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A brief history of the modern household boiler and what the future holds for domestic heating supplies

Boilers are a key element in the everyday lives of millions of people. They provide heating and hot water to homes, yet how many people know their boiler’s history? If you’re interested in learning more about these seemingly mundane pieces of equipment, then read on!

The history of the boiler.

The modern boiler is a direct descendant of Victorian engineer James Watt’s steam engine inventions during the industrial revolution of the 18th century. The first domestic boiler was installed in 1812, but central heating systems didn’t become common until the 1850s, with condenser boilers being introduced soon after. Commercial applications began to appear around this time, too, with oil boilers and combi boilers becoming popular following their development in the 1880s and 1900s, respectively.

Modern-day boiler technology.

In the modern era, boiler technology has advanced to the point where it is more efficient and environmentally friendly than ever before. Boiler technology has also been made much safer with improved safety features and controls. Two main types of boilers are used in the UK: gas and oil-fired systems. Read our blog ‘What is the difference between LPG, gas and oil as fuels and how will this affect my new boiler?’ if you’d like to learn more about different types of fuels used for heating.

The most common type of modern boiler system is a condensing boiler that can provide hot water at high temperatures while also producing low carbon emissions. These systems are popular because they use so little energy compared to older models, which makes them very effective for saving money on bills! You might wonder what the difference between a condensing boiler and a combination (combi) boiler is – the answer is, there isn’t a difference as all combi boilers use condensing technology.

What is the future of home heating?

Boiler technology has advanced rapidly over that time, and today’s boilers are more efficient than ever before. They are also cheaper to run, and more reliable with a reduced carbon footprint compared to models produced a couple of decades ago. So is there a need for further development? Absolutely!

With the environment being a top priority, the way we use energy in our homes has fallen under the spotlight, and rightly so – at the moment, UK homes are primarily heated by fossil fuels and contribute 13% of the UK’s overall carbon footprint, and this will need to change.

Air source and ground source heat pumps are currently emerging as a solution, but at present, they are too expensive for most people to consider them a viable option to switch to. The UK government is currently offering a discount scheme to encourage uptake, but it will be a long time before heat pumps are the norm. Learn more on our blog: Should I buy a new boiler or will they become obsolete?

While there are still many improvements to be made in this field, it seems clear that significant advancements will continue to occur as new technologies emerge in other areas of life. The one thing we know for sure is that the future of home heating will involve renewable energy sources and reducing our carbon footprint.

What type of boiler or heating system should I install?

If the world of central heating sounds way too complex, worry not; that’s what we’re here for! So if you need a new boiler installation or a complete central heating system upgrade, give our team a call, and we can guide you through the process to establish the most suitable for your home and budget.

Call our friendly team now on 0808 134 9499 (landline) or 01992 238 251 (mobile).

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