Eligible heating systems

To apply for the DRHI, your renewable heating system needs to be one of the four technology types eligible for the scheme. It must also meet specific technical requirements and provide heat for a permitted use.

Which renewable technologies are eligible?

There are four eligible renewable technology types. These are:

  1. biomass only boilers, and biomass pellet stoves
  2. air source heat pumps
  3. ground source heat pumps
  4. flat plate and evacuated tube solar thermal panels.

To be eligible, a renewable heating system must be issued with an MCS certificate by the installer. Certificates can only be issued for systems using an MCS certified product. This shows that the product meets the relevant EN standards.

To find out whether a product is MCS certified, search the MCS product directory.

Check heat uses

You’ll see from the table below that there are restrictions on what the heat produced can be used for.

Additional requirements for Biomass installations only

All models of biomass product installed need an RHI Emission Certificate, which shows that they meet the required air quality standards. You must also use a certain fuel type with the maximum moisture content allowed by the RHI emissions certificate. When purchasing the fuel type that is right for your biomass installation, you must always make sure that it’s listed on the Biomass Suppliers List (BSL). This demonstrates that the fuel meets our sustainability criteria.

Additional requirements for heat pump installations installed on or after 22 May 2018 only

This section only applies if you have a heat pump. If you have a heat pump: 

  • your heat pump must be metered for performance. 
  • you need to have an electricity meter arrangement that measures the electricity consumed by the heat pump to generate heat.

There are three metering arrangement options available for metering for performance, which can be used alone or in combination:

The meter(s) will be required to record and display:

•    electricity used by the plant to generate heat;

•    electrical input into any supplementary electric heater controlled by the same control system as the heat pump; and

•    electrical input into any immersion heater for a domestic hot water cylinder where the immersion heater is controlled by the same control system as the heat pump.

You will need to make sure this information is added to your MCS Certificate. For full details and examples, please read our Essential Guide to Metering.

Please note

Space heating must be delivered by a liquid medium, such as a radiator. Domestic hot water heating means hot water used for purposes other than space heating or heating a swimming pool.

Something you don't understand? Check our key terms.

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