Are you trying to save money? Do you want to reduce your household energy consumption? Do you want to cut down your energy bills? If your answer to these questions is a resounding yes, then you may want to bring your focus to your boiler.
The boiler is considered as one of the most energy-consuming devices in many households in the UK. But before you even touch the dial and adjust your boiler’s thermostat for just a few degrees more or less, you may want to familiarise yourself with the factors that affect your heating device and energy consumption.
The boiler is an essential part of the central heating system. If your heating controls are being utilised effectively, you can reduce your electricity consumption in the long run and eventually save a considerable amount of money on electricity bills. The effective use of heating controls can also ensure that every room in your house is properly heated in accordance to your preference and comfort.
Changes in temperature can bring about various changes and you have to take note of that. For instance, if you set your temperature too low, your boiler can serve as a breeding ground for bacterial growth. If you will set the temperature too high, you and your loved ones might suffer scalding.
How low can you possibly go?
The recommended boiler temperature in the UK is set between 60 to 65 degrees Celsius. Most heating companies recommend this temperature range too.
According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), the Legionella bacteria is commonly found in water and it multiplies at temperatures between 20 to 45 degrees Celsius. The bacteria goes dormant at temperatures below 20 degrees Celsius and succumbs to temperatures above 60 degrees Celsius.
Whenever you set your boiler between 60 to 65 degrees Celsius, you are protecting yourself and your loved ones from being exposed to harmful pathogens and diseases, just like Legionnaires’ disease. Pathogens and bacteria stand no chance against high temperatures, which is why numerous heating companies and the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) recommend this temperature range on your boiler.
If your family has a fairly robust immune system, setting your boiler to 49 degrees Celsius is actually safe but consider this temperature as the minimum setting. It is far safer to choose a temperature that is closer to 60 degrees Celsius. If you have a dishwasher that cannot generate its own heat, it is also recommended to set the temperature higher than 49 degrees Celsius.
Aside from generating heat, boilers have the capability of reclaiming heat that would otherwise be unused or discarded. Due to the advancement of technology, boilers have been developed to be more efficient, with most devices working at 90 percent efficiency. Because of their remarkable efficiency levels, the process of generating heat and water heating produces less wasted energy.
However, if your boiler is set at the wrong temperature range, enjoying its efficiency and full capacity will be compromised. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) was definitely accurate when they recommended setting your boiler temperature to 60 degrees Celsius or higher.
As a rule of thumb, you can adjust your boiler temperature up to 82 degrees Celsius during winter. This is considered a temperature in between medium and high. You can adjust it to a lower temperature if you the radiators are starting to feel too hot. During the warmer season, you can adjust your boiler temperature to 60 degrees Celsius and regulate it up or down according to your preference.
A lot of households prefer to use condenser boilers due to their efficiency. What makes them so efficient? They are actually capable of recovering heat that is generated during the process and diverting it to heat your home.
This efficiency is only made possible by maintaining a dew point temperature that is equal or below the heat exchanger. Dew point temperature is the measurement that determines the optimum temperature at which the water droplets form in the heat exchanger and the measurement of the air humidity inside it.
What about the water in my tap?
If you want to heat the water in your tap, you can set it at the recommended temperature but you should also take into consideration the type of heating system you have. For instance, if you have a water tank, you can set the temperature at 60 degrees Celsius or higher because this is the temperature that can kill Legionella bacteria. If you wish to go higher, you can adjust your boiler to make it warmer.
If you own a combi boiler with a small water tank that can heat water on demand, staying at temperatures between 60 to 65 degrees Celsius is also a safe bet. Always keep in mind that this is the optimum range that can keep bacteria at bay and keep you safe.
What about scalding?
At 60 degrees Celsius, heated water is enough to give you third-degree burns in just a few seconds. Because the water travels through pipes for several seconds before reaching your showerhead or tap, it may not be scalding hot as soon as it goes out.
In order to prevent scalding or other related injuries, it is advisable to install anti-scald valves. Have them installed at every outlet in which hot water comes in contact with people. Anti-scald valves can help you maintain boiler temperature at 60 to 65 degrees Celsius and get heated water out the tap or showerhead at 49 degrees Celsius or lower.
If you have a simple plumbing layout and you are familiar with plumbing, you can install the anti-scald valves yourself but if your plumbing layout is way too complicated, calling a trusted and highly qualified plumber is the safest and most sensible thing to do.
If you live in Swindon or the surrounding areas and you need expert advice about heating, plumbing and renewable energy, contact CentraHeat today! They have a dedicated team of experts that is available 24/7 and capable of giving you customer satisfaction. For enquiries and free estimates for installations, you may reach them on 01793 878 636, 07739 357 617 or firstname.lastname@example.org.