Which Boiler Is Best?

When deciding which boiler will be best for your home, the most important factors are the type of boiler and brand.

A new energy efficient boiler will save you up to £350 a year by reducing your energy bills.

You can complete the form at the top of this page to compare prices of trusted boiler installers in your area.


In this Guide:



Which Type of Boiler is Best for You?

best boiler image

The type that will be best for you depends on the size of your home and your heating requirements.

There are 3 main types of boilers suitable for UK households:


Combination (Combi) Boiler

A combi boiler provides heating and hot water directly from the boiler. They are the most popular choice for UK homes and are great for space saving.

Combi boilers are generally cheaper to have installed than other types of boilers as there is no tank and less pipe work involved.

If you are looking for a powerful shower then a combi boiler could well be the best option as the hot water is delivered through your taps or shower at mains pressure so there is no need for a pump.

  • Ideal for smaller homes or homes without much storage space
  • Cost and energy efficient
  • Might not be suitable for homes with more than one bathroom
Which Combi Boilers are Best?

Brand

Product Name

Mounting

Fuel Type

Efficiency Rating

Average Price

Alpha
Intec2 25XE
Wall-mounted
Gas or LPG
A
£1,080.00
Baxi
Platinum 40 Combi ErP
Wall-mounted
Gas
A
£1,200.00
Vaillant
ecoTEC plus 838
Wall-mounted
Gas or LPG
A
£1,330.00
Viessmann
Vitodens 200-W Combi 35kW Weather Comp
Wall-mounted
Gas or LPG
A
£1,300.00
Worcester-Bosch
Greenstar Highflow 44 0 CDi ErP
Floor-standing
Gas or LPG
A
£1,900.00
How does a Combi Boiler Work?

The image below explains how a combi boiler will work in your home:

combi boiler explainer


System Boiler

With a system boiler, the key heating and hot water components are built into the boiler. However it still needs a cylinder for storing hot water.

Unlike a conventional boiler, you don’t need a tank in your loft, but you don’t get hot water instantly and it can run out.

  • Ideal for homes with 2 bathrooms
  • No need for a water tank in the loft
  • Economical to run
Which System Boilers are Best?

Brand

Product Name

Mounting

Fuel Type

Efficiency Rating

Average Price

Baxi
EcoBlue 18 System ErP
Wall-mounted
Gas
A
£1,320.00
Vaillant
ecoTEC plus 637
Wall-mounted
Gas or LPG
A
£1,300.00
Viessmann
Vitodens 100-W System 30kW
Wall-mounted
Gas or LPG
A
£1,050.00
Viessmann
Vitodens 200-W System 26kW Weather Comp
Wall-mounted
Gas or LPG
A
£2,630.00
Worcester-Bosch
Greenstar 35CDi Classic System ErP
Wall-mounted
Gas or LPG
A
£1,200.00
How does a System Boiler Work?

The image below explains how a system boiler will work in your home:

system boiler explainer


Conventional Boiler

Conventional boilers, also known as regular boilers or open vent boilers, require a cold water storage tank in the loft along with a tank that maintains the central heating system’s water level.

They take up a fair amount of space, so your home or attic will need to be big enough.

  • Ideal for homes with more than 2 bathrooms
  • Best option for homes already with traditional heating and hot water system
  • Require plenty of storage space
  • Combi and system boilers more economical to run
Which Conventional Boilers are Best?

Brand

Product Name

Mounting

Fuel Type

Efficiency Rating

Average Price

Baxi
430 Heat
Wall-mounted
Gas
A
£1,050.00
Potterton
Ultra 24 Heat
Wall-mounted
Gas
A
£1,230.00
Vaillant
ecoTEC plus 430
Wall-mounted
Gas
A
£930.00
Viessmann
Vitodens 100-W Open vent 26kW WB1B
Wall-mounted
Gas or LPG
A
£950.00
Worcester-Bosch
Greenstar FS 30CDi Regular ErP
Floor-standing
Gas or LPG
A
£1,460.00
How does a Conventional Boiler Work?

The image below explains how a conventional boiler will work in your home:

conventional boiler explainer




The Best Boiler Brands in 2017

The best boiler brands are generally well known and long standing manufacturers. Companies such as Worcester Bosch, Baxi, Vaillant and Ideal boilers are trusted names within the industry.

Choosing any of these companies will allow you to feel safe in the knowledge that you are receiving a quality product.

The leading boiler brands are:

Brand Name
Info
VIESSMANN
These boilers are well-known for their high quality and they have recently won a Which? magazine Best Buy award in 2017. They are highly reliable and receive very positive reviews from both homeowners and installers.
VAILLANT
These boilers are generally considered to be strong and efficient and are one of the market leaders. They are not the cheapest of boilers but are cost efficient and overall work out at very good value for money.
WORCESTER BOSCH
This boiler make has a good and strong reputation with very few negative reviews. It heats water quietly and efficiently. Some negative reports say the controls can be rather confusing to use.
BAXI
This is a good mid range boiler. They are generally pretty reliable and tend to cost less than some of the other brands like Worcester Bosch and Vaillant.
IDEAL
With most of the Ideal boilers you will get a five years parts and labour guarantee. This is an overall sound boiler and also has optional easy to use wireless controls.
GLOW WORM
These are reasonably priced and relatively reliable. They also have a high satisfaction score from their customers.
POTTERTON
A well known British boiler brand who have have won the Which? magazine Best Buy award several times.
VOKERA
This is a good budget boiler and is ideal for tenanted properties These boilers are not renowned for their reliability or long life span.
ALPHA
These are middle of the road on cost but are generally good and reliable There are a few bad reviews about the customer service but nothing of great concern.


In 2015, both Worcester Bosch and Baxi have updated their Greenstar and EcoBlue ranges, respectively. These new systems are designed to align with new efficiency standards set to affect all boilers from September 2015.



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Review of the Best Boiler Brands in 2017

An independent review survey completed by Which? of over 3000 consumers showed that Vaillant and Worcester Bosch are the most reliable boiler brands. Both scored an impressive 83% for overall customer satisfaction.

A low number of Worcester Bosch and Vaillant customers reported any problems with their boilers, just 32% and 29%, respectively, the lowest scores over the whole survey. Baxi also fared well, with their Duo-tec combi 28 HE model being named the best overall boiler of 2015.

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Best Boiler for Your House

The best boiler for your house will depend on the size of your house and your heating/hot water needs. The best boiler for a 1 bedroom flat will not necessarily be the same as the best boiler for a 3 bedroom, detached house. Below we have compared the best boilers for small, medium and large properties.


Best for a 1 and 2 Bedroom House

If you have a smaller 1-2 bedroom house, or flat, with only one bathroom then you will be best off with a small combi boiler. A small property will require a combi boiler of around 24-27kW. Here are our recommendations for the best small combi boilers in 2017.

Manufacturer

Product name

Type

Max. central heating output (kW)

Average price with installation*

Viessmann
Vitodens 100-W
Combi
26
£1513
Baxi
EcoBlue+ 24
Combi
24
£1584
Ideal Boilers
Logic plus 24 HE
Combi
24
£1470
Worcester Bosch
Greenstar 24i Junior
Combi
24
£1573
Vaillant
ecoTEC Pro 28
Combi
24
£1603


Best for a 3 Bedroom House

Average sized 3 bedroom houses, perhaps with one bathroom and an en suite, can benefit from a range of boilers. A more powerful combi boiler (28-34 kW) should suit your needs and is the easiest and least space demanding option. A new, energy efficient, conventional boiler (18-24kW), with a water tank, could also be an option. It is best to talk to a qualified installer to receive the best advice for your situation.

These are our recommendations of the best boilers for an average 3 bedroom house in 2017.

Manufacturer

Product name

Type

Max. central heating output (kW)

Average price with installation*

Baxi
EcoBlue
Combi
28
£1797
Vaillant
EcoTEC Plus 837
Combi
28
£1698
Worcester Bosch
Greenstar 34CDi
Combi
30
£1786
Baxi
Solo 30 HE A
Conventional
30
£1519
Worcester Bosch
Greenstar FS 30CDi
Conventional
30
£2170


Best for a 4 Bedroom House

Large, four bedroom and above houses, will have higher heating and water demands and will therefore require a more powerful boiler. Typically experts do not recommend combi boilers for larger houses as they do not cope as well with multiple showers/appliances using hot water simultaneously. However, a powerful combi boiler of 30kW and above may be suitable if that is your preferred option.

Speak to an expert installer to find out what type of boiler would be best for your property. These are our recommendations for the best boilers for large, 4 bedroom houses in 2017.

Manufacturer

Product name

Type

Max. central heating output (kW)

Average price with installation*

Viessmann
Vitodens 200-W
Combi
35
£2287
Glow-worm
Flexicom 35hx
Conventional
35
£1822
Vaillant
EcoTEC Plus 438
Conventional
38
£2131
Worcester Bosch
Greenstar 42CDi
Combi
30
£2264
Baxi
EcoBlue Advance 40
Combi
32
£1975

*Installation based on South East England, with no additional radiators, fittings, thermostats or powerflushing existing radiators. Correct at time of publishing, to be used as a guideline only.


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