How to reduce your energy bills using a thermostat for central heating?

Millions of homes are not using simple room thermostats to control their boiler. 

What affect does this have on the consumer?

Increased energy bills, inefficient heating systems and wasted energy.

The last few years have seen massive strides in the development of renewable technologies – solar panels, heat pumps; advances in heating controls and homeowners keen to drive down their ever spiralling energy bill costs.

Homeowners have more choice than ever before.

In 2005, changes to the building regulations made the installation of condensing boilers a mandatory requirement and the industry was quick to respond. Yet, there are still some 4 million inefficient old boilers in operation.

Despite publicity of this fact what is less commonly publicised is that without the right heating controls the performance of any heating system; from a domestic to a large office workplace will be drastically reduced.

In order that a condensing boiler operates at maximum efficiency levels it requires the support of thermostatic controls.

Since 1999 the installation of a minimum level of controls has been a requirement and the industry has moved forward with qualified installers advising customers on the importance of heating controls; for example if a combination boiler is installed, then a time switch, room thermostat and thermostatic radiator valves should also be fitted to meet minimum industry requirements.

Millions of domestic properties in the UK haven’t yet reached the minimum level of requirement and properties don’t have a room thermostat – which measures the air temperature in a room and activates or deactivates the boiler and pump. Not having a room thermostat the boiler will fire and cycle into a reduced load heating system wasting energy and causing wear and tear on components.

The importance of installing condensing boilers has been addressed by the industry but despite this many properties lag behind and it is very much down to the installer to educate the homeowner when specifying and installing a condensing boiler with controls thus demonstrating energy savings and efficiencies to be gained by the homeowner.

Often, a timer control will be all that is needed but by specifying controls that communicate with the boiler and alter its firing rate and operating temperature when necessary could lead to even greater energy savings for the consumer.

Normal room thermostats wont enable this to happen but the use of intelligent control options will achieve this. External weather temperature sensor or a load compensation device enable intelligent controls to to feed information to the boiler and prescribe what output and what temperature it should fire at.

The lower the operating temperature of a condensing boiler the more the boiler will condense which could result in a further saving of up to 10% using intelligent controls as opposed to using a standard control system.

The use of weather compensation controls continues to become more prevalent in the industry; the next generation of domestic heating controls are likely to be managed remotely from the boiler. Bosch Germany have announced the introduction of a smartphone device which can be plugged into a boiler allowing homeowners to access their boiler via their smartphone.

What does this mean for the homeowner?

Telephone activated controls enables the user to delay the firing of the boiler, saving money.

How does it work?

If you are late leaving work or get stuck in Motorway traffic rather than relying on your controls pre-programmed settings i.e. set to come on at 4:20PM you can stop your boiler from firing and change the time so it comes on later or; if you find yourself leaving work early the same applies you will be able to set the time for your boiler to come on earlier. Equally, if the temperature drops you will have the flexibility to switch on your boiler in advance of the pre-programmed time.

Having this function has the potential to greatly reduce wasted gas use that shows on your heating bill!

The heating industry is evolving to meet the ever changing life style needs of the domestic and office consumer and to meet government legislation.

If you want to cut the cost of your energy bills whether its in the home or at your office premises then contact us for an impartial discussion.

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