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  • Very low carbon heating
  • Can be fully automatic

What it is 

Wood-fuelled heating systems, also called biomass systems, burn wood pellets, chips or logs to provide warmth in a single room or to power central heating and hot water cylinders to heat the whole house. 
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. 
Wood-heating systems are often better suited to larger buildings which may be difficult to insulate, and therefore less suitable for a heat pump system.  

Is it right for me? 

You will need space; biomass boilers are larger than gas or oil equivalents and you will need space to store the fuel. This area will need to be somewhere that's handy for deliveries as well as appropriate for feeding the boiler. You will need to consider that fuel prices may rise, and also check that you are physically able to add fuel to the boiler. 

  • Every stove or boiler will need an appropriate flue. You will need a flue which meets the regulations for wood-burning appliances. This could be a new insulated stainless steel flue pipe or an existing chimney, though chimneys normally need lining to make them safe and legal.
  • Boiler vs stove: Boilers can be used in place of a standard gas or oil boiler to heat radiators for a whole house, and to heat the hot water. Stoves are used to heat a single room, usually in conjunction with other heating systems, but may also have a back boiler to provide hot water.