Smallholders Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: Advice on biomass systems  (Read 4144 times)


  • Joined Dec 2012
Advice on biomass systems
« on: November 14, 2013, 11:32:49 pm »

We would like to use a renewable heat source and take advantage of the governments RHI, as we have a 1754 building with no plans to renovate (grade 2), we believe the best option is the biomass pellet system.

Qu - cost is there a way to reduce this by buying whole system direct

- does anyone have experience of them

- have you claimed the commercial RHI and does the system really pay for itself in 5 yrs, leaving an income stream for the next 15 yrs?




  • Joined Aug 2010
  • Aberdeenshire
Re: Advice on biomass systems
« Reply #1 on: November 15, 2013, 05:09:19 am »
My understanding was that to qualify for commercial RHI there had to be two or more buildings involved?

There's a new domestic subsidy coming in next year for Biomass I think too. But not sure you get domestic RHI now unless you do the other stuff like insulation etc first?

I'm sure others can correct me on these thoughts!

oor wullie

  • Joined Jun 2012
  • Strathnairn
Re: Advice on biomass systems
« Reply #2 on: November 15, 2013, 09:28:15 am »
Not sure how you would get commercial RHI for your home.  Domestic RHI is supposed to start in 2014 (decide for yourself how much you trust the governments statements on this).

I am pretty sure you will have to get a green deal assessment (I think that is what it is called) and make the appropriate improvements in efficiency before you get RHI, after all why should the government pay you to waste heat.

I am not sure about pellet boilers but I have just had a log boiler installed (ETA log boiler and 2000 litre accumulator tank).  Because it is a relatively unusual system (in this country) and it is pretty complicated I made sure I went with an installer who specialises in them.  The internet is full of stories of people who had problems with them not being installed properly.

These systems are not cheap but I am pleased with my system so far - only 2 months in, winter will be the proper test.


  • Joined Dec 2012
Re: Advice on biomass systems
« Reply #3 on: November 15, 2013, 10:33:11 pm »
The plan is to set it up through a company i believe and its to feed a farmhouse, 4 holiday lets and a shop, which i understand gets us were we need to be, but i dont know anyone who has one so wondered if the massive price tag was worth it.



  • Joined Aug 2010
  • Aberdeenshire
Re: Advice on biomass systems
« Reply #4 on: November 16, 2013, 07:58:13 am »
AHH that sounds perfect then.  :thumbsup:

I know one person who has done it, he's put in four wood chip boilers and between them they are heating thirty houses.  (Hes also doing/done a small hydro scheme. He's certainly not regretted it and it's been in a couple of years now.

Not sure whether the wood chips used are sourced from his estate (there certainly used to be a sawmill there) or whether they are bought in. Would make sense to use the wood on his land tho.


  • Joined Oct 2010
Re: Advice on biomass systems
« Reply #5 on: November 19, 2013, 07:12:44 pm »
In England you can get the boiler installed for free for a commercial setup such as yours. I believe you then (obviously)  contract to buy  your woodchips or pellets from the installer, and I think they get the subsidy also. (But I'm not 100% sure of the latter.)
Rules are made:
  for the guidance of wise men
  and the obedience of fools.


  • Joined Dec 2012
Re: Advice on biomass systems
« Reply #6 on: November 19, 2013, 11:10:27 pm »
We were predicted about 13k a year in rhi min plus savings in running costs, which should pay off a loan in 5  years apparently (so they tell us), which a financing company would receive instead of us, for 20 years.

It is shed loads of money and so far all we have is, it should or about, things are never straight forward and just as they don't tell you the full story in regards to the elec cost of the heating pumps or the regular service cost etc. Im sure the sales folk are only telling us part of the story.

But if we can really have a lovely warm house in the winter, actually pay of the loan in 5 yrs and the government pay us 13k for the next 15 years then we will find the money from somewhere.

We just think things are never that easy and hope to find someone who has ventured down this path.

The man who writes books on old houses and all this  renewable stuff gave a talk at the Home Building and Renovating show, he was excellent with a vast amount of knowledge and said wood pellet system was the best with solar at the bottom.

Who knows, its just scary figures.



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