Low income households throughout the United Kingdom can take advantage of a Government-led scheme called the Energy Companies Obligation (ECO). ECO is funded by the UK’s major utility companies and is designed to:
- lower carbon dioxide emissions produced by old and inefficient central heating systems / boilers
- reduce the cost of domestic energy bills for poorer sections of society including pensioners, those who receive tax credits and those on specific benefits with younger children.
How does the free boiler scheme work?
To qualify for a free boiler grant you must be a home owner or tenant. Landlords can apply numerous times via tenants in each individual property. The ECO boiler scheme provides non-repayable boiler grants and subsidised boiler replacements depending on your property type. Larger houses are more likely to qualify for non-repayable grants because the aim of the scheme is to reduce carbon emissions and the carbon savings must be worth the financial cost of the new boiler installation. For smaller properties such as flats a small customer contribution may be required.
Your income status
Pensioners who claim State Pension Credits and families with young children who claim Child Tax Credits (and whose total household income is under £16010) qualify for a free boiler replacement with no additional qualification components required. Those in receipt of Income Support, Universal Credit, ESA and Working Tax Credits may qualify if they meet additional eligibility requirements. A list of which can be found here – Free boiler grant qualification.
In addition to your property status and income status your boiler must be 8 years old and have an energy rating of C (85% efficiency) or below.
Since March 2013 nearly one million replacement boilers have been installed free of charge in the UK.