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Homeowners are constantly being encouraged to look at their existing heat sources and explore the opportunities to not only make savings on their energy bills but help look after the planet, too.

However, in the current economic climate, investments into energy upgrades can be expensive and put people off. Additionally, when there is such a wealth of information about the different potential options, it’s sometimes hard to find the exact advice you need.

We’ve compiled this handy overview of different types of alternative energy sources which are both eco- and energy bill-friendly, as well as advice on the schemes offering funding and grants so you can better afford the upgrades.


New boiler installations

Research suggests there are around 4 million households in the UK that use old and inefficient boilers, which increase energy costs and emit high levels of carbon dioxide. The government is trying to tackle this by offering certain households the opportunity to access funding to have their boiler replaced with a newer, more efficient model.

ECO4 is a government-supported initiative, delivered by the Energy Company Obligation, that has been put in place to help reduce household carbon emissions and provide more energy efficiency measures to UK homes. ECO4 grants are provided by energy suppliers, rather than the government, and all the biggest energy companies are obligated to take part in the scheme.

Through the ECO4 Scheme, homes with an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) or D or lower could receive discounted – or free boiler upgrades or a new green heating system.
ECO4 was introduced by the government in April 2022 and will run until 31 March 2026. The ECO4 Scheme also covers ‘boiler repair’, which can include diagnostics, cleaning and repairs to help restore existing boilers.


Heat pumps and biomass boilers


Recent data revealed that there was a nearly 20 per cent increase in certified heat pump installations in 2023, compared to the previous year, while the use of biomass boilers increased by 11 per cent in 2022 compared to 2011.

Both work differently. A heat pump captures heat from outside – either in the air or in the ground – and moves it into your home to keep it warm, while biomass boilers burn natural products like wood pellets, chips or logs to power a central heating system and hot water boiler.

The installation of green heating systems, such as air-source heat pumps and biomass boilers is also covered by the ECO4 scheme, replacing outdated, inefficient boilers to provide households with up to a 25 per cent reduction in their energy bills. However, the most popular scheme available to have a heat pump or biomass boiler installed is the Boiler Upgrade Scheme.

The Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS) is a UK Government grant for people in England and Wales, with funding of up to £7,500 available to put towards the cost and installation of low carbon heating systems.

To qualify, you must own your property, and have a valid EPC. However, your EPC must not contain any outstanding recommendations for loft or cavity wall insulation. Your property must also have an installation capacity up to 45kWh.

Installing energy-generating technologies including heat pumps can help save you further costs on your energy bills, as the Smart Export Guarantee can pay for the electricity you generate at home and export to the grid.


Working with Metro Plumb

Our skilled team of engineers will be able to advise which heat system is most suitable for your property, and can share guidance as you move through the process of applying for a grant. Our aim is to ensure your property is as energy efficient as possible, so you can save money and help do your bit for the environment too.

We’re on hand 24/7, 365 days a year, so reach out if you want our support to help upgrade your home, and make life more comfortable.

27th May 2024   |    Blogs