Old and inefficient boilers can make your fuel costs much higher and they are also damaging to the environment. Because of this, people who own an old boiler and meet other conditions (such as being on certain benefits) are eligible for boiler grants that can help to pay towards the cost of repairing or replacing it. Let's take a closer look at what the boiler grants UK scheme is, who qualifies, and what the process is for receiving the grant so you can get financial help with your boiler from Easy Boiler Company.
Boiler grants UK - what are they?
The boiler grant scheme comes from the government's Energy Company Obligation (ECO). The goal of this scheme is twofold. First, it aims to reduce carbon emissions that can come from old and inefficient boilers. The second aim is to reduce fuel poverty. Inefficient boilers use up a lot more fuel, and which results in higher costs for heating the home. This latter aim is the reason why the scheme is aimed at those who receive certain benefits.
Importantly, the point of the scheme is that the big energy companies have an obligation to put money into making homes more efficient and they can get fined if they fail to meet the required targets.
Who is eligible for a UK boiler grant & do you have to be a home owner?
There are quite specific requirements for who can receive boiler grants. There are three basic eligibility requirements:
You have to be in private housing
You will be eligible for the scheme if you own your own home. You can also be eligible if you rent from a private landlord, but you would need to go through your landlord. People who live in social housing aren't eligible under this boiler grant scheme because the housing associations/council will have their own energy efficiency schemes.
You have to have an inefficient boiler
Your boiler needs to be at least 5 years old and it needs to be broken or inefficient. For example, newer A or B rated boilers wouldn't be eligible for repair or replacement. Oil boilers usually aren't eligible for the scheme and you can't get a new boiler put in if you currently don't have one at all.
You have to be in receipt of certain benefits
Because one of the main aims of the scheme is to reduce fuel poverty for certain targeted groups, you are only eligible if you receive one of the approved benefits.
• Child or Working Tax Credit
• Universal Credit
• Pension Guarantee Credit
• Income Support
• Job Seekers Allowance
• Employment Support Allowance
• Disability Living Allowance
• Personal Independence Payment
• Attendance or Carer's Allowance
• Severe Disablement Allowance
• Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefits
• War Pensions Mobility Supplement
• Constant Attendance Allowance
• Armed Forces Independence Payment
• Child Benefit
Some benefits such as Child Tax Credit and Pension Credit mean that you are automatically eligible. For others, such as Working Tax Credit, Universal Credit, JSA, ESA, and Income Support, you can be eligible as long as you meet other criteria.
Additional eligibility requirements
There are some other eligibility requirements for you to be able to receive funding under the ECO scheme.
• Your household income can't exceed the maximum. The maximum income varies depending on the type of benefits that you receive.
• Your property has to be big enough to make the energy savings/reduced carbon emissions big enough to justify the funding. Funding usually isn't available for flats, for instance.
How to apply for the free boiler scheme
To apply for the boiler grant scheme, you need to approach one of the energy companies. If you are eligible your energy company might have already contacted you to let you know but if they haven't and you believe you are eligible, you can approach them yourself. You can also apply to many of the companies even if you aren't their customer. The energy companies involved in the scheme are:
• British Gas
• Co-operative Energy
• Scottish Power
• Utility Warehouse
What happens after you apply for a boiler grant
It usually takes between 4 and 12 weeks from when you first apply to when your boiler gets installed. A heating engineer will come out to assess your current boiler and the rest of your heating system. At this visit, they will be able to tell you if any other work needs to be done (e.g. replacement pipes), which you would have to pay for outside of the grant. The boiler fitting itself can take anywhere from a few days to a week, depending on how much work needs to be done.
It is well worth doing some research about the grants available from a variety of energy suppliers because some of them require you to make your own contribution towards the cost of the new boiler, and this contribution can vary. For instance, with E-on, you would need to pay £395 and with EDF, you would need to pay £240.
How much money can a new boiler save?
Even if you do have to pay some money towards the cost of a new boiler, it can be worth it in the long run. Around 60% of your total household energy bills go towards heating your home. So reducing the cost of heating bills can translate to big savings on energy bills. Replacing an old and inefficient boiler with a new A-grade boiler can reduce your energy bills by around £15 per year.
Under the same scheme, you can also get help with improving your home's insulation to further reduce your heating costs. Better home insulation can reduce the amount of heat that escapes your home, meaning that it will take less energy to heat it.
The ECO boiler grants UK scheme means that energy companies can provide you with a new boiler, or foot the cost of repairs to your current boiler, making your home more energy-efficient. This can save you money on your energy bills and can reduce carbon emissions that are harmful to the environment. You have to meet some quite strict eligibility criteria, including being in receipt of certain benefits, living in private housing, and owning an inefficient boiler, A new boiler can save you hundreds of pounds a year, so it is a scheme worth applying to if you are eligible.