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What’s the Difference between a Condensing and Non-Condensing Boiler?

Confused shrug

Choosing a boiler is an important decision for you as a homeowner – choose the right model and you might spend a little more up front, but you could save yourself a bundle on energy bills for years to come; choose the wrong one and…well, sometimes, you get what you pay for.

One decision you will have to make when choosing a boiler is whether to choose a condensing or non-condensing model. Let’s take a look at what that means.

Boiler basics

A boiler works by extracting heat from fuel as it burns. In both condenser and non-condenser boilers, that heat is first pushed through a heat exchanger, which transfers energy to the water that runs through your radiators and baseboards. The problem is no combustion system is 100 percent efficient, so some of the heat produced is lost along the way.

In a condensing boiler, however, the exhaust from the fuel burning process is routed to a secondary heat exchanger (a process that never happens in a non-condensing boiler), which extracts more heat and diverts it back into your heating system. By pulling more heat from the fuel burning process, and by running cooler overall, a condensing boiler operates about 10 to 15 percent more efficiently than a non-condensing boiler.

Why aren’t all boilers condensing? Two reasons: First, non-condensing boilers are cheaper to manufacture because they don’t have to deal with the secondary heat exchange process – which means fewer parts and less robust materials are needed for manufacturing.

The second reason? Because it requires an expert to install a condensing boiler in a way that ensures you’ll spend less on fuel than with a non-condensing boiler.

Fortunately, you’ll find those experts at Ace-Robbins.

Our highly trained technicians will assess whether your home heating system will be able to keep you comfortable while operating at the lower temperatures that provide a condensing boiler with its advantage. And as with all our heating system installations, we’ll get it done quickly – and get it done right the first time.

Ready to replace your old boiler with a high efficiency upgrade? Contact us for a FREE ESTIMATE on a boiler for your PA home – and don’t forget to ask about the $100 rebate on Rinnai Condensing boilers!