Where does the term boiler come from?  Wikipedia says a sealed vessel that heats water. Most household boilers are heated by gas and some mainly in country areas by oil. The boiler provides heating via radiators and hot water for the taps.

Such household boilers come in all shapes and sizes, being wall or floor mounted with their total output being measured in kilowatts these days which has replaced the good old BTU (British Thermal Unit).

Gas and Heating

20160726_123808Boilers are a bit like toilets – they work away and you forget them (yearly servicing is a good idea) then one day they stop working, and wow! What a difference to the house they make.

Let’s stick with the gas boilers, there are 2 main types that include conventional and combi. The conventional boiler provides hot water for radiators and for the taps through a cylinder where the water is stored until needed. A thermostat controls the water temperature. Both types of boiler need a means of expelling burnt gasses out to the world via a flue. The boiler is controlled by a timer, a room thermostat, often positioned in a hallway, and a hot water thermostat.  Most radiators will be fitted with a thermostatic radiator valve.

A combination boiler uses no cylinder and makes the hot water for the radiator as the conventional does, but the combi makes hot water as you need it (i.e. on demand). The system pump will be located inside the boiler.

Both boilers have a variety of things that can go wrong – usually without warning and quite high on the list is the electronic circuit board. The heat converter which heats the water can corrode and leak. Pilot light assemblies can fail, as can a gas valve etc.

Who to trust

Oil boiler engineers should be OFTEC registered and gas boiler engineers should be Gas Safe Registered (previously named CORGI). If your boiler needs to be repaired then call Plumber Northampton on 07494 123 007 or email plumbernorthampton@gmail.com