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  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Posts
    1

    Most Efficient use of a Combi Boiler?

    Hi

    Please can you help me - I have just had a huge gas bill in and so i would like to know if i am using my combi boiler in the most efficient way.

    Basically my boyfriend was told that 'you should not turn a combi boiler off as it takes more gas to power it back up' so essentially our boiler is on all the time.

    In the winter is was on all the time and not on a timer - so i am presuming I need to programme it to just be on when we are at home - will it use more gas going up and down daily?

    HELP - i just dont understand!!

    Thanks x

  2. #2
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    swindon, wiltshire
    Posts
    25
    Quote Originally Posted by SARAH View Post
    Hi

    Please can you help me - I have just had a huge gas bill in and so i would like to know if i am using my combi boiler in the most efficient way.

    Basically my boyfriend was told that 'you should not turn a combi boiler off as it takes more gas to power it back up' so essentially our boiler is on all the time.

    In the winter is was on all the time and not on a timer - so i am presuming I need to programme it to just be on when we are at home - will it use more gas going up and down daily?

    HELP - i just dont understand!!

    Thanks x
    Here goes
    Do not keep it on all the time, for heating, leave the hot water on!!!
    Get a programmable room stat fitted, this will give you different temperatures at different times, you can programme it to bring the heating on at approx 21c when you need it, then during the day when you are out or at night when a sleep it can be set at a much lower temperature, the theory is that you should not let the temperature drop to low as this requires more energy to get it back up to the required temperature if you set it at 12c to 14c during the day the heating will probably not be required unless it is extremely cold outside.
    If your boiler has a preheat or keep warm setting (which keeps the water within the boiler hot for a quicker draw off) swicth this off as it does use gas.
    Set the boiler heating as low as you can especially if you have a condensiong boiler this will ensure that the return temperature to the boiler stays below 57c meaning the boiler will be running at its most efficient.
    Use a price comparision webite (try Martin Lewis's site) and shop around for your gas and electric, do this a couple of times a year as suppliers quite often increase their tariffs but then sneak in a cheaper one.
    Good luck.
    You could take Billy Connelly's advice and buy one of those giant slippers that you can put both feet in??

  3. #3
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Ramsgate, Kent
    Posts
    16
    When you say boiler "ON" all the time I never turn my combi off. But the heating does get turned off.
    i broadly agree with Plumb in as above but I would explain it different.

    If your boiler and heating system are set up to comply with building regulations then you will have:

    1. A thermostat which will turn off the heating at the boiler when it reaches required temperature. This is usually set to about 21 deg C. So your heating does not run and run.

    2 A timer/ programmer: Yes programme the heating to only be on when you need it.

    2. TRVs in each room so you can set them to any temperature, you can even turn the heating off in a particular room. In my opinion these are not so important in a small house, TRVs will NOT turn off the heating at the boiler and will not save much in a small house.

    Finally there is an urban myth that a house should be kept warm with heating on constantly keeping a house warm even when you are out. This is not efficient, it is wasteful and expensive. The laws & maths of physics tell us that it is far cheaper to turn off the heating and let temperature in your house drop when you don't need it.
    It is infact cheaper to warm it up from cold than maintain a high temperature.

    Temperatures recommended for sleeping at night are between 15 to 18 c but it is perfectly OK to sleep in colder temperatures.

    Having said all that. If your home is well insulated and you are out for the day at work even with the heating off it will not fall to the same temperature as the outside.
    i wouldn't recommend it falling below about 5-8 degrees.
    When severe cold sub zero temperatures are forcast for outside then I would keep the heating on 24 hours but not at the full 21 deg. Probably somewhere around 15 depending on various factors.

    Don't forget insulation is important and will make huge difference to comform and heating bills. Insulation is quite cheap and often your gas/electric supplying can install for free or subsidised price.
    Mrs Tara Plumbing is NOT a heating engineer but does run a Gas Safe installation business: www.taraheating.co.uk my blog: www.MrsTaraPlumbing.com

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