Electric Boilers: What Are They? Detailed Guide!
Electric Boilers: What Are They? Detailed Guide!

Electric Boilers: What Are They? Detailed Guide!

With the announcement that gas-based combi boilers will be banned in the UK, the search for alternative combi boilers has become a necessity for everyone. Electric combi boilers stand out as the first option that comes to mind at this point. However, the electric combi boiler, which we are not very familiar with, means a question mark for many people. How they work, how effective they are, installation requirements need to be clarified. Today's article explains electric combi boilers, which are seen as the most powerful and common alternative to gas combi boilers, in detail!

Electric Boilers

Combi boilers heat water using gas energy, and the need for hot water to radiators and rooms is met through a pump system. Electric combi boilers have the same working principle as gas combi boilers. However, they use electrical energy instead of gas to heat the water that will be delivered to the radiators and pipes. Since they do not use gas while operating, they do not cause flue gas, which means there is no need for a flue connection for installing electric boilers. Therefore, they are one of the first choices of people who do not have any gas supply or want to reduce the damage to nature due to increasing greenhouse gases.

How Does an Electric Boiler Work?

Actually, the way electric boilers work is very similar to the way how gas boilers operate. The electric boiler prepares the cold water for distribution to the bedrooms and radiators by heating the cold water with the electrical source. Afterwards, the cold water passing through the unit, which is heated by electrical energy, is pumped into the pipes and can be used when needed.

In short, the working logic of electric boilers is quite simple and is based on the same root as the operating logic of a simple kettle. Moreover, there is no single type of electric boiler, and there are boilers that work in different styles.

Installation of an Electric Boiler

Electric boilers can be installed in two ways: they can be mounted on the wall or stand on the floor without mounting.  Since it does not emit waste gas and requires no flue gas pipe, the installation process is fast and practical. As long as your boiler is linked to your house's main electricity meter and central heating circuit, it can be mounted anywhere in your home, such as within a closet, a little space in the kitchen or the garage, depending on the boiler size.

Types of Electric Boiler

There are different types of electric boilers, which makes it very easy to choose the most suitable and effective boiler type for your sweet home. Some are suitable for your home, while others may not be an option for you.

Electric Combi Boilers (Direct)

At first glance, you cannot distinguish an electric combi boiler from a boiler based on gas. Electric combi boilers single-handedly generate and distributes the required heat for bedrooms and water. It does not also need such a large space since they are small and does not cost you a high amount of money since installation doesn't include a tank.

These combi boilers don't have a storage system, which means the water is heated as you need. However, this also means you won't be able to benefit from Economy 7 tariffs.


Electric CPSU

A CPSU (Combined Primary Storage Unit) stores a significant amount of hot water within the boiler so that the water can be released with a higher pressure into radiators and taps to fulfil hot water demand quickly. However, since they occupy much more space than normal electric combi boilers, they are preferred for commercial purposes rather than houses.


Speaking of Economy 7 tariffs, storage can pave the way for you to reduce your bills by storing up the electricity. Despite their higher cost, they come with a hot water tank.

Dry Core Storage

Dry Core storage electric boilers heat bricks overnight so that the heat can be directly used when hot water is needed, instead of being circulated directly into your home. Their design allows you to take advantage of Economy 7 tariffs for cheaper energy bills.

Solar Compatible

Although it allows you to produce the necessary energy only when the sun is present, you can enjoy free energy thanks to solar compatible electric boilers. With the hot water heated by the energy obtained through solar panels, you can effectively get hot water and use it within your needs.

Advantages Of Electric Boilers

Electric boilers, unlike gas boilers, do not emit bad odours; they even work 100% odourless. In addition, they can be mounted on the wall as well as on the floor, so they do not take up space. For users looking for elegance in combi boilers, they are designed with a style that they can become invisible in your house. Also, these boilers can be remotely controlled for users looking for functioning and provide a high amount of energy savings.

Even if your house is not connected to the gas main, you can use these devices anytime, anywhere, as long as you have an electrical connection. New generation electric combi boiler models include solar energy system integration, which means you can generate free-to-use and efficient energy through solar panels. It is also very easy to maintain and repair.

Here are other advantages of electric boilers:

Disadvantages Of Electric Boilers

Of course, despite their pros, electric boilers are not perfect and have some shortcomings and disadvantages. We have listed the disadvantages of electric boilers below:


How Should I Choose an Electric Combi Boiler for My Home?

One of the most important factors to understand whether an electric combi boiler is suitable for your home is the device's capacity. First of all, choosing an ideal combi boiler for the size of your house affects the efficiency to be obtained from the boiler. Considering this, it is not possible to acquire the desired efficiency if the boiler is too small or too large compared to your home. Remember, energy wastage occurs when high-capacity combi boilers are used in houses with fewer numbers of bedrooms. On the contrary, the combi may operate insufficiently if the number of bedrooms is more than your electric boiler can carry, resulting in the house and water not heating up enough.

For this, you need to examine different electric combi boiler options with a maximum heating power between 10 kW and 40 kW. Generally, the electric combi boiler model working with 9-15 kW can be considered ideal for small and medium-sized houses, while the models operating with 20-25 kW can be considered suitable for medium-large homes. As the house size, the number of rooms and the amount of radiators increase, the required kW will also increase.

Contact us for a more detailed guide if you are considering an electric combi boiler for your home and cannot decide which model and kW would be better for you. As Zara Heating, we can burst question bubbles with our expert engineers!

Why Should I Choose A Gas Boiler Rather Than Electric Boiler?

Of course, this is the first question popping up in minds when comparing these two. Both electric boilers and gas boilers have their own advantages and disadvantages. In addition to these advantages and disadvantages, it is also an important factor to consider which type of combi boiler is more suitable for your home. If gas boilers are ideal for your home and you feel more comfortable using old-fashioned products, here are a few reasons to choose gas boilers:

See Also: What size of boiler is convenient for my home?


We can provide the hot water required for our house with both electric and gas boilers. However, electric boilers have become an option due to the decreasing natural gas reserves and the announcement that gas boilers will be banned in the UK. If you want to change your boiler and install an electric boiler as a result of all this news, you can contact Zara Heating!