Watchdog investigates hydrogen boiler claims

CMA looks into marketing practices of boiler maker Worcester Bosch

CMA looks into marketing practices of boiler maker Worcester Bosch

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) is investigating whether Worcester Bosch has misled shoppers with ‘confusing or inaccurate’ claims in the advertising and labelling of its boiler products. 

The consumer watchdog’s probe will look at several marketing practices, including the use of labels or text stating that Worcester Bosch’s boilers can run on a blend of 20% hydrogen and natural gas. This may give the impression that this is a special feature, despite all boilers in the UK being legally required to operate in this way since the mid-1990s.

The CMA will also look at information and messaging on the use of hydrogen for home heating in the UK, even though its introduction is, potentially, years away and dependent on future government decisions. Descriptions and information about the environmental benefits of ‘hydrogen-blend ready’ boilers will also be investigated.

The CMA has written to 12 other businesses that sell ‘hydrogen-blend’ boilers after reviewing their marketing, to warn them that they could be breaching consumer protection law and to remind them of their legal obligations.

George Lusty, senior director, consumer protection, at the CMA, said: ‘We set out our concerns earlier this year about businesses marketing boilers as “hydrogen-blend”. We will now scrutinise green claims from Worcester Bosch to see if they mislead shoppers.’

Last month, Sky News broadcast an investigation that accused boiler companies of making confusing and potentially misleading marketing claims about the hydrogen compatibility of their products.