What is the Energy Company Obligation (ECO)?  

ECO works alongside the government’s Green Deal to help people install energy-efficiency measures to their home. Under this scheme the big energy suppliers are legally obliged to help the following with energy-efficiency measures:

  • low income and vulnerable households
  • homes that may not benefit from savings from the Green Deal
  • homes in low income areas

Government Schemes

 ECO is the government’s umbrella term for its programme to make houses in the UK more energy efficient, it covers the affordable warmth obligation, the carbon saving obligation and the carbon saving communities obligation. The scheme replaced Carbon Emission Reduction Target (Cert) and Community Energy Saving Programme (CESP) that ended in December 2012.

As part of ECO, the government estimates that £1.3 billion per year worth of energy efficiency and heating measures will be delivered across Great Britain.

How do I know if I’m eligible for a free boiler?

Before you look at the information below the first question to be answered is: Do you live in your own home or a property rented from a private Landlord.?

Social housing is excluded from the ECO Scheme but other Government sponsored schemes may be available.

You must receive certain state benefits:

Qualifying benefits under the ECO Scheme include

  • State pension credit,
  • Child tax credit,
  • Income-based job seeker’s allowance,
  • Income-related employment and support allowance,
  • Income support and working tax credit.

Some of these state benefits have conditions attached such as also having parental responsibility for a child under the age of 16 or being in receipt of a disability allowance. You have an inefficient or faulty central heating boiler.

Modern condensing boilers are very efficient and in broad terms the ECO Scheme covers practically every other type of central heating boiler including back boilers.  If your boiler is more than ten years old or has a square external flue, or if the pilot light stays on even when the boiler isn’t operating, it is likely that your boiler qualifies under the ECO Scheme to be replaced free of charge.  Some of the faults with boilers which are covered by the ECO Scheme are:


  • Problems with the pilot light or the boiler not lighting properly
  • Your boiler is making banging noises
  • Leaking gas or water
  • Your boiler is corroded

But there are many other faults included and a free technical survey can determine this.

ECO funding for Landlords in South Wales

If you are a private landlord you can also enquire about a free boiler as your tenant may be eligible under the ECO Scheme.  This means that you could have a new ‘A’ rated, energy efficient central heating boiler or energy efficient insulation fitted in your property completely free of charge.  What’s more, there is no limit to the number of properties for which you can apply as long as the tenant qualifies and other criteria are met.

If you are unsure either email boiler@ppswales.com Text “boiler” to 88802 call 01495 222069, hopefully the diagrams below should assist you.

Free boiler eligibility flow diagram

free boiler eligibility flowchart