Applications have opened for government grants of up to £6,000 to replace domestic fossil fuel heating systems with low-carbon heating such as heat pumps.
The Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BES) is open to both existing home owners and selfbuilders.
The scheme offers grants of £5,000 on the cost and installation of air source heat pumps and biomass boilers, and £6,000 for ground source heat pumps.
Properties must have an energy performance certificate (EPC), with no outstanding recommendations for loft or cavity wall insulation
A self-build must have been built mainly using the labour or resources of the owner and not be owned by a business or organisation.
Approved heat pump installations can include water source heat pumps and those on shared ground loops.
Hybrid heat pump systems such as a combination of a gas boiler and air source heat pump, are not eligible.
To be eligible for the scheme, a new heating system must:
have been commissioned (installed and fully checked by an installer) on or after April 1, 2022;
be capable of meeting the full space heating and hot water requirements of a property;
replace an existing fossil fuel heating system (such as oil, gas or electric); and meet certain technical standards, such as minimum efficiency requirements.
The grant will only cover biomass boilers in rural properties with no connection to the gas grid and with an emissions certificate showing that air pollution is kept to a minimum.
Biomass boiler installations in self-build properties aren’t eligible.
Under the scheme, an MSC-certified Installer must be used. They will judge if the installation is suitable and make an application for funding on the owner’s behalf. This sum is then deducted from their bill.