Heating Controls

Not a very exciting topic, however heating controls are very important!

First let's look at heating controls.

Room Thermostat

A room thermostat is a temperature motoring device normally located on an internal wall, typically located in the lounge or main living area at a height of about 1.5m. It switches off the supply of the space heating when a preset temperature is reached and switches it back on when temperature drops below the level set. Older room thermostats have mechanical temperature settings; modern ones tend to have digital electronic settings.


This is essentially a time-switch that turns the boiler on and off at pre-set times during the day. Most allow two heating periods per day and some allow variation of the on-times each day (7 day programming) As with room thermostats, most are now digital, but older ones may be mechanical with movable "pegs" to indicate on and off times.


Most boiler and radiator systems will have a programmer otherwise the boiler would be on all the time.

Thermostatic Radiator Valves (TRV's)

These valves are fitted to one end of the radiator. The TRV has sensors built into the fitting to turn off the hot water supply when a pre-set room temperature is reached, thereby allowing individual temperature control of each radiator. The TRV valve will always have numbers on it to alter the setting. If you have a room in your house you don't use much, turn the temperature down on the TRV, no need to heat space you don't use!

Boiler Energy Manager (BEM)

A BEM is an intelligent control mechanism that controls the boiler firing regime more sensitively than a simple thermostat and programmer method. There are various types of Boiler Energy Managers and they mainly work on conjunction with a compensators. They can also sense the return water temperature to the boiler and switch off the boiler when this rises above a certain level. They have a complex control panel.


A device, or feature within a device, which adjusts the temperature of the water circulating through the heating system according to the temperature measured outside (Weather Compesator) or inside the building (Enhanced Load Compesator).

Time and Temperature Zone Control

Enables the independent programming of the heating times and temperature of two or more zones, for example one upstairs and one downstairs. This involves either (A) a separate plumbing circuit, either with their own programmers or with separate channels within the same programmer, or (B) programmable or communicating TRV's (By contrast , standard TRV's provide only independent temperature control)

Communicating TRV's

Is a TRV that has the capability to respond to time and temperature commands from a central controller.

Heating controls allow you to easily regulate the temperature of your home. The controls automatically turn the heating on and off based on settings input by the user, to ensure maximum comfort. This process moves away from a fixed, traditional timer system and can therefore be used to better control the temperature within your home.

Thermostats, allowing people to control the temperature of their home, have been around for a long time. Newer heating control systems have evolved to the give residents total control of their heating, and by extension, their bills. The latest technology allows you to automatically control your heating to work around your daily schedule.

Installing huge quantities of loft or wall insulation will increase the energy efficiency of your property. However to get the biggest savings on your energy bills, it is absolutely key to be able to regulate the temperature of your home. Thermostats and TRVs are a really important way to help benefit from the increased energy efficiency of the envelope (floor, walls and roof) of your home. If you don’t have them, your boiler will continue to operate as it always has, which means your home will be warmer, but you will be using the same amount of gas.

The recommended temperature for homes is 21 degrees in your lounge and main living areas and 18 degrees in bedroom.

Finally – and this is one of our favourite tips – turning your thermostat just one degree can cut your energy bills by as much as 10%!


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