What are Heating Controls
Upgrading your heating controls could help you save money, while also making sure that your home is always comfortable.
All heating control systems essentially do two things – they control when you want the heating on, and how warm you want your home to get when the heating is on. They may also do the same for your hot water.
There are lots of types of controls available to do this, but a fully controlled heating system should include at least:
- A timer or programmer function – this sets the time for when the heating comes on and when it goes off
- A room thermostat – this sets the temperature for that room and turns the heating off when the toom gets warmer than this. Thermostatic Radiator Valves (TRVs) should NOT be fitted in this room.
- Thermostatic radiator valves – these are fitted to all of the radiators elsewhere in the house, and they control the temperature in each room
Is it right for me?
If you can’t control the time your heating turns on or off, and the temperature throughout the house, then you should consider fitting new heating controls.
For any central heating system, you should be able to control: –
- When the heating turns on and off
- What temperature a key room or space should be at, e.g. living room or hall
- What temperature each remaining room or space should be at
If you can’t do all of these with your current controls, then you should look at upgrading them.
Residents in England getting a new boiler fitted, should meet new standards for heating controls at the same time, and so you may have to upgrade.
If you’re having any other work carried out on your heating system, this is the perfect time to consider upgrading your controls. It’s often easier and cheaper to have different improvements fitted at the same time
How to get it
Make sure you understand how your new controls work, so that you can use them to save money and stay warm.
Every heating control system looks different, and has a different selection of buttons and dials, but they’re all trying to do the same thing.
Generally, your strategy should be to set thermostats so that you are warm enough, but not too warm, when the heating is on. You should set your programmer so that your heating comes on shortly before you get up or come home, and goes off shortly before you go out or go to bed.
If everyone is out during the day, then the heating should be off for this time. Alternatively, if you’re at home during the day, you may find you’re comfortable with a lower temperature at this time.
Make sure you ask your installer how to use the controls – they should be happy to do this, as well as giving you the instruction manuals.