Boiler Upgrade Scheme
Have you heard about boiler grants and are wondering if you qualify for the latest ECO4 boiler scheme?

The Energy Company Obligation (ECO) scheme is an initiative set up by the government, together with the UK’s largest energy companies to help vulnerable households upgrade their heating system i.e. their boilers.

As of 2023, the ECO scheme is now referred to as ECO4 as this is the fourth round of funding to date.

The ECO scheme is one of two boiler grant schemes active in the UK, the other is known as the Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS).

More information on the Boiler Upgrade Scheme

Who qualifies for a boiler grant in the UK?

The Energy Companies Obligation (ECO4) Scheme is a Government and Energy company initiative that was set up with a few major goals, these are as follows:

  • To improve the energy efficiency of UK households.
  • To help reduce fuel poverty.
  • To make energy and therefore home heating more affordable.

In short, the ECO3 scheme allows some of societies most vulnerable households to apply for a grant to replace their old or inefficient boiler for free in order to help them reduce their heating bills in the long term.

What do you need to qualify for a free boiler grant?

In order to qualify for a boiler grant, also referred to as the ECO programme, you need to meet the following criteria:

  • The applicant must be the property owner e.g. not a landlord.
  • The current boiler in the property must be at least 8 years old.
  • The property must be connected to the mains gas supply.
  • The applicant must be in receipt of a qualifying benefit.
What type of benefits are accepted?

As mentioned, in order to qualify/be entitled to a government boiler grant, you will need to be in receipt of certain qualifying benefits, this includes the following:

  • Pension Credit Guarantee Credit Element
  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
  • Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
  • Income Support
  • Working Tax Credits
  • Child Tax Credits
  • Armed Forces Independence Payment (AFIP)
  • Attendance Allowance
  • Carer’s Allowance
  • Disability Living Allowance (DLA)
  • Severe Disablement Allowance
  • War Pensions Mobility Supplement
  • Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit
  • Personal Independence Payment (PIP)
  • Constant Attendance Allowance
  • Child Benefit*

*If you claim Child Benefit we will need to ask some additional questions to check if you qualify.

 

If you are currently in receipt of any of the benefits listed above, you may be entitled to a boiler grant, but bear in mind there may be other income thresholds you have to meet.

How old is your boiler? Should you consider a boiler repair or start looking at the latest boiler prices? It’s no secret that boiler efficiency deteriorates over time.

What are the income thresholds?

In order to be entitled to the ECO grant funding for a new boiler, you must also fall within any of the following income thresholds:

If you are a single claimant:

  • One child – £18,500.
  • Two children – £23,000.
  • Three children – £27,500.
  • Four or more children – £32,000.

If you are claiming as a couple:

  • One child – £25,500.
  • Two children – £30,000.
  • Three children – £34,500.
  • Four or more children – £39,000.
Which other free boiler schemes are available?

If you are not eligible for the Government ECO3 scheme, then it is worth checking if you meet the criteria for other schemes such as the Boiler Upgrade Scheme, or the Affordable Warmth Obligation initiative.

As well as helping to replace boilers, this scheme can also help with repair costs and home energy efficiency upgrades, for example, updates to the insulation in your home such as adding insulation to the loft or cavity walls.

For this scheme, as well as the criteria mentioned above, typically applicants must also have a household income of less than £20k per year in order to be accepted.

This scheme is also available to pensioners who live in social housing, as long as the boiler in question has an energy efficiency rating of either E, F, or G.

What size boiler is right for your home? If you are thinking about a combi boiler, it is largely determined by the number of radiators in your home. Check out our complete guide to new boiler installation here if you are wondering about the best type of boiler for your home.

How much may a new boiler cost? Are you considering converting from a conventional to a combi boiler? Use our boiler installation cost calculator to get an estimation.

Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS)

As previously mentioned, the ECO3 scheme is one of two forms of boiler funding available in the UK. The second is the BUS.

The BUS scheme provides grants to encourage property owners to replace existing fossil fuel heating systems with low carbon, more efficient heating systems.

These include ground source heat pumps, air source heat pumps, and biomass boilers in limited circumstances.

The scheme operates similarly to the Green Homes Grant Scheme. The government contributes a fixed sum towards the upfront costs of low carbon heating technologies, and the property owner pays for the rest.

The scheme opened for grant applications on 23rd May 2022 and will run up to 2025 with a £450m funding confirmed for the three years.

You’ll benefit from a 0% VAT rate on the purchase and installation of the low carbon heating technologies.

If you are eligible for this initiative, you should be contacted automatically, but it is worth checking with your supplier if you have not received any help.

Who qualifies for a boiler grant

If you have an old boiler that is nearing the end of its life or you are currently without heating, then it is well worth applying for the ECO3 (now ECO4 scheme).

If you don’t think you will be eligible for the ECO scheme, you may want to consider the Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS).

It’s also worth mentioning that boilers on finance schemes are also available, these are offered by some boiler installation companies and allow you to spread the cost of a new boiler over several years, enabling you to pay for your boiler in monthly increments.

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