Clean Heat Grant Relaunched as the Boiler Upgrade Scheme

the clean heat grant has been relaunched as the boiler upgrade scheme
(Image credit: Vaillant)

The Clean Heat Grant, now known as the Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS), is a government scheme due to launch in spring 2022 that will help to fund a transition from gas boilers to low-carbon alternatives. 

The scheme will offer people switching from boilers to renewable technologies such as air source heat pumps, ground source heat pumps and biomass boilers, an upfront payment to help cover the capital cost. 

More specifically, homeowners will receive £5,000 towards the installing an air source heat pump, and £6,000 towards a ground source heat pump. Homeowners in rural areas could receive £5,000 towards the cost of a biomass boiler.

What is the Clean Heat Grant?

The Clean Heat Grant, now known as the Boiler Upgrade Scheme, will function in a similar way to the Green Homes Grant: the government will contribute a fixed sum towards the cost of a renewable heating system, and the homeowner will have to pay the rest.

It is designed to replace the Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI), which will close to new applicants on 31 March 2022. The RHI scheme offered tariff payments for a period of seven years, rather than an upfront payment.

The government unveiled this news as part of the Heat and Buildings Strategy on 19 October.

Why is it Being Introduced?

The funding on the scheme is designed to help homeowners afford the upfront costs of low-carbon technologies, such as ground source heat pumps and biomass boilers.

Ministers have also said that they hope the scheme will help to grow consumer confidence in the technologies available, in order to boost industry demand.

The scheme is an important facet of helping the government meet its net zero emissions target by 2050, and to help phase out fossil fuel heating in homes off the gas grid, the government has said.

Biomass boilers will be available on the Boiler Upgrade Scheme

Biomass boilers will be available on the Boiler Upgrade Scheme (Image credit: Getty Images)

How Will it Work?

The Clean Heat Grant previously outlined that vouchers would be delivered through an upfront payment of £4,000, and delivery will be issued on a first come, first served basis. Then new reports in the summer suggested that the government was planning to increase the grant to £7,000. 

We know now that homeowners will be able to receive a fixed sum of either £5,000 or £6,000 depending on which low-carbon heating system they are eligible for.

There Were Two Grant Consultations

The first consultation, titled ‘Future support for low carbon heat’, ran between April-July 2020 and laid out the initial proposals for the Clean Heat Grant. 

It proposed the scheme to function as one of two support mechanisms following the closure of both the domestic and non-domestic RHI. The non-domestic RHI will be directly replaced by the Green Gas Support Scheme, which will increase the proportion of green gas in the grid through support for biomethane injection.

The government issued new proposals in February via the announcement of a second consultation which ran from 12 February 2021 to 5 March 2021, and issued its response to the first consultation when it announced the Boiler Upgrade Scheme in October. 

Jack Woodfield
News Editor

Jack has worked in journalism for 11 years and is the News Editor for Homebuilding & Renovating, a role he has had since 2019. He strives to break the most relevant and beneficial stories for self builders, extenders and renovators, including the latest news on the construction materials shortage and hydrogen heating. In 2021 he appeared on BBC's The World at One to discuss the government's planning reforms. 

He enjoys testing new tools and gadgets, and having bought his first home in 2013, he has renovated every room and recently finished a garden renovation.