Domestic Heat Pumps

Is my home suitable

Air source heat pumps are installed outside your home, so lots of homes are suitable. The heat pump unit is quite large, so you will need to make sure you have space outside in the garden. Your heat pump will also be more efficient if you have a suitable sunny spot, as the air will be warmer.

Air source heat pumps operate at much lower temperatures than traditional gas or oil boilers. Your home will need to be well insulated so that you feel the benefits of the heating system. If you have existing radiators then they may need to be upgraded, and they will feel cooler to the touch than you may be used to. They work well with underfloor heating systems, and can be fitted to an existing system.

We have designed systems for small Cornish cottages and off grid eco-mansions, so we can make sure you get the right system for your home.

How does it work?

Air Source heat pumps absorb heat from the outside air. This heat can then be used to heat radiators, underfloor heating systems and hot water in your home.

The technology is the same as the refrigeration unit in a fridge or air-conditioning system. In a refrigeration system the warm air extracted is a waste product of cooling. In a heating system, the warm air extracted is used in your heating system.

Benefits

Air source heat pumps (also known as ASHPs) and Ground source heat pumps (GSHPs):

  • could lower your fuel bills, especially if you are replacing conventional electric, oil or LPG heating
  • could provide you with an income through the government’s Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI)
  • could lower your home’s carbon emissions, depending on which fuel you are replacing
  • don’t need fuel deliveries
  • can heat your home and provide and hot water
  • need little maintenance – they’re called ‘fit and forget’ technology
  • can be easier to install than a ground source heat pump, though efficiencies may be lower.

Unlike gas and oil boilers, heat pumps deliver heat at lower temperatures over much longer periods. During the winter they may need to be on constantly to heat your home efficiently. You will also notice that radiators won’t feel as hot to the touch as they might do when you are using a gas or oil boiler.

 

Incentives

Renewable Heat Incentive

The Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) is split into Domestic and Non-Domestic tariffs.

Domestic RHI

The scheme is now open for householders looking to replace their current heating system with a supported renewable heat technology and householders who have installed eligible renewable heat technology since 15 July 2009. The domestic RHI will pay owners the following:

Ground Source Heat Pumps 18.8p/kWh
Air Source Heat Pumps 7.3p/kWh
Solar Thermal >19.2p/KWh
Biomass Boilers 12.2p/kWh

The RHI criteria for eligibility are available via Ofgem. We are happy to talk through the best options for your individual situation and remain completely impartial. The Energy Saving Trust and YouGen also provide independent information easily accessible via their websites.

Read our Domestic RHI fact sheet here

What happens next?

When you are ready to go ahead with investing in a heat pump system, we will arrange for a survey of your home. One of our team will come and get all the details we need for your install to go smoothly.

We will check you have a suitable location to install the heat pump, and any associated ground works (for GSHP’s). We rarely find any problems, but in the unlikely event there is an issue we can advise on the best solution. If we feel that an alternative technology would provide better benefits for your home and budget, then we will advise you on potential alternatives. We are accredited for a variety of products, and will always aim to give impartial advice, so that our recommendations are based solely on your needs and requirements.

We’ll take all the measurements we need so that we can design your system, carefully planning how to add it in to any existing heating and pipework. We will also need to measure the rooms and other spaces in your home so that we can carefully calculate your potential heat losses. This is important so that we can make sure the system is sized accurately – this is important for you to get a really efficient system. It is also important if you care claiming the RHI for your system as it has to be carefully matched to your predicted usage. We will carefully explain all the details and talk through any special requirements you might have.

Once we have all the information we need, we can provide you with a quote for your install. This will give you our recommendations and options for the heat pump system we think will give you the maximum benefits.

When you are ready to go ahead, we will arrange your install at a time that suits you for the installers to come to your home.

Maintenance

Heat pumps are sealed units, and therefore shouldn’t require high levels of maintenance. If you are claiming the RHI your system should be maintained following manufacturers guidlines. Spotting any potential issues early will also save on repair costs later.

We can offer maintenance contracts for all domestic heat pump installs.