Boilers and reducing fuel bills
Due to far reaching advances in heating technology, today’s boilers are more energy efficient than boilers previously installed and now coming to the end of there normal working life. Replacing a 15 year old boiler with a modern highly efficient model, could save you over 20% on your existing fuel bills.
Regular maintenance of the boiler
Boilers should be checked at least once a year and the filter on a warm air unit should be regularly cleaned. Check the plumbers database for engineers that provide servicing or regular maintenance contracts.
Replace an older boiler
Older boilers are only about 50-60% efficient and should be replaced by either a modern conventional model – efficiency 70-80% – or a condensing boiler – about 90% efficient. Condensing boilers cost more than a conventional boiler but savings in fuel bills will give a payback period of 3-6 years. New ‘high efficiency’ gas boilers, for example, those with thermal capacity heat exchangers, are more efficient than standard new boilers and may be more suitable for small or medium sized houses
How to choose an efficient boiler
There is now a boiler database showing the efficiency of gas and oil domestic boilers. Both current and obsolete boilers are included and the database is regularly updated. The database was developed on behalf of the government to help SAP assessors and is also intended to help purchasers and specifiers to select efficient heating boilers for domestic central heating system.
Most boiler manufacturers publish the average seasonal efficiency figures of their boilers, similar to the ratings you see on electrical appliances such as fridges freezers and washing machines etc. A simple guide to efficiency, has been created with SEDBUK efficiency bands assigned to boilers on a ‘A’ to ‘G’ scale. The band is shown on the database and may be used on product literature, the scheme is temporary and it will be replaced when the European directive on boiler energy labeling is introduced.
SEDBUK (Seasonal Efficiency of Domestic Boilers in the UK)
SEDBUK is the average annual in-use efficiency applicable to a particular boiler. It should not be confused with other output figures for efficiency that are sometimes quoted in the manufacturers product literature.
The Boiler Efficiency Data File is published as part of the DETR’s Boiler Efficiency Database scheme. It holds data on domestic boilers, gas and oil fired only, current and obsolete, for the purposes of carrying out SAP energy ratings. SEDBUK (Seasonal Efficiency of Domestic Boilers in the UK) is a new method for calculating the seasonal efficiency of central heating boilers, developed and agreed with boiler manufacturers. Its purpose is to identify differences in efficiency between different boilers in such a way that they are recognised and treated fairly in the SAP. The new method uses efficiency test results already obtained by manufacturers to demonstrate compliance with the European Boiler Efficiency Directive, so does not require any additional testing to be carried out.