How Much Does It Cost to Install Central Heating?
If your heating system has recently broken down or you have moved into a new property, you will have to select a suitable boiler and have it installed by qualified heating engineers.
This guide provides a comprehensive overview of how much it costs to install a new central heating system. We'll cover what you need for your new boiler project, factors to consider, and any additional expenses you may face.
Factors that affect the cost of central heating installation
The installation's complexity
The size and complexity of the job affect central heating installation costs. If the installation involves extensive piping work or awkward installation in inaccessible areas, installation costs will increase. That is why it is useful to get an accurate quote first.
Another factor that can affect the cost is the length of the job; if it turns out that the work has to be extended due to inaccessible areas of the property, the quote might have to be revised. So, make the process easier by leaving home for a few days or a week.
Number and size of rooms
Central heating systems require radiators. The style of radiators has a bearing on the overall cost, but so does the number of them you need. Obviously, you will pay more by installing a system that requires more radiators, so factor this into your budget when researching how much it costs to install gas central heating.
Further to the number of radiators you need, the cost of installing central heating systems also depends on the size of the rooms you need to heat. If you have large rooms, you might require more than one radiator. Of course, larger rooms cost more to heat and can increase running costs.
Quality of components
There are two things to consider when it comes to central heating installation costs. The first is the type of system you want to install - do you want a standard boiler, combi boiler, system boiler, or something else. The second thing is the quality of components, what brand of boiler and radiator?
Like all products, boilers, and radiators are made by big brands, and the name often comes with a higher price tag. While big-brand boilers and radiators are undoubtedly more expensive, you have peace of mind that you are buying a quality item with a suitable guarantee, affecting long-term costs.
Overall costs will also depend on the labour costs of the work. If you want to get an accurate picture of labour costs for your project, there are various online calculators that you can use. In general, the labour cost depends on two things - the hourly rate and the size of the installation job.
The hourly rate is one of the first things to consider when arranging your central heating installation cost budget. The reason is that labour rates vary greatly depending on your locality, and within a region, you might get better rates if you shop around. So, work with these factors to keep costs down.
A standard boiler is one of the most common boiler styles in UK homes, but it isn't always the best choice. Standard boilers, or regular boilers, are more common in older properties, but they use a hot water cylinder to heat water. Standard boilers often have a bigger price tag as well.
If you want to install a standard boiler, it will cost between £1750 on the lower end of the scale and £3000 on the higher end. Although standard boilers are an older technology, they are still helpful for some properties and some heating styles. These boilers work well in colder homes to protect pipes.
By far, the most popular form of boiler in the UK is a gas combi boiler. This type of boiler is a heating system that uses a small boiler unit to heat water as it comes through the pipes; there is no need for a hot water tank in the basement or loft. Combination boilers are also reasonably priced in comparison to other types.
If you want to install a combination boiler in your home, you can expect to pay £1260 on the lower end of the scale and £1625 on the higher end. It makes sense to install a combination boiler because it is more affordable to install, and it can save you money on your energy bills - it's an excellent gas boiler.
If your property is on the larger side, you might want to consider a system boiler. System boilers are becoming more popular in the UK because they provide a continuous supply of hot water by using a hot water tank or cylinder; this is different from combi boilers that provide hot water on demand.
It will cost you a little more to install a system boiler in your home; part of the cost goes to installing a larger system on a bigger property, and there will also be additional labour costs involved. On the lower end, you can expect to pay £500, and on the higher end, a systems boiler will cost £3000.
Liquid petroleum gas (LPG) boiler
Central heating systems that are growing in popularity are LPG boiler systems. LPG stands for Liquid Petroleum Gas, which is a mixture of hydrocarbon gases like propane, butane, and propylene. LPG gas boilers are popular in off-grid properties; they are better for the environment than fossil fuels.
Although LPG boilers are more popular in off-grid properties, they are growing in popularity in homes as well. If you want to run an LPG boiler, you will have to procure your own gas supply. This is contained in gas bottles and delivered to your home. The gas is cheaper than gas from the main supply.
Depending on the brand, the boiler itself can cost as little as £400 or as much as £2000.
One of the best boiler options for your home nowadays is a biomass boiler. A biomass boiler is all about recycling, reusing, and reducing the carbon output of your home. Once installed, you can put bio-matter into the boiler that's converted to gas. This output is used for hot water and home heating.
Unfortunately, a biomass boiler is also the most expensive boiler option for your home. If you want to install a biomass boiler in your home and reduce your carbon output, it will cost you between £10,000-£14,000 for installation. However, once installed, there are big savings and earnings you can make.
Cost of other central heating system components
Whether you install a standard boiler or a combination boiler, you will need to install radiators. Each room in your home will need a radiator, and more than one might be required for larger rooms. Radiators are branded items, so they can range in price; the number of radiators you need also affects the total price.
Remember that radiators are needed in every room. You'll be able to choose between ornate radiators and standard ones. Designer radiators have fins and stand out from the wall; they are more of a feature and cost between £150-£1000. Standard central heating radiators are flat and cost £20-£120.
Controls: wireless or traditional
Thermostatic radiator valves and smart heating controls are important to your gas heating system if you want to heat your home efficiently and reduce your carbon output. A heating engineer can advise you on the best heating controls for your home. Smart technology is also available such as smart thermostats.
Your home's heating controls can be traditional or modern; for example, you can put a thermostat in each of the rooms, which allows you to measure and adjust the heat of your rooms manually. The other option is to use a zonal heating system. Wireless room thermostats cost £125-£190 per room.
Hot water cylinder
If your home is larger or has greater hot water demands, you're better off with a hot water cylinder. Combi boilers are excellent for heating water fast and keeping the costs down, but they struggle to handle many taps on at once or high water demands. In that case, you need to install a water cylinder.
Hot water cylinders need space; it is a large, heavy items that will have to be installed in the basement, the loft, or a convenient cupboard. The heating engineer will advise you of the best place to install one. Expect to pay between £300 and £1500.
Additional expenses to consider
On top of the costs outlined above, you might have to think about the price of staying in a hotel if it's a big installation job and you want to keep out of the way for a few days.
Installing a central heating system: What's involved?
The first thing is planning; you will have to select the best boiler system for your home and lifestyle. Once you have found the perfect boiler system, you need to find an engineer to install it for you. Remember to shop around the local area and select a boiler engineer that gives you a competitive rate. Finally, you will want to evacuate your residence for a few days while the work is carried out.
How to find the right central heating engineer
Installing a new boiler system is an expensive undertaking, so you don't want to overpay on the labour costs. That said, you don't want to go too cheap either and risk short-term issues with your boiler system. Spend some time researching heating engineers in your local area. Talk to friends, family members, and local tradespeople to find where the most credible heating engineers can be found.
How can I save money on a new central heating system?
Installing a new central heating system will set you back a few thousand pounds at least. Still, there are some ways to reduce your overall spending and make some smart choices for the future. The first thing you need to consider is the boiler type. Combi boilers are not only more efficient than regular ones, but they are also cheaper. The radiators you choose can also save money, so can a zonal heating system.
How long does it take to install central heating?
The time it takes to install a central boiler system depends on the system you are installing and the size of your property. Central heating installation with a combi boiler can be faster and cheaper to install than a regular boiler because there is less piping work, but the duration of your central heating installation also depends on the number of rooms. Expect installation to last between 1 and 2 weeks.
Is it expensive to run central heating?
According to experts, a unit of gas is three times cheaper than a unit of electricity, so you can expect to pay less for central heating if you opt for gas over electricity. Then again, there are other reasons to pay a bit more for an electric system, such as a smaller carbon footprint. In comparison to other power sources, how much does it cost to have central heating installed? Overall it's the cheapest form of heating system to have.
What is the most economical temperature for central heating?
Installing central heating might provide you with a cheaper way to heat your home, but a lot of the savings you make in heating your home depends on usage. A zonal system, for instance, will heat different rooms at various times, giving you more control and flexibility over your central heating. If you don't have a zonal system, you need to manually adjust the heating in different rooms.
Installing a new boiler system in your home is usually not optional; it's a necessity. This is especially true if it's an older property or you have recently moved in.
Still, it's a good idea to have a rounded knowledge of the costs involved so you can outline a budget and keep the project under control. Defining your hot water needs and lifestyle habits at the outset is a good practice and try to consider more efficient heating options.