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a comprehensive guide to what you’ll pay and when it comes into effect

The Government plans to replace gas boilers with green alternatives in the coming years, but many households fear they will be left to pick up the bill.

Boris Johnson will today set out his new green agenda. By 2025 builders will be banned from fitting conventional gas boilers in new-build homes. Mr Johnson will also ban the sale of new boilers by 2035 for all households.

Instead homes in Britain will likely be heated by heat pumps, which can be prohibitively expensive to install, or hydrogen systems, which are still in development. 

The Government plans to offer £5,000 grants for those switching. However, critics have warned just 90,000 homes will benefit from the Government 

Millions of draughty homes will also need to be better insulated in order to preserve energy and keep homes at optimal temperatures.  

But will you be forced to replace your existing boiler, and how much will it cost you? Telegraph Money takes a look. 

When does the gas boiler ban come in?

The Government announced that by 2025 newly-built homes cannot have gas boilers installed, and must instead be heated using low-carbon alternatives. This ban will not apply to new boilers fitted in existing homes.

However, in a hydrogen strategy unveiled last month, officials said the Government would also explore “enabling or requiring” new natural gas boilers to be “easily convertible to use hydrogen” by 2026. This could apply to new boilers fitted in existing homes.

The Government’s climate change advisers have also recommended a ban on sales of conventional gas-only boilers by 2033. Around 1.7 million of these devices are replaced in Britain every year. 

Will the Government pay me to switch to a heat pump?

The Government wants to end the sale of gas boilers in Britain from 2035, and will offer households grants of £5,000 to help them switch to heat pumps. However, just £450m in funding has been earmarked for the scheme, meaning just 90,000 homes will benefit.

The Boiler Upgrade Scheme will begin in England and Wales next April and will initially run for three years.

What are the alternatives to gas boilers?

As a total ban on the sale of gas-only boilers is not expected until the mid-2030s, a device fitted today would likely last most of its typical 15-year lifespan before it would need to be replaced with a low-carbon alternative.

Even when the ban does come in, it would only apply to new installations, and as yet there has been no suggestion working gas boilers would need to be replaced.

Installing low-carbon heating today would cost more than a gas boiler, though costs will likely come down considerably before any ban.

In May, the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy said it would “incentivise” people to switch to low-carbon alternatives, while making sure boilers are replaced in a way that is “fair, affordable and practical”.

The Government said it was continuing to test hydrogen as a low-carbon heat source but “was not going to force people to remove working boilers.”  

Hydrogen is being trialled in test homes, and Centrica, which owns British Gas, predicted it would be over a decade before it was available for domestic use.

There are no hydrogen-ready boilers yet on the market, but upfront costs are estimated to be slightly more than gas, with additional purchase costs of around £250.

The ban on gas boilers is likely to include an exception for hydrogen-ready devices, which work on natural gas but can run on the alternative when it is available. 

The Government’s advisers previously said hydrogen will only be suitable in around 11pc of homes, meaning some “hydrogen-ready” boilers could be installed but continue to run on gas.

Meanwhile, heat pumps have also been explored as an alternative. The Government wants 600,000 of these devices installed in homes each year by 2028. This graphic shows how heat pumps work:

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