“Demand for biomass boilers as a green and money-saving heating alternative is growing, however ensuring customers have the correct product properly installed is becoming an issue for the industry.” says Ben Tansey, director of Northumberland based re:heat, one of the UK’s leading wood heat specialists.
Here Ben, from the Alnwick-based wood heat company, gives three key areas to consider when choosing, installing and maintaining the correct equipment.
1. Think about the fuel type they’re going to use.
If you want a simple, straightforward operation, as close to an oil replacement as possible– then wood pellet is the fuel of choice. If you are involved with woodland management, you have time and a willingness to get your hands dirty, plenty of space and don’t mind being on call to load the boiler, then a log boiler could be the right system. A chip fired boiler usually isn’t the right choice for a domestic customer – the space and the cost are usually prohibitive, but not always.
2. Think about fuel delivery.
Without fuel, the boiler isn’t going to work. If a delivery vehicle can’t get to the property then the boiler isn’t going to get fuel. Long term, the most expensive thing you’re going to have to do is put fuel into the boiler. It sounds simple, but is often forgotten. Simple and cheap (e.g. hand filled small volume hoppers) can saddle you with many years of unnecessary manual labour and more expensive fuel. Think about delivery – think big and think long term.
3. Use good quality proven, tried and tested technology.
The RHI (Renewable heat Incentive) is a generous incentive and should encourage users to invest for the long term. Cutting a few hundred or thousand pounds out of the system cost at this stage can seem a sensible thing to do, but can result in higher long term running costs of ten times the initial cost saving – and real headaches for the installer. We understand that investing in a high efficiency; high quality boiler is a commitment, however, the returns available from the RHI are designed to comfortably cover the initial investment in quality equipment, assist with fuel costs and leave you with a system you are happy with. In addition to meeting your expectations and leaving you with a system which should last 20 years, running on lower cost, lower carbon fuel.
re:heat works with customers throughout the UK to find the best system for their needs, from designing and fitting, through to advising on operating the boiler and finding local fuel suppliers or preparing their own wood for use as fuel. They can be contacted by telephone on 01665 665040.