Advantages and disadvantages of the three main boiler types

Heating and Air Conditioning

There are three types of boiler for your home, each with different advantages and disadvantages depending on the demands placed upon them. Comparing the types can be a little confusing, so this basic guide to the pros and cons of combination, system and conventional boilers might come in handy.

Combi boilers

Combination – usually known as ‘combi’ – boilers are the most popular domestic choice in the UK. A single unit provides both heat and hot water on demand, so there is no need for a water tank or cylinder. Combi boilers heat water directly from the mains supply, so the water pressure stays high during heavy usage.


– Unlimited heat and hot water on demand.
– Cost effective and environmentally friendly, as you only heat the water you need.
– Space saving, with no tank required and compact models available.


– Water pressure can drop if more than one appliance is run at a time.
– No alternative hot water source if your boiler breaks down.
– Not generally compatible with solar panels.

System boilers

System boilers provide heat to the central heating system directly and hot water to a storage tank. They are fast and responsive and good for larger properties that may need multiple appliances provided with hot water at the same time.


– Quick and easy to install compared with a conventional boiler,
– Space saving, as no cold water tank needed.
– Fast response to many taps at the same time.


– Cylinder can lose heat if poorly insulated.
– Room for the cylinder is needed.
– The quantity of hot water available is limited by the size of the cylinder.

Conventional boilers

Conventional boilers have a storage cistern with feeds for hot and cold water. They do not rely on pressure from the mains, so provide a consistent hot water supply. Whether you are looking for boiler repair in Gloucester or boiler servicing in Glasgow, there are plenty of companies that will be able to help, such as There is also a lot of useful information available online.


Hot water can run from many taps at the same time.
Work even if pressure is low.
An immersion heater can be installed for backup.


Multiple components take up space.
Complicated to install.

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