Potterton boilers have been around for over a century now. As you’ll no doubt appreciate, for any company or name to survive that long is a major achievement, requiring them to provide quality goods to the right market at the right time, and they also need to keep improving so that their customers keep coming back. In other words, they have to know what their customers need and keep providing it, time after time.
The company didn’t always make boilers, but that’s not surprising when you consider they were founded in 1850 – there wasn’t much demand for boilers except in large scale industrial applications, so it was hard for a new company to break into it. By the turn of the century, though, it was becoming increasingly apparent that boiler technology had advanced the point where it could be used in commercial buildings and perhaps even private homes, which also made it easier for small companies to make their mark. Potterton did so, and installed their first boiler, the ‘Victor’, in 1902. Their sense of flair and timing was shown off in 1908, when they installed no fewer than 16 Victor boilers in a single installation, the first of its kind to be done. Evidently, that gave the company something of a reputation and by the 1930s had done a large number, for the time, of boiler installations including high profile clients like the Leicester Square Odeon 10 and 11 Downing Street.
In 1955, Potterton developed the Diplomat gas boiler which is seen, quite rightly, as one of the first of the modern gas boiler designs. It kick started mass installation in UK households by putting effective and affordable technology within reach of many, and by 1969 the company had produced its millionth boiler. The 1970s saw a new design innovation, with the Netaheat wall hung boiler offering a radical design change from floor standing boilers. In fact, it was considered so groundbreaking that it won the first ever award of excellence from the Institute of Domestic Heating Engineers. Once again, the design proved popular and in 1978 the company reached the two million boiler mark.
Into the more modern era, and in 1987 the three millionth Potterton boiler was sold, with the fourth million following on in 1992. Combi boilers soon joined the range, and these continued to get praise and excellent reviews from those in the industry and those whose opinions count – from 2006 to 2010, Which? consumer magazine gave the Gold Combi 24 its Best Buy award.
Eventually, as often happens with successful companies, Potterton was bought by a bigger rival and merged with the Baxi boilers company, hence you’ll often hear those in the trade referring to ‘Potterton Baxi’ as a company name. The two brands have remained distinct though, and continue to develop and manufacture boilers to their own designs and under their own names. That means that customers can be sure they aren’t just buying the same boilers under a different name, they genuinely have a choice in how to meet their heating needs.