Is It Cheaper To Leave The Hot Water On All The Time?
Central heating is now a common feature of everyday households. Our winters are warmer and hot water is now an on-demand luxury. Having said this, there are numerous costs involved: not only do boilers cost thousands to install, replace and service; we must also cover the price of energy that is delivered to our homes.
With this in mind, humanity has been on the pursuit for eco-friendly heating and cooling for many years, begging the question: what is the most cost-efficient way to heat a home?
To find out, keep reading to discover our thoughts on one of the most commonly asked questions about central heating as we divulge some home heating tips.
How Do Boilers Work?
Before we move onto the main topic of discussion, it helps to provide some background information into central heating systems, in general.
At the heart of our homes’ energy supply is a boiler. Boilers work by burning oil or gas and utilise the heat to increase the temperature of the water kept inside. This water is then stored until it reaches the right temperature, before being distributed throughout your home.
The most common types of boilers nowadays are condensing boilers. They are named this way as they convert condensation from water vapor into heat by recovering it from flue gases. In simple terms: condensing boilers recycle otherwise lost heat that can be re-used to heat homes, increasing efficiency, and reducing operating costs in the process.
Read more – Types of Boilers Explained
Should My Boiler Run Constantly?
Leaving hot water running continuously to save money is one of the most common misconceptions of central heating. Many believe that due to the way in which water is heated, keeping it at a consistent low temperature is more efficient.
The Source Of The Myth
The myth derives from speculation amongst consumers seeking methods of improving their energy efficiency. The rationale being that: over time, the water that is retained within a boilers’ water cylinder cools down. To compensate for this, your boiler will begin burning fuel to heat the water back up, using more energy and costing more in the process.
In order to reduce the amount of time spent heating the water, many believe that it is more energy efficient to keep this water at a consistent temperature.
Is It True?
Although heating up cold water does take longer and uses more fuel, the amount of energy that is used to keep the water at this consistent temperature costs far more than the occasional few times it is heated when needed. This water is also wasted due to it not being used.
Therefore, letting a boiler run constantly uses more fuel as opposed to using it on-demand.
How Can I Really Save Money?
Although this myth isn’t true, there are a few other ways in which you can save money on your energy bills. Here are some of our favourites:
Insulated Water Tanks
Modern boilers are designed with this myth in mind by containing insulated tanks in which hot water can be stored.
When it is needed, the water is sent around your home and replenished throughout the day to prevent your heating system consistently drawing large amounts of energy at all times.
Boiler temperature controls allow homeowners to set their radiators and hot water to a temperature that suits them. The most common setting for radiators is between 70-75 °C, whereas for hot water it is between 50-60 °C.
Thermostats are an essential tool in saving money on heating. They allow radiators to be turned on at certain points throughout the day or to keep rooms at consistent temperatures to maximise comfort.
Modern thermostats such as Google’s Nest and British Gas’ Hive can be connected to the internet to provide even more functionality such as remote interaction and increased home monitoring capabilities.
Read more in our full review of the Best Smart Thermostats.
Cheaper Energy Tariffs
Another simple way to reduce your energy spend is by contacting your energy supplier and asking for a better tariff.
Many have found that they can save almost £200 a year just by switching to a different tariff.
Looking To Save? A New Boiler Can Help
We hope this guide helped you understand a little more about how your boiler works. With this information, you will be able to choose a boiler that suits you and saves money in the long-term.
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