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Navigating the New Norms: A Homeowner’s Guide to Boiler Plus Regulations

So you’ve decided it’s time to upgrade your old inefficient boiler.

Perhaps it’s started making some unexpected and worrying noises or had to have too many expensive repairs.

As you read the quote for your new boiler, you notice a new smart thermostat is listed. You may be wondering why you need this additional expense; after all, the 30-year-old programmer and room thermostat work perfectly, don’t they…?

As legislation evolves, it’s vital to stay in the loop. That’s where Boiler Plus comes into play, a series of regulations that might sound as dry as an overdone roast, but bear with me—it’s more interesting than it first appears, especially since it touches the comfort of your home and the health of your wallet.

 

warm radiator

What Exactly is Boiler Plus?

Imagine Boiler Plus as the new headmaster of the school of heating systems. Its rules, introduced by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) in April 2018, are not just suggestions but mandatory enhancements to the energy efficiency of homes across the UK. It ensures your boiler doesn’t just huff and puff but also makes your home cosy and more efficient.

 

The headline act of these regulations requires all newly installed gas boilers to boast an efficiency level of at least 92% ErP. But there’s more. The details are like a secret recipe for efficiency:

– Time and temperature controls must be installed with every new gas and oil boiler. This means you can have precise control over your heating, much like the thermostat in your car.

– Combi boilers, the clever two-in-one systems providing both heating and hot water, must now include one of four energy-saving measures:

  • Weather compensation
  • Load compensation
  • Flue gas heat recovery systems
  • Smart controls with automation and optimisation functions

Install a Combi boiler without meeting these criteria, and you might as well be pouring money down the drain – with the added risk of a significant fine.

The Risks of Non-Compliance: A Cautionary Tale

For homeowners, a £5,000 fine for non-compliance is as welcome as a burst pipe in January. Ensuring boiler work meets the new standards is crucial to avoid such penalties. The rules aren’t there to be draconian but to guide you towards a more energy-efficient future.

A Deeper Dive into the Technology

Flue Gas Heat Recovery Systems (FGHR)

FGHRs are the unsung heroes of boiler efficiency, recycling the heat from flue gases that would typically float away into the atmosphere. This recovered heat warms up your domestic hot water, reducing the work your boiler has to do.

Weather Compensation

Imagine your boiler with its own weather station, adjusting your heating to Mother Nature’s whims. Weather compensation does that by tweaking the heat based on outside temperatures. It’s a smart way to stay one step ahead of the weather.

 

Load Compensation

Your heating system, just like a good detective, should respond to the slightest clues. Load compensation senses how warm your home is and adjusts boiler output accordingly. It’s all about providing just the right amount of heat and no more optimising fuel consumption.

How Do These Changes Affect You?

You might ask, “What do these regulations mean to me?” If you’re considering a new boiler, these technologies can help reduce your energy bills. They turn your heating system into a finely tuned instrument of efficiency, which is good for your pocket and the planet.

Your Next Steps

Boiler Plus ensures your home heats up more efficiently and economically. Choosing one that meets these new standards is essential if you plan to install or upgrade your boiler. It’s not just about compliance but also about embracing a greener, more cost-effective future.

And remember, if the maze of regulations seems daunting, you’re not alone. At PHP Services, we pride ourselves on having over 30 years of experience. We are happy to guide you through the process, ensuring your home meets these standards without hassle.

Engage with Us

We’d love to hear your thoughts and experiences. Are you considering upgrading your boiler, or have you already switched to a more efficient system? Share your stories or questions on social media, or contact us for personalised advice and expert services. We’re not just here to ensure you meet regulations but also to help you enjoy a warmer, more sustainable home.

Article by Jared Hooper MIPHE RP

Company Founder, Member of the Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering, a Gas Safe and OFTEC registered Plumbing and Heating Engineer with over 30 years experience.