Now the rush to the craftsmen begins. Gas households have had to carry out a heating check since October 1st. The owners of the apartment or house have two years to do this. The federal government promises a low price. But if you’re not careful, you’ll pay extra in the worst case. FOCUS online says what you need to know when making an appointment.

Saying “yes” can be expensive for homeowners.

By September 30, 2024, craft businesses must carry out a check on the approximately 30 million gas heaters in Germany. The compulsory inspection is confirmed in writing.

Readers of FOCUS online report that in many cases craft businesses suggest a hydraulic balance in addition to the new heating check and also want to carry this out.

If the craftsman’s business asks whether you want a hydraulic balance in the case of single-family houses or individual apartments, a “yes” will cost over 900 euros in the worst case.

Energy has never been as expensive as it is now. But instead of panicking, you should calmly check potential savings at home. As our guide shows, there are many of them.

Yes and no.

In Germany, the measure is only mandatory for certain households. Specifically, only multi-family houses with ten residential units or more must have the hydraulic balance carried out by September 30, 2023. From six residential units in an apartment building, the deadline is September 15, 2024.

Detached houses or apartment buildings with fewer than five residential units only need the simple heating check.

On average, companies charge between 100 and 180 euros for a simple heating check, depending on location and working hours. It usually lasts a maximum of 60 minutes.

Four functions of the gas heaters are checked:

The specialist company also checks, among other things, any losses in exhaust gas, heat and ventilation.

Heating engineers, gas and water fitters, chimney sweeps and energy consultants can carry out the simple heating check.

The demand for inspections for heating systems increases steadily from October and decreases from mid-March.

If the system has to be serviced, cleaned, adjusted or insulated, the total sum of the heating check can double or triple depending on the work and time involved.

Material, travel and VAT are also important cost items that you should not ignore.

Hydraulic balancing is more complicated than a simple heating check.

During hydraulic balancing, a specialist company determines how much thermal output is actually required to heat the individual living rooms of a house. Based on this, the required amount of water for the heating system and the optimum flow temperature are set.

In addition, the pump performance and the necessary resistances in the heating circuit are calculated. This ensures, for example, that exactly the required amount of water always flows from the circulation pump to the radiators and back. Because if too much or too little water flows, not all rooms in the house are heated evenly. The result: colder radiators are turned on more. This causes unnecessary costs.

The measure is carried out by heating contractors and, depending on the size of the system, takes several hours, perhaps with an interruption of two days for the calculation.

Hydraulic balancing costs a good 600 to 1200 euros, depending on the size of the home and the heating system.

FOCUS online advises: If you want to have the hydraulic balance carried out and you are not legally obliged to do so, get government help. After submitting your application, you will receive 15 percent of the costs back from the Federal Office of Economics and Export Control (BAFA) via the “Heating Optimization” program.

The subsidy is only available for houses with up to five residential units.

The energy consumption when heating radiators can be reduced by up to 15 percent through hydraulic balancing, according to the “Intelligent heating” portal of the VdZ – Economic Association for Buildings and Energy and the non-profit consulting company co2online. The Federal Association of Consumers expects savings of up to five percent.

If you now convert the potential savings to your gas consumption, then you will find out for sure: In many cases, investing in hydronic balancing is not worthwhile.

The crafting costs are often higher than one could get out of savings in one winter.

But heating costs were high even before the supply crisis and they are likely to remain so for gas and oil heating systems. In this respect, such a hydraulic balance is an investment in the future. Depending on the heating system, the costs for the adjustment will be amortized in a few years, tradespeople believe.

At the same time, the following also applies: The hydraulic balance can result in higher relief. The pump consumes less power due to an adjustment. The heat distribution is improved.

Anyone who can afford the hydraulic balancing should therefore carry this out as a matter of principle. If the costs are too high, you can get funding or waive the comparison.

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