Planning Permission

Planning permission is not normally needed when installing a micro-combined heat and power system in a house if the work is all internal. If the installation requires a flue outside, however, it will normally be permitted development if the conditions outlined below are met:

  • Flues on the rear or side elevation of the building are allowed to a maximum of one metre above the highest part of the roof.
  • If the building is listed or in a designated area even if you enjoy permitted development rights it is advisable to check with your local planning authority before a flue is fitted. Consent is also likely to be needed for internal alterations.
  • In a conservation area or in a World Heritage site the flue should not be fitted on the principal or side elevation if it would be visible from a highway.

If the project also requires an outside building to store fuel or related equipment the same rules apply to that building as for other extensions and garden outbuildings.

Building Regulations

The ‘Low or Zero Carbon Energy Sources: Strategic Guide (LZC)’ supports the inclusion of low or zero carbon energy sources in Part L of the Building Regulation and Approved Documents L1A, L1B, L2A and 2B. Chapter 4 deals with micro-CHP.

As micro-CHP systems operate within the context of the building, the equipment, installation and testing must all comply with the relevant standards. Details of these standards are set out in full in the LZC guide.

The guide also sets out the factors to be considered for the purposes of calculating the potential of a micro-CHP system to contribute towards lowering the carbon dioxide emissions of a building in order for it to meet the compliance requirements of Part L.

View the ‘Low or Zero Carbon Energy Sources: Strategic Guide (LZC)’ (PDF 764Kb).

Building regulations also apply to other aspects of the work such as electrical installation and plumbing work. It is advisable to contact an installer who can provide the necessary advice, preferably one who belongs to the relevantCompetent Person Scheme.


This is an introductory guide and is not a definitive source of legal information. Read the full disclaimer here.

This guidance relates to the planning regime for England. Policy in Wales may differ. If in doubt contact your Local Planning Authority.