ECO Scheme Heating and Insulation Grants

Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland, England and Wales from the Renewable Heat Incentive and the ECO Scheme

ECO Scheme

Renewable Heat Incentive

The ECO Scheme provides Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland, England and Wales.

You must be a home owner and you must receive one of the ECO Scheme qualifying State Benefits, Tax Credits or Other Allowances  to qualify.

Air Source Heat Pump Grants from the ECO Scheme help with the upfront cost of installation.

However, in most cases the ECO Scheme grant WILL NOT cover the full cost of installing an Air Source Heat Pump in your home and you will need to contribute to the cost.

You will need a free survey of your home and heating system to assess the cost of installing and Air Source Heat Pump and to calculate any contribution.

The Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) was set up by the Government to encourage home owners to move from fossil fuel heating systems to electric heating systems.

It is important to note that RHI Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland, England and Wales do not help with the installation cost.

Instead, once the installation is complete you will receive monthly payments for 7 years in a similar way to the incentives for installing Solar PV panels worked.

The monthly incentives will increase by an inflationary factor each year and the estimated payback time on investment would be around 5 years.  This in addition to an annual saving on your heating bills.

Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland, England and Wales from the Renewable Heat Incentive and the ECO Scheme

Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland, England and Wales

Air Source Heat Pump Grant Application Form

Grants may be available through the ECO Scheme and the Renewable Heat Incentive

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Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland, England and Wales from the Renewable Heat Incentive and the ECO Scheme

Air Source Heat Pump Grants from the ECO Scheme

Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland, England and Wales from the Government’s ECO Scheme are available to homeowners who receive one of the qualifying State Benefits, Tax Credits or Other Allowances.

A full list of the qualifying benefits can be found on the Qualifying Criteria page, HERE.

It must be stressed that in most cases, Air Source Heat Pump Grants will not cover the full cost of installing an air source heat pump in your home. However, some installers offer finance to cover the contribution required and there should be savings to be made on your heating bills by switching to an air source heat pump.

Home owners who will save the most on their heating bills by taking advantage of air source heat pump grants in Scotland, England and Wales will be those with LPG or oil boilers and those with electric heating such as electric storage heaters.

Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland

Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland, England and Wales from the Renewable Heat Incentive and the ECO Scheme

Air Source Heat Pumps and the Renewable Heat Incentive

You do not need to receive any of the ECO qualifying benefits to apply for the Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive.

The Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (DRHI) is a Government scheme designed to help home owners to switch to renewable energy heating sources.

In addition to promoting the use of air source heat pumps, the DRHI also offers financial incentive to install biomass boilers, ground source heat pumps and solar thermal heating systems.

The Government has set a target of 12% of all domestic heating to be provided by renewable energy by 2020. The DRHI primarily targets homes which do not have access to mains gas.

These home owners tend to use oil and LPG boilers or electric heating and have the most to gain financially by switching to an air source heat pump. They will also provide the greatest reductions in carbon emissions.

Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland, England and Wales from the Renewable Heat Incentive and the ECO Scheme

Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland, Wales and England

Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland, England and Wales from the Renewable Heat Incentive and the ECO Scheme

How does the Renewable Heat Incentive Work?

Air Source Heat Pump Grants from the Renewable Heat Incentive are not upfront grants which help with the cost of installation.

Instead, the homeowner will pay for the installation and claim back quarterly incentive payments for 7 years based on the RHI tariff at the time your application.

Before your air source heat pump is installed you will need an up to date EPC (Energy Performance Certificate) for your home. This will show your home’s energy demand for both heating and hot water, measured in kilowatt hours (kWh).

The current (to 30th September 2019) RHI tariff to install air source heat pumps under the RHI is 10.71 pence per kWh. This means that if your home had a combined heating and hot water energy demand of 15,000 kWh per year, your annual financial RHI incentive would be £1,606.50 (15,000 x 10.71p), or £410 .62 per quarter.

Over 7 years, the total amount payable would be a minimum of £11,245.50. However, in practice it will be even more than this because your RHI payments will increase by the CPI (Consumer Price Index) on 1st April each year.

The RHI tariff to install air source heat pumps is reviewed quarterly by BEIS (Government Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy).

BEIS has produced a RHI calculator so that potential applicants can estimate their RHI payments prior to deciding whether to install an air source heat pump. The RHI calculator is easy to use and can be found HERE.

Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland, England and Wales from the Renewable Heat Incentive and the ECO Scheme

What are Air Source Heat Pumps and how do they work?

Air source heat pumps absorb heat from the air outside your home. This can be transferred inside to heat central heating radiators and to provide hot water. They can even work when the temperature outside is below zero.

Inside an air source heat pump there are several important components which extract heat from the air and use to to heat your home.

  • A fan sucks air from outside into the air source heat pump.
  • An evaporator transfers heat from this air to a liquid in a sealed network of pipes, which similar to that in your refrigerator. The heat causes the refrigerant liquid to evaporate and turn into a gas.
  • This gas is directed into a compressor, which compresses it, causing the temperature of the gas to increase substantially.
  • The heated gas is transferred to a condenser where it is cooled and condenses back to a liquid. The act of cooling this hot gas releases the heat which is used to heat water which travels through your central heating radiators and to provide hot water at your taps.
  • Now that the hot refrigerant gas has converted to a cool refrigerant liquid, an expansion valve releases it to start the process all over again. In essence the whole process is continuous.

Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland, England and Wales from the Renewable Heat Incentive and the ECO Scheme

air source heat pump grants in Scotland

By compressing the liquid refrigerant and causing its temperature to rise, the amount of energy used to operate an air source heat pump is multiplied.

Typically, for every unit of electrical energy used by an air source heat pump, it generates 3 to 4 units of heat energy. This means that air source heat pumps are between 300% and 400% efficient, compared the an A rated gas boiler which is around 95% efficient.

Hence, you use less energy to heat your home and provide hot water. This reduction in energy required means that you cut both your heating bills and your carbon emissions.

Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland, England and Wales from the Renewable Heat Incentive and the ECO Scheme

Benefits of Air Source Heat Pumps
  • Very little maintenance required. An annual check of the main components, cleaning the filters and a safety check is all that is needed.
  • Air source heat pumps are highly controllable and maintain a stable temperature inside your home rather than causing swings in temperature as with boiler run heating systems.
  • No more oil, LPG or coal deliveries required if you currently use an oil, LPG or solid fuel boiler.
  • Air source heat pumps will reduce your heating bills.
  • Because of the way that air source heat pumps operate, the component parts last a long time and long warranties are normal.
  • Switching to an air source heat pump will reduce your carbon footprint.
  • RHI incentives are available for 7 years after installation.
Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland

Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland, England and Wales from the Renewable Heat Incentive and the ECO Scheme

Air Source Heat Pumps FAQs

How much space do I need for an air source heat pump?

Air source heat pumps are about the same size and shape of an air conditioning unit and you will need space outside where the unit can be installed. This should be either against a wall or on the ground.

Your air source heat pump will also need space around it to provide a good air flow but should be within 1 metre of your boundary due to restrictions regarding planning permission.

Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland, England and Wales from the Renewable Heat Incentive and the ECO Scheme

Will an air source heat pump help to cut my energy bills?

In most cases, yes.

The less efficient your current heating system is, the more you will have to gain by installing a air source heat pump.

If your boiler uses coal or LPG, or you have an electrical heating system at the moment, you will achieve a greater saving by switching to an air source heat pump than if your boiler uses mains gas.

Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland, England and Wales from the Renewable Heat Incentive and the ECO Scheme

Are grants available to help install air source heat pumps?

From 1st January 2020 grants may be available from the Affordable Warmth Scheme to help pay for the installation of an air source heat pump in your home.

It is unlikely however, that if you use grant to help install an air source heat pump that you will also be able to claim Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive tariff payments. It will be an either / or choice.

More information about grants for installing an air source heat pump can be found HERE.

Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland, England and Wales from the Renewable Heat Incentive and the ECO Scheme

How important is the insulation in my home to air source heat pumps?

It is very important.

Air source heat pumps produce heat at a lower temperature over a longer period of time than similar oil or gas heating systems. Consequently, your home will need to be very well insulated so that you can take full advantage of your new air source heat pump.

Additionally, as part of your application process to receive Renewable Heat Incentive tariff payments,  you will need to complete an assessment to confirm that your home complies with current loft and wall insulation energy efficiency requirements.

Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland, England and Wales from the Renewable Heat Incentive and the ECO Scheme

How much are the Renewable Heat Incentive Tariff Payments?

Renewable Heat Incentive tariff payments for air source heat pumps are based on the annual heat demand from your Energy Performance Certificate (EPC).

The annual heat demand is measured in kilowatt hours (kWh) and this is multiplied by the tariff in pence at the time of your RHI application. Currently (December 2019) the tariff is 10.7 pence.

Therefore, if your annual heat demand is 18,000 kWh, your gross annual tariff payment will be 18,000 x 10.7p = £1,926. However, this is adjusted downwards by the Seasonal Performance Factor (SPF) of the particular air source heat pump you install.

Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland, England and Wales from the Renewable Heat Incentive and the ECO Scheme

Who are the main manufacturers of Air Source Heat Pumps
Dimplex Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland
Dimplex Air Source Heat Pumps
Mitsubishi Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland
Mitsubishi Air Source Heat Pumps
Panasonic Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland
Panasonic Air Source Heat Pumps
Samsung Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland
Samsung Air Source Heat Pumps

Air Source Heat Pump Grants in Scotland, England and Wales from the Renewable Heat Incentive and the ECO Scheme