Vaillant has launched an updated version of its flagship ecoTEC plus premium boiler range.
Vaillant’s ecoTEC plus boiler has been a firm favourite amongst homeowners and installers alike, since its launch in 2005. Due to the popularity of the existing ecoTEC plus boiler, rather than develop a completely new product, the team at Vaillant set out to improve on the current range.
“This is probably the biggest launch of an appliance that we’ve seen in the last 15 years,” Paul Honeyman, Head of Product Management explained. “Essentially we gave one brief to our Research and Development team. We’ve got the best boiler in the market, we just need to make it better. Bring it into the 21st century.”
Vaillant worked closely with its installer customers in developing the new ecoTEC plus, listening to feedback to futureproof the product for coming years.
Installer was invited to Vaillant’s headquarters in Remscheid, Germany with some VIP engineers to get a preview of the new original, remastered boiler ecoTEC plus. What is clear is the amount of innovation and attention to detail that has gone into the design and manufacturing of the product. Some key features for installers to know about are:
The quality of the UK’s gas supply is less predictable and the types of gasses being delivered to our houses can fluctuate. IoniDetect is Vaillant’s self-adapting combustion control technology, which allows very precise combustion of gas. The boiler automatically adjusts to different gas types and qualities, ensuring clean, safe and efficient combustion at all times. IoniDetect also allows the burner to precisely modulate down to a ratio of 1:10. That means a 25kW boiler will modulate itself down to 2.5kW so the customer will benefit from a more efficient system, reduced running costs and a product that’s better for the environment.
Automatically convert to LPG
Due to the inclusion of IoniDetect as standard, the boilers will automatically switch to LPG, allowing more flexibility for installers working in off-grid areas.
The ecoTEC plus is capable of running on a 20% hydrogen blend if the UK government decides to introduce hydrogen to the UK gas supply as part of its decarbonisation plans.
Smart home ready
One of the main USPs of the boiler is that it is smart home ready. Alongside the ecoTEC plus, Vaillant is launching a new range of Senso controls, as well as its new myVAILLANT Connect gateway. The innovative gateway can be installed underneath the boiler without removing the case, and without requiring a separate bridge. Theoretically, an end user can do it themselves, and the ease of installation will save installers a lot of time. The controls use the eBUS technology seen on the previous Vaillant models and can be integrated with Apple HomeKit, Amazon Alexa and Google Home.
“We’ve been making controls for years, but this is a big step forward for the brand,” said Mike Lacey, Head of Digital Technology at Vaillant. “The world is moving towards more connected products and we’ve worked with installers and customers to deliver easy-to-use and easy-to-install products that make their lives easier. In the background we’ve moved onto new Microsoft servers so we can guarantee reliability, and our myVAILLANT Pro app allows installers to remotely monitor their customer’s boilers, ensuring the highest levels of service.”
New semi-touch interface
The attractive interface on the front of the boiler is designed for the end user’s comfort. There are also enhanced features like “limp home mode”. Effectively, on certain diagnostic codes, the boiler will recognise that it’s got a fault, and reduce itself to 60% output, but won’t shut off and leave the customer without hot water. This will be particularly helpful during heating season and will allow engineers to manage their time better, knowing they’re not leaving their customers vulnerable without heating and hot water.
Signature curved front
The boiler features Vaillant’s signature curved front which makes it immediately identifiable as a Vaillant model. This is specific to the UK market as engineers here told the manufacturer that the curved front was important to them, as it’s part of the Vaillant DNA.
The new ecoTEC plus range has clearly been built with installers in mind. Vaillant worked with customers who install their boilers every day, to get their feedback on how to make the products easy to fit, service and maintain. It’s a difficult balancing act to improve on a product that is already very popular with installers, but the feedback so far has been very positive:
Todd Glister from Glister Services said:
“The thing I absolutely love about the new products is myVAILLANT Connect that works seamlessly with the ecoTEC plus. The customer-integrated module that can just plug in underneath the boiler is so easy to do, bringing the boiler into 2023 by making it Smart Home enabled is absolutely incredible. Some of the things I really love are the little differences that are going to make life easier for me on the boiler, the condensate connection is a genius bit of innovation and allows for such an easy condensate connection. And the user interface is great, bringing touchscreen increasing and decreasing of temperatures, it is well worth a look. I cannot wait to get my hands on one and get it installed.”
Ian Rice from Gastech Northampton added:
“I do a lot of service work on Vaillant boilers and the new ecoTEC plus looks great. They’ve made access to the internal components even easier which will save me a lot of time and effort on the job. They’ve made some clever additions as well with the ability to monitor boilers remotely via the app, and the limp-home mode which keeps it ticking over when there’s a problem until an engineer can attend. You can tell a lot of work has gone into it to make our lives easier.”