must be compatible with this type of fuel.

Oil

Oil was one of the first ways in which a boiler was fueled and although this type of fuel is on the decline, many homes still find oil to be the more suitable choice for them. You might find oil to be a suitable boiler fuel for your home if you live in the countryside and/or you’re not connected to the national grid.

Solid Fuel

A rare but available option is solid fuel boilers, which uses the likes of coal, wood, or pellets to run a boiler and provide heat to the home. This type of fuel is more suitable to back boilers, however, it tends to be one of the cheaper options for fuelling a boiler.

Biomass

Biomass is the name used for using wood logs, chips or pellets to fuel a suitable boiler. This is one of the less common fuel choices, as the boilers that use biomass are often large, expensive to install and require a lot more maintenance than other boilers. That being said, biomass boilers utilise a sustainable fuel by giving off carbon dioxide that can be absorbed by plants – and 3 tonnes less than gas boilers each year.

Electric

Electricity is becoming increasingly popular as a boiler fuel type – the boilers are cheaper to run than those utilising other fuels, and they are very quiet too. Electric boilers are also relatively easy to install in place of other boilers.

What type of boiler is right for you?

Alongside different fuel options, there’s also a number of boiler types that you will need to consider when investing in a new boiler.

  • Combi boilers – this boiler will provide both unlimited hot water and heating from one system, in an environmentally-friendly way. Combi boilers are also space-saving as there’s no need for a water tank or cylinders. That being said, if your home is larger than average, or has low water pressure, a combi boiler may not be the most suitable option for you.
  • System boilers – these boilers use a water storage cylinder rather than a tank, with the majority of its components being built into the system. This allows installation to be very quick and easy, as well as eliminating the risk of leaks. System boilers are a good choice for larger homes or homes with more than one bathroom. Expect unlimited hot water and efficient running costs with a system boiler.
  • Conventional boilers – these boilers are the more traditional type, consisting of both a water storage tank and a cylinder. Although they are not the most suitable for smaller homes with limited space, they are perfect for anyone with a low water pressure home or those looking for plenty of hot water to more than one bathroom. They’re also most suitable for older properties with traditional pipework in place.

Did you know? Any new boiler installed in your home must now be a condensing boiler. These systems utilise any excess heat made from the boiler as fuel, which in older systems would have escaped into the atmosphere. This modern way of converting heat as fuel helps to reduce the amount of energy needed for the boiler to operate, therefore reducing running costs and improving energy efficiency too.

Research the different boiler brands

A little research into the best current boiler brands will set you in good stead when investing in a new boiler for your own home. This information isn’t hard to find – all it takes is a brief read online of recommendations from authoritative sources.

Take Which?, for example. The researchers behind the brand run an annual survey amongst 9,000 boiler owners, as well as 200 trusted engineers, to provide their readers with the most recommended boiler brands of that year. You can find the results from the most recent Which? survey here.

Taking the time to discover the most recommended boiler brands at that time could save you plenty of time, money and stress in the long run – a worthy investment indeed.

Look into the potential running costs of your new boiler

To save you from wasting your money on avoidable costs, it pays to think about the efficiency of the new boiler you’re thinking about buying. An inefficient boiler will likely waste an awful lot of energy which leads to you being hit with a hefty bill at the end of the month.

Thankfully, the vast majority of new boilers are very energy efficient, but you could still come across the odd one that isn’t up to scratch. With that in mind, be sure to narrow your options down to boilers with an energy efficiency rating of A, at the very least. Swapping out your old faulty boiler for a boiler with an A-rating could save you around £300 a year or more.

Top tip: You might also wish to consider boilers with advanced heating controls available, with which you’re able to control the heating from room to room and at different times, even when you’re out of the house. These boilers could save you even more money in the long run.

What are the initial costs of buying your new boiler?

There are a number of factors that can influence the initial costs of your new boiler. Firstly, there’s the cost of purchasing the actual unit itself, along with the installation costs for a qualified engineer to fit the boiler into your home. There’s also an added cost if you’re changing the type of boiler you use to a new system, or whether you’d like to boiler positioning elsewhere in your home. Any additional features that need to be installed will also come at an extra cost.

In the current climate, you should expect to pay, on average, anything between £600 and £3,000 for a new boiler, and at least £600 for installation.

FAQs around buying a new boiler

When should you replace your boiler?

Boilers should, on average, last up to 15 years so if your current boiler is reaching that age, it’s well worth taking the time to plan ahead for a replacement. Make sure you allow plenty of time to save up for the cost of a replacement boiler and installation, as well as time for researching to find the best boiler for you.

Does a new boiler add value to your house?

Research from GoCompare suggests that the ‘green credentials’ of a home are some of the biggest factors for adding value to your property. Boilers are one of the most important elements of your home’s green credentials and a new and improved boiler could add up to 1.9% to your property’s value.

For an initial consultation or estimation for our heating and boiler services, feel free to contact us by filling in our online form or calling us on 01724 862 266. With over 20 years of experience in boiler installation, we pride ourselves in delivering a friendly and professional service to each and every one of our customers.