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Does your house need a more powerful boiler?


Does your house need a more powerful boiler?

If you currently feel that your home is under-heated, and that you struggle ever to feel warm inside when the temperatures plunge outside, it’s easy to imagine that what you need is a more powerful boiler.

Boiler power is expressed in terms of kilowatts (kW) and boilers range between 24kW and 42kW in size.

Generally speaking, the more radiators (and bathrooms) you have, the higher the output needs to be. Small houses with up to 10 radiators would typically require up to 27kW. Medium sized houses with up to 15 radiators, up to 34kW. And then large houses up to 42kW.

Going slightly over specification for a boiler is probably fine, just to give a little margin. Modern boilers only burn the gas they need up to a point, so they will switch to a lower power level if only a light touch is needed to maintain the right temperature.

But go too far over, not only will you pay a lot more for a boiler whose power you don’t need and can’t use, but it will end up being less efficient as well. 

The truth is that getting a new boiler is a major investment, so you should expect any reputable heating engineer to give you sound advice as to what you need. They should look at your home, measure your heat loss, and determine what’s the ideal capacity for your new boiler.

But make sure you get three independent quotes, and check the boiler specification they’re quoting on. It’s easy for someone to give a quote for a lower spec boiler because it will be cheaper to buy – but you need to know if that’s what they’re doing and what power boiler they’re recommending. A lower initial purchase price won’t be much comfort if you end up with a cold house. 

Just because your existing boiler is struggling to heat your home, it doesn’t necessarily mean you need a more powerful boiler. It may be just that it’s too old and has become inefficient, or you might have an unrelated problem, like sludge in the radiators, or a faulty thermostat.

Want some advice on the right sort of boiler for your home? Let us know

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