Since previous incarnations of ‘free boiler’ schemes such as the ‘Green Home Grants’ were unmitigated disasters, people have become cautious of the Energy Company Obligation (ECO) free boiler scheme, so how do you make sure it’s not a scam?
Firstly, the ECO scheme which provides the boiler grants is being funded by the ‘Big Six energy providers’ which face huge fines if they don’t meet carbon emissions targets set by the UK Government. So far from being some sort of get-rich-quick scheme from the energy companies, they have a legal obligation to provide support and take part in the government initiative.
So now we know it’s a real program, let’s separate the truth from the scams with a quick game of ‘True or False’:
- “Everyone can get a boiler!” – FALSE
Firstly, yes you can receive a free boiler, but it is not available to everyone. In order to qualify you need to meet certain criteria. The boiler grants are only available to homeowners and private tenants (with their landlord’s permission) who receive specific benefits. You can read more about who qualifies in our earlier article.
- “You can save £1000s!” – TRUE
A new boiler will cost you thousands of pounds, so a free one will save you thousands! Also, If your boiler is old and run down, by getting a new energy-efficient boiler, you could save money every month on your home heating bills, saving you an estimated £315 every year!
- “Any plumber can get you a free boiler!” – FALSE
Only plumbers who are ECOPAS certified can carry out boiler installs as part of the ECO boiler grant scheme. Find out more on the Gov.uk website.
- “You can replace your any boiler for a newer one” – FALSE
Your current boiler needs to be less than 86% efficient, so running at a C energy rating or lower. This usually means it’s over 8 years old, or it needs to have broken down. You can’t replace a 2 year old working boiler with a new one under the scheme.
- “You can get a boiler or insulate your home” – TRUE
The ECO scheme also offers insulation grants to help low income households reduce heat loss, improve energy efficiency and reduce their heating bills even further. Find out more about the Affordable Warmth scheme on the Gov.uk website.
- “Free boilers are only available in England” – FALSE
ECO is available in England, Scotland and Wales. If you live in Northern Ireland there is an alternative scheme called Warm Homes Grants.
- “The process is really easy” – TRUE
We do the hard work for you, so all you need to do is fill in one simple form and we will take care of the rest.
For more information, get in touch or visit our FAQs.