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High-Efficiency Boiler vs Old Boiler: How to Choose

High-Efficiency Boiler vs Old Boiler: How to Choose

According to studies, 29% of your residential energy costs come from heating systems. So, having a high-efficiency boiler and other heating systems, especially during winter is your topmost concern.

A residential boiler might not be on your mind when it comes to choosing home appliances. Though you rarely think about its benefits, you feel its effects regularly during winter. Without a good boiler, you would struggle to heat your house and live comfortably. This heating system is also responsible for keeping your shower water hot. However, in most cases, boilers go unnoticed until it’s too cold or they stop working.

Are you looking for a new boiler to make your living warm and cozy in winter? There is no shortage of options in the market, but choosing the right one for your home can be pretty confusing. Here in this article, we will chalk down the critical differences between high-efficiency and traditional boilers so that you can make an informed decision.

Understanding The Types of Boilers

A boiler is one of the basic heating systems known for keeping your home warm and your bathing water hot. This heating system heats the water and circulates the steam through radiators to keep your property warm. However, when making a boiler purchase, there are a handful of options with distinguished features.

  • Gas-Fired Boilers– These boilers are highly efficient at heating your home. Anyway, due to the limited availability of natural gas and increasing fuel prices, the boiler maintenance cost is very high.
    Oil-Fired Boilers- This is one of the traditional boilers that use oil to run. The energy efficiency of such boilers is impacted by the fluctuating prices of oil.
  • Water-Fired Boilers– These boilers are known for their energy efficiency feature. Water-fired boilers convert water into steam. These heating systems are cleaner to us than gas-fired or oil-fired boilers.
  • Electric Boilers– If you are looking for a high-efficiency boiler, electric boilers are the best choice. Though these heating systems are slightly more expensive than traditional ones, they won’t burn a hole in your pocket in the long run.

What Makes a Boiler Efficient?

The efficiency of a boiler is determined by the amount of fuel used by the system to heat water and the home. Every boiler comes with an AFUE or Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency rating. You may consider these efficiency ratings to understand whether the system has a standard efficiency or high efficiency. The ratings tell you how much your boiler will cost to operate in a year.

High-efficiency boilers have 90 or higher AFUE ratings. This means an efficient system uses 90 percent of the produced energy while escaping only 10 percent of it. On the other hand, old boilers rank as low as 60-70 percent. Such systems waste around 30-40% of energy.

Luckily, most countries have set a new minimum requirement for boiler efficiency. Today, a standard gas boiler must have an 82% AFEU rating whereas an oil boiler, has 86% efficiency. So, if you have an old or traditional boiler at home, consider taking professional help for boiler replacement.

Energy-efficient boilers like Navien and boilers utilize modern-day technology to recycle water vapour produced during heating. These boilers have condensing feature and save you a lot on your bill. A condensing high-efficiency boiler is around 10% more efficient than traditional boilers as they produce more heat for lesser energy.

Environment-Friendly Boilers

Old boilers that use oil or natural gas are not the best options for the environment. These boilers not only use more energy for heating but also emit carbon dioxide and other pollutants into the atmosphere. These heating systems may also spread allergens and make your indoor air unhealthy.

On the other hand, high-efficiency boilers like Navien boilers use condensing technology and thus not only save you energy but also reduce the production of greenhouse gases. These boilers have low noise levels. Thus, you may install them in or near your living areas without worrying about the loud noise that most traditional boilers produce.

With the growing concern for the environment, some reputed heating solutions like Viessmann high-efficiency boilers are bringing an energy revolution. These boilers do not use any fossil fuel and are very eco-friendly in nature. These emission-free boilers are efficient and convenient even when used with energy generated from renewable sources.

Cost-Effective Boilers

A high-efficiency boiler may cut your energy costs in half. Though these heating systems are premium quality appliances with a premium price tag, over time they pay for themselves. For example, a premium boiler may save you CAD 2,000 a year. So, if the upfront cost of a high-efficiency boiler is CAD 12,000, after six years of usage, the appliance with pay itself off.

Additionally, these technologically advanced boilers have low-cost installation and require less maintenance. So, if you are a residential homeowner, purchasing a highly efficient boiler makes absolute sense.

Factors When Deciding on Appropriate Venting Systems

While installing vents for your boiler system, you need to consider two main factors. These factors help you to choose the appropriate ventilation system for your home. The first factor is the pressure your boiler produces. Here, you may consult an HVAC duct & vent installation professional to know whether your boiler produces negative or positive pressure.

The second factor to be considered is if your boiler is condensing or noncondensing. Traditional boilers with 85 and below ratings are classified as non-condensing. On the other hand, Navien or Viessmann boilers with 85 and above ratings operate in condensing mode.

Air vents are important for steam boilers. When the heating system shuts down, the steam along with condensate gets eliminated from the system. Due to this, the space inside the boiler gets occupied with air and other condensable gases. These gases must be eliminated from the boiler in the next operational cycle. Otherwise, it may impact the whole heating process and reduce the appliance’s efficiency. An air vent removes the air and gases trapped in the boiler without interfering with its overall performance.

An improper air vent system may cause:

  • Reduced heat transfer
  • Reduced efficiency and performance
  • Malfunctioning of traps
  • Enhanced corrosion
  • Reduction in steam pressure


Are you thinking of installing a new boiler? Why not consult with our boiler maintenance and installation professionals? Let our HVAC experts find you a perfect boiler with a proper ventilation system. Our technicians are backed with proper training and offer installation services at very competitive prices.

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