Old boilers (15 years old or more) ideally should be replaced with new energy efficient GAS CONDENSING BOILERS. These can reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 12% (0.7 tonnes) annual average emissions, and can also reduce your heating bills by a third!
An energy efficient condensing boiler recovers the maximum possible waste heat which is normally vented through the flue of a conventional (non-condensing) boiler. The most efficient condensing boilers convert more than 90% of their fuel into heat, as opposed to 78% for conventional types.
When buying a new boiler
1. Ensure that your home is fully insulated.
2. Get at least three quotes. One of the best ways to find a reliable installer is to ask friends, relatives and colleagues for a personal recommendation. Your installer should always be fully qualified and registered with CORGI ( Council of Registered Gas Installers).
3. Check the Competent Persons Schemes Listings. These were introduced by the government to allow individuals and businesses to self-certify their work as compliant with UK Building Regulations.
4. Consult the Energy Saving Trust Database to find a energy efficient boiler that matches your requirements.
5. Check your heating controls
Many households may reduce their fuel bills and CO2 emissions by setting their heating controls correctly, such as ensuring that the heating is not on at times when the house is empty. Try turning down your thermostat just by a single degree or two. You may not even notice the difference in temperature, but may make a noticeable saving on your bill. A programmable room thermostat or Thermostatic radiator valves (TRVs) will allow you to adjust the level of heating in different rooms, so that you may decide to turn down the level of heating a room that is rarely used.
6. Consider Biomass Boilers
Biomass boilers are now more widely available, and can be installed to be used domestically, as well as more traditional sectors such as commercial industry, leisure industry and community projects. Most Biomass boilers can be used with different wood fuels ranging from logs to wood chips and wood pellets.
Most wood fuelled Biomass boilers are carbon-neutral as wood is a carbon-neutral fuel. Although it releases carbon dioxide when it is burnt, the amount given off is the same as was stored by the tree when it was growing. If the tree were left to rot in the forest it would produce the same amount of carbon emissions as are released by burning it.
The majority of firewood used for biomass boiler fuel comes from sustainable sources, so for every tree cut down another is planted, and the carbon released from the felled tree will be absorbed by another tree.
There are an increasing number of companies that specialise in the supply and installation of Biomass boilers, such as Border Eco Systems Biomass Boilers based in the Scottish Borders.