Vented vs Unvented Hot Water Cylinder

What is the difference between a vented and unvented hot water cylinder and what exactly do I need? If you are looking to find out the difference between thermal store vs unvented cylinder, click here.

What is an Unvented Hot Water Cylinder?

An unvented hot water cylinder is a pressurised system which is fed directly from the cold mains water feed and therefore can deliver hot water at mains pressure, which is great for improving the performance of your shower and bath.

An unvented cylinder doesn’t require a cold water storage tank, which is ideal if you are pushed for space as well as offering more flexibility when siting the cylinder.

The water can either be heated directly via an immersion heater or indirectly via the central heating system, solar thermal technology or other renewal energy such as heat pumps and biomass.  If you are considering using multiple fuel sources, you may wish to consider a thermal store.

The unvented hot water cylinder will require an expansion vessel to be fitted to allow the expansion of water in the system as it heats up. The Unvented cylinder also comes with other safety mechanisms, such as pressure relief valves and twin thermostats. 

To ensure safety and to comply with building regulations, it is essential that an unvented hot water cylinder is installed by a G3 qualified installer and serviced annually.

Unvented Hot Water Cylinder Explained. Hot water unventd cylinders and hot water storage fact file from McDonald Engineers.

Our POWERflow unvented hot water cylinder is one of the most popular copper unvented cylinders on the market today due to its unrivalled performance.  We also offer a range of Stainless Steel Unvented Hot Water Cylinders where budget is key.

What is a Vented Hot Water Cylinder?

A vented hot water cylinder is the more traditional approach where there is a cold water storage tank, often in the loft, which supplies water to the hot water cylinder on a gravity system - see schematic below.

The cold water is heated either directly from an immersion heater within the hot water cylinder or indirectly via the central heating boiler or solid fuel appliance.

The cold water tank is used to enable trapped air to escape as well as acting as an expansion tank to accommodate the expansion of the hot water during the heating process and the occasional instance of an overheat situation.

As they are relatively simple in their construction and operate at lower pressure, vented hot water cylinders tend to be cheaper than unvented.

The biggest challenge is they may deliver a lower pressure of water.

The system also takes up more space in the home with the combination of the cold water tank and the hot water cylinder.

However, on the plus side, Vented Hot Water Cylinders tend to be cheaper and require almost no maintenance.

Vented Hot Water Cylinders Explained. For hot water storage solutions, contact UK Hot Water Cylinder Manufacturers, McDonald Engineers for information on vented and unvented hot water cylinders and pressurised water cylinders.

We offer an extensive range of vented hot water cylinders, many from stock. However we can also design, manufacture and supply a custom-designed vented hot water storage cylinder to suit your requirements.Contact us now on 01592 611123 to discuss your project