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9th January, 2017

“So This Salesman Came to My Door…” Beware the Biomass Hype

privateThere’s an awful lot of talk about Biomass boilers at the moment. And they can be a great choice for certain types of properties. However, we’ve been hearing some horror stories about bad installations, and pressure-sell sales tactics. There are some great suppliers out there, some really reputable firms who are doing great work. But we do think that it’s worth bearing a few things in mind when someone tries to sell you a biomass boiler – including us!

What’s the heat loss on your house?

If it’s below around 15kW for example, then biomass isn’t going to deliver a great return for you, either on heat or cost savings. You might want to consider another product instead.

Can you get the fuel delivered?

Just like an oil boiler, you’ll need to schedule regular deliveries of biomass pellets, and you’ll need somewhere to store them. Typically people are having to give up their garage for conversion into a suitable dry store for between 5 and 6 tonnes of pellets.

Do you feel pressured into buying?

You should NEVER feel pressured into buying a renewables product. Our industry has a strict set of guidelines about sales tactics and door to door sales in particular. You should be able to see the person’s ID. Remember: if you’re uncomfortable, or if you’re not sure, you don’t have to say yes. If you feel that you, a friend or a member of your family’s been the victim of bad sales practices, you can complain here.

Are you able to carry out the required maintenance?

You need to take into account the regular maintenance requirements of your system. If you’d rather have something that didn’t require the maintenance of biomass, you might want to think about a fit-and-forget system like a heat pump instead, just like we did for this community hall.

If you’re not sure about what renewables products might be right for you, then get in contact. If you’re interested in making your home more energy efficient, then you might want to talk to our Green Deal Assessor.


Photo by Gareth D Jones.

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Black Isle Renewables Ltd,
Culbo Road, Culbokie,
Dingwall, Ross-shire IV7 8JU
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