A Guide to Boiler Grants

Getting a new boiler installed is not cheap. Prices average around £2,500, with the lowest price you can get for a new one is about £1,500. And if you want a top-shelf boiler, get ready to pay upwards of £4,700.

It’s understandable why you might be hesitant to replace your dusty old boiler. However, boilers that have been in use for a long time become inefficient. They could be only 80% to 70% efficient, which translates to losing around 20p to 30p for a pound of heating you pay for. This adds up over time to the point that you will be saving way more money if you were to just purchase a new boiler. In fact, you could save as much as £315 a year on your gas bill if you were to replace your G-rated boiler for a brand new A-rated boiler.

Fortunately, you might not even have to pay a single penny for a new boiler thanks to boiler grants.

What are Boiler Grants

Boiler grants are government subsidies for replacing old boilers. They can be completely free or largely subsidised, depending on the qualifications of those applying for such grants.

Boiler grants were started under the Energy Company Obligation (ECO) scheme by the UK government. The ECO scheme tasks medium to large energy suppliers with the duty of funding the installation of energy-efficient measures in homes across the UK. These measures include installing wall insulation and modern boilers.

The goal of the ECO scheme is to help low-income households reduce their heating costs at home and their carbon footprint, ultimately addressing the country’s fuel poverty problem and global climate change.

Boiler grants are also non-repayable. For grants that do require a small contribution, the amount you have to pay is calculated by how energy-efficient your household is. A supplier will take care of this energy assessment.

The ECO scheme was first developed in 2013, with the latest update put in place this year as the ECO3 scheme. Under ECO3, only gas boilers can be replaced with a boiler grant. The scheme is set to end in March 2022.

The energy suppliers involved in this grant are:

  • Avro Energy
  • British Gas
  • Bulb
  • The Co-Operative Energy
  • E
  • EDF Energy
  • E.ON Energy
  • Green Network
  • Green Star
  • npower
  • Octopus Energy
  • OVO
  • Scottish and Southern Energy
  • ScottishPower
  • Shell Energy
  • Utilita
  • The Utility Warehouse

Boiler Grant Schemes

The ECO3 scheme is the primary government scheme that provides free or largely subsidised boiler replacement and installation. There are strict requirements to qualify for a boiler grant under this programme. The initial requirements are as follows:

  • Your household must be earning less than £20,000 a year
  • You must be the owner of your home
  • Your property must be on a mains gas supply
  • Your boiler must be a gas boiler
  • Your boiler must be at least five years old
  • You must be the recipient of at least one government benefit from the list of eligible benefits (breakdown below in a later section)

Affordable Warmth Obligation

The Affordable Warmth Obligation falls under the larger ECO3 scheme. Its official name is the Home Heating Cost Reduction Obligation (HHCRO). It provides financial aid for repairing and replacing boilers as well as insulation for lofts and cavity walls.

The Affordable Warmth Obligation has similar eligibility requirements to ECO3. The main difference is that landlords, private tenants, and tenants in social housing programmes also qualify. Another important distinction is that a home provided under social housing needs to have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of D, E, F, or G.

Breakdown of Benefits for Boiler Grant Eligibility

There are specific government benefits that you need to be already receiving to be eligible for a boiler grant.

There are only two benefits that will make you automatically qualify for a replacement boiler grant. If you are receiving Pension Credit or Child Tax Credit (with an annual household income of less than £16,010), you can get a boiler grant with no additional requirements.

Meanwhile, there are five main benefits that require at least one more condition to be met for you to qualify for a boiler grant, namely:

  1. Working Tax Credit (with an annual household income of less than £16,010)
  2. Universal Credit (with a monthly take-home pay of £1250 or less in the past 12 months)
  3. Income Support
  4. Income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
  5. Income-based Job Seekers Allowance (JSA)

If you receive Working Tax Credit and your household income is less than £16,010 per year, you also need to meet at least one of the following conditions:

  • You receive disabled worker element
  • You receive Severe Disablement Allowance
  • You are over 60 years old
  • You have a child under 16 years old
  • You have a child under 20 years old not in higher education

If you receive Universal Credit and your monthly take-home pay from the last 12 months is £1,250 or less, you also need to meet at least one of the following conditions:

  • You receive Disability Living Allowance
  • You receive Personal Independence Payment
  • You have a limited capability for work and/or work-related activity
  • You have a child under 16 years old
  • You have a child under 20 years old not in higher education

If you receive Income Support, ESA, or JSA, you also need to meet at least one of the following conditions:

  • You receive Disability Living Allowance at the higher rate
  • You receive Pension Premium
  • You receive Employment Support
  • You have a child under 16 years old
  • You have a child under 20 years old not in higher education

Income Thresholds

Apart from the listed requirements above, there are also household income thresholds that are considered in calculating the amount of funding you can receive if you qualify for a grant. These thresholds only apply to those who receive:

  • Child Tax Credit
  • Working Tax Credit
  • Universal Credit

If you receive any of these benefits, the calculation for your household income threshold factors in:

  • How many adults live in your household
  • How many children live in your household
  • How many bedrooms your household has

Energy Efficiency

Lastly, the energy efficiency of your property also factors into how much funding you get for your grant. The less efficient it is, the more funding you get. If it is already efficient, you will likely have to make a small contribution to the cost of replacing and installing a new boiler.

Benefit from a Boiler Grant

If you believe you qualify for a boiler grant, contact any of the listed energy suppliers here to learn how they can help you. You don’t have to buy energy from them to benefit from a boiler grant under ECO3.

If you get contacted by an energy supplier saying they will install a new boiler, ask for credentials. They must be PAS 2035/2030:2019 or Microgeneration Certification Scheme accredited and have registration numbers. Check the Gas Safe Register as well to be sure.

All our heating and plumbing engineers are gas safe registered with many years experience. They’re also friendly to boot. If you think you’re eligible for a boiler grant, why not give us a call today to see how we can help choose and install your new boiler.