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Heating your home is not cheap, and with an inefficient boiler, it can be even more costly. However, if you’re on a low income, or struggling to pay your heating bills. You could get a grant for a new A-rated boiler.
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As part of the 2016 Governments ECO Scheme, grants for new boilers are being allocated to low-income households throughout the UK in a drive to improve heating efficiency and reduce heating bills. It aims to reduce fuel poverty in low-income households by ensuring that heat is generated as efficiently as possible and fuel wastage is kept to a minimum.
The ECO scheme will fund the installation of free or subsidised boilers in place of inefficient boilers to those who are most vulnerable including qualifying private homeowners and tenants who receive certain means-tested benefits.
If you qualify, you could have your old and inefficient boiler replaced by a new, energy-efficient, condensing boiler, with an A-efficiency rating. This means that your home and water would be heated much more efficiently. It will use less fuel and will therefore significantly reduce your home energy costs. In addition to saving on your heating bills, you will also reduce your carbon emissions and therefore your carbon footprint, and so you’ll be doing your bit for the planet too.
Your boiler has a big impact on your energy bills. The older your boiler is, the more inefficient it will be and the more you’ll save by installing a new one as it will produce more heat output from each gas unit.
All boilers are rated by how efficient they are at using energy. Most modern boilers will work at around 90% efficiency, with the remaining 10% lost when fuel is converted to heat. However, an old tired boiler of around 10 years old will most likely be 65-80% efficient. So, by upgrading your old boiler to a new one, the cost savings, with both fuel costs and carbon savings will be significant.
The cost of a new boiler will depend on the model, but typically a new gas boiler would cost around £2,300. If you needed to buy a new boiler, it would take you up to eight years to recoup the cost in savings you will make on your gas bill. However, if you qualify for a new boiler on the grant scheme, you can start to feel the benefits from the savings immediately.
Unfortunately, government funding is limited for this scheme and the benefits-related criteria are quite rigorous. However, if you receive the correct combination of income-related benefits, and your current gas, oil or LPG boiler is over 5 years old, then you could qualify.
If you have a young boiler of less than 5 years old, it is assumed that it is cheaper to repair your old boiler than it is to have it replaced with a new one.
To be eligible for a free boiler grant you will need to be a permanent resident of the property and you will need to be receiving a means-tested benefit, such as:
Some of the benefits mean that you will qualify for a boiler grant automatically, with some others there may be extra qualifying components such as being responsible for a child under 16, you may need to be of a certain age, and that the total household income amongst all working-age residents must not exceed £16,010.
In addition to the above criteria, another requirement is that your residence is large enough to justify the cost of the boiler. A flat for example would not qualify as it is deemed that the resulting carbon savings generated from upgrading a boiler in a flat would not justify the funding required to cover such work.
If you meet the benefits related criteria, you will have a local, approved company get in contact to arrange the installation. You could soon have your brand new A-rated boiler in place to keep you warm this winter.
If you don’t qualify for a free boiler, then you won’t necessarily miss out. You could be eligible for a contribution towards the cost of having your boiler replaced. The contribution amount is determined by how efficient your home is, so an energy assessment will be carried out to determine this.