Installers and metering

The Government recently published its response to the consultation on Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) reform. For information on what the Government changes mean for you, please see our changes to the scheme.

The Government is introducing new Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) Scheme Regulations which will come into effect in spring/summer 2017. Please note that the content and timing of any changes we outline will be subject to parliamentary process. Our updates are based on information provided by the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS).

As an installer you need to know when, under the Domestic RHI scheme, a system must be metered for performance* and/or when a system must be metered for payment*, how these types of metering work, and what metering documents you have to complete and give to your customer for their application.

Solar thermal for heating domestic hot water never has to be metered. If that’s all your customer has installed, you don’t need to read this page.

Where systems need to be metered for performance

This section only applies if your customer has a heat pump. If they don’t have a heat pump then jump to the metering for payment section to see if their renewable energy plant needs to be metered for payment.

From spring/summer 2017, it’s a requirement that all new applications for air source and ground source heat pumps must have electricity metering arrangements alongside their heating systems to be eligible for the Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI).

There are three metering arrangement options available for metering for performance:

  1. Stand-alone electricity metering*
  2. On-board electricity metering*
  3. Metering and Monitoring Service Package (MMSP)

For more details on metering for performance, make sure you read our Factsheet: Important Changes to the Domestic RHI Scheme.

Where systems need to be metered for payment

Below we’ve highlighted some common situations which do require metering for payment, but for full details make sure you read our Essential Guide to Metering.

1. Where there's back up heating

This applies where:

  • The renewable heating system is installed alongside a fossil fuel space heating system. For example, where there’s a biomass boiler and a back-up oil boiler.
  • The renewable technology is a heat pump with an integrated fossil fuel system, like a gas boiler, built into it.
  • There’s more than one renewable heating technology for space heating, for example, where there are two biomass boilers. See Multiple productsopen key term pop-up  for more information. (Remember that it's fine to have a solar thermal plant installed alongside your other technology, as long as your solar thermal plant is only heating domestic hot water).

Back-up heating that doesn’t count: The system doesn’t need metering if the back-up heating is only designed and installed to heat a single room, such as an open fire or plug-in electric heater. Similarly, immersion heaters and supplementary electric heaters, that some heat pumps and biomass systems have, don’t count. Heat recovery systems that recycle air but don’t generate additional heat also don’t need to be metered.

2. Where there’s a biomass heating system that isn’t designed to heat the whole property

Biomass systems must meet all of the space heating requirements for the property. Anything less will need to be metered.

3. Where the property is occupied for less than half the year

Homes that have been lived in for less than half the year must be metered. This includes second homes or tenanted properties, which have been empty for 183 days in the 12 months prior to applying to the scheme. The applicant needs to declare on the application form if their home is occupied for less than 183 days a year. This rule doesn’t apply if the applicant is applying as a custom build.

 

* To learn more about this term, please see our Factsheet: Important Changes to the Domestic RHI Scheme

Next steps

To find out more, see:

Multiple products

There are some circumstances when you may be able to install multiple products and apply for these in one application. We explain these here. More.

Publications and updates

  • Published: 18th Jul 2014
  • Guidance
  • 1 Associated documents
This document is for people with an air source heat pump or ground source heat pump that must be metered for them to receive scheme payments.

  • Published: 9th Apr 2014
  • Guidance
  • 1 Associated documents
This document is for people with a biomass heating system that must be metered for payment. It must be completed by the installer and given to the customer to send to us if their heating system needs an alternative to standard metering arrangements.

  • Published: 9th Apr 2014
  • Guidance
  • 1 Associated documents
This document is for people with an air source heat pump or ground source heat pump that must be metered for payment. It must be completed by the installer and given to the customer to send to us if their heating system needs an alternative to standard...

  • Published: 9th Apr 2014
  • Guidance
  • 1 Associated documents
This document is for people with a biomass heating system that must be metered for them to receive scheme payments. It must be completed by the installer and given to the customer who’ll use it to answer the questions about metering on the Domestic...