Changes to the Boiler Upgrade Scheme

The Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS) supports the decarbonisation of heat in buildings. It provides upfront capital grants to support the installation of heat pumps and biomass boilers in homes and non-domestic buildings in England and Wales. 
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The Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS) supports the decarbonisation of heat in buildings. It provides upfront capital grants to support the installation of renewable technologies including heat pumps and biomass boilers in homes and non-domestic buildings in England and Wales. 


Acting on behalf of property owners, installers can apply for:  


  • £7,500 off the cost and installation of an air source heat pump  
  • £7,500 off the cost and installation of a ground source heat pump, including water source heat pumps  
  • £5,000 off the cost and installation of a biomass boiler  


£450 million of grant funding is available over three years from 2022 to 2025. 


On the 14 March, Claire Coutinho, Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, announced updates on the Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS) and the Clean Heat Market Mechanism (CHMM), including some important updates relating to biomass technologies which HETAS Registered Installers should be aware of.

Government have announced that they will: 

  1. Remove the requirement for a property to have no outstanding Energy Performance Certificate recommendations for loft and cavity wall insulation – although government guidance remains that properties should be appropriately insulated. This will address concerns about forcing hard-pressed families to carry out insulation upgrades for them to be eligible for the scheme, instead empowering them to decide what is right for them.   
  2. Increase the capacity limit for shared ground loops from 45kW to 300kW. This will address concerns that the cost of groundworks for ground source heat pumps is a significant barrier to deployment. This change will spread the costs of ground infrastructure, making them a more affordable solution for consumers. 
  3. Expand the definition of biomass boilers eligible for the scheme to include those which have a cooking function, provided it is integrated and cannot be controlled separately to the heating function of the property. This will allow a wider range of biomass boiler models under the scheme, thereby widening consumer choice. 
  4. Introduce flexibility into the regulations to be able to vary the grant levels more quickly for specific types of property if needed in response to changing market conditions or future regulation. 

Biomass products

Eligibility rules for biomass appliances on the BUS include include off-gas-grid properties in rural locations and confirmation that the boiler meets maximum emission limits for particulate matter and NOx. In most cases the product shall be certified under the MCS Biomass Standard which includes biomass boilers with integrated cooking functions, as encompassed by the recent amendments to the scheme. This change creates more choice for consumers, with a wider range of products.

On the recent announcement, HETAS Head of Technical Calvin May says: 

“HETAS welcomes the changes to the Boiler Upgrade Scheme for biomass appliances, allowing a wider range of appliances to become eligible. Biomass can be the heat source of choice for many off-grid properties and such appliances can provide a range of benefits to home heat.

The government’s Biomass Strategy identified the firm commitment to biomass sustainability and establishes the potential future availability of sustainable biomass to the UK. The importance of understanding how the resources could be prioritised strategically across the economy to help achieve net zero targets, along with wider environmental and energy security commitments, is a key takeaway that we welcome.  We look forward to working with government and the wider industry on the important role of biomass for heat.”

HETAS is a leading provider of MCS product approval for biomass products, alongside our own Cleaner Choice certification scheme. To find out more about the changes to the BUS and product certification, contact the team on 01684 278170 or email

Government’s response the improving boiler standards and efficiency consultation 

At the same time as announcing changes to the Boiler Upgrade Scheme, government published their response to the consultation on improving boiler standards and efficiency. 

Further, government plan to implement most proposals via an update to ecodesign and energy labelling regulations, which would apply in Great Britain. They intend to publish a consultation on draft legislation to give effect to these proposals in due course. 


View the full statement here. 

Read the full outcome to the ‘Improving boiler standards and efficiency’ consultation here. 


HETAS, Severn House, Unit 5 Newtown Trading Estate, Green Lane, Tewkesbury, GL20 8HD