FREE Boilers

Free Boilers in Borders

Envirohomes Renewables, celebrated for its expertise in boiler installations across Scotland, has a rich history of successful projects. Our online reviews mirror the high standards of service we deliver. Each of our boiler engineers is not just experienced but also holds vital industry accreditations, ensuring compliance and safety in every project. These certifications include:

  • Qualitymark Protection
  • Gas Safe Register
  • PAS 2030 Certification
  • Elmhurst Energy Assessment Accreditation

At Envirohomes Renewables, our mission transcends mere installation services. We aim to significantly reduce energy costs for our clients, contribute to the reduction of personal carbon footprints, and play a vital role in helping Scotland achieve its ambitious Net Zero target. Our vast experience and team of highly qualified professionals are your assurance of a safe, efficient, and eco-friendly boiler installation.

Our specialized services are particularly focused on aiding economically challenged households, primarily those on benefits, by offering a fully funded boiler installation service. This initiative is part of the Government’s ECO 4 Grant, designed to support low-income families in their quest for more efficient and cost-effective home heating solutions. The eligibility for this service is outlined in detail below.

The ‘Free Boiler Scheme’ or ‘Free Boiler Replacement Scheme’, part of the Scottish segment of the government-funded ECO4 programme, is a thoughtful initiative aimed at eradicating fuel poverty. This scheme is particularly beneficial for pensioners and low-income households, focusing on the upgrade of heating systems and the installation of new boilers to ensure efficient energy use and reduced heating costs.

Who Qualifies For The Free Boiler Scheme?

The UK and Scottish governments have been consistently offering free boiler grants and financial aid for home energy improvements for over a decade. Under the ECO4 boiler scheme, the Free Boiler grant is intended to make various energy-saving improvements accessible to UK households. The primary aim is to alleviate the burden of high heating bills and energy costs on eligible homeowners. Qualification for this grant is based on a set of criteria, including but not limited to:

  • Household income below £19,720 per year.
  • Homeownership status.
  • Receipt of specific benefits such as Child Benefits and Income Support.
  • Pensioners aged over 60 receiving Pension Credit Benefits or similar assistance.
  • Ownership of a gas boiler that is over 15 years old.
  • A boiler with an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of D or lower.
  • Possession of a faulty or non-functional boiler.

What is
The ECO4 Scheme?

 The Energy Company Obligation 4 (ECO4) scheme, launched in April 2022, represents the latest in a series of government initiatives aimed at improving energy efficiency in homes across the UK. This scheme is an extension and refinement of the previous initiatives, starting back in 2013, with ECO3 concluding in March 2022. The ECO4 scheme is scheduled to continue until March 2026.

ECO4 adopts a holistic approach towards enhancing energy efficiency, primarily focusing on the upgradation of heating systems in UK homes. The broader objective of the ECO scheme is not just limited to providing warmth but extends to reducing carbon emissions, thus contributing significantly to the UK’s goal of achieving carbon neutrality by 2050.

Since its inception, the ECO scheme has brought about improved energy efficiency in over 2.3 million homes, marking a significant milestone in the country’s environmental sustainability efforts.

The primary legislation under ECO4 mandates large energy companies to support low-income households. This support includes offering hardship grants to single parents, aiding individuals with disabilities, and providing assistance to families experiencing financial difficulties. Companies such as UK Energy Support are working in collaboration with Ofgem – the UK’s energy regulator – and other energy suppliers to ensure compliance with the ECO scheme’s standards. Local authorities play a critical role in identifying and referring households that would most benefit from this scheme.

What does the ECO4 scheme cover?

The ECO4 scheme offers financial support that covers a wide range of energy efficiency improvements for UK homes, such as:

  • Free boilers
  • Central heating systems
  • Boiler replacement
  • Solar panels
  • Air source heat pump
  • Storage heaters
  • Various types of insulation grants (e.g. loft, underfloor, external and internal wall, cavity wall, and roof insulation)

What boilers can you get under the Free Boiler grant?

  • Conventional boilers
  • Combi boilers
  • System boilers
  • Air-source heat pumps

Which Types Of Boilers
Are Not Eco-Friendly?

Gas boilers

  • Environmental Impact: Gas boilers, while popular due to their low electricity usage for ignition, are not the most environmentally sustainable option. Their operation depends on burning natural gas, a type of fossil fuel, which results in the release of carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gases, contributing to atmospheric pollution.

  • Efficiency Concerns: The energy efficiency of older gas boiler models is relatively low, often rated at G-grade on the Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) scale, with about 70% efficiency. Despite improvements in newer gas boiler models, they still fall short of the efficiency levels achieved by combi boilers or heat pumps.

  • Regulatory Shifts: Environmental concerns have led to stringent regulations for gas boilers, mandating efficiency ratings of 86% or higher. These evolving environmental standards are likely to result in a gradual phasing out of gas boilers in the foreseeable future.

Back boilers

  • Environmental Impact: Back boilers, typically much older and installed behind fireplaces, are notably less efficient (about 78%) than contemporary boiler models like combi boilers, which offer efficiency rates above 90%. Popular in the 1960s and 70s, these boilers not only have lower efficiency but also emit higher levels of pollutants. Moreover, the risk of carbon monoxide leakage with these units can pose serious safety hazards.

  • Obsolescence Issues  The declining use and inefficiency of back boilers have led to a shortage of replacement parts. This scarcity, coupled with their gradual phase-out, makes them an unsustainable choice for long-term use.

  • Regulatory Shifts: Current government regulations stipulate a minimum of 86% efficiency for new boiler installations. This requirement renders back boilers obsolete, as they do not meet these modern efficiency standards

Oil boilers

  • Environmental impact: Oil boilers, reliant on heating oil – a kind of fossil fuel, have a considerable environmental impact. During operation, they release significant amounts of carbon dioxide (CO2) and sulfur dioxide into the atmosphere, thus contributing to air pollution and escalating greenhouse gas emissions.

  • Efficiency: Traditional oil boilers, particularly older, non-condensing models, show relatively modest efficiency, with their rates hovering around 60-70%. Despite advancements in recent models pushing efficiencies over 90%, oil boilers still lag in terms of eco-friendliness when compared to more contemporary heating solutions.

Which Types Of Boilers
Are Eco-Friendly?

Combi boilers

A combi boiler, short for combination boiler, is a highly efficient heating unit and a central heating system in one.

Combi boilers heat water straight from the mains and eliminate the need for a separate water storage tank. This is a highly energy-efficient boiler and its compact size can be particularly helpful for smaller homes.

Notable features of combi boilers include:

  • Space saving (due to smaller size)
  • Energy efficient
  • On-demand hot water
  • Simple installation and lower maintenance required

Heat Pumps

A heat pump is notably different from a boiler as it does not generate heat nor does it rely on fossil fuels. These devices are designed to transfer heat from one location to another, effectively working with a variety of heating distribution systems, including ductwork, radiators, and underfloor heating. This enables them to transfer heat from outside to inside a building for heating purposes, and conversely for cooling.

Typically operating on electricity, heat pumps can also be powered by renewable energy sources such as solar panels or wind power. This aspect makes them highly energy-efficient for both central heating and cooling, while also being more environmentally friendly over time.

Notable features of heat pumps include their capability for zoning, which allows independent temperature control in different areas of a house. Additionally, they can be integrated into existing central heating systems to enhance overall efficiency.

There are two primary types of heat pump systems for central heating: air-source pumps and ground-source pumps. Air-source pumps, which are the most common, transfer heat between indoor and outdoor air and are generally easier and less expensive to install. Ground-source pumps, on the other hand, utilize the stable temperature of the ground as a heat source. While they are more efficient, they tend to be more expensive and complex to install.

What Are The Advantages Of An Eco-Friendly Combi Boiler?


Yes, the Free Boiler Grant is a component of the broader ECO scheme. This scheme offers funding to households meeting specific criteria, enabling them to qualify for free boilers or boiler replacements, central heating systems, and other energy-efficient upgrades like solar panels and heat pumps.

Although combi boilers are highly beneficial, they have limitations, particularly when there’s a simultaneous high demand for hot water in a household. For instance, if two showers are running concurrently in different bathrooms, the water pressure might drop due to the boiler’s lack of a backup water tank, a feature present in conventional boilers.

While receiving benefits is a significant qualifying factor for the Free Boiler Grant, there are scenarios where you might still be eligible even if you do not receive benefits. Envirohomes Renewables can assist in determining whether you qualify for a free boiler under the ECO4 scheme, regardless of your benefits status.


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