Free boiler grants: Learn if you are eligible

Discover whether you're eligible for a grant to get a free boiler for your home.

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It can be expensive to replace or repair a boiler. In fact, many households will not be able to afford to do so immediately.

If you’re in this position, it’s worth investigating whether you’re eligible for a free boiler grant under the Energy Companies Obligations (ECO) scheme.

This scheme was set up by the government to help reduce the carbon footprint of low-income families. It allows eligible households to receive a brand-new boiler, paid for by the government.

Below, we outline how these schemes work and who is eligible to apply.

Am I eligible for a free boiler?

Here are some of the conditions you’ll need to meet to be eligible for a free boiler.

  • Your home needs to be connected to a mains gas supply;
  • Your boiler will need to be at least eight years old, or at least five years old and in need of repair;
  • Your energy supplier needs to be partnered with the ECO scheme (more details below);
  • You’ll need to be receiving government benefits to support a low income (more details below).

Energy companies are obliged to partner with the ECO scheme once they pass a specific threshold of domestic customers. This threshold is set to drop in the coming years. In 2019, all of the ‘big six’ energy companies, plus around a dozen smaller energy providers, had partnered with the ECO scheme.

If you’re receiving Pension Credit or Child Tax Credits (with an annual household income below £16,010), you’ll automatically be eligible for a free boiler grant provided you meet the other criteria listed above.

If you’re receiving Income Related Employment & Support Allowance, Income-Based Job Seekers Allowance, Income Support, Working Tax Credits or Universal Credit, you may also be eligible. However, you’ll need to meet additional criteria on top of those listed above.

Your energy supplier will be able to confirm whether you’re eligible for this scheme.

What is The Affordable Warmth Obligation?

This initiative is part of the ECO scheme, albeit with different eligibility criteria. Under this initiative, you may be eligible for money towards the repairs or replacement of your boiler.

To be eligible, you’ll need to be living in private housing with an E, F or G energy rating and receiving certain government benefits.

The scheme is available to residents of England, Scotland and Northern Ireland, although a similar scheme called Nest exists in Wales.

Once again, your ECO-partnered energy provider will be able to confirm your eligibility.

What is the Boiler Scrappage Scheme?

This was a similar government initiative, which is no longer open for applications. The ECO scheme is currently the only government scheme offering new boiler grants.

What are alternatives to free boiler grants?

If you cant afford to repair or replace your boiler and you’re not eligible for a grant, consider a boiler rental scheme.

There are several boiler providers that offer this with little-to-no upfront payment.

This will cost you more in the long run, but you’ll be able to benefit from reduced energy bills immediately. However, you should check whether these deals are more cost-effective than a personal loan.

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