According to British Gas, combination or ‘combi’ boilers are the most popular type of boiler in the United Kingdom. Their main distinguishing feature is they provide hot water ‘on demand’, a huge bonus in families and households with two or more members, especially if there is only one bathroom. Few things are more irritating than competing with housemates for the last bath or showerful of hot water.
There are other benefits to combi boilers. They take up less space because they eliminate the need for a separate hot water tank. They can be economical since they only heat the water you need. Finally, because they have fewer parts in a combi system, they are quicker to install than other types of boiler. Combi boilers are also capable of producing between 9 and 18 gallons of 35C water per minute.
The Down Sides to Combi Boilers
Combi boilers can only operate at maximum pressure on one tap at a time. Combi boilers are too slow to run a bath or to supply a power shower. There is no immersion heater so there is no reserve of hot water if there are problems with the gas supply or the boiler itself. Finally, you need to run a lot of cold water before the hot water kicks in. This is both wasteful and irritating if you are in any kind of hurry.
What Size Boiler Is Right for You?
This is a question for your plumber or installer, who will take into account factors like home insulation and double glazing.