Foundations Webinar, Tuesday 25 January 2022
The UK Government, together with the world’s largest economies have pledged to keep global warming below 2°C, as part of the 2016 Paris Accord on Climate Change.
In line with this, the Committee on Climate Change has advised the government to achieve net-zero status by the middle of the century.
Net-zero on carbon emissions is defined as balancing carbon emissions with carbon removal, as a result, the government is actively looking for routes to drive efficiencies to meet this ambitious target.
A big part of achieving this goal is for the UK to abandon its reliance on fossil fuels in favour of renewable energy sources.
Since heating is responsible for a colossal one-third of carbon emissions, it is receiving a considerable amount of pressure to innovate to become greener and cleaner.
The latest indications that change is just around the corner is the commitment from government that gas boilers will be banned in new builds come 2025.
Additionally, the government Clean Growth Strategy (CGS) is clear that the goal is to completely phase out high carbon fossil fuels over the next decade in off-grid homes, which is predicted to impact over 850,000 homes in the UK that rely on oil heating.
These new types of policy reforms are a strong indication that the road ahead is going to be very different from what the industry and consumer are used to.
The Future is Electric
The UK Governments guiding documentation for this major reform is named the “Future Homes Standards”, which provides clues as to where future of heating is heading, and electric appliances are going to dominate our homes.
The document points to ground source heat pumps (that use electricity), heat networks as well as electric heating as recommended alternatives to current gas boilers and central heating.
Electric Boilers & Radiators
Almost every home utilises a boiler of some type, commonly most UK homes use gas combi boilers, that provide both heating water and hot water on demand.
Unfortunately, gas and oil boilers have a considerable carbon footprint, so in the next few decades are likely to be phased out completely and replaced by greener electric alternatives – including electric boilers.
Why should you choose an electric boiler?
Even though electric boilers have the environmental credentials, you may be wondering why else you should opt to have one installed in your home instead of a traditional boiler, here are a few:
Can Be Retrofitted
Thankfully, electric combi boilers already exist and are a viable alternative that can be retrofitted with most central heating systems, meaning they will work with existing radiators and pipework.
100% Efficiency Ratings
Since they do not produce their heat via combustion, they do not create the hot, toxic fumes, hence a flue is not required. Not only does this mean there is no risk of carbon monoxide leaks, but it means they are extremely efficient, with many achieving an efficiency rating of 100%.
On the other hand, the best gas combi boilers efficiency ratings rarely exceed 90%. This means that a considerable amount of heat they produce is lost via the exhaust fumes, meaning you are essentially paying for energy that is lost to the environment.
Low Installation Costs
Electric Heating Systems typically have a smaller initial installation cost than gas, oil, or LPG systems. Some people assert that these costs will be offset by the higher costs of electric in comparison to gas, but the reality is that the price of gas is forecast to increase, while the price of electricity is set to decrease.
The reducing cost of electricity is largely down to government support and the many initiatives funded to support renewable energy. For instance, in 2019, there were 12 new renewable energy projects announced, with the aim of supplying more than 7 million homes with greener energy at a record low price.
How can you save money when using an electric boiler?
Utilise a Thermostat
As Heatable explain “Thermostatic control can help you save up to 16.5% on your energy bills and help the environment even more, by enabling you to control the temperature and set up a heating schedule.”
For example, you can set your thermostat so that your heating comes on only when you are home and you can change the temperature that is maintained, allowing you to alter it based on current temperatures.
Modern smart thermostats also have innovative features such as geofencing – meaning it can detect whether you are home or not and switch the heating on or off as necessary.
Smart thermostats can also adapt depending on the current weather, your behaviours, as well as your home’s insulation, allowing it to create a personalised schedule based on you and your property.
Obtain the Best Flat Rate Tariff
Why stay loyal to the “Big Six” energy companies who often have the most expensive tariffs?
Today, there are many new, smaller energy companies offering highly competitive flat rate tariffs.
Companies such as “Look after my bills” even offer a service by which they periodically look to keep your bills as cheap as possible, which includes your electricity bills.
Over the next few decades, the government’s plans are clear – when it comes to home heating, access to appliances that use high carbon fuels are going to face further restrictions.
Fortunately, renewables are gaining more support and funding, helping to drive a greener future and make electricity cheaper, making electric appliances, like electric boilers much more appealing to consumers.