Summary: Gas central heating systems guide, advantages of gas central heating and disadvantages of gas central heating.
Gas central heating systems
A gas central heating system is a common and effective way of keeping a house or other building warm during cold weather. It works using a boiler, which is connected to a continuous supply of gas. This gas is fuel that is burnt, which in turn heats up cold water. The heated water is pumped (using an electrically powered pump) through a pipe system that runs throughout the building. The pipes all lead to radiators or taps. In the case of radiators, they are positioned in areas where the heat can be emitted to maximise the input of heat to a room. The hot water taps are fitted with every sink, bath tub or shower.
The two main ways to control the gas heating systems are to use a thermostat or an electronic programmer. A thermostat can be manually adjusted to turn on/off the heating depending on the user’s needs. Thermostats can also be programmed to come on if the temperature falls past a certain level or to turn off when it reaches a high enough temperature.
Electronic programmers are usually on timers that the user sets. This dictates the time of day or night that the heating will turn on. A common time for the heating to be set to come on is just before getting up in the mornings and before getting home from work. This is entirely at the occupants’ discretion.
- There are two main types of gas central heating systems. The condensing boiler and the standard boiler. In general, gas is a highly efficient fuel to burn as you get a good return on every unit of energy used. Condensing boilers in particular are very efficient as they use hot flue gases, which are wasted in standard boilers.
- The gas used to fuel the boiler is pumped straight to your home.
- Updating an old standard boiler with a new, more efficient boiler is fairly easily done. It does not require an entirely new system. Plumbers are easily found if repair or updating work needs to be done.
- The cost of gas is probably the biggest disadvantage as it has risen quite dramatically over the last few years and is predicted to continue to rise.
- Installing a gas central heating system is a big task and is costly. Boiler, pipes and radiators need to be fitted throughout the entire building. If you are in an area that is not connected to the gas network, then becoming connected is quite costly.
- An annual service is required for the boiler to check that it is in correct working order. This costs money and is a hassle that other heating systems do not require.
- Gas is not an environmentally friendly fuel to burn. It is a fossil fuel and is therefore a non-renewable source of energy.
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