New regulations for existing homes mean that, from 15 June 2022, heating installers will be required to install thermostatic room controls when replacing a boiler. To support this change, industry experts from the BEAMA Heating Controls group have produced a short animation to explain the change to consumers, and to highlight the benefits of this work being done. The animation is freely available for installers to share on their websites and social media so that their customers can be confident they are receiving a compliant system.
The 2022 changes fall under Part L of the Building Regulations, which covers energy conservation and is a key element of the Government’s progress towards reducing the UK’s carbon emissions to net zero by 2050. As heating and hot water systems use about 80% of the energy in our homes, it is essential that every opportunity is taken to make those systems as efficient as possible when work is being done.
The new requirement will match the current standards for new heating systems, and in most cases this requirement will be met by adding thermostatic radiator valves (TRVs) to radiators. TRVs are a familiar and proven technology for installers and deliver cost effective savings for householders. These should be added to all heated rooms except where the room thermostat is located, and there is no need to replace existing TRVs if these are fully working.
The energy savings in homes as a result of this change are likely to be significant. Recent research at the University of Salford showed that under standard operating conditions a heating system with TRVs would use around 18% less gas, compared to the same system without TRVs. With predictions of annual fuel bills hitting an average of £3,000 over the next few years, consumers should welcome the fact that getting a new, more efficient boiler installed will be complemented by measures to reduce wasted energy from the radiators.
Commenting on the new tool, Remi Volpe of Schneider Electric and Chairman of BEAMA Heating Controls says: “This change to the regulations will directly benefit householders by saving them money and should be welcomed by our industry. We know that many installers saw fitting TRVs as good practice to deliver an efficient and effective heating system, but also feared that adding them to a quotation could see them being undercut by competitors. The fact that this is now a required minimum standard will help to level the playing field, and it’s important that we get this message out as widely as possible.”
This new requirement applies in England from June, and a similar requirement was consulted on for the Building Regulations in Wales and the Scottish Building Standards. It is expected that these will also come into force in the near future.