The domestic Renewable Heat Incentive is currently waiting for its final details from the government. These are expected during the summer of this year with the scheme going live early in 2014.
Further details can be gained from here
Among the key points are that the government is reconsidering the tariffs. This includes a possibility of increased tariffs for some technologies.
Currently the domestic tariff for biomass is projected to be between 5.2 and 8.7p per kWh over 7 years. For a 20kW installation this could mean £16000 over 7 years.
This does not compare as well as the non domestic Renewable Heat Incentive where the same installation could get a similar tariff over 20 years ie in excess of £40,000. However you would probably pay for your installation and financing as per the government report depending on the boiler and facilities that you want from your boiler.
Whilst we are waiting for the government to announce what they want to do we are finding that customers are changing or tailoring their installations to suit the delay.
In discussion with customers have found that a key difference between commercial and domestic is the issue of a pellet store. On smaller installations it is easier to poor pellets more frequently into a boiler that has an internal hopper or a smallish hopper that sits next door to it. If you want to build a hopper or buy a larger hopper the hoppers can be reasonably priced. For instance an 8 tonne external hopper can be about £2000. You then have to consider how to feed the pellets from the store to the auger. This can be a further £950 for a flexible auger of 3 or 4 meters. Alternatively you can use a vacuum system, where prices can start at £2000.
The payback of a boiler without a large hopper is much greater, but you have to poor in pellets on a more regular basis. It is possible to do this in the short term with a view to putting in a larger hopper as and when the RHI is confirmed.
The other trend we have seen is that wood boilers are being more carefully considered. For instance logs can be purchased in the South West from Longleat
|Hardwood Logs||from £130.00 per tonne||Delivered|
|from £116.00 per tonne||Collected|
|Softwood Logs||from £101.00 per tonne||Delivered|
|from £87.00 per tonne||Collected|
These prices are considerably less than wood pellets and affect the payback of an installation project.
Mass produced fuels have gone up in price over the winter with oil reaching 65p a liter as the cheapest alternative to gas.
Our WBS boiler can accept a wood pellet burner. You can start with a log boiler and upgrade to a pellet boiler at a later date.
Both the above ideas are a move to keep costs down as te main driver for everyone is cost.
At Ecobuild this year we exhibited our Pyroburn product that gives an alternative to a straight log burner.
The other development is the “Duo”, now a live product, we visited the factory 12 months ago to see the product in the final stages of development.
You can see a Dual chamber boiler video by following the link.
So we are finding that fuel prices are increasing – and this makes biomass more attractive, and logs or alternative fuels even more so. Well priced boilers and installations are met with approval, however we would all like to see a final version of the Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive confirmed soon!