From April 6th, 2018, regulations for new boiler installations in the U.K are changing.
Any new boiler that is installed in the U.K. from April onwards must comply with the updated set of boiler regulations.
What are the new boiler regulations?
Named Boiler Plus, the new regulations will demand that all new boilers deliver the highest level of energy efficiency measures than ever before.
The newly installed boilers will need to have an ErP efficiency rating of at least 92% or higher. Changes to the ErP efficiency rating are part of a wider government plan known as the Clean Growth Strategy which aims to combat climate change and provide UK homes with greater comfort and lower energy bills.
Many of the boilers currently on the market fail to reach this standard of efficiency, and it is recommended for consumers to check the efficiency rating beforehand if the boiler is being purchased and installed before April 2018.
Gas-fired heating is responsible for around 60% of annual energy spending, and the new highly efficient boilers could reduce bills significantly according to the Energy Saving Trust.
As well as an improved energy efficiency rating, all new gas and oil boiler installations must include a programmed timer and a thermostat so that owners can accurately monitor and control their heating. While many new boilers currently have this feature, from April 2018, it will be a compulsory requirement for all boilers.
Customers will also be given the option to select additional energy-saving measures and every new boiler installed after April must include at least one of the four following measures:
- Flue gas heat recovery systems
Boilers with this technology can reuse heat from the boiler that would usually be wasted. Some studies claim that these boilers can output the same amount of heat while using 4% less gas, making the boiler even more energy efficient.
Many new boilers will already have this technology. However, it’s worth asking your installer to check.
- Load compensating thermostat
This feature adjusts the radiator temperature so that it is hotter when the home is cold, and cooler when the home is at the desired temperature. Load compensating thermostats should only cost about £25-£30 more than a standard thermostat.
If you are likely to leave your heating on for long durations, these new thermostats could provide significant savings.
- Weather compensating thermostat
Similar to load compensating thermostats, weather compensating thermostats adjust the radiator temperature based on the temperature outside the building.
They also cost around £25-£30 more than standard thermostats and are generally more likely to save money if the heating is on for long periods.
- Smart thermostat
Smart thermostats allow the customer to control the heating through a tablet or smartphone from anywhere. Although there is not enough evidence that these thermostats save more money than standard thermostats, they are an excellent way for customers to keep track of their heating and adjust it whenever they like.
What do the new boiler regulations mean for installers?
All boilers installed after April 6th, 2018 must comply with the following new regulations:
- Gas boiler performance: space heating efficiency of the new boiler to be no less than ErP 92%
- Time and temperature control is required for all gas and oil boiler installations
- Combi boiler installations must also include one of the following features: Weather compensation, Load compensation, Flue Gas Heat Recovery, Smart controls.
Engineers that install boilers which do not abide by the new regulations will be deemed as breaking the law and could result in the following:
- Prosecuted by Building Control.
- Referred as a safety concern to the HSE (Health and Safety Executive) by The Gas and Safety Register.
- Prosecuted as fraudulent by Trading Standards for charging a customer for an appliance which is illegal.
What do the new boiler regulations mean for customers?
Homeowners who knowingly allow old boilers to be installed in their home could face prosecution and fines of up to £5,000. Therefore it is essential for customers to check that the new boiler meets new regulations and it is wise to confirm this with the installer beforehand.
The new regulations will also mean that customers should see a significant decrease in annual heating costs, making the new regulations a great solution for customers as well as the environment.
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