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Many technology advances related to new-generation boilers and water heaters involve control technology.
"Controls technology is evolving at a fairly rapid rate," Connor says. New control systems — combined with installations featuring multiple, smaller boilers rather than one large unit — enable operators to sequence the units more closely to meet occupants' needs and use less energy to do so.
"Sequencing-control technologies now exist that monitor the actual building heating-system requirements and determine how many condensing boilers, at their highest efficiency points, need to operate," Southwell says. "These controls provide increased energy efficiency but also can considerably decrease boiler cycling losses." Cycling is the ultimate enemy of efficiency.
"Nothing is more inefficient than a cycling boiler," Connor says.
Condensing Boilers: Understanding Efficiency Ratings
Boiler Controls Monitor Heating-System Requirements
Boilers: Maintenance Impacts Energy Efficiency