Are you moving into an apartment with a boiler and now worried that the cost of hot water and electricity could increase enormously? Do you think boilers are the technology of the day before yesterday?
Then we can reassure you and show you that boilers still meet the standards, provided that you follow a few important consumer instructions. In this way, the boiler can become a useful water heater in your home.
We will also explain how to install an electric boiler, what distinguishes it from a continuous-flow heater and give tips for energy-saving operation.
What is a boiler?
If you put it simply, a boiler is a device for heating water that is available in different capacities, e.g. 50, 70, 120, 200 or 1000 litres. It is also known as a water heater, hot water storage tank and hot water storage tank.
It also includes a water heater for boiling water, which can be used to heat up to 5 litres of water. In the kitchen it is mostly used for preparing small meals or for washing up. Nowadays they are mainly made of stainless steel to protect them from rust calcification.
In general, boilers can be divided into directly and indirectly heated appliances: Directly heated hot water storage tanks are advantageous when large quantities of water have to be heated. Inside the boiler there is a burner with which the water is heated. However, these appliances have become obsolete since the advent of low calorific value boilers and are hardly ever sold or manufactured.
Indirectly heated water heaters are heated by the heating heat and the temperature is adjusted with a heating controller. Through the pipes running away from the boiler, the water is transported directly into the appliance, where it runs through until it has become too cold. Due to the fact that heating costs have risen in recent years, this method has also become relatively expensive.
Installation of the hot water storage tank
Boilers are available as under and over table versions and are available with or without fittings. Under-table units require a low-pressure fitting.
During installation, the type of hot water boiler to be used is of course decisive. It runs on electricity, natural gas, liquid gas or solar energy. Depending on the type of energy, the necessary connections must be available in the home to which the appliance can be attached. You should therefore select the boiler on the basis of the existing connections.
In general, you should make sure that the temperature selection button is easy to reach and that a visual inspection of the operating light is possible. In addition, hot water tanks may only be installed in frost-free rooms.
During installation, a support rail is first aligned with the aid of a spirit level and screwed tight before the storage tank is installed. If present, the fitting is then fitted. Finally, the water connections are fastened.
If the boiler is to be operated with electricity, it should always be connected to its own circuit. However, this work should always be carried out by a specialist, otherwise the risk of malfunction and injury is very high.
Difference: boiler and instantaneous water heater
In many households there is a water heater instead of a boiler. The difference is in the hot water preparation: A hot water boiler heats the water and stores it. In contrast to the instantaneous water heater, which heats the water as it flows through the appliance.
Therefore the purchase of a boiler is worthwhile only if regularly large quantities of water are needed, because it has a higher capacity than the instantaneous water heater. However, they are more expensive in operation because they heat the water permanently, even when it is not needed. The instantaneous water heater, on the other hand, heats the water only when needed.
Energy saving tips for hot water boilers
The energy consumption and the costs for the hot water preparation depend on the one hand on the consumption quantity and on the other hand on the type of energy with which the device is operated. Electric hot water heating is particularly expensive when the boiler is rarely used because it is still on standby. This results in high energy losses, which it tries to compensate in order to keep the water at a certain temperature.
However, if your water consumption is low, you should not try to save energy by maintaining a low operating temperature. Otherwise, bacteria will develop in the hot water tank and contaminate the water. The operating temperature should therefore always be above 60 degrees.
Nevertheless, you can save energy with an electronically heated boiler: So the hot water tank does not have to maintain the water temperature at night. The same applies if you are not in the house during the day. The exact times are regulated by a timer, for which the purchase costs can be recouped after just a few days. It ensures that the boiler is only in operation at the set times. If you are not in the apartment for a longer period of time, e.g. on holiday, it can be switched off completely. Get the latest updates on efficient heating and cooling devices for your home through following water tech’s twitter account.