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RHI is a great opportunity for heat meter installations

Dear Sir,

I think your readers might appreciate some clarification regarding the Renewable Heat Incentive and heat meters.

In November 2011, Ofgem produced a document entitled RHI Guidance - Eligibility and how to apply. In order to claim the RHI for a non-domestic installation, Ofgem specified that a class 2-certified heat meter has to be used.

Using the appropriate heat meter, the equipment owner can claim the RHI on any new installation that has been commissioned since July 2009.

This is, therefore, a big opportunity for installers who did not install a heat meter at the time the installation was carried out.

As of April 2012, the RHI is worth up to 8.3p/kWh for biomass, up to 4.7p/kWh for heat pumps, up to 7.1p/kWh for biomethane and 8.9p/kWh for solar thermal.

There are several makes of class 2 meters on the market and most of these are suitable for the RHI.

However, for solar thermal, Ofgem has specified that the heat meter must also be able to be calibrated for the glycol mixture in the system, mainly because the glycol affects the heat transfer characteristics of the fluid.

Class 2 does not automatically mean that the heat meter can be used for a solar thermal system, as there are a lot of class 2 heat meters on the market that cannot be calibrated for glycol.

If a heat meter is being fitted to a solar thermal system, the installer must check that it has been calibrated for the brand of glycol being used and the correct concentration level.

The distributor should be able to produce a calibration certificate with the heat meter.

Kevin Carling, managing director, Secon Solar


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