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  • How does my central heating work?

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    • Blog
    • How does my central heating work?

  • Blog
  • How does my central heating work?

    • home
    • Blog
    • How does my central heating work?

    Updated: February 17, 2024

    Without a doubt, keeping your home warm during the cold months is a priority for everyone. 

    Understanding how your central heating works and how many types are there is important for homeowners. In this blog we will talk about the different types of central heating and how it exactly works.

    What is central heating?

    What central heating does is that it keeps your home warm and cosy. The hot water needed for your central heating usually comes from your boiler. This hot water will pass through a network of pipes and travel to radiators. 

    The level of efficiency of your central heating system depends on how energy efficient your radiators are. We’ll help you know what are the best radiators available on this blog. 

    Your boiler will be more than often put in a handy location such as a bathroom, a kitchen cupboard or a loft. It will move hot water by using an electrically powered pump.

    Read Also : Types Of Boiler Systems Explained

    Types of central heating systems

    In the UK, there are four main types of central heating available. The most popular being the wet systems and the electric storage heaters. 

    Wet Central Heating 

    This is the most common type of central heating in households across the UK. In this type water will flow through the system continuously and will be heated by your boiler, which in turn will feed the radiators. This system is usually powered by gas boilers such as regular boilers, system boilers or combi boilers. Other alternatives include using an electric combi boiler or a heat pump. 

    Electric Storage Heaters

    An electric storage heater works by using electricity to charge and release heat when it is needed. To produce heat, this system depends on bricks within the storage heater that contain electric elements. Some electric storage models have fans that can push the warm air through your radiators. 

    Warm Air Systems

    This system is less common nowadays in the UK. However, it still exists in some buildings. In this system, cold air will be taken from outside and heated in the boiler. After that it will be released by vents into the different rooms of a house as warm air. 

    District Heating

    There is another old heating system which is called district heating. A boiler is not needed in this system. It gets its hot water from a centralised heating source by the use of insulated pipes. This type of heating uses no carbon and is very energy efficient.

    Underfloor heating

    Underfloor heating can come in two forms: either as a wet or dry heating system. A wet underfloor central heating system will pass water through pipes which are placed underneath your floor. On the other hand, a dry underfloor heating system would get its power from electricity that is passed by using cables. These cables are placed underneath laminate floors or tiles. 

    Read Also : Everything You Need To Know About Boilers

    How Does My Central Heating Work
    How Does My Central Heating Work? 4

    How does central heating work?

    When using a wet central heating system, a circuit would move without stopping and kick out hot water from your boiler. After that, hot water will be delivered to all the radiators and go back a second time to pick up more heat. This water is kept inside a sealed system and it circulates every day unless the system is drained for the purpose of maintaining it. In a modern system, you can find trunks and branches that can feed several radiators from a common trunk pipe. 

    Your system will be considered as a forced-air system if it is included with an air conditioner or a heat pump. The cool air that comes from your air conditioner or heat pump goes through the same ductwork or register as the heated air. A heat pump is a 2 in one system; it can provide both cooling and heating. Heat pumps would collect and extract air from outside and move it inside your house. 

    Read Also : 1 Top Rated Central Heating Services

    How do I control my central heating system?

    By using either a valve or a thermostat you can easily regulate your central heating and pick the ideal temperature. Your thermostat can be either built into your home or wireless, portable device. 

    When a room becomes hot enough, a thermostat would turn the boiler off. A thermostat is usually used to monitor room temperature. Some heating systems have timers. These times would turn your boiler off and on at certain times that you have set on. A smart thermostat can also be used as a more advanced option. It can be controlled using your computer or smartphone.

    Read Also : Best Regular Boilers Or A Heat Only Boilers

    How Does My Central Heating Work
    How Does My Central Heating Work? 5


    What kind of heating is central?

    If you have a heat pump, a boiler or a furnace in your home, then you have central heating. Central heating systems have centrally located parts, radiators or ductwork to distribute heat. 

    Is central heating electric or gas?

    The most common types of central heating are the ones powered by gas or electricity. A gas heater works by burning natural gases to create heat. 

    Which is the cheapest form of central heating?

    Propane gas is considered to be one of the cheapest options to keep your home warm. What is more, it’s a very efficient way to heat a home, making it a perfect choice for people looking to cut their heating costs and save on their energy bills.

    What are the symptoms of a failing heating system?

    No heat
    Strange smells
    Thermostat indicators
    Strange sounds