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Demystifying ECO4 Qualifying Criteria: Electricity, LPG, Oil, and Mains Gas



The Energy Company Obligation (ECO) scheme, particularly the ECO4 phase, is a pivotal initiative in the UK's efforts to enhance energy efficiency and curb carbon emissions. However, not all properties are eligible for this scheme, and eligibility criteria vary based on the heating fuel used. In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into the differing qualifying criteria for electricity, LPG, oil, and mains gas heating systems under ECO4. We will also shed light on why specific properties miss out on ECO4 benefits, the exceptional case of mains gas supply, and why it matters for your energy-efficient future. To find out if your property qualifies, check out



Qualifying Criteria for Different Heating Fuels

  • Electricity: ECO4 extends its support to properties with electric heating systems that are energy inefficient or endure fuel poverty. If your property's energy efficiency rating is low, or you find yourself grappling with high energy costs, you might be eligible. The scheme aims to revamp outdated systems and enhance insulation.
  • LPG (Liquefied Petroleum Gas): Homes relying on LPG heating can qualify if they are categorized as low-income or vulnerable households. These properties might be located in areas where alternative energy sources are limited, making LPG essential. ECO4 strives to alleviate energy costs and bolster environmental sustainability.
  • Oil: Properties with oil heating systems become ECO4 candidates if they meet specific criteria. These could include residing in regions lacking mains gas availability or having energy efficiency ratings that need improvement. ECO4 endeavors to transition these homes to more efficient and sustainable heating alternatives.
  • Mains Gas: Properties connected to the mains gas network are subject to distinct ECO4 criteria. Despite being a cleaner and more efficient energy source, not all mains gas properties qualify. The spotlight is on low-income and vulnerable households that stand to benefit the most from energy efficiency enhancements.


  • Why Certain Properties Don't Qualify
  • Newer Properties: Modern properties adhering to stringent energy efficiency standards might not fit the ECO4 criteria. The scheme's focus rests on improving the energy performance of older, less efficient homes.
  • High-Efficiency Systems: Properties already boasting energy-efficient systems or substantial insulation might not be eligible. ECO4 aims to optimize energy consumption where it's most needed.
  • Non-Residential Properties: ECO4 is tailored for residential properties. Commercial or non-residential buildings don't fall under its purview.
  • The Mains Gas Supply Exception
  • While properties with mains gas access are generally considered energy-efficient, exceptions exist within ECO4. The exception aims to assist low-income and vulnerable households with mains gas heating that might still struggle with energy bills or have outdated heating systems. This acknowledgment that circumstances vary within the same energy source ensures equitable distribution of energy efficiency benefits.


ECO4 is a pioneering stride toward bolstering energy efficiency and curbing emissions in the UK. Understanding the qualifying criteria for different heating fuels - electricity, LPG, oil, and mains gas - unveils the scheme's dedication to addressing energy inefficiency and fuel poverty. While not all properties fit the bill, ECO4's focus on older or vulnerable homes ensures impactful change where it's most needed. The exception for mains gas underscores the scheme's inclusivity, catering to households with varying energy challenges. Check to see if your property qualifies and embark on your journey towards a more energy-efficient future.


Here is a general breakdown of the qualifying criteria for different heating fuels:

  1. Electricity:
    • Low Energy Efficiency: Properties with low energy efficiency ratings might qualify. This often includes properties with outdated insulation or inefficient heating systems.
    • Fuel Poverty: Homes that are considered to be in fuel poverty, where a significant portion of the household's income is spent on energy bills, may also qualify.
  2. LPG (Liquefied Petroleum Gas):
    • Low-Income or Vulnerable Household: Properties classified as low-income or vulnerable households can qualify for ECO4 support. This is typically targeted at homes in areas where alternative energy sources are limited, making LPG a vital energy source.
  3. Oil:
    • Low Energy Efficiency: Similar to electricity, properties with low energy efficiency ratings are often eligible for ECO4 improvements.
    • Lack of Mains Gas: Properties in areas without access to mains gas supply might qualify for oil heating system upgrades under ECO4.
  4. Mains Gas:
    • Low-Income and Vulnerable Households: Even though mains gas is generally considered more energy-efficient, ECO4 focuses on helping low-income and vulnerable households within this category. These households may still have inefficient systems or struggle with energy bills.

Properties That Don't Qualify:

  1. Newer Properties: Newer properties built to high energy efficiency standards might not be eligible for ECO4 improvements, as the scheme prioritizes older, less efficient homes.
  2. High-Efficiency Systems: Homes that already have energy-efficient heating systems or substantial insulation improvements might not qualify.
  3. Non-Residential Properties: ECO4 is designed for residential properties, so commercial or non-residential buildings are generally not eligible.

Exception for Mains Gas Supply: While properties connected to the mains gas supply are generally considered energy-efficient, exceptions exist to accommodate low-income and vulnerable households with mains gas heating systems. The aim is to ensure that even within this category, households facing energy-related challenges receive the necessary support for energy efficiency improvements.

It's important to note that specific eligibility criteria and requirements might change over time and can vary based on government policies and the specific ECO phase. If you want to check whether your property qualifies for ECO4, you can use the eligibility assessment tool provided by organizations like to determine your eligibility based on the most up-to-date criteria.