London homeowners are well-accustomed to small dwelling spaces. The average UK home size is below the European average, and has been shrinking in the past decade. Research has shown new London homes to be around 15% smaller than those in Ireland and Germany. This means the market for in-home heating is somewhat more tailored towards smaller-sized homes. Owners of larger homes, however, have different needs, and need to know what to look out for when finding the best heating solution.
Combination boilers (Combi for short) are the most popular choice of boiler for small and medium-sized homes. They provide instant hot water, are energy efficient, produce good pressure, and don’t require a water tank, heating cylinder or airing cupboard – meaning they don’t take up much space. While the benefits of a Combi may be hard to overlook, for bigger homes, they do have drawbacks.
Many large homes contain multiple bathrooms, both standalone and en suite. Combi boilers can only give maximum pressure to one water source at a time, so for large homes with more than one bathroom, using water from multiple sources at the same time will not be feasible. A Combi will also not be able to supply enough pressure to a power shower if you have one.
A good alternative to meet the demands of larger homes is a system boiler. A system boiler uses a tank that stores hot water. While this takes up more space, it allows hot water to be used from different sources at the same time. Heat-only boilers can also keep up with higher water demand, but have more components and are tricky to install. For easier installation, a system boiler is a better choice.
Wattage is also an important consideration in boiler installation. As a rule of thumb, the more floors, rooms, radiators and extensions a home has, the higher the power requirements will be.