Even if we insist on the fact that the climate is perfect on the French Riviera, our homes are nevertheless equipped with heating. Here's an update on the different types of heating in a condominium and how to save on the bill during winter. In a condominium the heating is either individual or collective. Each type of heating has its advantages.
Collective heating system
Collective heating in a building in France consists of radiators in each apartment, connected to a water circuit heated by a central boiler. The boiler runs on fuel, oil, gas ... More and more often, condominiums install meters on collective heating radiators, which allows co-owners to pay a fairer price for their own heating consumption instead of a package price where everyone pays the same price, regardless of their consumption.
Before moving into an apartment, it may be worthwhile to check the possibility of installing thermostatic valves on the radiators, in order to be able to regulate the heating and save money. The collective heating is most often turned on in October / November and turned off in March / April, so be sure to install your thermostatic valves once the heating has been stopped, otherwise the draining of the pipes and the shutdown of the heating system (if possible) are at your expense.
Collective heating is often less expensive and included in the condominium charges. On the other hand, if the boiler needs to be repaired or replaced, it can become expensive, especially in a small condominium.
Other types of communal heating are air flow heating and underfloor heating, but these types of heating are less common.
If the heating is individual, the apartment is most often equipped with electric radiators. Nothing prevents you from either replacing your radiators with a more economical / ecological model or installing a reversible heat pump which can also serve as air conditioning in summer. Or alternatively, use both. Electric heaters come in many configurations (convection heat, radiating heat, fluid or dry inertia radiators, etc.)
In an apartment, you cannot act on the insulation of the building, but you can pay attention to your windows and other openings. Changing the windows to double glazing prevents the heat from escaping and allows you to heat less.
The advantages of collective heating
The advantages of individual heating
Quite inexpensive, especially if you are installing thermostatic valves. The cost of collective heating is included in the charges.
If it is a holyday home, you can turn off the heating while you are away and save money, since you only pay for the electricity you use. You don't have to wait for the boiler to be turned off to do any renovation work.
Thanks to the pipes, the whole building is better heated and often even the common areas benefit from the heat emitted.
You yourself choose the number of radiators or heat pumps you need, as well as their location.
You don't need to invest in radiators - if a radiator needs to be changed it can often be replaced by the condominium, if it is stipulated in the regulations that it is a piece of common equipment.
You do not have to foresee an additional cost in case the boiler needs to be replaced.