Why HVO could be the future for oil boilers

Since 1978, Grant Engineering has been manufacturing oil-fired boilers which have efficiently heated thousands of homes in the UK, Ireland and further afield. The company has diversified its product portfolio over the years but, as Grant’s managing director, Paul Wakefield explains, oil boilers remain a core pillar of the company’s direction, with exciting developments in HVO biofuels helping to secure its place in a low- carbon future.

Grant Vortex HVO-ready boiler


Designing innovative heating products has always been a central focus for Grant, whether that be manufacturing the first condensing oil-fired boiler, developing the patented Vortex heat exchanger or bringing to market the latest range of low-NOx oil boiler models. Grant products have been ahead of the curve when it comes to legislative changes and the brand is well- recognised for being a pioneer in the field of domestic home heating.

The technical innovation of our products has also resulted from the ongoing dialogue we have with heating engineers, feeding their comments into product development and ensuring that Grant products remain installer friendly while also being sophisticated in design and operation.

Another driving force behind our R&D is delivering choice for customers. Over the years, the Grant oil boiler range has developed to ensure there is a boiler solution for almost any rural home, whether that be a white-cased utility boiler for the kitchen, an external combi for properties where space is limited, wall hung variants when a floor standing model is unsuitable, or boiler house models when the garage is the most convenient location.

In the last twelve months, Grant has streamlined its oil boiler range, but the same level of choice remains with the Vortex models, which range in output from 15kW up to 70kW, still comprising of internal, external, wall hung, boiler house and combi models.

Renewable heating

Low-carbon heating for all Providing options for customers is more important today than it has ever been. We all have a collective responsibility to reduce our carbon footprint and how we heat homes will significantly help lower emissions. Renewable heating will be the future of our industry but how this looks should not be restricted.

Grant first entered the renewables market in 2006 and since then, we have expanded our offering to include air source heat pumps, solar thermal systems, hybrid technologies as well as ancillary products such as hot water cylinders, underfloor heating and aluminium radiators, to give our customers complete package solutions.

The growth in the air source heat pump market has been an exciting development in our sector. Alongside the technological developments in heat pumps, understandings of low-carbon heating have significantly improved with consumers being more aware and more heating engineers undergoing heat pump training to meet the growing demand.

Air source heat pumps, such as our award- winning Aerona³ range, have been and will continue to be the right solution for hundreds of thousands of homes but it is important to recognise other low-carbon heating solutions.

HVO biofuels

HVO has become a popular topic in the oil industry and rightly so because Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil could have an essential role in helping reduce the carbon emissions of hard-to-heat homes currently on kerosene oil. Some properties are not suitable for low temperature heating systems because their heat loss is too great and, while improving the insulation levels of all buildings must be encouraged, the cost of such home improvements could make installing a heat pump unfeasible for some rural properties.

This is why Grant believes consumers should be given more choice when it comes to changing their heating to a lower carbon solution and this choice should include low-carbon liquid fuels.

HVO trials have been underway for several years now with homes and other buildings being converted from kerosene oil heating systems to HVO operation. HVO is 100% biofuel, with feedstocks using oils that contain rapeseed oil, sunflower oil, soybean oil and non-food oils.

Grant has been heavily involved in the trials researching the use of HVO in home heating, research which has shown that HVO can reduce carbon emissions by up to 88% when compared to standard kerosene. All Vortex floor standing oil-fired boilers are HVO compatible and they can be converted to HVO operation with a few minor alterations to the boiler, burner and system.

Looking ahead

The coming months will be pivotal for the oil heating sector. Lobbying of government to secure the inclusion of HVO biofuel in future legislation is going to be crucial to support those homes currently on oil who are unable to make the swap to electric heating. To demonstrate our commitment to low-carbon liquid fuels, Grant’s HVO compatible Vortex Pro oil-fired boiler models are now available with a 10- year guarantee when installed by a G1 Installer (effective from 1st February 2023, full T&Cs apply).

This 10-year guarantee is available on the Vortex Pro Internal and Pro External heat only and combi boilers, something which will give homeowners complete peace of mind as well as giving them the option to convert to HVO operation in the future.