Anyone who owns an oil or gas heating system will sooner or later have to have the system renewed or renovated. In many cases this is even mandatory. FOCUS online says who will have to replace their heating in 2023.

The Building Energy Act has been in force in Germany since November 2020. Among other things, it stipulates that homeowners may only operate their heating systems for 30 years (from installation).

According to this, from 2023 onwards, only heaters that were installed after January 1, 1994 may be operated in Germany. Anyone who connected their boiler before this deadline may only continue to operate the heating in exceptional cases.

However, there are important exceptions. The replacement obligation does not apply to low-temperature boilers or systems with low output.

Important! Even if owners have been living in the apartment or house with the outdated oil and gas heating since February 1, 2002, the old heating systems can continue to be operated.

But if the Müller family sells the house, the new homeowner will have to replace the heating system within the next two years.

According to heating technicians when asked by FOCUS online, the decisive factor here is the installation of the standard heating boiler. It is irrelevant whether new components or small repairs took place in these 30 years.

Those affected can find out from the bill issued when the boiler was connected. If the document is no longer available, the type plate on the boiler can help. It’s usually located right inside the main lid. Depending on the model, the type plate contains the serial number, the manufacturer, the model type and the year of manufacture.

If you can no longer read the sign, the chimney sweep in your area can help. He usually logs the regular inspections and can look at his archive for a fee.

If the local chimney sweep has already passed away or there has been a change in personnel, a heating installer can also help. Based on make, type, model and wear and tear, he can easily find out the age.

If house owners have lived in the house themselves since February 1, 2002 and operate heating systems that are more than 30 years old, then they are exempt from the replacement obligation. However, the house loses value when it is sold because the new owner has to replace the system within two years.

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.

If you have an older heating boiler and are subject to the Building Energy Act, you could face a fine in extreme cases. Local chimney sweeps can also shut down heating systems and prohibit operation.

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If you need to replace the heating, you should obtain several offers from different heating installers in your area. Use a combo of low calorific fossil fuel and renewable energy. Here you can, for example, rely on solar thermal energy, heat pumps or fuel cell heating systems. The following applies: from 2024, a newly installed or replaced heating system must use at least 65 percent renewable energy. According to the Federal Environment Ministry, this is possible in most cases with heat pumps, solar thermal energy (i.e. the use of sunlight to generate heat) or wood pellets.

The aim is to phase out gas heating quickly. Solar systems on the roof should thus become the standard.

You can find an overview of what new heaters cost here. If you replace all the radiators, the costs can double in extreme cases. The decisive factor is the number, the type and the provider.

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These are often other hybrid heating systems, for example a heat pump or a solar thermal system combined with a gas condensing boiler, explains energy consultant Stefan Materne. Heating with stoves for pellets, wood chips or logs is also a possible combination.

The choice of heating is an individual decision that has to suit the building: the size and condition of the house, the number of residents, the orientation of the roof, radiators or underfloor heating and many other things play a role in determining which heating system can be the best.

no If you replace the heating system because it is more than 30 years old and you are obliged to replace it at the same time, you are not entitled to any subsidies.

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