March 14, 2021
You may have heard of LPG boilers before, but even if you are not familiar with them, they are a fairly popular alternative to a normal gas boiler.
Designed for a multitude of uses, LPG boilers have become favourites, but how do you choose the best boiler from across the entire market?
Here are some of the best LPG boilers 2021 has to offer, as well as examples of how they might benefit you, and why they are worth considering for your home.
An LPG boiler, or Liquefied Petroleum Gas boiler is designed for anybody without access to a normal gas mains connection. Although similar in design to oil boilers, they burn LPG, which allow them to be filled up from containers and serve the same basic purpose.
In general, an LPG boiler is not a standard thing that all houses will have. They are generally used by people who can’t get (or don’t want to use) mains gas, such as people in caravans, unfinished homes, or in fairly rural locations without an accessible mains system.
At its core, an LPG boiler is the same as any standard boiler, only designed for different situations and built around a different kind of fuel.
A lot of the same factors you see in regular boilers can be found in LPG models, although the different context makes some of them more extreme.
If you do not have mains access, then there is not an easy way to connect a gas boiler up to a consistent source of natural gas.
Not only is it hard to buy in bulk, but very few boilers are designed for anything except a constant source of power, which is something only the mains can really provide.
An LPG boiler gives you the same benefits through the use of Liquefied Petroleum Gas, which is easier to get hold of and comes in safe containers.
They’re generally also designed for people to ‘hand-feed’ the boiler fuel, rather than needing a mains connection.
As a result, some are far more compact and portable, and a few are even meant to be moved around or installed on a moving vehicle like a caravan.
Others are larger building-level boilers that can be set up like storage tanks, allowing them to be used to heat an entire building.
LPG boilers are often much cheaper than oil/gas options, although it depends on the exact models involved. In some cases, they are actually the same model that has been altered with a conversion kit, meaning that it is the same basic framework with some altered components for handling LPG.
Really, it is impossible to compare them accurately, because they are meant for completely different things. It is a bit like comparing an oven to a camping stove: they do the same job, but they are not used in the same place and are not supposed to be used alongside one another.
You can find high-quality and low-quality examples of both boiler types, so neither is necessarily worse than the other. The one you choose usually comes down to the kind of heating you need, as well as how much immediate access you have to a mains gas supply.
Many of the brands producing LPG boilers are the same brands making regular boilers, which means that you can expect a lot of the same design quirks and features. As mentioned earlier, some are even based on the same model, offering similar benefits and performance levels.
Arguably a source of some of the best LPG boilers 2021 can provide, Viessmann is well-known for their great boiler designs. Of course, you can often expect a price increase to match, meaning that the average user may have to save up before they can safely buy one.
Many of their LPG models are capable of working with both LPG and gas main sources, often to an efficiency rating of around 98% under ideal conditions. Certain settings may even push it to almost 100% if you fiddle with the options long enough!
As a bonus, a lot of these boilers do not need any kind of conversion kit to switch between LPG and gas mains, and will automatically (or partially automatically) adjust to the one that you are using. Combine that with a remote control app option, and you have a lot of control over the boilers themselves.
The high efficiency and small size of most Viessmann models mean that they are suitable for a lot of different situations and uses, especially in smaller spaces. For larger areas, though, you might need something slightly stronger to keep everything heated equally.
It is also worth mentioning that most of their LPG boilers are very quiet, with the Viessmann Vitodens 200-W LPG Combi Boiler being a notable example at only 34 decibels (slightly quieter than the average library).
Valliant is a similar company to Viessmann in that they are well-known and well-liked, offering a huge range of models that all have unique features to offer. Valliant LPG boilers are similarly well-made, boasting high flow rates and fairly compact bodies.
Stainless steel heat exchangers are a common feature on their boiler designs, which allows them to improve efficiency and provide more reliable heating without actually altering the design. Although they may get blocked now and then, when they are clear, they function extremely well.
A lot of the designs also have great heating efficiency and speed, which means that they can prepare the water quickly rather than taking a long time to warm up. The company offers 24kW, 28kW and 30kW models, all of which are great for differently-sized spaces.
Worcester Bosch has a lot of green-friendly options that give you easy controls, plenty of adjustment options, and great energy efficiency. While they might technically sacrifice some actual heating speed and power, they are also a very reliable option that can support larger spaces well.
The main benefit to a lot of Worcester Bosch models is the number of controls, which allows you to properly adjust the boiler rather than having to make guesses at how hot it will be. Although some components may be fairly weak, finding spares is not hard, since there are so many on the market.
Different designs can include features like efficient low-energy pumps, frost protection, keyless filling links, and even condenser options to help prevent freezing and improve your overall efficiency. As a premium brand, you may need to expect to pay more than other companies, so keep that in mind.
Ideal is another well-known company that follows a similar design style to Worcester Bosch, giving you fairly good efficiency and a range of premium, high-quality components that do not break down easily. They are also easily converted to and from LPG usage as needed.
The energy-saving features are some of the key points here since they can make your power last longer and ensure better use of whatever you are feeding the boiler with. Even in the LPG configuration, you get a compact design and easy controls that can work in your favour within small spaces.
Different boiler models will have different features, of course, so some are going to be more useful than others. The Ideal Vogue GEN2 LPG Combi Boiler is a compact choice that could work very well in a smaller building, but larger spaces would require something bigger and more powerful.
When you are looking through the best LPG boilers 2021 companies are able to suggest, there is a lot of factors that can go into the decision. It is not just about cost, but efficiency, size, quality, and even the amount of money that it can save you in the long-term.
Of course, LPG boilers are also plagued by another problem: the availability of the fuel. You are not running on a mains supply, so every drop is precious, and there are going to be times where you will welcome any alternative options or benefits that can stretch your existing fuel further.
Your LPG boiler should suit your living situation. This means that boilers with optional gas main adjustments are usually very handy since you can plug them back into the mains if you are in a vehicle like a caravan. If your area has no mains support, though, then it is not necessary.
The same goes for fuel consumption. If you can only get so much fuel at once (i.e. you do not have a car to go and pick up a lot at the same time), then a boiler that consumes it quickly may not be the best choice. If you can, then you might have the luxury of being able to risk higher fuel consumption.
The last thing you want is a boiler breaking down, so it is always important to make sure that your LPG boiler is not falling apart quickly. Stronger materials and better overall quality make a big difference, especially when you are focused on a key part such as the heat exchanger components.
Efficiency saves money, retains fuel, and generally makes a heater better. The more efficient a design is, the better, so you should always try to keep it in mind when looking at your options. It is not just about saving money and fuel, but about being sure that you are actually getting proper heating.
An inefficient boiler consumes more fuel to heat any specified amount of water, and that makes it less practical overall. There can be times where some loss in efficiency is excusable, like a big external boiler meant to heat an entire office building, but smaller designs need all the efficiency they can get.
Remember a 1% loss in efficiency means that your heating is only working at 99% efficiency, so you are losing 1% of the money spent on fuel. Drop that to 90%, and that means that 10% of your fuel money is contributing nothing at all, which can be a huge pain if you are already paying a lot.
A small boiler can't heat a big space well, and a big boiler is going to waste a lot of heat if it only needs to use 20% of its output to warm up a small room. Choosing an appropriate size of boiler (compared to the space you are heating) is extremely important.
Size also dictates weight and the amount of space taken up, both of which are equally important. In smaller spaces, a bigger boiler is not just unnecessary, but can actually make it harder to live around the boiler itself. Remember that they are often louder, too, which can create a lot of white noise.
The only reason that you would need a large boiler in a smaller space is if you are using a lot of water at once. The bigger the boiler, the more hot water you can draw out at once, which is important for areas with multiple bathrooms, kitchens, or other water-using spaces.
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