Boiler, Building Regulations and Efficiency

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Boiler Plus and energy efficiency.

From the 6th April 2018 changes to part L of the Building Regulations, also called Boiler Plus, will take effect.

This means the minimum requirements when installing a new boiler in an existing property will change.

Key changes are:

Space heating efficiency for gas boilers will be no less than ERP 92%

Minimum time and temperature controls are required for all gas boilers.

Combi boiler installs must also include one of the following:

Weather compensation

Load compensation

Smart controls with automation and optimisation

Flue gas heat recovery

Weather compensation;
This uses a small temperature sensor located outside. When the temperature changes outside the boiler responds and increases or decreases the radiator temperature to compensate. This has many effects including reducing the cycling of the boiler, ie. instead of the boiler keep switching on and off it turns up and down, increasing efficiency and giving a more comfortable stable room temperature. This also increases boiler life.

Load compensation;
This is achieved with the use of a thermostat that lowers the temperature of the water going to the radiators as the room temperature gets near to the temperature set on the thermostat. This reduces energy usage and also keeps a more stable room temperature than conventional thermostats.

Smart controls;
There are various smart controls available. They can be controlled remotely with a phone or tablet. To comply with  the new regulations they must include automation and optimisation.
Automation can detect occupancy and turn the heating off or on when someone leaves or returns.
Optimisation can calculate the time required for the heating to reach the set temperature on adjust the time it comes on so the house is warm by the required time.

Flue Gas Heat Recovery
Flue gas heat recovery uses heat from the waste flue gases to preheat the cold water entering the boiler, this reduces the energy needed to warm the water to the temperature required.

These are the minimum requirements but more than one option can be used together for increased comfort and  efficiency.

Although the 4 options above will be compulsory for combi boiler for now, some of the above can also be used with conventional and system boilers.

I have heard that home owners can be fined  up to £5000 for knowingly not complying with the regulations.

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