Gas Boiler better on Ground or First floor? (prob a combi)

Discussion in 'Engineers' Talk' started by BikerChris, Mar 25, 2018.


Ideal floor for Gas boiler location (prob a combi)

  1. Ground Floor

    3 vote(s)
  2. First Floor

    0 vote(s)
  3. Depends on stuff you haven't mentioned.

    0 vote(s)
  1. BikerChris

    BikerChris Member

    Hi all,

    Just wondering but is it generally better to have the boiler in a cupboard on the ground floor or first floor? I guess the ground might be better in my situation as the bedroom would be close to it on the first floor.

    Building is just a carcass at the moment, so free to do either. Proposed Bathroom upstairs, kitchen downstairs if it helps to know.

  2. Bob Rathbone

    Bob Rathbone Well-Known Member

    Put the boiler downstairs in the kitchen. If you put it in a bedroom, and by some piece of bad luck it leaks Co, then the sleeper will not survive. If it leaks in the kitchen or a room downstairs that is not used for long periods, ie for sleeping, then the effects of a Co leak will be bad but chances of survival will be enhanced by those affected being awake and able to recognise the symptoms or at least feel ill. The noises from the boiler will also waken the sleeper.
  3. BikerChris

    BikerChris Member

    Cheers for that. Don't worry, I wasn't going to put it directly in a bedroom, but in a cupboard in the hallway. Does that change your opinion at all? I've lived in flats where the boiler was in a similar position.

    That's great though, perhaps I'll put it down stairs. Thanks again Bob!
  4. KIAB

    KIAB Well-Known Member

    Downstairs every time, utilty room ideally or kitchen.
    BikerChris likes this.
  5. Jitender

    Jitender Well-Known Member

    In my first floor flat the boiler has been fitted in the kitchen.

    Had a back boiler originally. The location in the kitchen was the easiest siting as the gas meter and hot and cold water pipes were all nearby. The flue couldn't be taken out thorough the external wall as the gutter line was low so had to have it taken out through the roof using a flashing and terminal kit.

    Having the first floor flat I do had loft space above but headroom isn't great, just about stand up in there. May get this resisted up in the loft, at least it is out the way. I know they can be boxed in with units but would prefer a wall unit there as space is at a premium.

    But if you are possibly planning on having the loft converted would be a no no.
    BikerChris likes this.
  6. candoabitofmoststuff

    candoabitofmoststuff Active Member

    I don't have a combi, so am not speaking from experience...
    But one of the things I'd also consider,in your situation, (i.e. "blank canvas"), is the distance of the run to the hot taps in any bathrooms/toilets/showers.


  7. Pollowick

    Pollowick Well-Known Member

    Great point ... a place I stay has two bathrooms, one which has about a 2m pipe run (at most) from an outside boiler and the other about 20m so hot water takes an age to come through and then, all the hot in the pipes is wasted going cold.
  8. WillyEckerslike

    WillyEckerslike Well-Known Member

    That's a really good point. We have a system boiler about 1m from the sink but the hot water has to travel from a fair distance upstairs - take ages. I suppose with a combi it will be a case of siting it nearest to where you're going to use the most hot water most often.
  9. KIAB

    KIAB Well-Known Member

    And insulate pipes, pointless heating voids.

    Also if you desiging a house to build, always pays to design it with bathroom,ensuite located over kitchen/utilty & boiler within kitchen/utilty location, keeps pipework to a minimum.

    Seen a few houses built where kitchen is one end & bathroom/ensuite other end,pipework runs must be a nightmare.
    BikerChris likes this.
  10. BikerChris

    BikerChris Member

    Hi all,

    Thank you all so much for your thoughts, very very much appreciated

    Its a very good point about pipe runs to services candoabitofmoststuff, in this case i don't think it matters much as the place is so small. the kitchen is too small to conceal the boiler i reckon, even though it would make life a bit easier (attaching to external wall so easier to vent). may be i'll ask my kitchen design friend if it's possible, it would free up a large cupboard,m but take away one in the kitchen.

    great minds think alike and all that Jitender, I had thought about putting it in loft, but that would give quite a long run to the kitchen in this situation.

    downstairs is the way forward I reckon, although I do wonder about looking at it from what gets used most, or what needs the quickest water. in the morning when i have a shower or wash hands / shave, i might want hot water quicker than when i'm in the kitchen washing dishes? Hmmm. Or may be the place is so small it really does not matter too much?

    Your spot on KIAB about designing bathrooms over kitchens when possible, makes for a tidier floor plan and makes service routes much easier.

    Thanks again all, oh and here is the floor plan. There is a mono pitch out the back (bottom of the page) which explains the diff in front/back dims.
  11. ManTheVan

    ManTheVan Member

    What do you need to think about when chosing a home for your combi boiler? How close or far the hot taps are as said above.

    And how far the gas pipe has to travel and how it will get there. And where the flue goes out the wall, does that make a difference? And where the condensate pipe will go to as well - it needs to fall all the way and end up somewhere suitable.
    BikerChris likes this.
  12. Pollowick

    Pollowick Well-Known Member

    If you are tight on internal space, especially the kitchen, do you have space outside at ground level? If so, what about locating the boiler on the opposite side of the wall to B2?

    Sister-in-law had one moved from inside her kitchen to outside which freed up more space for cupboards.
    BikerChris and ManTheVan like this.
  13. BikerChris

    BikerChris Member

    Thanks again guys, really appreciate it.

    ManTheVan, The gas pipe doesn't have to travel too far from the inlet, the box is outside at the front (top) to the right, so may be 5-6m above the existing concrete floor which is going to have timbers over it and then topped with insulated boarding so there will be good space for the pipe work (hopefully!) as well as lecky and water. one reason i guess that the boiler might be better upstairs is that i was going to break through the roof for venting (dual pitch above). At ground floor this would make the vent run about 6m to the roof, but if it was at first floor level (B3) it would only be 3-4m or there abouts. the condensate is a bit of a bugger as the joists run left to right so i guess they'd need holes drilled through them (if the boiler was upstairs). downstairs might be a bit tricky...hmmm. may be this is leaning the boiler going for b3 position upstairs?

    pollowick, thats a good idea mate, i have some outside space, so it could have a timber frame around it and some insulation may be. nice one for thinking....'out the box', ha! here is a pic of the back so you can see the rectangle is on the outside of b2. the 2 red lines to the left are where there is a fence (the boundary is a bit weird). do let me know if you still think its a good idea and welcome to anyone elses ideas. Thanks again!

    Attached Files:

  14. A bit too much info for delving in to this at the mo', but a few points: I wouldn't run a gas pipe under a sealed floor (ie between concrete and floorboards with gap filled with insulation) and it's probably even outlawed by regs (needs to be in vented space so no risk of gas buildup). So it may have to go under the upstairs floorboard void.

    Condensate pipe MUST have a constant fall throughout, so if drilling through joists any distance you'd have to allow for this - ie drill in decreasing height positions. Obviously the ideal place to drill through a joist is in the middle (neutral axis), but you won't be able to do this towards the start and end of the pipe run, so take this in to account.

    You've considered Jit's idea of installing it in the loft. Provided you can give good access to this area (there are regs about safety, flooring etc), then I would personally seriously consider it - get it the hell out of the way. The slightly longer pipe runs with slower hot water delivery is a minor negative for all the benefits.
    BikerChris likes this.
  15. BikerChris

    BikerChris Member

    thank you for all of that, much to think about so thank you for taking the time to write. you are right about the constant fall for the condensate, what a chore that would be plus poss damaging the structural integrity of the joists doh.

    may be boiler would be best in the loft space, there's room for it for sure and its no bother to slap some boards down. it would also free up the cupboard space on the ground floor and mean i don't have to put a new cupboard in at the first floor making it feel bigger.

    shame you all don't have a beer money account that i send cos you've been so helpful without wanting to sound like a kiss *** lol!
    Deleted member 33931 likes this.
  16. Bob Rathbone

    Bob Rathbone Well-Known Member

    If you put it in the loft, consider this, how will you prevent the boiler from freezing when the boiler is off in very cold spells, without using extra gas. How will you monitor the pressure in the system and top up as required, how will you do this when you are old and grey, unable to crawl around in the loft.
    Your neighbour has a boiler fitted with a flume control extension, you could do the same, the heat from the boiler would be available to heat the living space, not the local wildlife in the roof. For me, a boiler in the loft is a very bad idea, I would not do it.
    BikerChris likes this.
  17. Pollowick

    Pollowick Well-Known Member

    When I said outside, I meant actually fit an outside boiler - one with its own cabinet to provide weather protection.
    BikerChris likes this.
  18. A frost stat, and it'll use a teeny bit of extra gas.
    A remote pressure gauge - or just stick yer 'ead up t'loft every 6 months.
    The OP is not old and grey, and he won't be in this house when he is.
    Modern boilers give out very little heat to the room they are in - mine is in a purpose built cupboard which is barely luke warm.

    For me, a boiler in the loft when you have limited space is a cracking idea. I would do it.
    BikerChris likes this.
  19. BikerChris

    BikerChris Member

    Jesus, there's a lot to consider, thank you all for pointing these things out, really appreciated (I know i keep saying that but its true!).

    Bob and Devil, you've both got really good things to say and it might help to know this is a starter home so it should only be used by younger people (if they are lucky enough to get mortgages of course!). Only having a bathroom upstairs would probably put more mature occupants off a little bit as well.

    Well observed about my neighbour Bob, they've got a bit more space to play with than me...well, a lot!

    I think so far I'm going for the loft space, I do understand and appreciate your thoughts about putting it out the back, but like everyone in the world, I want to do it with as little hassle as possible. Also, the garden is pretty small as it is (it really is!) and a cupboard would take a dent out of that.

    Thank you both and Pollowick, KIAB, WillyEckerslike and ManTheVan, you've given me a lot to think about and I think the solution will be perfect for my wallet and my limited time!

    I'll let you know when it's done, any other comments are more than welcome but next time i'm on here, i will post some pics!


    Deleted member 33931 likes this.
  20. It's good to have as many alternative viewpoints as possible - that way you can make an informed decision.

    If you do decide on t'loft, then read up the requirements for access and space and lighting and flooring and stuff :)
    BikerChris likes this.

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