Wood fuelled systems are very simple to understand instead of burning gas or oil you simply burn logs or wood pellets. There are two types a stove or a boiler.
A stove burns logs or pellets to heat a single room – and may be fitted with a back boiler to provide water heating as well.
A boiler burns logs, pellets or chips, and is connected to a central heating and hot water system. A wood-fuelled boiler could save you nearly £600 a year compared to electric heating.
- cheap renewable fuel source:
- Financial support: wood fuel boiler systems could benefit from the Renewable Premium heat incentive.and the Renewable Heat Incentive.
- A low-carbon option: the carbon produced in burning the wood is re-absorbed by the growing of replacement trees to provide more pellets or logs for your boiler.
A pellet stove will cost around £4,300 including installation. Installing a new log stove will usually cost less than half this, including a new flue or chimney lining.
For boilers, an automatically fed pellet boiler for an average home costs around £11,500 including installation, flue, fuel store and VAT at 5%. Manually fed log boiler systems can be slightly cheaper.
Pellet costs depend mainly on the size and method of delivery. Buying a few bags at a time makes them expensive. If you have room for a large fuel store that will accept several tonnes of pellets at a time, delivered in bulk by tanker, you can keep the cost down to around £190 per tonne in most parts of the UK.
Logs can be cheaper than pellets, but costs depend on the wood suppliers in your local area, as they cost a lot to transport. If you have room to store more than a year’s worth of logs you can save money by buying unseasoned logs and letting them season for a year.
Savings in carbon dioxide emissions are very significant – around 7.5 tonnes a year when a wood-fuelled boiler replaces a solid (coal) fired system or electric storage heating. Financial savings are more variable – if you replace a gas heating system with a wood-burning system you might save £100 a year, but if you are replacing electric heating you could save as much as £580 per year.
This table shows how much you could save by installing pellet central heating in a typical three-bedroom semi-detached house with basic insulation:
|Fuel replaced||Expected saving||Expected carbon dioxide saving|
|Electricity||£580 a year||7.5 tonnes a year|
|Oil||£280 a year||4 tonnes a year|
|LPG||£720 a year||3.5 tonnes a year|
|Coal||£300 a year||7.5 tonnes a year|
|Gas||£100 a year||3 tonnes a year|
These savings assume the house has been insulated, as we always recommend that people insulate their homes properly before considering installing renewable energy systems. So you could save money from insulating, and then save the money from switching to wood heating too!
Eco concepts also supply and install Biomass boilers to Commercial customers. The public sector has so far shown the highers demand due to their high energy bills in organisations like the NHS and Schools. The cost savings are very large when compared to traditional methods but the organisation must allow for the storage of the pellets under cover in a dry area. If this is possible on the site massive savings can be made.