Boiling water taps are becoming increasingly popular in modern kitchen design. Below is all you need to know about boiling water taps before you invest in one for your new kitchen.
What are boiling water taps?
They look exactly like normal taps except they can instantly dispense boiling water – so no more waiting around for your kettle to boil!
How do they work?
Boiling water taps work by storing hot water in an electrically powered tank. Usually, people will choose to have this tank installed under their sink but, it can be installed elsewhere.
Do I need a special electrical feed?
Yes, to connect a boiling water tap you will need to have access to a 13 Amp power socket with a dedicated separate circuit. Most homes do not have a power socket under the sink. Therefore, it is important to factor in the possible cost of an electrician if you are considering having one installed. This can be quite expensive if you are having just the tap fitted, without any other additional work to your kitchen. However, if you are having it installed as part of a larger refurbishment, it can be done at the same time as other electrical work, making it more cost effective.
What types of tap are there?
Boiling water taps are currently available in the following four models:
1 Hot water only – tap dispenses only boiling water.
2 in 1 – dispenses mains cold water and boiling water.
3 in 1 – dispenses both hot and cold mains water, and boiling water.
4 in 1 – dispenses filtered water, hot and cold mains water, and boiling water. Some manufacturers are now producing taps that will also dispense sparkling filtered water.
What you are planning on using your boiling water tap for will determine which model you buy. The more functions the tap has, the higher the cost will be.
Water tanks for the taps can hold between 2 and 11 litres. A 2-litre tank will usually be suitable for most households, but make sure to check the tanks reheat time.
Are they cheaper to run than a kettle?
The simple answer is yes. According to Quooker, it costs 3p per day to run their boiling water tap, whilst it costs around 2.5p to boil a litre of water in a kettle. Most households will boil their kettle multiple times a day, so a kettle does cost more to run than a boiling water tap.
However, the costs and installation of a boiling water tap are significantly more than a standard kettle, meaning the tap would take a lifetime to repay the initial investment.
Are boiling water taps safe?
All taps are heavily insulated so the metal does not get hot when in use. Most boiling water taps come with child proof handles to ensure that they remain safe in households with younger children. Not only that, but the water is dispensed at a low pressure to avoid splashing and the possibility of the user getting hurt.
What are the benefits?
The most obvious argument for getting a boiling water tap is that they save time. Boilng water taps speed up cooking times because you will never have to wait for water to boil.
They are great for people with mobility issues as they will not have to carry any heavy kettles.
By installing a boiling water tap you will have instantaneous access to boiling water, saving you time when you are making your morning cuppa.
Did you know the average person spends over 18 hours a year waiting for a kettle to boil? What would you do with that extra time?
Are boiling water taps energy efficient?
When you look at boiling water taps in comparison to a kettle, they are more energy efficient. Boiling water taps require significantly less energy to boil water than a kettle does.
They also reduce the amount of water waste as users are only using the exact amount of water they need. How many times have you overfilled your kettle? Or boiled it twice because you forgot about it?
These factors combine to make your boiling water tap much more energy efficient than traditional kettle use.
Are they easy to install?
All boiling water taps are monobloc mixer taps. This type of tap can have either one or two handles but only needs one hole as the handle(s) is attached directly to the spout.
If your kitchen previously had a monobloc tap then it should be simple to install however, you may need to factor electrical work into your installation costs as previously mentioned.
Moreover, if your kitchen did not have a monobloc mixer tap previously, then you will also need to factor in the costs of plumbing work to your installation.
How much maintenance does it need?
Perhaps the most important factor to note before purchasing a boiling water tap is the maintenance.
You can’t just use a descaler tablet like you would in a kettle. You need to change the filters of the boiling water tap and tank every 6-12 months to prevent limescale build-up.
It’s important to do this to keep the appliance functioning as it should do, and extending its life expectancy. The cost of this will vary depending on which brand you buy and can be purchased online.
Make sure to check the manufacturer’s instructions on changing filters before you buy. It’s not a tricky job, and usually takes 5-10 minutes but we can come and change it for you if required.
Is water pressure important?
Yes, you need to check your water pressure before purchasing a boiling water tap, most manufacturers will specify what pressure you will need. For more information on water pressures have a look at our advice post on How to Choose A Kitchen Tap.
Is it actually boiling water?
Although their name suggests differently, most boiling water taps deliver water just shy of 100°C, at 98°C. This is to account for the heat lost in transportation from tank to spout. Currently, Quooker is the only true boiling water tap on the market, as it is the only brand that can deliver water at 100°C.
After covering all you need to know about boiling water taps, we hope you are feeling more informed. We hope you have come to a decision as to whether it is worth investing in a boiling water tap for your kitchen. If you are taking the plunge, we recommend Quooker or Franke. Both brands are high quality, easy to use and crucially, easy to maintain. They also boast good safety features and come in a wide range of styles and finishes.
If you have any further questions, that we haven’t answered here, do get in touch and we’d be happy to talk them through with you in person!