Condensing boilers capitalise on this extra heat source by incorporating an extra heat exchanger which pre-heats the water in the boiler system using the latent heat from water vapour. This water vapour is created during the burning of fuel, these boilers then condense this vapour back into a warm liquid and the heat from this process is used to pre-heat the water entering the central heating system, the condensed water is then drained away. Because the water now entering the central heating system is already warm, the boiler does not need to use as much energy to heat it to the temperature required by the system, thus making it a more efficient process.
There are many myths about the reputation of condensing boilers that have been proved false by the Building Research Establishment (BRE), which is the UK’s major researcher for the building trade. They found that:
- Modern condensing boilers are as reliable as standard boilers.
- Condensing boilers do not require more frequent servicing, are no more difficult to service than standard boilers and are not difficult to install.
- Condensing boilers are always more efficient than standard boilers under all operating conditions.
Due to their efficiency, which makes them better for the environment, since 2005 all new gas central heating boilers that are fitted in the UK must be high efficiency condensing boilers unless there are exceptional circumstances.
Vaillant have three different types of condensing boiler available: condensing, system and open vent. Please click on the links to see more information about each.