12 October 2021

50% of installed heating appliances are inefficient – EU project to offer an assessment tool guiding consumers towards better options

The H2020 HARP project releases its updated online tool. It will enable consumers in 5 EU countries to assess the energy efficiency of their installed heating appliance and support them in finding a more efficient alternative.

The way we heat our homes in the EU today weighs heavily on the environment and our household budgets. 50% of installed heating appliances are old and inefficient[1]. With volatile EU gas prices currently soaring, the cost for households will be high. Unfortunately, this situation is set to continue as the the yearly replacement rate for heating appliances lies at only 4%.

The updated version of the online tool released today will enable consumers in France, Germany, Spain, Italy and Portugal to find out where their installed heating appliance fits on the EU energy label. The aim of this assessment is to motivate consumers to look for a more efficient alternative, pushing for a higher rate of planned replacement of inefficient appliances. The tool will also accompany the consumers in the replacement process, providing:

  • An overview of the different suitable alternatives and their benefits including cost savings;
  • A list of installers that could help replace the user’s heater;
  • An overview of the available incentives at national level.

Not all technologies are equally polluting, but most of the installed heaters are of the most polluting types. Among the 129 million boilers installed in the EU, more than 50% are inefficient, ranked in C or lower energy classes (75-82% efficiency).

The HARP online tool will accompany the consumer throughout the whole decision process from raising awareness to providing tailored practical assistance.

Joana Fernandes, Coordinator of the HARP project, said:

‘As winter is just around the corner, we are excited to launch our online application with all its functionalities, allowing consumers and professionals to label space, water and combi heating systems. Our international project team has joined forces to provide a practical tool that helps consumers replace their old heating systems with the most efficient solutions on the market. We are now working to bring the tool to users across Europe, a crucial contribution to lowering the cost of heating on the environment and our household budgets’.

Inefficient heating systems have a huge impact on the EU’s energy consumption and CO₂ emissions considering that:

  • 80% of energy in the households is used in heating and hot water.
  • Mainly due to the use of gas, oil, and coal boilers, 12% of total EU emissions come from heating buildings.
  • Boilers can last for over 15 years, and their replacement rate is very low (4% per year). It is likely that most consumers will find that their installed heater falls into C-class, or lower.
  • Even though the Ecodesign and Energy Labelling regulations for space and water heaters, in place since 2015, removed the worst performing products from the market, it is estimated that 50% of installed boilers are inefficient.

About HARP
HARP (Heating Appliances Retrofit Planning) is a project funded by the EU Horizon 2020 programme aiming to raise consumer awareness on the inefficiency of their heating systems and to accompany the adoption of efficient alternatives.

To access the HARP online tool, click here: https://heating-retrofit.eu/harp-app/
You can find more resources on the HARP project here: https://heating-retrofit.eu/resources/


Contact at ECOS: 

Pia Cencig, membership & communications manager at ECOS – pia.cencig@ecostandard.org

ECOS is co-funded by the European Commission and EFTA

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