I live in a victorian terraced house and when our gas boiler recently broke, we decided to replace it with a Mitsubishi Ecodan Air Source Heat Pump. We’ve been really pleased with the results and it feels great to reduce our carbon footprint further. For anyone else interested in this, you can read about how we did this on my blog post about removing a gas boiler and replacing with a heat pump.
The main disappointment from me has been the cost of removing the gas supply. Bulb want to charge £120 for meter removal and the gas network operator wants to charge in the region of £1000, so we have to keep paying £74 a year standing charge.
This was surprising and not great considering the cost already made by us in making the change to renewable heat and hot water at home. If Bulb is serious about making an impact and reducing carbon emissions to tackle climate change, I have a question!
Would Bulb consider a £0 rate standing charge for members who have removed their gas boilers and have no further need for gas?
As a present customer, my options to avoid a standing charge are to either pay the costly removal fees or switch my gas supply to another company with a tariff that does not have a standing charge for gas (such as Ebico).
Doing the latter is the only real option, cost wise - but Bulb would be missing a trick here. If the transition away from fossil fuels needs to be achieved at the rates being proposed (and we do!) then we need energy companies to come up with new ideas to enable people to do this. A million people a year by 2025 can’t be expected to pay £1000+ removal fees. Barriers need to come down, we need new ideas.
If Bulb were to provide the ability for those who’ve removed their gas boilers to switch to £0 standing charge for gas (losing any duel-fuel discounts), Bulb could be seen to be offering a solution to this emerging area, which is great PR and it also helps add reassurance for people making the transition, ultimately helping to reduce carbon emissions.
In terms of a process for something like this, note that as someone who has removed my boiler, I can easily show evidence of my gas meter, with its serial number and it’s outbound pipework (which would normally head into the house) capped off.