What are timers, programmers and programmable room thermostats?



A boiler timer is a basic device that allows you to set times for your central heating.


A boiler programmer allows you to set different times for heating and/or hot water.

What is the difference between timers and programmers?

A timer operates your heating system at the same times every day whereas a programmer allows different heating times for different days of the week to suit your lifestyle.

Room thermostats

A room thermostat enables you to set the target temperature for a room.

Room thermostats are usually best positioned in the hall or landing.

They should be sited away from direct sunlight and clear of curtains and furniture.

Programmable room thermostats

A programmable room thermostat enables you to set different room temperatures for different times of the day and night.

When set up correctly, a programmable room thermostat prevents the system from having to heat the house from a ‘cold start’.

The control always maintains a temperature within the property and this ensures that the boiler is only ever ‘topping up’ the temperature in the home.

As a guideline, target temperatures should be set at 21 C for comfort temperature and 15 C for economy temperature.

Source: Worcester Bosch

Dave Stroud
Author: Dave Stroud