An immersion heater utilises electricity to heat water much in the same way as a kettle. Older central heating systems normally rely on a hot water tank with an immersion heater, which works to store the hot water produced by a boiler which is usually the main method of heating water. Here we will go through exactly what you need to know about immersion heaters.

How Does an Immersion Heater Work?

1. The immersion heater has a metal element that sits inside the tank where it is immersed in water.

2. The immersion heater is linked to the mains electric via a cable and has its own off/on switch. When the immersion heater is switched on, electricity heats the metal element, and this heat is passed on to the surrounding water.

3. This heating process can take 1-2 hours to reach the desired temperature, depending on how much water the tank holds and how powerful the immersion heater is. 

Note: You need to heat tap water to at least 50°C to destroy any potential bacteria.

Immersion Heater Problems

One of the primary issues with immersion heaters is that you have to heat all the water in the tank when you might only need a small amount. This not only means having to wait for the water to heat but it also uses up too much electricity. When you turn the heater off, the water will start cooling down again.

To combat this, a lot of households end up leaving their immersion heater on the whole time, so hot water is always on hand. However, this is not necessary and insulating your hot water tank will help keep your water hot for as long as possible. At the same time inserting a thermostat and timer along with the immersion can help to keep energy use under control.

picture of an immersion heater supplied by Stronge Plumbing & Heating who also install and replace hot water cylinders who serve Dublin, Meath, Louth, Kildare and Wicklow

Benefits of Having an Immersion Heater

Backup Hot Water

The major benefit of keeping an immersion heater is having a backup supply of hot water. These heaters have their own electricity supply and don’t depend on boilers to work. This means that even if your boiler breaks down, you’ll still have access to hot water.

Easy to Manage Energy Use

Your immersion heater can be switched on and off at the flick of a switch. This enables you to keep your energy consumption under control when it’s not needed. On the other hand, an immersion heater with thermostatic control will automatically turn itself off when the water reaches your preferred temperature and turn itself back on when the temperature cools down.

Saving Money with an Immersion Heater

If you decide to install an immersion heater timer, you can set it to automatically heat up at specific times of the day or night. If your energy tariff is less at night, this would be the ideal time to turn it on. 

Immersion Heater + Solar = Free Hot Water!

Solar panels that produce hot water are also known as solar thermal collectors. They are a great way to help reduce your hot water bills in the long term. A dual coil water cylinder is the most suitable type of hot water cylinder used when using solar to heat your water. 

Solar thermal systems could provide 50-60% of your hot water requirements throughout the year. You can avail of Solar water heating grants through SEAI. Using a solar heating system will also reduce your households energy consumption and therefore help to do your part in caring for our environment. 

If you are considering getting an immersion heater installed in your home, call an expert to discuss your options with you. If you need the services of a company that offers the highest quality immersion heater installation Dublin has to offer, call Stronge Plumbing and Heating. We specialise in immersion heating maintenance and repairs. We are on call 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The majority of our customers are reached within the first hour of placing their call. Contact us at our branch on (01) 531 2220 or 085 855 6111.