Home Heating and Cooling Upgrades Program

Upgrades for individuals

A smiling young girl sitting inside with her dog, wrapping a blanket around her dog
A smiling young girl sitting inside with her dog, wrapping a blanket around her dog

Receive a $1,000 rebate to upgrade with an energy efficient reverse cycle split system.

About the program

The Home Heating and Cooling Upgrades Program will help 250,000 low-income and vulnerable households improve their thermal comfort by offering rebates to upgrade gas heaters, electric heaters, wood heaters and no heating with energy efficient electric reverse cycle split systems.  

These upgrades will improve the quality of life for our most vulnerable residents, provide jobs for trades people, produce broader environmental benefits by reducing gas emissions and improving local air quality, and pave the way for the electrification of Victorian households as the state transitions to a renewable energy future.  

Currently rebates are available to community housing organisations

Upgrades for community housing

Not-for-profit community housing organisations can apply now.

Find out more

Register your interest

If you are part of an owner-occupier household who is looking to replace an inefficient heating system and you hold a concession card, or have a combined household income of less than $90,000, you can apply for a $1,000 rebate directly from Solar Victoria from July this year.  

Applicants can receive an additional $200 if they need to cap an old gas heater and $500 if they need to upgrade their switchboard to safely install a split system. 

Please sign up to receive an update when the program is open for applications.  

FAQs

  • The Victorian Government will provide 250,000 rebates to help  households install energy efficient electric reverse cycle split systems to replace their old gas, electric and wood-fire heater or where there is no heating system.  

  • The first wave of the Home Heating and Cooling Upgrades Program will focus on eligible not-for-profit community housing organisations who can apply for rebates on behalf of their tenants.  

    To ensure rebates reach vulnerable Victorians across the state individuals will be able to apply in the coming months. 

  • A reverse -cycle split system can heat as well as cool and is one of the cheapest ways to heat your home in winter. In cooling mode, it extracts heat from the indoor air and moves it outside, via pipes connecting the indoor and outdoor units. In winter it 'absorbs' heat from the outdoor air to warm the air inside. 

  • Households will benefit from improved comfort, including by having efficient cooling to deal with summer heat stress. Improving comfort for households in summer and winter will also provide important health benefits for individuals with illnesses associated with respiratory disorders such as asthma and individuals who are prone to heat stress.  

    Reverse cycle split systems are also safer than many gas and electric systems and mitigate the risk of burns or monoxide poisoning.    

    There are also wellbeing benefits. Reverse cycle split systems allow users to have guests more frequently thus reducing social isolation and allow for families to be more active at night allowing for children to study longer for example.    

  • The program will be available to low income and vulnerable households, targeted to ensure the program helps those who need it most.   

    Eligibility criteria has been developed based on feedback from close consultation with industry and welfare groups. Social and not-for-profit community housing providers are also eligible to apply for this program on behalf of their tenants.  

  • The rollout of the program will be designed with leading industry and welfare agency experts to ensure it reaches those who are most in need.  

  • No – households must confirm they are eligible before buying a heater, and rebates will not be paid retrospectively.  

  • The average energy efficient reverse- cycle split system costs approx. $1700, including installation.    

  • We will be working with retailers, industry, unions and community groups to design a mechanism that makes it easy and efficient to access and install an eligible system. Further details on how to buy a system will be provided in due course. 

  • The old, inefficient system must be decommissioned. Removal will be at discretion of householder and by agreement with installers to avoid unnecessary “make good” costs. 

  • Yes - reverse cycle split systems are the most efficient, proven technology that costs less to run and delivers dual benefits of heating and cooling.   

  • Yes – up to 100,000 systems will be available in the first year of the program.  

  • Rental properties are eligible. Landlords may apply to upgrade heaters in their rental property to benefit low income renters. Renters will be encouraged to work with their landlords to upgrade heating and cooling on the property.  

  • The program will support households over 4 years.  

  • Reverse cycle split systems can only be installed by air conditioner installers licensed by Energy Safe Victoria and the Victorian Building Authority where relevant. Plumbing and gas fitting work can only be done by plumbers licensed by the Victorian Building Authority and Energy Safe Victoria where required. All installations in Victoria are required to have relevant compliance certificates.  

  • The program will be delivered by Solar Victoria and build on the successful safety measures put in place to protect consumers and workers under that program. Installations in Victoria are only permitted by licensed installers and must include compliance certificates. Regulators including Energy Safe Victoria, Victorian Building Authority and WorkSafe Victoria will step up their regulatory activity to ensure Victoria’s high safety standards are maintained.  

Other energy efficiency programs

Reviewed 03 June 2021

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