If you’ve heard that the Scottish Government is planning to ban gas boilers in 2024, you might be worried about what to replace your gas boiler with, how much it will cost to replace a gas boiler, and when you need to have an alternative to a boiler installed by.

In a move that will affect every homeowner in Scotland (whether your property is let out or owner-occupied), Scotland has committed to decarbonizing heat in buildings, generating zero direct emissions by 2045 to help combat climate change.

One-fifth of Scotland’s greenhouse gas emissions come from heating buildings and our homes, so it’s important to look at what greener alternatives to gas boilers can be used.

As part of the Scottish Government’s net-zero strategy, there have been several plans published concerning housing and energy efficiency, from meeting minimum energy standards to banning gas boilers, which will affect all Scottish homeowners in the future.

We take a look at everything you need to know about heating your home in 2024.

Is my gas boiler banned in 2024?

In a nutshell, the new standards around gas boilers coming into play on 1 April 2024 will only affect buyers of new-build properties and some other property types, and they will already have been made aware of the changes their properties will have in place, or the permissions they will need to apply for.

What other eco-friendly changes should I be aware of?

There are more changes on the horizon aside from gas boilers that Scottish homeowners will need to be aware of: privately rented homes will need to meet a minimum energy standard by 2028, and owner-occupied homes will need to meet this same standard by 2033.

What are the alternatives to gas boilers?

By 2045, all homes in Scotland will need to have converted to zero-emissions heating systems, such as the kind outlined in the February 2024 issue of ESPC Property & Interiors. This means that by this time, homes will no longer be able to have gas boilers installed.

Types of zero-emissions heating systems include heat pumps, or being connected to a district heating network, using heat from a variety of sources depending on your location and/or property type.

Under the proposals, people buying homes (or non-domestic properties) before 2045 will be expected to convert to a zero-emissions heating system. There would be a grace period of between two and five years after the purchase of the property, and some exemptions would apply.

When are gas boilers being phased out in Scotland?

As of November 2023, the Scottish Government pushed back its plan to start phasing out the installation or replacement of fossil fuel boilers by at least three years, taking the target date from 2025 to 2028.

Coming into effect from 1 April 2024, The Building (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2023 (New Build Heat Standard), means that gas boilers will be banned from new-build homes, while some other buildings will require a warrant in order to install a gas boiler. Boilers will be replaced with zero direct emissions heating systems, such as heat pumps.

How much will it cost to replace my gas boiler with a zero emissions alternative?

The cost of purchasing and installing a heat pump is typically around £10,000 – although currently the Scottish Government is offering grants of £7,500 towards the cost, plus interest-free loans to cover the remaining expense.

At the time of publication, there has been little clarity on what would happen if a gas boiler broke down, and when a homeowner would then need to install a zero-emissions heating system to replace this.