Gas central heating is the most common way of heating your home and hot water. If you live in the country where there is no mains gas supply, you can still have gas central heating but instead of mains gas you can have LPG gas. Though a little dearer you still have the same benefits of gas.
Gas central heating comes in different forms, you have the combination boiler, where you need no storage tanks, the hot water is heated instantly, as soon as you turn a hot tap on the boiler will fire up and heat the water. As soon the tap is switched off the boiler shuts down. You will notice that the pump on the boiler will still carry on running for a short time, this is to cool the boiler down.
Next you have the traditional type of gas central heating, which consists of a conventional gas boiler, a hot water tank, a cold water storage tank and a feed and expansion tank. The cold water tank supplies water to the hot water tank and the cold taps in the bathroom. The feed and expansion tank feeds the gas central heating system. It’s called a feed and expansion tank because it feeds the heating, and also take up the expansion from the system.
With the traditional system you have zone valves fitted which controls the heating and hot water.
These zone valves are controlled by thermostats, one for the heating and one for the hot water. Depending on the size of your home you may have more than one zone valve fitted, still controlled by a thermostat.
You now have the option of a system boiler for your gas central heating, this type of boiler is becoming very popular because you don’t need the feed and expansion tank, which is normally located in the loft area. The boiler works at high pressure normally around 1.2bar. The boiler has a built in expansion vessel which takes up the expansion from the boiler as it heats up.
The system boiler normally has the pump built into it, so there is no need to fit a pump externally. The boiler will also have a pressure relief valve built in, to release the pressure should the pressure start to rise. A fill up loop will need to be fitted to the system, this is a water supply to the heating system. The loop is connected to the water mains on one side, and the other side to the return pipe on the boiler.
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A pressurised gas central heating system will run at a lower cost then the tank feed system, the reason being is that it does not lose any heat up the expansion pipe, so the heat is retained within the system.
When it comes to pressurised gas central heating you also have the option of have a pressurised hot water tanks, commonly known as unvented hot water cylinders. Again this then means you don’t need the cold water tank that supplies the hot water cylinder. The unvented cylinder is feed through the water mains .You need a decent incoming water pressure to able to have one of these unvented cylinders Installed.
There are many other combination of installing a gas central heating system, it really all depends on your property and the costs involved. It’s a good idea to contact a gas safe registered installer to advise you what is best for your property.
Many people tend to go for the combination boiler because you don’t need any tanks fitted and also because it frees up valuable storage space. But the problem I come across a lot is the hot water is slow at the taps and you can only run one tap at a time. So if you have 2 bathrooms and they both get used at the same time like in the morning when you are in a rush to get off to work, you will find only one can be used.
The hot water from the combination boiler is ok for smaller properties but I don’t advise for larger properties. For some reason everybody seems to think the combination boiler is the best boiler to choose. It is a good boiler, but you have to pick the right Gas Central heating system for your property, otherwise you are just throwing your hard earned money away.
The gas safe register is there for you to locate a local registered installer and also for your protection. It’s worth checking out, because you will know that the person who comes to advise you on your gas central heating system is fully experienced and full of knowledge.
Gas central heating is an expensive investment so it’s worth getting it right. Before you make a decision, get a couple of estimates so you can compare the costs, talk to your friends or people you know that may have used a gas safe engineer. Then if you are like me go with your feelings. If you would like some free advise on fitting a gas central heating system then just enter your details in the box below and we will contact you in the future…