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Picking a Great Boiler: Steam, Hot Water, or Condensing

Although the furnace is the most common type of heating system in homes today, it doesn’t have the world of winter comfort all to itself. Many homeowners have boilers to provide warmth to their households. The energy-efficient performance and cozy heat of a boiler—whether sent through radiators, baseboard heaters, or in-floor elements—makes them attractive alternatives to forced-air heaters.

There are different types of boilers available today, and we’re going to look at the three main ones: steam, hot water, and condensing.

Steam Boilers

Originally, all boilers were steam boilers. The act of boiling water to turn it into steam is where these heaters got their name, after all! Today, steam boilers are still in use, and they can provide the highest levels of heat for a space. However, for most homes this amount of heating isn’t necessary, and the more energy-efficient option is a hot water boiler or condensing boiler.

Hot Water Boilers

This is the type of water heater that most homes have in North America. Using natural gas, electricity, oil, or propane, the systems raises the temperature of the water in it to high—but not boiling—levels. They consume much less power than steam boilers because they don’t have to reach such hot temperatures. Most homes will find the heat from a hot water boiler more than enough to meet comfort needs.

Condensing Boilers

These boilers run from gas or oil, and are able to perform at higher efficiency than standard hot water boilers. The reason for this is that they condense water vapor from the exhaust gases to recover energy that would otherwise go to waste. This is similar to the condensing furnace, which is also an energy saver. Condensing boilers are becoming popular in Europe and are making headway in the U.S. If you have a condensing boiler installed, you may be eligible for a Federal tax credit and rebates from local power companies.

Need help choosing a model for a boiler installation in Paramus, NJ? Contact the professionals at Advanced Mechanical Services today!

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