January 2023

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Understanding Your Energy Bill: Energy Bills Explained

Energy bills can be confusing because they often include many charges, such as energy usage, taxes, fees, and delivery charges, making it difficult to understand the total cost. Energy suppliers also use different unit rates and billing methods, adding to the complexity. Additionally, promotional rates and discounts can also make it difficult to compare bills and determine the most cost-effective option.

So here we are to break it down for you, so that you understand what you are looking at

What Is a KWH of Gas?

In the UK, gas is measured in cubic meters (m3), however on your bill provided your supplier, you are measured and charged in kWh, although this measurement is to make sure gas and electricity is measured in the same format attempting to simplify the way we read bills, it often adds to the confusion.

The calculation to work out m3 of gas to kWh is;

  1. You need to subtract your current reading with your last meter reading.
  2. Multiply that number by the calorific value. All this information will be on your bill
  3. Multiply that figure by 1.02264. This is the correction figure which accounts for changes in the temperature and pressure of the gas.
  4. Divide this figure by 3.6 and you’ll have your gas usage in kWh.

A kilowatt-hour (kWh) is a unit of energy equivalent to one kilowatt (1 kW) of power used for one hour. It is commonly used to measure the energy consumption of households and businesses. The energy usage of appliances, electronic devices and lightings are often measured in watts (W) and their usage time in hours (h) , thus we can calculate the energy consumption in KWH. For example, if an appliance uses 1,000 watts (1 kW) and is operated for one hour, it has consumed 1 kWh of energy.

How Many kWh of Electric Does a House Use In a Day?

The average household in the UK uses around 10 kilowatt-hours (kWh) per day. However, this can vary depending on factors such as the size of the house, the number of people living in the house, and the appliances and devices being used.

For example, a smaller home with fewer occupants and energy-efficient appliances may use less than 10 kWh per day, while a larger home with more occupants and older, less energy-efficient appliances may use more. Additionally, the time of the year, weather and the habits of the occupants (like leaving lights and appliances on when not in use) can also have an effect on the daily energy consumption. Homes that run an electric vehicle, electric underfloor heating, or a hot tub will usually use more than the average house.

You will be able to find your monthly or annual consumption on the bill that your supplier provides to be sure.

How Many kWh of Gas Does a House Need In The UK?

The amount of kWh of heat a house needs in the UK can vary depending on a number of factors, including the size of the house, the level of insulation, the number of occupants, and the climate. On average, a UK household uses around 20,000 kWh of energy per year for heating and hot water or 55kwh per day. However, this can range from around 8,000 kWh for a small, well-insulated house with a single occupant, to over 30,000 kWh for a large, poorly insulated house with multiple occupants.

What Is The Efficiency of a Gas Boiler Per kWh?

The efficiency of a gas boiler is typically measured by its annual fuel utilization efficiency (AFUE) rating. AFUE is a measure of how much of the energy in the gas that is used to heat a home, rather than being lost through the flue or elsewhere.

The efficiency of a gas boiler is typically between 80-90% AFUE. This means that for every 100 units of energy used by the boiler, between 80 and 90 units are used to heat the home and the rest is lost.

It’s important to note that this is a standard efficiency measurement and it’s possible to find some boilers with higher efficiency, usually over 90% AFUE.

Also, you can compare this efficiency with the KWH used by the house, to estimate the amount of gas used to heat the house.

What Is The Efficiency of An Air Source Heat Pump Per kWh?

The efficiency of an air source heat pump (ASHP) is typically measured by its coefficient of performance (COP). COP is a ratio of the amount of heat energy delivered to the home to the amount of electrical energy consumed by the heat pump.

The COP of an ASHP can vary depending on factors such as the temperature of the air and the temperature required for heating the home, but typically ranges from 2.5 to 4.8. This means that for every 1 unit of electrical energy consumed by the heat pump, 2.5 to 4.8 units of heat energy are delivered to the home.

It is important to note that the COP of an air source heat pump is affected by the temperature of the air it is extracting heat from, the lower the temperature the lower the COP. Also, the COP of an air source heat pump is typically higher when it is used for space heating than when it is used for hot water heating.

It’s also possible to find some ASHP with higher efficiency, usually over 5.0 COP.

As a reference, it’s worth noting that in general, ASHP are 3x to 6x more efficient than traditional heating systems such as gas boilers, which typically have an efficiency of around 80-90%.

What Is The Price Of Gas And Electric In The UK 2023?

The prices of gas and electricity in the UK can vary depending on a number of factors, including the supplier and the specific tariff. However, as of 2023, the energy price is capped in the UK at 10.7p per kWh for gas, and the electricity at 35p per KWH.

It’s important to note that these are average prices and prices can vary significantly depending on the supplier and the specific tariff. Some suppliers may offer fixed rate tariffs, while others may offer variable rate tariffs that can change depending on market conditions.

Also, it’s worth noting that the prices of gas and electricity are subject to change over time, due to factors such as changes in government policy, changes in wholesale energy prices, and changes in taxes and levies.

Do Air Source Heat Pumps And Solar Panels Work Well Together & Save Money?

Air source heat pumps (ASHP) and solar panels can work well together as part of a combined heating and hot water system.

Solar electricity can be used to power the ASHP and run it more efficiently. By using the solar panels to power the ASHP, less electricity needs to be drawn from the grid, reducing the overall running costs of the heating system.

Additionally, when solar panels are producing more electricity than the house is using, the excess can be fed back to the grid, and the household can be credited for it. This can help offset the cost of running the ASHP, making the overall system more cost-effective.

It’s important to note that the combination of solar panels and ASHP work best in properties where there is a high demand for hot water and heating, and where there is adequate sunlight to generate the electricity needed. Also, a properly sized ASHP and solar panels system will provide better performance and energy savings.

It’s worth consulting with a professional to assess the suitability of this type of system for your property and to calculate the right size of the ASHP and solar panels to maximize the energy efficiency and cost savings.

What Is The Energy Price Cap?

The UK energy price cap is a regulatory measure implemented by the UK government to limit the amount that energy suppliers can charge customers for their energy. The price cap applies to standard variable tariffs (SVT) and default tariffs, which are typically the tariffs that customers are placed on if they do not switch to a different tariff.

The price cap is set by the regulator, Ofgem, and is based on the level of wholesale energy prices and the costs that energy suppliers incur when supplying energy. The cap is reviewed and updated every six months to reflect changes in wholesale prices and supplier costs.

The goal of the price cap is to protect consumers from being charged excessive prices for their energy and to encourage them to shop around and switch to a cheaper tariff. Since the cap was introduced in January 2019, it has been adjusted several times depending on the changes in the wholesale price and supplier’s costs.

Why Are The Energy Prices So High In The UK & Will They Come Back Down?

Energy prices in the UK are influenced by a number of factors, including the cost of wholesale energy, the cost of transportation and distribution, government taxes and levies, and the costs of maintaining and upgrading the energy infrastructure.

The cost of wholesale energy, which is the price that energy suppliers pay to purchase energy from generators, is subject to fluctuations based on global market conditions, such as supply and demand, weather conditions and geopolitical events.

The cost of transportation and distribution, which is the cost of getting the energy from the power stations to homes and businesses, can also be significant. These costs include maintaining and upgrading the energy infrastructure, such as power lines, pipelines and substations, which can be costly.

Government taxes and levies, such as the Climate Change Levy (CCL), the Renewables Obligation and the Feed-in Tariffs, also contribute to the overall cost of energy. These taxes and levies are designed to support the development of renewable energy sources and to reduce carbon emissions.

The costs of these factors can vary over time, and therefore energy prices may fluctuate. Additionally, energy prices can also be influenced by competition among suppliers, as well as by government regulations and policies.

It’s worth noting that energy prices in the UK have been increasing over the past years, and it’s likely to continue to increase in the future as the costs of renewable energy sources and the costs of maintaining and upgrading the energy infrastructure continue to rise.

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How To Find A Reputable Air Source Heat Pump & Solar PV Installer

Whether you’re replacing your old central heating system, or just looking to supplement your existing one, a heat pump and solar PV installation will be an investment in both comfort and energy efficiency.

It can be a daunting process if you’ve never had one installed before. There are plenty of companies out there who will be only too happy to take your money. However, many won’t deliver what they promise or, worse still, use substandard products that could be unreliable and unefficient.

So how do you find a reputable installer? Here are our top tips:

What To Look For When Searching For The Best Heat Pump Installer

When searching for an air source heat pump and solar PV installer, an accredited company is the first thing to look for. Accreditation means that the company has met specific standards an independent body sets. This can be either voluntary or compulsory, depending on where you live in the UK.

We suggest that you only purchase from these directories:

You should also consider whether or not they have a good reputation. Their workmanship must be up to scratch because this will affect the quality of your product and its performance over time. You’ll want to find out if any customers have had issues with them before making an appointment with them yourself to discuss your requirements further.

Finally, looking into what warranties come with your purchase is worthwhile, so there aren’t any nasty surprises later down the line!

Just on a side note, heat pump installers as a requirement must be MCS Certified if the customer wishes to claim the £5000 Boiler Upgrade Scheme voucher.

What Does A Solar PV Installer Need?

Now that you’ve found a reputable air source heat pump installer, it’s time to start looking for a solar PV installer. There are many types of solar systems, so it is important that the installer must know what they are talking about and can implement the right size and specification for your home or business.

To begin, check that they have good references and accreditation before hiring them. In addition, their previous customers should be able to tell you whether or not they were happy with the installation and if there were any issues with their system.

Most of the time the warranties that you will get are with the manufacturer, so there isn’t usually any issues here, but you want to make sure the company you use is a HIES member, as HIES members get a 2 year workmanship warranty, which should rule out the majority of potential issues due to them occurring or being noticeable in that time frame.

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The Quality Of Your Solar Panels And Inverter Matters

As with any other critical piece of your system, you’ll want to ensure that the solar panels and inverter are high quality. Again, a reputable installer will help you determine whether or not a particular brand or model is suitable for your home, and this information can worked by using a combination of your bills, the times you and your family are at home and a bit of good old common sense!

When considering which solar panels to buy, just make sure you get good warranties and smart capabilities, but if you are buying 400w panels, they are all 400w panels, so providing they have a good warranty, you are usually good to go.

The best warranties come with at least 20 years of coverage on the panels and offer transferability options if you decide to sell your house or move away from its installation, inverters usually have 7 year and up, batteries are almost all 10 years.

Finally, be sure that the company offers some guarantee of reliability, or is a member of HIES —you don’t want something failing because it wasn’t built well enough!

How Long Should I Expect A Solar or Heat Pump Installation To Take?

The length of time for installation depends on the size of the project. Larger installations of heat pumps can take a week, with some taking as long as two weeks, however in most cases 2-3 days is enough. Solar installations on roofs with good access can be done in a day, however larger systems, or roofs that are stone or or slate may take longer.

Suppose you don’t have any skills or experience in working with power tools and electrical appliances. In that case, hiring an expert with that knowledge and experience is best. This way, you can rest assured that everything will be installed safely and correctly.

How Much Will It Cost To Get A Solar PV And Heat Pump Installation?

When you’re thinking about going solar, it’s easy to focus on the financial benefits of a solar PV system. However, several costs are also associated with installing a solar PV and heat pumps in your home.

When dealing with a reputable installer that you trust, these costs can be broken down into two main types: fixed costs and ongoing costs.

The fixed cost is the initial investment that you make when purchasing your system (and any additional equipment necessary), while the ongoing cost is what it would take to run the equipment over time. Financing the initial cost of a system is often a hot topic, however although there may be interest chargable on the repayments it usually is still worth doing, as the savings that you will make often cover the interest and much more, so bare that in mind!

How Compare Renewables Can Help YOU!

Heat pumps and solar panels are two of the UK’s most popular home energy upgrades. They both help you reduce your power bills and positively impact the environment.

However, there are many different types of heat pumps and solar panel systems. Each one will have its own advantages and disadvantages, so choosing the right product for your home is important. If you don’t, you could end up with an expensive system that doesn’t work as well as it should.

That’s where Compare Renewables— Heat Pump & Solar Panel comes in. Our website helps YOU find reputable heat pump and solar panel installers by comparing them all against each other on price, quality, and customer satisfaction ratings.

With so many products on the market today, it can be difficult to know which one is best for your needs. That’s why we do all the hard work for you – finding the most reliable companies in the UK and comparing their products side-by-side so you can make an informed decision about which one is best for your home

With our knowledge and experience, we help you connect with fully accredited & trusted installers in your area by decrypting the process of researching green energy products and installers. 

Let us help YOU get the most qualified heat pump and solar panel installer for your home!

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Why You Should Buy a Heat Pump Instead of a Gas Boiler?

It’s a question I get asked a lot. Should I buy a heat pump or a gas boiler? There are benefits and trade-offs to heat pumps and gas boilers, but which is right for your home? 

Well, a heat pump is a smart investment for your home. It heats your home and provides hot water, making it an energy-efficient option that can save you money. In fact, there are many benefits to having a heat pump over installing a gas boiler, and today we will be discussing exactly what those benefits are!

Heat Pumps Are More Efficient

Heat pumps have become more efficient over time, so they are now able to heat your home as well as provide hot water. There are two types of wet heat pump systems: air source and ground source.

Air source heat pumps are the most common type of system in use today. They use a compressor to circulate refrigerant through an evaporator coil inside the house, which transfers its warmth into the existing wet water system and heats your home by heating radiators or underfloor heating. 

This is how it provides hot water as well – since it has already spent some energy heating up your house and pipework, it can now use that same warmth to heat water for bathing or washing dishes.

Ground source will require large amounts of upheaval, so unless you have extraordinary sized bills from a mansion sized house as well as a decent amount of land that you can drill or dig up, this isn’t usually the best option.

Heat Pumps Are More Cost Effective Than Gas Boilers

This is a simple reason to get a heat pump over a gas boiler. Heat pumps are more cost-effective than gas boilers. A heat pump is a powerful and efficient way to heat your home, as it can provide both heating and hot water. 

In comparison to a similar-sized gas boiler, the heat pump would use around one quarter of the energy per year to provide the same amount of heating as your current system. This means that over time you could save hundreds or even thousands on energy bills if you choose to install a new heat pump instead of upgrading your existing system.

Heat Pump Efficiency Is Based on The Quality Of The Installation

The efficiency of your heat pump will depend on several factors, including:

    • Location. Will you be installing it in an area with harsh winter weather? If so, you’ll want to ensure your home has adequate insulation to prevent heat from escaping through walls, windows, and roofs.

    • Quality of installation. If an installer doesn’t know what they’re doing or skips steps during installation (like sealing up holes in ductwork), it could impact how well your heat pump works overtime and reduce its effectiveness to reduce your bills.

    • Weather conditions at the time of installation and later down the line may also play into how efficiently it functions— however so long as you choose a good brand of heat pump which has a good energy rating you can minimize any extra running costs, as the energy ratings take into consideration the highs and lows of the annual temperature and some will work just as efficiently at minus 7 degrees, as they do at plus 7.

You Are Less Likely to Need Repairs as Often With A Heat Pump

Heat pumps are more reliable than gas boilers. Heat pumps are much less likely to need repairs and last longer than a traditional furnace or boiler. 

They also require less maintenance and have fewer parts that can fail over time, so there’s a lower risk of an expensive repair bill.

When it comes to maintenance, there are several options available. You can set up a regular maintenance plan with your technician, ensuring that the system is working efficiently and preventing any major problems from occurring. A skilled technician can also help you identify potential problems before they become more serious and expensive to fix.

If you would prefer to do some of the work yourself, some simple tasks can be done without calling in an expert—for example, checking for lint build-up in the lines or replacing filters regularly. If you prefer not to deal with this kind of work yourself, hiring a professional is still an option!

Finally: if you don’t want any hassle whatsoever (and who does?), there are plenty of companies offering maintenance plans specifically tailored for heat pumps.

Heat Pumps Can Save You Space In Your Home

Heat pumps work differently to  gas boilers, they need fresh outside air which means that they can be installed outside, and even mounted on the wall. This creates two benefits:

You can save space in the room where you want to install the heating system. This can be useful if your home is small or has limited space available for appliances like boilers. 

You will need a hot water cylinder in your home for the heat pump, however in most cases this can be put in the loft, to save you space inside the house.

A Heat Pump Has Many Benefits That Are Worth Looking into 

I hope this article has helped you to understand why heat pumps are such a great option for your home. They can save you money and energy but also provide hot water and work effectively as a heating source for your home. 

So, now the next question that must be answered is: “Who do I buy a quality heat pump from?” Well, the answer is simple, fill in our form, then we can get you prices from trusted installers with MCS accreditation, so that you can make an informed decision on what will work best for you. 

Visit Compare Renewables!

At Compare Renewables, we are experienced professionals who are passionate about renewable energy and the environment. We’re here to help you find the best company for your renewable heat pump installation and ensure that installation goes as smoothly as possible.

We know that many people want to install their own heat pump but don’t know where to start or what they need. With our website, you can quickly compare quotes from local tradespeople specializing in renewable energy systems like heat pumps.

Just enter your post code and tell us about your needs—we’ll do all the rest! If you have any questions about installing one of these systems in your house, please contact us today!