Matt Jackson

vaillant 10kw air source heat pump, cost of heat pump, heat pump price

How Do Air Source Heat Pumps Work?

Air source heat pumps are a modern solution for heating your home and providing hot water. They harness the power of the outside air, even when temperatures drop significantly, to generate heat energy. This energy is then used to warm your radiators, underfloor heating system, or hot water tank. There are two main types of heat pumps used in homes: air-to-water and air-to-air heat pumps, with air-to-water being particularly suited to British homes built with a wet heating system, providing an efficient way to transfer heat through your home.

Air source heat pump systems are not only renewable but can also be cost-effective, saving you money in the long term through energy bill savings. They require less energy than traditional heating systems and are powered by electricity which is a greener option for reducing your carbon footprint, providing that your electricity is produced by renewable sources. Furthermore, certain government incentives such as the Boiler Upgrade Scheme can help with the initial costs, and help homeowners in England to make the shift.

Heat Pump Overview

Heat pumps are emerging as the number one choice for domestic heating for homes and buildings throughout the UK, the advances in technology and a deeper understanding of how to maximise the output of heat pumps mean that heat pumps are here to stay.  

Gas Boiler Ban In 2025

The UK government has finally confirmed plans to ban gas and “hydrogen-ready” boilers in new homes built in England starting in April 2025. This decision comes after a long-awaited consultation on low-carbon building standards.

The proposals suggest that heat pumps will likely become the standard heating system for new homes. This aligns with the government’s goal of making all new houses “net zero ready” by 2025, meaning they’ll produce very low levels of carbon emissions.

The consultation process also ruled out alternative options like hybrid heat pumps and “hydrogen-ready” boilers for new builds. This decision was based on the conclusion that using any fossil fuel heating system, even those designed for future hydrogen use, wouldn’t achieve significant carbon reductions, hindering progress towards net zero.

Expenses of Heat Pump Installations

It is no secret that the cost of installing an air source heat pump is a significantly larger expense than a combi boiler. Yet, over a few years, the higher upfront cost gradually balances out due to the lower consumption of energy and in turn, reduced energy bills. To sweeten the deal, a £7,500 subsidy from the Boiler Upgrade Scheme brings the opportunity to install a heat pump to a much wider audience than before, by bringing costs in line, or sometimes to be even cheaper than the cost of traditional heating systems. 

Types Of Heat Pumps

There are two types of heat pumps that make up over 99% of all heat pumps sold:

    • Air-to-Air: Warms or cools your home by funnelling outdoor air through a duct system.
    • Air-to-Water: Transfers heat into a water heating network for your radiators or underfloor system.

For the purpose of this guide, we will be mainly focusing on air-to-water heat pumps. In the UK most houses are built with a wet heating system which is connected to radiators or underfloor heating. Due to the UK being a colder country in general, wet systems are favoured to keep homes warm in the winter. Air-to-air systems require ventilation ducts to be installed in homes which isn’t a standard practice for our English homes, this is why air-to-air systems are more common in warmer countries that require cooling.

Will Heat Pump Prices Come Down?

While heat pump installation costs are based on factors like pump capacity and installation complexity, you can anticipate substantial savings on your annual heating expenses, sometimes saving up to two-thirds. The systems are impressively efficient, with operating efficiencies of over 400%, compared to traditional boilers at 90%.

If you are banking on costs reducing before you install a heat pump, then you are likely to be waiting forever. I have been working in the industry for over 10 years, and the costs have only gone in one direction, which isn’t likely to change any time soon.

There are a few reasons why costs are going up, by looking at the total cost of an installation, it is hard to see where the cost reductions are going to come from. The components of a heat pump are predominantly manufactured in Asia, which results in large shipping expenses to get the equipment around the world to us. Other essential materials required like copper piping, or water cylinders do have consistent pricing which has seen above inflation increases over the last 20 years. To install the system, plumbers and electricians will be required, with work spread over several days, there is already a shortage of tradesmen which is pushing labour prices to highs never seen before. There are also other essential charges for businesses, such as office staff and memberships to schemes such as the MCS, and HEIS.

There is the possibility for funding levels to change however, which could go up or down for the consumer. The British government have a track record of unpredictability, however in my opinion I think it is highly unlikely that further funding will be made available due to the current economic climate. The Boiler Upgrade Scheme is confirmed to run until at least March 2025, which means the government’s £7,500 voucher will significantly reduce the net cost of installing a heat pump until then.

One factor which can help you control costs the most is how well your home is insulated. A well-insulated home ensures minimal heat loss, enhancing the pump’s performance and leading to better savings, a well insulated home will also mean you require a smaller heat pump capacity, smaller radiators and this results in lower upfront installation costs.

Remember that energy efficiency not only reflects on your energy bills but also contributes to a more sustainable living environment. Hence, while the initial price might appear steep, the long-term benefits of a heat pump system are both financially and environmentally significant.

Heat Pump How It Works – Explained

A heat pump operates by moving heat from one location to another using a refrigerant. This system uses the thermal energy present in outdoor air or ground to heat your home. It’s a bit like your fridge, but instead of keeping things cool, it warms your living spaces.

Principles at Work:

  • Thermal Transfer: Heat naturally travels from warmer to cooler areas. Heat pumps exploit this by collecting heat from the environment and transferring it indoors.
  • Cycles of Operation: Inside the pump, a refrigerant captures external heat as it evaporates into a gas, then a compressor raises the temperature of this gas.
  • Efficiency: Despite requiring electricity to operate, heat pumps are energy efficient. They do not burn fossil fuels, making them a cleaner choice for heating.

Due to their design, they have the ability to function in a spectrum of temperatures, you can rely on heat pumps to provide warmth even in the depths of a cold British winter! Some models will still work well at temperatures as low as -25°C, which is far below the lowest temperatures that are seen in the UK.

Types of Air to Water Heat Pumps:

  • Air Source: These extract heat from the air. An external unit with coils and a fan draws in outdoor air, heats the refrigerant, then sends it indoors into a wet heating system.
  • Ground/Water Source: These gather heat from the ground or water. They work similarly but start with warmth from underground or water sources to provide heating.

When you have a heat pump installed, a loop system consisting of an evaporator coil, compressor, and condenser coil works continuously. This means the process of absorbing and releasing heat is sustained, ensuring your home stays warm consistently.

Understanding the Mechanics:

The external part of an air-source heat pump features coils filled with refrigerant. The outside air is pulled over these coils by a fan, heating the refrigerant, which evaporates and is compressed to further increase the temperature. The refrigerant then travels indoors to release the captured heat before cycling back outside to restart the process.

Adopting heat pump technology has become increasingly popular for their efficiency and sustainability, making them a favoured choice in future proof home designs.

Fundamental Operations of a Heat Pump

Heat naturally moves from an area of higher temperature to one of lower temperature, but the reverse requires additional energy to be expended. Deploying a heat pump allows this process to occur, transferring warmth in a manner opposed to its natural flow. 

Basic Concept

The heat pump operates by consuming less energy (work) to move a given quantity of heat, hence its advantage over other heating methods like electric resistance heating, which typically requires substantially more energy.

Energy Transfer Ratio

To shift heat Q from a cooler exterior to a warmer interior, the amount of energy W needed can be expressed as:

  • Work Done (W): Represents the energy employed by the heat pump’s compressor.
  • Heat Moved (Q): The heat shifted from the colder zone to the warmer zone.
  • Coefficient of Performance (COP): A measure of the heat pump’s efficiency at the prevailing temperatures of the two regions involved.

The equation is given by:

W = Q / COP

The efficiency of a heat pump is significantly influenced by its COP, which is typically greater than one (can be 1:4), meaning that it needs less work to transfer heat compared to the amount of heat it moves. However, it’s important to note that the COP decreases as the higher-temperature environment’s temperature climbs, or the external temperature decreases, requiring more energy per unit of heat transferred.

Calculating Efficiency

Envision a heat pump working along the confines of the idealised reverse Carnot cycle:

  • Low-temperature reservoir: Situated at 270 K (-3°C)
  • High-temperature reservoir: The interior of a building at 297 K (24°C)

The kelvin (abbreviated to K), less commonly called the degree Kelvin (o K), is the Standard International ( SI ) unit of thermodynamic temperature.

Consider an air source heat pump scenario where the outside temperature is -3 degrees Celsius, equivalent to 270 Kelvin, and the inside temperature of a building is maintained at 25 degrees Celsius, equivalent to 298 Kelvin. The coefficient of performance (COP) of the heat pump is 4, meaning for every unit of energy input, the heat pump can transfer 4 units of heat energy.

Given this, we can understand how the heat pump operates. At -3 degrees Celsius (270 K), the heat pump extracts heat from the outdoor air and transfers it into the building. Since the COP is 4, for every unit of energy (e.g., electricity) the heat pump consumes, it can move 4 units of heat from the outdoor environment to the indoor space.

So, to raise the indoor temperature from 270 K to 298 K (25 degrees Celsius), the heat pump needs to transfer a certain amount of heat energy. With a COP of 4, it requires only 25% of the energy input compared to the amount of heat energy it transfers. In this case, the heat pump would effectively add heat to the indoor space, ensuring it reaches and maintains the desired temperature of 298 K (25 degrees Celsius).

Practical Considerations

It’s vital to be aware that the theoretical heat output may not always be achievable in practice. External factors, such as suboptimal placement of the unit where airflow is restricted, could deter performance. This is also an area where the different brands of heat pump will give a different performance output, so be sure to choose a brand with a good reputation and high performance figures.

Installation Stages of Air Source Heat Pumps

 

Air source heat pump installation is a structured process requiring a MCS qualified installer to evaluate, plan, and execute the setup. Below is an overview of what to expect during the installation stages.

Step 1: Evaluating Your Premises

The process kicks off with a professional assessment of your property to determine the heat pump’s optimal placement, considering factors like insulation levels, heat requirements, and radiator upgrades. A survey is sometimes done by a third party company for a fee, by outsourcing the survey, you can feel confident that you will get an impartial assessment of your home and heating requirements. Once your assessment is completed, the outcome of the survey will allow you to make an informed choice on the heat pump size, brand and radiator upgrade requirements, without the influence of a company that may not have your interests as their main priority.

Step 2: System Design and Quotation

Once your assessment is completed, the outcome of the survey will allow you to make an informed choice on the heat pump size, brand and radiator upgrade requirement.

The system design will include an estimation of the total cost, influenced by the size of the heat pump and the complexity of the installation.

Step 3: Implementing the Installation

With the design agreed upon, the actual installation can begin. The first step will be the draining down and removal of the existing system, usually existing pipework is kept in place if it is in good condition. The new heat pump, hot water cylinder and radiators are then installed with new wiring, the system is then filled up with water and ready to turn on.

Step 4: Certification and Functional Testing

On completion, pressure tests are conducted and a start up cycle to verify the heat pump system‘s operational functionality. Safe operation and electrical sign off have to be done before it’s fully handed over for your usage. You’ll receive key MCS certification and user guide documents with warranty information.

Cost-wise, an air source heat pump might entail an expenditure between £12,000 and £18,000, though this varies with several factors. However, by calculating savings over time, through reduced energy costs and financial incentives, such as the Boiler Upgrade Scheme, the initial investment can be efficiently recovered, and savings turbo charged if you combine with solar panels and smart energy tariffs! 


Government Grants for Heat Pumps

 

Boiler Upgrade Scheme

As part of the transition to greener energy, the UK government’s Boiler Upgrade Scheme means you could claim £7500 when you switch to a more efficient air source heat pump. You must own your property and having an older non-renewable heating system, this includes all fossil fuel systems, as well as electric boilers and storage heaters. To get access to the grant, you must be working with an MCS accredited installer and choose an approved heat pump model.

You can find a local heat pump installer by filling in your details with Compare Renewables.


Potential Reductions in Heating Expenditures

Upgrading to an air source heat pump can be cost-effective over time. These systems are known for their exceptional efficiency, boasting a coefficient of performance (COP) that can reach over 400% in efficiency. In simpler terms, an air source heat pump can provide up to four times the heat energy per unit of electricity it consumes, offering marked savings on your energy bills. This efficiency measure starkly contrasts with fossil fuel-based heating systems, such as boilers with efficiencies between 70% to 95%, equating to 0.7 to 0.95 in COP.

Considering factors like your current heating setup, property size, and the heat pump’s efficiency, the potential savings available for grabs could swiftly counterbalance the initial installation costs. With heating demands ever-increasing, air source heat pumps are setting the standard for the new super efficient, environmentally friendly and normal way to heat your home, which is a winning formula accross the board in our eyes.

Heat Pump Costs

Influencing Factors on Heat Pump Expenses

Acquiring a heat pump involves contemplating several key aspects that will affect the financial investment:

  • Home Dimensions: The larger your residence, the larger the heat pump will need to be, which does have a cost increase incrementally. Yet, selecting the right size heat pump is important, it needs to be large enough for your needs, but not vastly oversized. A heat pump should be oversized by around 10% to 30%, as this will allow for changes in the home over time, but ensure the pump is not too big, which would incur unnecessary higher running costs. 
  • Heating Demands: Your household heating demands as also as important as the size, these are shaped by the insulation levels of the walls, roof, floor and windows. The greater the insulation levels will mean a smaller system is required, which will save on upfront installation costs and also long term running costs. 
  • Pump’s Brand: Top tier brands may command a premium price; however, they can offer superior quality and efficiency and although there could be a higher initial price, the return on investment will pay for itself through your reduced heating bills. Brands like Mitsubishi, Vaillant & Samsung offer good quality heat pumps and are known for their reliability.
  • Efficiency Rating (CoP): Pumps with a higher Coefficient of Performance (CoP) deliver better efficiency, but also note that the COP will vary depending on the flow temperature of the water in the system, if you are comparing systems, ensure you compare the COP at 50 degrees.
  • Renovation Expenditures: Should insulation be needed to keep your house warm these should be added to the total cost, there may also be some new radiators required when upgrading to a heat pump. New radiators are needed to make sure the rooms heat up as fast as possible which will reduce running costs.

Estimated Costs for Air Source Heat Pump Installation

When adding up the costs of an air source heat pump, the upfront costs are softened because you should qualify for the Boiler Upgrade Scheme voucher, which is a sizable contribution of £7,500.

Air Source Heat Pump Cost

Single Air-to-water heat pump setups come in around 4 or 5 different sizes per brand, from 5kw up to 17kw. The smaller and thermally sound houses need a smaller heat source pump, the bigger and older houses usually need a large heat pump to keep their home warm, which usually incurs a bigger price tag. The heat pump prices below are before the £7500 voucher has been taken off, and include some radiator upgrades.

  • A Smaller House / Good insulation: Expect heat pump installation costs between £12,000 and £15,000. (£4500 to £7500 to pay when using the grant)
  • A Large House: Heat pump costs can be between £13,500 and £18,000. (£6000 to £10,500 to pay when using the grant)
  • Annual Upkeep: On average £150 – £250 for annual servicing, this is required to keep warranties valid.

Upkeep and Handling of Air Source Heat Pumps

To guarantee optimal performance and extend the lifespan of your air source heat pump, appropriate upkeep is vital. Here are streamlined strategies to maintain your system effectively:

  • Routinely Check the exterior unit and remove any debris that could impair the fan blades.
  • During winter, prevent snow and ice from amassing on the unit to avoid damage, a little bit would be fine, but if there was heavy snowfall you would need to create space for airflow 1m around it.
  • Check the refrigerant and anti-freeze levels – this is to be done on the annual service, but the refrigerant levels shouldn’t change in most systems, the anti-freeze may need topping up.
  • Schedule a yearly service to verify all components, including the compressor and heat exchanger, are in good condition with no leaks or faults. Your installer might offer a service plan when you purchase the system.

Just using a little bit of common sense and caring for your air source heat pump system like you would with outher parts of your home reduces the need for repairs and assures the system is operating efficiently. A heat pump by design needs less maintenance than almost all other types of heating system, but with little extra effort, they are also extremely reliable.

Comparing Air Source Heat Pumps with Conventional Heating Methods

Air Source Heat Pumps vs Gas Boilers

Gas boilers, traditionally common in british homes, utilise natural gas to create heat. In comparison, air source heat pumps are a more efficient alternative by extracting warmth from the outside air.

Both offer their own set of benefits and considerations. This is the first of 3 system comparisons, so let’s compare these heat pumps vs gas boilers to help you make an informed decision for your home.

Installation Costs:

Air source heat pumps typically involve higher upfront costs compared to gas boilers. Although the installation costs are high, the Boiler Upgrade Scheme can help offset these costs, making air source heat pumps a more financially viable option and bringing them to a level where they are an attractive option against a gas boiler.

Gas boilers, on the other hand, generally come with lower installation costs. The equipment is often more affordable, and installation is relatively straightforward for homes already connected to mains gas. However, it’s important to consider potential future regulations, such as the upcoming ban on gas boilers in new homes from 2025 and the phasing out of gas boilers over the proceeding 10 years.

Running Costs:

Despite the higher upfront costs, air source heat pumps offer significant savings in running costs over time. They are highly energy efficient, meaning they can provide 4 to 5x more heat energy per unit of electricity consumed compared to gas boilers. This results in lower energy bills and long-term cost savings for homeowners.

Gas boilers have historically been favored for their relatively low running costs, especially in areas where natural gas is readily available. Gas boilers are the cheapest of all the fossil fuel systems that could heat your home. However, fluctuations in gas prices over time can impact their affordability over the longer term. 

Carbon Footprint:

After manufactuing an installation, air source heat pumps can have no carbon footprint compared to gas boilers. This is because they rely on electricity rather than burning fossil fuels for operation. As the UK continues to transition towards renewable energy sources, the environmental benefits of air source heat pumps are expected to increase further.

Gas boilers are a major source of carbon emissions in residential heating systems, according to GOV.UK, over 38% of the UK’s gas usage is for heating homes. Burning natural gas releases carbon dioxide and other pollutants into the atmosphere, contributing to air quality issues and environmental concerns. With the UK government’s commitment to achieving net-zero emissions, air source heat pumps are their chosen heating system to help achieve their net-zero goals.

In conclusion, while both air source heat pumps and gas boilers offer heating solutions for homes, air source heat pumps are the stand out winner for their energy efficiency and lower carbon footprint. 

See our extended review of Air Source Heat Pumps vs Gas Boilers.

Air Source Heat Pumps Vs Oil Boilers

Our second heat pump comparison is with oil boilers. Oil boilers operate similarly to gas boilers but use oil as a fuel, making them less favourable where a gas supply is unavailable. 

Installation Costs:

We already know air source heat pumps typically involve higher upfront costs compared to oil boilers. However with the  Boiler Upgrade Scheme offsetting the costs, there will be between £4500 to £10,500 to pay.

Comparing this to oil boilers on the other hand, generally come with supply and installation costs that range from £4000 to £12,000. The equipment is often in the same price range, but with fossil fuels being phased out, oil systems are set to become rarer with installations and parts becoming more expensive.

There is also a need for an oil tank which can cost £1500 to £5000 if you dont already have one installed. Just like with mains gas, there is the potential of environmental regulations regarding oil heating having a negative effect too.

Running Costs:

Heat pumps offer significant savings in running costs over time, especially if you can compine them with cheap or free electrcity from solar panels. The efficiency of oil boilers is comparable to that of gas boilers, but they suffer from a greater price volatility in the oil market oil and a more significant environmental impact. 

Oil boilers have historically been favored by residents who are off the mains gas network, this is due to oil being the fuel that provides the lowest running costs available to them, which is the best of bad bunch situation. However, oil prices over time are significantly higher than mains gas and even more higher than a heat pumps electricity requirement, which makes oil on par with bottled gas, as the worst choice of fuel based on the ongoing running costs.

Carbon Footprint:

As covered already, air source heat pumps have no carbon footprint, when compared to oil boilers there is only one winner. Oil boilers are a significant source of carbon emissions, burning oil releases carbon dioxide and other pollutants into the atmosphere, contributing to air quality issues and environmental concerns. It is likely that oil boilers will be outlawed in the not too distant future.

In conclusion, while both air source heat pumps and oil boilers offer heating solutions for homes, air source heat pumps are the clear winner across the board, the installation costs are comparable and from a running cost and environmental point of view, an air source heat pump is the winner by a mile.

Air Source Heat Pumps vs Electric Storage Heaters

Our third and final comparison is heat pumps vs storage heaters. Electric storage heaters are seen in properties without access to gas and use off-peak electricity to store heat for release during the day.

Installation Costs:

Air source heat pumps typically involve higher upfront costs compared to electric storage heaters. There is no need for a wet system and expensive copper piping, plus lower labour costs, although they are still not the cheapest system to install. 

The cost of a system will range from an average of £250 to £800 per radiator, which means a system with 10 radiators could cost £2500 to £8000. In comparison a heat pump is in the range of £4500 to £10500, which means there will be some situations when a heat pump could be cheaper, but most houses a heat pump is likely to be the higher cost. A good measure would be if there is 15 radiators in a house, a heat pump is likely to be cheaper, however for a smaller house, the initial cost of storage heaters will be less.

Both systems are powered by electricity so there is no supply issues or variances in cost for this aspect of the installation.

Running Costs:

Despite the higher upfront costs, air source heat pumps offer significant savings in running costs over time. Giving at least 4x efficiency over storage heaters and with both systems are running on eletricity, that means a heat pump will be 4x times cheaper to run than storage heaters.

There could be a slight variance in those figures depending on what your day and night time electricity tariffs are, plus if your home has solar panels installed, which would favour air source heat pumps. This is because the solar panels will provide free electricity in the day time, which in turn will give you free heat.

Electric storage heaters typically have  inefficiencies in heat retention. They often require charging during off-peak hours when electricity tariffs are lower, but may struggle to retain heat effectively throughout the day, resulting in unnecessary higher energy consumption and associated costs with day time electricity.

Carbon Footprint:

Air source heat pumps have a lower or equal carbon footprint in comparison with electric storage heaters. This is because both systems rely on electricity rather than burning fossil fuels for operation. 

As both systems use electricty, they could be carbon neutral, providing the electrcity is generated from a renewable source. However a heat pump uses 4x less electricty, as the UK still has fossil fuel power stations for electricty generation, it does position storage heaters behind air source heat pumps from an environmental point of view.

In conclusion, while both air source heat pumps and electric storage heaters offer electric heating solutions, air source heat pumps stand out for their energy efficiency and carbon footprint, they are also simliar on installation costs, which means overall heat pumps are the better choice for as the best heating system.

Heat Pumps vs Boilers vs Storage Heaters

This master table provides a side by side comprehensive overview of the key differences between air source heat pumps, gas boilers, oil boilers, and electric storage heaters.

AspectAir Source Heat PumpsGas BoilersOil BoilersElectric Storage Heaters
Installation CostsHigher upfront costs, but with government incentives to offset expenses.Lower upfront costs, particularly if your home is already connected to mains gas.Average upfront costs, with extra to pay if your home doesn’t have an oil tank already.Average upfront costs, but no wet system in place if you switch to another type.
Running CostsBest energy efficiency, long-term savings on energy bills, can combine with solar panels.Lowest of the fossil fuel running costs, no way to combine with solar panelsHistorically unstable running costs due to fluctuations in oil prices.Highest running costs due to being very inefficienct.
Carbon FootprintLower carbon emissions due to reliance on electricity rather than burning fossil fuels.Higher carbon emissions from burning gas.Higher carbon emissions from burning oil, plus inefficient delivery by roadLower carbon emissions, depending on the source of electricity generation.

The outcome is that overall, air source heat pumps represent a significant step forward in heating, from an financial and environmental point of view, the heating landscape is changing to a renewable one, although the costs are higher initially, the long term view shows that air source heat pumps are the clear winner. If you are struggling to pay for the heat pump up front, a lot of installers offer finance plans, which although paying interest doesn’t sound appealing, your savings over time should outweigh the interest payments and long term savings in comparison to other heat sources.

Air Source Heat Pumps For The Environmental

Annual Carbon Emissions

It is known that traditional heating systems have a considerably high carbon footprint. To offer contrast, let’s look at a comparative analysis:

Based on average household consumption a study has shown how many kilograms are emitted per heating system:

Gas Boilers – 2720kg

Oil Boilers – 5240kg

Air Source Heat Pumps – 780kg (if the electrcity is generated from fossil fuels) or 0kg (if electricity is sourced from renewables)

Just to put this into perspective, the 5240kg of Co2 emissions is enough power to charge a smartphone 620,0oo times, or 2600 litres of diesel consumed by a car.

If the nation could switch over to an air source heat pump (ASHP) on each property, the UK would see a drastic decrease in carbon emissions, especially if the electricity powering it comes from renewable sources like solar PV & wind farms, effectively cutting emissions to zero. Besides being a huge part of moving towards a net-zero country, renewable technologies also give bill payers economic benefits over the long term.

Innovative Refrigerants and Their Significance

Recent advancements, such as the introduction of R32 and R290 refrigerants in heat pumps, hold high hopes for even better environmental outcomes. R32, having a lower global warming potential (GWP) than its predecessors, presents a stride towards more ecological heating systems. R290, or propane, is notable for its negligible GWP, enhancing the eco-friendly credentials of ASHPs.

The R32 refrigerant has a GWP of 675, and the R290 heat pumps have a GWP of 657, which is important, by 2025 all refrigerants with a GWP of over 750 are being phased out of use. These refrigerants used in todays heat pumps are essential for longevity in new green heating solutions

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do Air Source Heat Pumps Get Warmth

Air source heat pumps absorb heat from the atmosphere and intensify it to warm your residence and water supply. The operation is analogous to a refrigerator but in reverse, drawing in air, even at temperatures as low as -25°C, to maintain a comfortable indoor climate throughout the year.

What Are The Benefits Of Getting An Air Source Heat Pump?

Opting for an air source heat pump can bestow multiple benefits:

  • Exceptional energy efficiency, potentially reducing heating expenditure
  • Provision of both heating and hot water
  • A pathway to a carbon-neutral operation given the use of electricity over fossil fuels
  • Eligibility for financial incentives like the Boiler Upgrade Scheme

What is the Cost To Install An Air Source Heat Pump?

Investing in an air source heat pump entails costs affected by your home’s scale, installation intricacy, and the chosen model. While prices typically span from £12,000 to £18,000, government contributions of up to £7500 can significantly mitigate the expense.

What Is The Difference Between Air-to-Water and Air-to-Air Systems?

Differentiate between two air source heat pump models:

Air-to-water systems: Integrate with water-based heaters like underfloor setups or radiators, providing central heating and hot water.

Air-to-air systems: Directly warm your home’s air, suitable if you have an existing network of fans or ducts but ineligible for the Boiler Upgrade Scheme.

Is a Mitsubishi Ecodan Heat Pump Good?

The Mitsubishi Ecodan is a great heat pump, it excels in reliability and efficiency, it comes with the melcloud control app and a 1:4 heating efficiency ratio at 50°C output temperature. It is once of the best heat pumps you can buy and is available for a range of property sizes.

Should I Get An Air Source Heat Pump or Conventional Heating System?

Air source heat pumps surpass traditional heaters in energy efficiency and environmental friendliness, providing heat transfer from ambient air, thus trimming your bills and carbon footprint. They future-proof your home, ready for upcoming regulations disallowing fossil-fuel-derived heat in new homes post-April 2025.

Does Solar Panels Work With Air Source Heat Pumps?

Adopting an air source heat pump is a stride towards sustainability, particularly when allied with solar photovoltaic (PV) panels and battery storage, cementing an eco-friendly, self-sufficient home energy system.

Discover our complete guide to solar panels for complementary sustainable energy solutions.

solar panel house diagram, cost of solar, how do solar panels work

How Do Solar Panels Work?

Solar panels have become a familiar sight in our communities, adorning the roofs of buildings and according to MCS certified, 1.3 million homes in the UK. Despite their prevalence, many still ponder the mechanics behind their functionality. In essence, solar panels harness sunlight and transform it into electricity through specialized structures known as ‘photovoltaic cells’ within the panels. These cells ingeniously generate an electrical current that can be utilised within our households.

This solar technology not only provides a renewable energy source but also a clean one, offering an alternative to traditional fossil-fuelled power. By reducing carbon emissions and curbing the escalating costs of energy, solar panels are becoming a must-have asset for both the environment and homeowners. In this article, we will delve deeper into the inner mechanics of solar panels, explore their components, and weigh the advantages and disadvantages of solar energy for our planet.

How Solar Panels Work

Solar panels, also known as photovoltaic (PV) panels, convert solar energy into usable electricity. The number of solar panels installed on a rooftop determines the amount of electricity generated. Here is a step-by-step guide on how solar panels work:

  1. Solar panels consist of metal sheets inside a glass casing that contain a series of cells known as photovoltaics (PV). PV cells are made of a thin, semi-conductive material with two silicon layers. One layer is positively charged, and the other is negatively charged, creating an electric field. When sunlight hits the PV solar cell, it causes motion within the electric field, generating an electrical current.

  2. Once the electric current is generated, it can be redirected from the solar panels. At this point, the electricity produced is in a form known as a direct current (DC), and for us to use this on our electrical devices at home, it needs to be converted to an alternating current (AC).

  3. To convert DC electricity to AC, a solar inverter is used. An inverter is an important part of a solar power system, in british temperatures it is best to install them inside the house, but there are inveters desgined to be outdoors if needed. In home systems, there are Three types of inverters: a ‘string inverter’ (a central inverter), a hybrid inverter or micro-inverters. Micro-inverters are used only on individual solar PV panels and are not likely to be seen in larger systems. A string inverter will be used for most home setups requiring multiple solar panels. This is so-called because each solar panel is wired into a central inverter (much like a series of strings coming together). A hybrid inverter does the same job as a string, but allows a battery to be coupled up and charged by the solar system. In 2024, hybrid inverters are the most popular choice amongst the british public due to the increased financial benefits of having solar storage batteries.

  4. In some modern models, the inverter can also be used as a point to monitor your power generation and usage levels. Depending on the model, you can access these details online or through an app.

  5. From here, you now have a usable source of electricity that can power your home. Three things can happen next – you can use the produced electricity or store any that you don’t use in a solar battery. If at any time you are generating more than what you are using, you can automatically sell back electricity to the grid using the smart export guarantee (SEG)

It’s important to note that solar panels are most effective in direct sunlight, but they do still work on cloudy days. Although the efficiency of solar panels decreases in cloudy conditions, they can still produce about 10-25% of their rated capacity, depending on the thickness and density of the cloud cover source.

Since 2020, homeowners in England, Scotland, and Wales have been able to receive payments for each renewable energy unit they produce and export to the grid under the Smart Export Guarantee source. 

In conclusion, solar panels work by converting solar energy into usable electricity through a series of PV cells, inverters, and batteries. They are an effective and sustainable way to generate free electricity and reduce your carbon footprint.

The Different Types of Solar Panel

Monocrystalline or Polycrystalline?

When choosing solar panels, you will come across different types of solar panel materials. The two main types are monocrystalline & polycrystalline, with thin film panels not used much anymore. Each type has its own advantages and disadvantages, depending on your needs, budget, and space.

TypeAdvantagesDisadvantages
MonocrystallineHigh efficiency up to 30%, long lifespan, takes up less spaceMore expensive 
PolycrystallineLower cost than monocrystalline, average efficiency up to 22% Lower efficiency than monocrystalline, takes up more space
Thin-FilmLeast expensive, flexible and lightweight, works well in low light conditionsLower efficiency, shorter lifespan

What Are Solar Thermal Panels?

The most popular solar panels are photovoltaic, which are electricity producing panels, however solar thermal panels use sunlight to generate heat which can be used for your central heating system and hot water needs. Although both are utilising solar energy, solar thermal panels do have a use for some homes and businesses, but the disadvantage is that solar thermal power cannot be coverted in to electrical power, unlike solar PV. Electrical power can be used for your basic electrci needs, but also used for heating too when conbined with an immersion water heater, or an air sourced heat pump.

How Long Do Solar Panels Last?

The lifespan of solar panels depends on the type of panel and how well they are maintained. Monocrystalline panels have the longest lifespan, usually 25 years or more. Polycrystalline panels have a lifespan of 20-25 years, while thin-film panels have a lifespan of 10-15 years. Proper maintenance can extend the lifespan of your solar panels. This includes cleaning every year or two, checking for damage, and ensuring that the panels are operating at maximum efficiency, which you can do through a mobile app on most new systems.

In conclusion, when choosing solar panels, you need to consider the type of panel material, whether you need solar PV or solar thermal panels, and the lifespan of the panels. By understanding these factors, you can make an informed decision and choose the solar panels that are right for your needs.

How to Choose the Best Solar Panel System for Your Home?

Choosing the best solar panel system for your home is not the easiest thing to decide on. However, our website www.comparerenewables.com makes it easy for you to find MCS accredited solar installers. Simply fill in your details and receive quotes from trusted installers. When choosing a solar panel system, consider the following factors:

  • Your budget
  • Your roof space
  • Your energy & battery
  • The efficiency of the panels
  • The warranty offered by the manufacturers

An expert will come out to see you and provide a detailed quote. Don’t hesitate to ask questions and compare quotes before making a decision.

Take a look at our guide on the costs involved to install a solar system in your home.

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How Does a Solar Battery Work?

Storing Energy

Solar batteries store energy generated by solar panels that is not immediately used. This stored energy can be used during periods of low solar generation, such as at night or on cloudy days. The process of storing the energy involves converting the stored direct current (DC) electricity produced by the solar panels into alternating current (AC) electricity that can be used in your home. This is done through the use of a hybrid solar inverter, which also manages the charging and discharging of the battery.

Are Solar Batteries Worth It?

The cost of solar batteries has decreased in recent years, making them a more affordable option for homeowners. However, the cost-benefit analysis of installing a solar battery depends on a variety of factors, including your energy usage, the size of your solar panel system, and your location. In areas with high electricity rates or frequent power outages, solar batteries can provide significant savings from your electric bill as well as peace of mind. Additionally, solar batteries allow you to operate your home on a fully renewable energy source, reducing your carbon footprint.

Using my experience I have found that solar batteries can be a valuable addition to a solar panel system, providing backup power and reducing energy costs. The best way to calculate the right battery size for your home is to look at you annual usage, divide by 365, to get your daily usage, then get a battery that is between 30% to 50% of you annual consumption, that should be enough to cover you at night and on days of low light. However, it is important to carefully consider your individual circumstances and remember, capturing all of your solar electrcity is not the aim here, you want enough batteries for the average day, not your highest day of consuption, because you will not get a good return on investment on that extra battery which be used on a few days per year.

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Advantages of Having Solar Panels at Home

Installing solar panels at your home comes with a wide range of benefits. Here are some of the advantages that you can enjoy:

  • Saving Money: By installing solar panels on your roof, you can produce your electricity supply, which means you no longer need to rely on a grid supplier for the majority of your consumption. This can significantly cut down your electricity bills. The only electricity expenditure you need to consider is if you use the grid during the night and the standing charge.

  • Reducing Your Carbon Footprint: Solar panels are one of the best steps you can take if you’re looking for a way to go green and cut down harmful emissions. Most electricity suppliers use fossil fuels such as oil, gas or coal to produce power, which creates harmful carbon dioxide. On the other hand, solar power is a clean, non-polluting, renewable energy source that is also free!

  • Becoming Independent from the Grid: The National Grid provides most people with electricity, fuel prices are prone to sharp, unstable price changes. By switching to your supply, you can become less dependent on the grid and know that you have a consistant power supply from solar panels.

  • Low Maintenance: Solar panels have a long lifespan of at least 25-30 years and come with average warranties of around 20+ years, meaning you don’t have to worry about expensive replacements or constant upgrades.

  • Earning Money: Through various incentives and schemes, homeowners with solar panels may be able to receive payments for any excess electricity through more recent export tariffs. This helps significantly in recouping the cost of the installation, making it an even more lucrative  long-term investment.

Do Solar Panels Work in Bad Weather?

It is a common misconception that solar panels only work on hot and sunny days. However, solar panels can still generate power in almost any type of weather, including cloudy days, rain, and even snow. The only difference is that they won’t produce as much as they would on a brighter day.

On severely overcast and cloudy days, your solar panels’ power output will be impacted if the cloud cover lasts most of the day. One way to determine if your solar panels are getting any sun is to check for shadows outside. If shadows are being produced, your panels will likely get some sunlight. No shadows would suggest the clouds are too thick for any sun to get through.

It is important to understand your unique solar panel setup, especially before you purchase, such as your location, the type of panels, and how you will source electricity should your supply drop in cloudy weather and in the evening. The best way to improve solar panel performance in bad weather is to use a battery storage back up system, which will store excess energy for use during periods of low production or bad weather. 

How much do solar panels cost?

The cost of solar panels depends on various factors such as the size of your home and the number of panels you need. Typically, solar panel systems cost between £5,000 – £15,000. The size of the system is measured in kilowatts (kWp), and the cost of a 4kWp system, which is the average size for a UK home, is around £8,000. If you add a hybrid inverter on and a battery storage, you can expect to pay an extra £3,000 and upwards, depending on the amount of battery storage which you require.

We have a guide to find out which system will be best for your home – How Many Solar Panels Do I Need?

By generating your own electricity, you can reduce your dependence on the grid and save money on your electricity bills. We recommend speaking to professionals to get the best idea of how much solar panels cost. By getting multiple quotes from qualified installers, you can get trustworthy advice and find the best prices simultaneously!

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How to Choose a Solar Panel Installer

Choosing the right solar panel installer is crucial to ensuring that your solar panel system is installed correctly and efficiently. Here are some tips on how to choose the best solar panel installer for your needs:

  1. Look for an installer who is MCS accredited. This means that they have been vetted and approved by the industry standard body for renewable energy installers in the UK.

  2. Get quotes from at least three different installers. This will allow you to compare prices and services and choose the one that best fits your needs.

  3. Check customer reviews and references. Look for reviews and testimonials from previous customers to get an idea of the quality of service that the installer provides.

  4. Make sure the installer offers a warranty on their work. This will give you peace of mind knowing that if anything goes wrong with your system, the installer will be there to fix it.

  5. Consider financing options. Many installers offer financing options to help you spread the cost of your solar panel system over time. You will also get cover using the FCA section 75 rule.

By following these tips, you can ensure that you choose the best solar panel installer for your needs and get the most out of your solar panel system.

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4 Ways To Make Money With Solar Panels 

Using Electricity From Your Solar Panels

Instead of relying solely on electricity from the grid, your solar panels produce their own power, reducing the amount of electricity you need to purchase from the utility company and saves you money for every kWh.

Store Energy in Your Battery to Use at Night

Solar panels work only work during daylight hours, meaning they become useless when it’s dark. This doesn’t just mean nightfall; in low light days through the winter, they won’t produce as much electricity as in good conditions. Installing a solar storage battery to store the excess energy generated during the day for use at night. This prevents you from having to buy electrcitiy from the grid at night time and is a great way to maximise the return on your investment.

SEG Payments

The Smart Export Guarantee (SEG) is a government scheme that pays you for the excess electricity you generate and export to the grid. This means that you can earn money from your solar panels even when you’re not using the energy yourself. The SEG payments are made by energy suppliers and are based on the amount of energy you export. The rate you receive will depend on your supplier, so it’s worth shopping around to find the best deal.

Overnight Charge Your Battery on the Cheap Rates

If you have a solar storage battery, you can charge it overnight during off-peak hours when electricity rates are cheaper. This means that you can use the stored energy during peak hours when rates are higher, maximising your savings and return on investment. 

In conclusion, by using a combination of SEG payments and solar storage batteries, you can maximise your return on investment with an optimal setup. However, it’s important to choose a trusted installer and consider all factors before investing in solar panels.

Solar Panel Rules & Regulation

The Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) is the governing body when It comes to installation standards and good practice. All installers who claim to have a level of competency should be registered with the MCS to evidence their quality. The only other main area of external influence is with your local Distribution Network Operator, who will have an input on what system you are able to have at your home. 

G98 or G99 Application

When installing solar panels in the UK, a notification must be made to the energy grid. This notification is called a G98 or G99 application, depending on the size of the system. Installers will usually handle this process for you, but it’s important to understand what each application entails.

G98

A G98 application is required for solar panel systems with an inverter size of less than 3.68kW. This application process is relatively straightforward and involves notifying your local District Network Operator (DNO) within 28 days of commissioning the system. Once the DNO receives the notification, they will review the application and confirm that the system meets safety and technical standards.

G99

If your solar panel system has an inverter size of more than 3.68kW, you will need to submit a G99 application. This process is more complex than a G98 application and requires a more detailed review by your DNO. The purpose of the G99 application is to ensure that your solar panel system is safe and won’t cause any disruptions to the energy grid.

The G99 application process involves submitting detailed technical information about your system, such as its maximum export capacity and fault ride-through capability. The DNO will review this information and may require additional testing or modifications to ensure that your system meets all safety and technical standards.

Once your G99 application is approved, you will receive a connection agreement from your DNO. This agreement outlines the terms and conditions for connecting your solar panel system to the energy grid and may include requirements for ongoing maintenance and monitoring.

It’s important to note that the G99 application process can take several weeks or even months to complete, so it’s important to plan accordingly and work closely with your installer to ensure that all requirements are met.

How Many Solar Panels Do I Need?

The move towards solar panels UK-wide is a hopeful sign that more and more of us are ready to embrace an eco-friendly lifestyle. But one pressing question looms – ‘How many solar panels do I need?‘. Figuring that out carries significant importance. It helps you make informed decisions on your solar panel cost and aligns your initiative with the desired outcome.

Imagine your home, now a hub of sustainable energy, self-sustaining and brimming with the power harnessed directly from the sun. This is no daydream, but a real, tangible possibility that could lower your bills, reduce your carbon footprint, due to the recent cost increases of electricity which now makes solar a really good investment. Installing solar panels is a big step and starts with understanding what your bespoke needs are in broad daylight.

Going on a solar panel installation adventure is no small undertaking. Before you dive in, you must consider the number of panels you need, your home’s energy requirements, the suitability of your roof, cost considerations, the efficiency of Monocrystalline versus Polycrystalline panels, and the added value of batteries in storing excess energy.

But worry not, you are not on this path alone. Here at Compare Renewables, our aim is to provide the compass that guides you to make an informed choice, one which you can be confident about. Our services extend across England, Scotland, and Wales, connecting you with reputable installers to assure the quality of your installation.

Key Takeaways

  • Determining the precise number of solar panels you can fit on your roof is crucial to maximising efficiency and costs.
  • Understanding differences between Polycrystalline and Monocrystalline panels and their respective output capacities will inform your choice of panels.
  • All-black Monocrystalline solar panels, often exceeding 400W per panel,  are the only panels you should use for their sleek aesthetics and high efficiency.
  • Including a solar storage battery in your installation will increase the efficiency of your system.
  • Through solar panel installation, homeowners can expect a return on investment in as little as 4-8 years.
  • Using reliable services like Compare Renewables ensures access to reputable MCS solar panel installers across England, Scotland, and Wales.

How Much Electricity Does My House Use

When determining how many solar panels will be necessary for a home in the UK, one must first understand their household’s electrical energy consumption. This is greatly impacted by the size of the household and the electricity consumption habits of its inhabitants.

An Overview of Average Energy Consumption in UK Homes

Knowing the average consumption rates can provide a useful baseline. A 1-2 bedroom house typically uses about 2600kWh per year. In comparison, a 2-3 bedroom home has higher consumption rates at around 3300kWh annually Larger houses with 4-5 bedrooms consume approximately 4,500kWh

These averages are all based on basic usage, if you have any high electricity consuming devices or features then this could be vastly different. Things such as Electric Car Charging, Hot Tubs, Ponds, Swimming Pools, Electric Underfloor Heating or Electric Storage Heaters are all examples of things that could vastly increase electricity usage sometimes in excess of 10,000+ kWh per year. It is best to check your bill for accurate infomation.

Calculating Your Household’s Energy Usage Accurately

To determine how many solar panels and batteries will optimally serve your home, an accurate calculation of your household’s energy requirements is vital. The calculation should take into account usual energy usage, including patterns and peak consumption periods. Remember, understanding the specifics of your household’s energy consumption will directly affect the number of solar panels for home usage.

Factors Affecting Energy Consumption

Various factors can influence your household’s electricity consumption levels, thus impacting the number of solar panels required. The obvious consideration is what electrical items you have at home, electric cars and hot tubs are examples of things that use a lot of electricity. Secondly, the amount of people living in your home and the total time you spend at home can also vastly impact electricity consumption. Considering these factors can help ensure that you have the right number and type of solar panels to meet your home’s energy needs.

Solar Panel Capacity and Roof Space Considerations

When looking to install a solar panel system, understanding the solar panel system size that your home can support is essential, within reason it is good practice to fill the roof up with panels if you can for the fastest return on investment. The capacity and configuration of solar panels for your home depend largely on the suitability and shape of the roof.

The pitch and orientation of the roof is an important thing to look at for optimal sun exposure. The UK is in the northern hemisphere, which means the sun is in the south and that is which way the solar panels should be facing, east and west-facing roofs are also possible as that is where the sun comes from and goes to at the end of the day. North-facing roofs should not have solar panels on in the UK as they will not work for most of the year.

Moreover, the angle of your roof plays a large role in how much solar radiation your panels can absorb. There isn’t much you can do to change the angle of your roof, but a 35-degree pitch is the perfect angle for UK homes. If these aspects are optimal on your property then you’ll capture the maximum amount of solar energy possible, thus maximising the output of your system.

Roof Suitability and Potential Solar Panel Layout

A crucial aspect to consider in the planning phase is the roof’s suitability for solar panel installation. A general rule of thumb is to allocate approximately 2m² per 400w panel to ascertain how many could conceivably fit on your roof. For example, a roof with a surface area of 20m² might potentially accommodate a 4kW solar panel system. 10-12 panels is a normal amount of panels for a home in the UK, but if you can fit more on, then you will save more money in the long run!

The surroundings of the solar system are also a key factor. When designing your solar array layout, seek to maximise the efficiency of each panel by avoiding shade from chimneys, vents, trees, or neighbouring structures.

Average Solar System Sizes for UK Households

Choosing the appropriate solar system size for your household is an important step towards effective energy independence. It is observed that the solar system sizes in the UK are often a reflection of the household size.

For instance, a 3kW system is generally deemed adequate for smaller homes, accommodating 2 individuals, requiring an estimated number of 7-9 solar panels. Moving up, medium-sized households with 3-4 inhabitants often find a 4kW system fitting, with about 9-11 panels. The larger households or families with 5 or more people potentially could find a 6kW system as an ideal match, which typically consists of roughly 14-16 panels.

As is evident, the solar panel number is not a rigid figure. It is, in fact, contingent on factors such as the individual energy consumption patterns of the residents and the percentage of daily electricity needs that are intended to be met via residential solar power.

Remember, the actual size and number of solar panels required will vary based on the unique energy profiles and consumption habits, but in general, more is better.

Taking steps towards procuring a solar energy system can be a transformative action, contributing towards a greener future and, at the same time, significantly reducing energy costs.

Polycrystalline vs Monocrystalline Solar Panels

When it comes to making the right choice for solar panel technology, you might find yourself considering two predominant options: Polycrystalline solar panels and Monocrystalline solar panels. These solar technologies are different in various aspects, including aesthetics, efficiency, and performance characteristics.

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Understanding the Difference in Solar Panel Technologies

Polycrystalline and Monocrystalline solar panels are both widely used in the solar energy industry and offer unique benefits. Polycrystalline solar panels, as the name suggests, are made up of multiple crystals. They are known for their blue look and efficiency ranges that typically lie between 15% to 19%. On the other hand, Monocrystalline solar panels are composed of single-crystal structure. They are easily recognizable by their dark black colour and are often considered more efficient, with efficiency ratings ranging from 16% to 23%.

When choosing between Polycrystalline and Monocrystalline, you should make sure that you only install Monocrystalline as these are much more efficient in British weather and can still produce electricity in cloudy and overcast conditions.

Solar Panel Looks: The All-Black Solar Panel Option

While solar panels’ primary function is to generate electricity, their aesthetic impact on your property should not be overlooked. A surge in popularity is the sleek, all-black Monocrystalline solar panels. They are not only appealing to the eye but also provide a higher efficiency often exceeding 400W per panel. As such, their growing preference serves both a functional and cosmetic purpose for homeowners.

How Many Solar Panels Do I Need

Addressing the number of solar panels for a UK home involves various factors. Both the size of the roof space available and the household’s energy requirements come into play. Are you planning to offset some of your energy costs or are you aspiring towards total energy autonomy? This point will also affect your solar array size. Let’s delve into this in a bit more detail, along with how the Smart Export Guarantee (SEG) can make your usage a little irrelevant.

Smart Export Guarantee (SEG)

The Smart Export Guarantee (SEG) in the Solar Industry Explained

The SEG is a government-backed initiative launched in January 2020 in the UK to encourage the uptake of small-scale renewable energy generation, specifically targeting individuals and businesses with solar photovoltaic (PV) panels.

Here’s how it works for homeowners:

  • If you have a solar PV system and generate more electricity than you use, the surplus goes back to the grid.
  • The SEG requires licensed electricity suppliers to offer you a guaranteed payment for each unit of electricity you export.
  • This incentivises installing solar panels by providing financial benefit from selling excess energy.

Some energy suppliers such as ‘Octopus energy‘ and ‘SO energy‘ offer really good tariffs for feeding electrcity back to the grid, which in 2024 are between 50% and 100% of your unit rate for every kWh sent back!

For example, if your rate is around 30p per kWh to buy electricty, every time you use 1 kWh which is generated from your solar system, you will save 30p.

However, the best export rate on the market is around 22p per kWh, so if you are out at work and don’t use the electricity that your solar panels have generated, the system will automatically export that solar electricity to the grid, and you will get credited 22p.

How Many Solar Panels Does the Average House Have?

The number of solar panels you’ll need is not an arbitrary figure. It’s based on your specific circumstances and requirements. In the UK, the number of needed solar panels can range quite broadly. If we take a 400W panel as standard, a home with more than five residents typically requires a 6kW system, which translates to about 15 panels. But a smaller family, say of 3-4 people, could manage with a 4kW setup, needing approximately 10 panels.

Need is a strong word however, because of the Smart Export Guarantee it is now worth installing excessive solar panels above your actual needs, as this will generate you money on top of saving money on your bills

What this means is that you should try to fill your roof up with solar panels wherever possible, as the cost of an extra few solar panels will not cost much more than what you are already paying. The total cost of solar panels includes scaffolding, an inverter, labour, delivery and other little bits, which you will need regardless of whether you have 8 panels or 18 panels.

Various factors can cause these solar panel numbers to shift. Your savings can vary significantly with solar panel brand or type of inverter. You can read some of our other guides on solar panels and equipment to find the optimal fit for your household’s needs and aspirations. Whether you are aiming to cover a portion or all of your home’s energy needs, know that installing a home solar system is an investment in sustainability that pays itself back over time.

Cost Considerations: Investing in Solar Energy

In the process of understanding and deciding on a solar panel system, the number one consideration for homeowners is the cost of solar panels. The transition to sustainable energy is not only an environmental decision but also a significant financial outlay, as we are sure you are aware. The cost of installing solar panels can range considerably depending upon several factors including the system size, type of solar panels chosen, and the complexity of the installation needed.

Typically, for UK homes, solar systems vary from 3kW to 12kW, homeowners can expect the solar panels cost UK wide to stretch between £5,000 and £15,000 depending on systems with or without storage batteries. Nevertheless, it should be noted that the actual price can fluctuate depending on labour costs, choice of brand, supplier, and assorted other factors.

How Much Should a 4kw Solar System Cost?

A 4kw solar system usually costs around £6000 to £8000 for supply and installation in the UK. That is for a system without storage batteries. To add batteries on the system will cost an additional £2500 for a small battery and increasing in cost infinitely to multiple batteries of varying sizes.

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Another vital aspect when understanding the solar investment is the influence of regional differences in solar irradiance across the UK. The amount of sunlight your locality receives can dramatically impact the efficiency and therefore, the cost-effectiveness of your solar panel installation. Therefore, accounting for these regional differences and geographical shading, for example if your house is in a valley with mountains either side, considering this crucial when calculating the financial aspect of installing a solar system.

Given the long-term financial benefits of solar energy, be it through sustained energy savings or electricity export payments, the upfront costs should be evaluated as an investment into a sustainable future. However, to ensure the maximum return on this investment, a comprehensive understanding of the associated costs is integral.

Solar Batteries: The Role of Solar Panel Storage

When discussing the efficiency and utility of solar power systems, the important role of solar batteries gets important attention. Paired with a robust solar panel system, solar battery storage serves to push the boundaries of energy independence even further.

Benefits of Integrating Solar Battery Storage

The merit of integrating solar batteries into your solar power system resides in the ability to store surplus energy generated during peak sunlight hours. This reserve can then be tapped into during nighttime, prolonged cloudy periods or periods of high energy demand, ensuring consistent, uninterrupted power access.

The integration of solar battery storage is a game-changer for households seeking enhanced energy autonomy. It significantly mitigates the reliance on grid electricity and enables the household to utilise solar power far beyond sunset. This not only bolsters the efficiency of the solar installation but also translates to substantial cost savings in the long run.

Calculating the Cost of Solar Panels and Battery in the UK

Following the trail of thought to complement your solar panels with battery, an array of factors comes into play when calculating the upfront investment. The make and model of solar batteries, the capacity and the specificities of your solar installation all account for the final cost.

Solar batteries start at around £1500, but you will need an AC battery charger, or a hybrid inverter, which has a battery charger built in, to make the battery work. To make the investment in battery storage worthwhile, you will need at least a 5kw battery, which you can expect to pay at least £2500 on top the solar only system. The amount of battery stoarge needed can be worked out by looking at your daily usage, but remember not to go too large on the batteries, you dont want to be paying for batteries to store electric that you don’t use!

The cost of solar panels and batteries in the UK is not to be perceived strictly as an expenditure but rather as an investment. By storing excess energy, you’re leveraging your solar panel system to its maximum capacity and further reducing your dependence on the grid. This flexibility leads to significant reductions in energy bills over time, fortifying the financial viability of your solar power system.

Assessing the Benefits: Solar Energy Return on Investment

As clean and sustainable sources of energy, solar installations present more than environmental benefits. The financial gains from investing in a solar energy system strike a chord with UK homeowners seeking to reduce utility expenses. With energy prices consistantly going up, investing in solar seems like a very safe and sensible commitment to make.

Calculating the Financial Payback Period of Solar Installations

The solar panel payback period – this is the length of time it takes for the cost of a solar installation to be recouped through energy savings – can be a crucial factor for homeowners. Typically, the payback period for UK solar installations ranges between 4 to 8 years. However, the exact period depends on individual energy consumption, size of the solar system installed, and even geographical factors influencing sun exposure.

Finding Reliable Solar Installers Near You

Installing solar panels is a significant decision that can be made effortlessly, people go into google and search for ‘solar installers near me‘ or ‘solar panel installers near me‘, but you will need to make sure the companies are not only reliable, but have all of the necessary accreditations to install you a system that qualifies for SEG payments, such as the MCS scheme

A service that streamlines this process for you is Compare Renewables. This platform aids consumers in finding reliable solar panel installers across the United Kingdom – including England, Scotland and Wales. The service assimilates information about vetted professionals that cater specifically to your location and solar energy requirements, making the process of transitioning to solar power hassle-free.

Whether you’re shifting to solar only system or a solar and battery sytem, a knowledgeable installer can guide you through the entire process. Our recommended solar installers will offer expert advice on which storage batteries will work best for you to achieve optimum efficiency.

Remember, investing in solar panels can offer a generous return on investment within 4-8 years, making it a financially prudent decision.

Finding local, dependable solar installers for solar power installation is a critical step in your renewable energy journey. Ensure to fill in the form here with Compare Renewables before making the final decision

What to Expect from a Solar Panel Installation Process

taking the first steps to installing renewable solar energy for your home involves a step-by-step process. To ensure the success of the solar panel installation, familiarity with the procedure can be tremendously beneficial. Let’s delve into what a typical solar panel installation process entails.

  1. Assessment of Energy Needs & Roof Suitability: The process kicks off with a comprehensive onsite or virtual evaluation of your home to determine its energy requirements and understand the suitability of your roof for installing solar panels.
  2. System Design & Planning: Based on the outcome of the initial assessment, installers devise a system that meets the goals identified during the evaluation phase, taking into consideration factors such as orientation, shade, and structural integrity, among others.
  3. Installation: As the bulk of the solar panel installation process, professional installers will fix the system on the roof, ensuring it complies with all the regulations and standards.

Once the solar panel installation is complete, the post-installation phase commences, which is every bit as crucial as the preceding steps.

  1. Performance Monitoring: You will have a mobile app installed where you can monitor the established energy goals, the system’s performance and energy production.

Ensure you understand every aspect of the solar panel installation process and feel free to ask your installer to clarify any points of doubt or concern.

Beware, installing solar panels on your roof is a skilled job and should only be conducted by professional installers to prevent incorrect installation or even damage to your property. Always opt for accredited providers who are trusted by a platform like Compare Renewables, to get a quote and ensure you’re dealing with the right professional.

“Once people realise how much money they save with solar, they will wonder how they ever afforded to be without them”

Conclusion

In essence, calculating the number of solar panels needed for a UK home involves checking what you can afford, put simply more panels equals a faster payback. Most modern solar panels have started leaning towards an all-black aesthetic and deliver over 400W per panel, thereby enhancing both the appearance and efficiency of your solar energy installation.

Choosing solar power as part of a broader sustainable energy initiative is not only economically wise in the long run, but it also constitutes a positive step towards environmental conservation. With the incorporation of storage batteries, homeowners can extend the utility of their solar installations, storing excess energy generated for use during non-daylight hours. This leads to improved energy independence and overall system efficacy, making the return on investment (typically between 4-8 years) even more attractive.

Services such as Compare Renewables assist in the identification of reliable, suiting installers across England, Scotland, and Wales. We aid in the process of installing solar power, by linking installers with  consumers who want to truly unlock the full potential of their roof to a solar power system.

As a final word, the benefits of solar panels extend beyond financial savings to include autonomy over energy use, reduced carbon footprint, and the opportunity to contribute to a greener future.

You can also read our post here which lists the10 main reasons to install solar panels‘.

FAQ

How Many Solar Panels Do I Need?

The number of solar panels you require depends on a number of factors, including your home’s energy consumption, the efficiency of the selected panels, the orientation and size of the roof, and your geographical location. This could range from 6 upwards, depending on the household size and energy requirements, but in general, more is better and you should fill your roof if you can.

What considerations should be made for a home’s energy requirements?

Assess your average annual electricity consumption in kWh, consider the performance of the chosen solar panels, take into account the direction and shading factors of your roof. The roof size will deterimine the amount of solar panels you can have, your usage list on your bill will explain how much battery storage you need to cover your energy needs.

How much roof space do I need for my solar panels?

It generally requires around 2m² per 400W panel, although this varies depending on the size and efficiency of the panel. South facing roofs are preferable as they receive the most sunlight, although east and west are still good for solar.

What is the difference between Polycrystalline and Monocrystalline panels?

Monocrystalline solar panels are considered more efficient with efficiencies between 16% and 23%, compared to Polycrystalline panels with efficiencies ranging between 15% and 19%. Monocrystalline panels are often more expensive but they are also more space-efficient.

How much do solar panels cost in the UK?

The cost of solar panels in the UK can range from £5,000 to £15,000, depending on the size of the system, the type of panels chosen, and the complexity of the installation. Labour cost, brand, and supplier factors also influence the final price.

What is the benefits of integrating a solar battery storage system?

Solar battery storage allows you to store surplus solar power generated during the day for use during the night or during periods of low solar generation. This adds significant value, offering increased energy independence and improved efficiency of the solar installation.

 

What incentives are available to maximise savings on solar panels?

In the UK, homeowners can benefit from the Smart Export Guarantee (SEG) scheme, which pays households for excess solar electricity they export back to the grid. This scheme can help to significantly reduce the payback period for a solar energy system.

How can I find reliable solar panel installers near me?

Services like Compare Renewables can aid you in finding trusted solar installers across England, Scotland, and Wales. Customers can obtain quotes from vetted professionals that cater to their location and specific solar energy requirements.

What does the solar panel installation process involve?

The installation process involves assessing your home’s energy needs, examining your roof for suitability, and determining the optimal system size and panel type. After planning, the actual installation is carried out, followed by monitoring to confirm the system’s output.

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Heat Pump Grant Goes Up To £7500

Air Source Heat Pump Grants in 2024

Rishi Sunak has unveiled alterations to the UK government’s environmental initiatives aimed at achieving net-zero targets, with changes to the heat pump grant program being among them. In his announcement, Rishi emphasized the priority of the country’s long-term interests over short-term political considerations.

Heat Pump Grant 

The grant for the boiler upgrade scheme will increase to £7,500

Rishi expressed confidence that the UK would still achieve net-zero emissions by 2050. His decision to delay the ban on new petrol and diesel cars until 2030, along with other net-zero measures, aims to avoid public backlash and prevent imposing substantial costs on the working population.

Implications for Landlords: Landlords can continue to make improvements to their rental properties, benefiting both themselves and their tenants. Funding remains available under the ECO (Energy Company Obligation) scheme for eligible landlords. However, the emphasis on making energy-efficient changes by 2028 has been removed.

It’s worth noting that the ECO4 scheme will run until March 31, 2026. This presents an opportunity for landlords to apply for funding to offset the cost of energy-efficient upgrades, covering insulation, heating, and renewable energy improvements.

£7500 Heat Pump Grant

Property owners in England and Wales who meet certain criteria are eligible for a heat pump grant of up to £7,500. The eligibility criteria include property ownership, a valid Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) issued within the last 10 years (or obtaining a new one if necessary), and the replacement of fossil fuel heating systems with heat pumps. Despite the delay in banning new boilers until 2035, there has never been a more opportune time to consider installing a heat pump.

Rishi emphasized that the grant for the Boiler Upgrade Scheme, aimed at facilitating the transition to heat pumps, comes with no repayment obligations.

The current voucher scheme offers £5,000 for air source heat pumps and £6,000 for ground source heat pumps. The recent changes will see this grant for upgrading to a heat pump increase by 50% to £7,500.

The Boiler Upgrade Scheme, launched in May 2022 to encourage the replacement of gas boilers with electric-powered heat pumps, forms a crucial part of the government’s commitment to achieving “net zero” carbon emissions by 2050. Although this scheme is set to end in 2028, there are no current plans regarding its post-closure prospects. Hence, the present remains an opportune time to consider making home improvements, and assistance is readily available for those interested.

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!

 

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Charge Your Electric Car with Solar Energy

There’s a lot to consider when deciding if you want to add solar panels to your home. The benefits of going green are great, but it also costs a pretty penny and takes time to see results. But if you’re thinking about making the switch, here are some things you should know:

More People are Switching to Electric Vehicles Every Day

With more people switching to electric vehicles each day, EV charger stations are also popping up all over the world. The number of electric cars is growing at an incredible rate—but so far, the number of charging stations hasn’t kept up with that growth.

However, there is a simple solution to the lack of charging stations! In fact, it’s already happening: You can now find solar-powered EV chargers in many places around America and Europe (as well as other parts of the world). Even though some people may think that using solar power makes no sense because it doesn’t generate electricity instantly like coal or nuclear plants do, others believe this type of technology represents an opportunity not just for themselves but also for their community by creating jobs while helping reduce carbon emissions worldwide.

Electricity Itself is Not Necessarily Green

Electric vehicles are often touted as being carbon-neutral or even renewable, but this is only sometimes the case. The electricity that powers an EV comes from a fossil fuel source, usually coal, and it has to be transported for miles before it can be used by the car. This means that the electricity used by EVs is not carbon-free, and it needs to be generated in a cleaner way. 

Charging Stations are Being Installed Using Non-Renewable Resources

Did you know that many of the new public charging stations being installed are using energy produced by coal and natural gas? This defeats the purpose of an electric car, however. 

In addition to that, charging stations are often installed in areas with no renewable power available, so the cleanliness of the electricity being used is questionable. Some companies have started installing solar panels at their charging stations. Still, even more than this may be needed to offset the amount of carbon dioxide released into the atmosphere by using fossil fuels.

You can help move away from these dirty fuels by making your own solar panels at home. By doing this, you’ll be able to generate clean electricity for your own needs and for sale back into the grid. This will reduce carbon emissions while also saving money on utility bills!

Use Home Solar Panels to Charge Your EV

One of the easiest ways to help lower your carbon footprint is by using electricity from your solar panels to power your EV, and you can install them right on your own roof!

In a world where we are increasingly reliant on dirty fossil fuels, this is a powerful example of how solar can help reduce our dependence on oil and gas. The sun provides free, clean energy that’s so easy to store and use—you don’t have to worry about paying for it later! And since it’s stored in batteries, there’s no need for expensive charging stations at night or during cloudy weather.

So, how do you get the energy from your solar panels into your electric vehicles? Well, you can use the Myenergi Zappi Car Charger to convert your solar energy into electricity for your EV! The Myenergi Zappi Car Charger was among the first EV chargers to use solar energy, made by a British company and it is still one of the most reliable!

There is also a new kid on the block when It comes to EV Chargers, Solax Power have finally released their long awaited EV charger, the X1-EVC-7.2K, which can also charge in ‘green mode’, where excess solar power is diverted into your EV, preventing you from getting a token sized payment from the Smart Export Guarantee (SEG), but saving you from paying the full price of electricity.

Things to Consider When Installing Solar at Home for Your EV

There are many considerations for installing solar at home for your EV. For example, you will need to decide what type of solar panel to use and how much power it will produce. You also need to consider how many panels you will need and where they can be placed in your home or yard. 

Finally, other factors may affect the solar panel cost, where they’ll be located on your property, and what kind of financing options exist for them (i.e., do banks offer loans for this type of project?).

Where to Get Reliable Solar Panels?

You should get a high-quality solar panel. This is one of the most important factors when choosing where to get your solar panels, as low-quality panels will not perform as well and may even fail sooner than expected.

You also need to consider how easy it will be for you or someone in your family to install the solar panel independently. If this is something that seems like too much work, then buying an already-installed unit at a store might be ideal. 

Additionally, when shopping around for these items, look into what types of warranties are offered by each company selling them. Hence, you know if they have any guarantees about their quality or longevity.

Trust Compare Renewables To Find Your Solar Panel Installer

Compare Renewables is a trusted provider of solar panels and other renewable energy solutions. With an experienced in-house team and affordable prices, we can help you reduce your electricity bills and protect against rising energy costs. Our team is highly skilled in finding the BEST solar companies out there!

Trust is a key factor when choosing an energy supplier and should be an important consideration when deciding whether or not to switch to solar energy. Trust is built on reputation, experience, and expertise. We’ve helped thousands of customers across the UK with their renewable energy needs. In fact, our customers tell us that they trust us because we’re easy to contact with no hard sell tactics and provide clear information about our products and services.

At Compare Renewables, we’re committed to helping you find the best renewable energy deal for your property. We want to make sure that you’re getting the best value for money and that your electricity supply is secure. 

With our dedicated team of experts and easy-to-use website, it couldn’t be easier to get started with us today!

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Things To Know Before Installing An Air Source Heat Pump in Your Home

If you are thinking of Installing an air source heat pump there is a good chance you will have a few questions and things you are unsure about, well look no further, this article should get to the bottom of it all and hopefully by the time you have finished reading you will know if an air source heat pump is right for you! I have gone through the process of finding and installing a heat pump in my home, so this should stand me in a good position to give out the best advice I can. However, not everything is easy to understand , I found several important factors to consider before taking the plunge, particularly revolving around the air source heat pump installation cost and the necessary property adaptations to accommodate a system in your home.

,In my quest for a green heating solution, the government’s previous Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) and the current Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS) caught my attention. These initiatives do present a considerable financial argument, offsetting upfront costs and supporting the shift towards green energy solutions. Nevertheless, I was aware that the installation of an air source heat pump is not a one size, fits-all solution. Every home will have differing prerequisites, such as varying levels of wall and loft insulation, plus different external spaces for the heat pump to be situated, all having positive and negative effects on the efficiency of a heat pump system.

Finding credible air source heat pump installers near me became a priority, so that I could get their opinions and quotations, I had an idea how it would all fit, but their expertise would be invaluable in assessing my property for suitability and explaining the actual installation process. They would also be instrumental in calculating potential running costs of the system and offsetting the grants towards the installation costs, so that I could work the financial viability of installing an air source heat pump on my average sized house.

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Adding to the complexity, I had to consider the lower operating temperatures of these pumps, which turned out to be unnecessary worry, as this is all built in to MCS calculations that are done before installation. Despite this worry, if sized correctly, I knew an air source heat pump would meet all my domestic heating and hot water needs. It’s not just about the boiler upgrade scheme or the costs involved; it’s about making a responsible, well-informed decision that aligns with my environmental values and long-term financial planning.

Understanding Air Source Heat Pumps and Their Functionality

As an increasingly popular choice for not just for eco-conscious homeowners, but all homeowners, air source heat pumps (ASHPs) are transforming the way we heat our homes. Utilising the ambient air as a renewable heat source, these systems offer a new super efficient alternative to traditional fossil-fuelled heating methods. Let’s explore further how these heat pumps function and what sets them apart in the world of domestic heating solutions.

How Air Source Heat Pumps Work

The core principle behind a heat pump system is its ability to transfer heat from one place to another. Despite common misconceptions, an air source heat pump is capable of extracting heat even when outdoor temperatures are as low as -25 degrees Celsius, which to most people, including myself, seems completely bizarre. This is achieved through a refrigerant fluid that absorbs the heat before a compression cycle releases the heat to be circulated inside a home.

Characteristics of Air to Water Heating Systems

The most popular type of ASHP is the air to water heating system, which is designed to operate with water-based heating elements such as radiator and underfloor heating systems. By harnessing low-grade heat from the outdoor air and upgrading it to heat water to about 50 degrees Celsius, they provide a comfortable and sustainable heating solution throughout the home. There are different heat pumps that will work to a high temperature, but higher does not always mean better as the hotter each system runs, the less efficient it becomes, so 50 degrees is the happy medium, and the standard set by the Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS). If your house is 100% underfloor heating, then a lower design temperature will be required in comparison to radiators.

Heat Pumps Will Require Radiator Upgrades

To ensure the correct functioning of  what some people call a heat source pump for short, it may be necessary to upgrade existing radiators for new higher output radiators. Due to the lower operating temperatures of ASHPs, in comparison to gas and oil heat systems, traditional radiators may not have a high enough output to achieve the desired room temperatures. Therefore, larger higher output radiators may need to be installed, the design calculations will specify the output required once your home has been surveyed. The principle of larger radiators is based on having a lower flow temperature in the heating system, the lower the flow temperature, the larger the radiator is needed.

One of the most common things I have heard from discussing heat pumps with friends and colleagues, is that people can be reluctant to change their radiators, citing the reason as “I don’t like my house too hot”, however the point has been completely misunderstood here. The upgraded radiators are not just to get the house warm, but to do it as fast as possible! The faster the heat can get out of the air source heat pump, and into the radiators, which then let the heat out into your rooms, then the cheaper it will be to run!

The Impact of Insulation on Heat Pump Efficiency

When considering the transition to a heat pump system, it’s not just the air source heat pump cost that matters, but also the readiness of the property to support low carbon technology effectively. Insulation stands as the silent yet indomitable factor that can steer a heat pump’s performance from good to exceptional. Let’s delve into how insulation influences efficiency and what you need to know prior to installation.

Improving Home Insulation for Better Heat Pump Performance

To get straight to the point, loft and wall insulation is the most important measure you can take to make a house suitable for a heat pump, there is no short cut. Sufficient insulation acts much like a thermal envelope, locking in the warmth and ensuring the output of a heat pump isn’t lost through the walls, floors and ceiling. This is especially pertinent for air source heat pumps, where heat pumps run at a lower temperature based on a continual heating process, heat leakage can significantly diminish overall efficiency and cost-effectiveness.

From an investment point of view any insulation measures will be good move when considering installing a heat pump. Draught proofing around windows and doors can also make a significant difference. A well-insulated home requires less energy to stay warm, allowing an air source heat pump to operate within its ideal parameters, thus financially optimising your return on investment.

Assessing Your Home’s Insulation Before Installation

Before having a heat pump you will need heat loss survey carried out on the property, this is done by specialist installers, so isn’t something you need to do before inviting companies around to give you a quotation. The audit of insulation levels became a pivotal step in my commitment to sustainable heating, and although I didn’t need get my own survey before, I recognised the importance of gauging my home’s insulation status prior to looking at an air source heat pump. It’s crucial to identify any potential weak spots where heat could escape, such as through insufficient loft insulation or notorious drafty windows, and getting these issues rectified before a heat pump is fitted.

These are the main areas of concern in most homes:

  • Loft and Attic Spaces: Ensuring they are bolstered with high-quality insulation material.
  • Walls: Cavity wall insulation or solid internal wall insulation (IWI) is a game-changer in older properties like mine.
  • Floors and Basements: These often-overlooked areas are the hardest to rectify, usually because there is little or no access without major disruption.

A heat loss survey helped us figure out the most cost effective insulation upgrades, laying the groundwork for a successful heat pump installation. This experience highlighted the idea that making renewable energy systems efficient isn’t solely reliant on cutting-edge technology; it’s equally about tapping into the basic principles of thermodynamics.

The following table illustrates the potential impact of insulation improvements on the efficacy and running costs of my heat pump:

Insulation AreaBefore ImprovementAfter ImprovementPercentage Efficiency Gain
LoftPoor200mm or loft insulationUp to 25%
Cavity wallsNon-existentCavity walls filledUp to 40%
FloorsMinimalSealed and insulatedUp to 20%
Window glazingSingleDouble/triple glazingUp to 25%

It’s clear that for any homeowner in the UK considering the installation of an air source heat pump, overlooking the vitality of property insulation is not the best option. The intimate link between a snugly wrapped home and the consistency of a modern heat pump system is the definition of a match made in heaven.

Assessing the Suitability of Your Property for a Heat Pump System

Following on the the above point, the heat pump will always do a job of heating your home, as long as it is the right size for your home, but the simple equation is as follows:

  • Low insulation levels = Larger heat pump, larger radiators, higher installation and running costs.
  • Good insulation levels = Smaller heat pump, smaller radiators, lower installation and running costs.

Both of the above will get you you to the same end goal, but having a well insulated house, is a no brainer, for both environmental and financial reasons.

Finding a Location For Your Heat Pump to Sit

My first step was to identify a suitable exterior space. A heat pump requires ample airflow to efficiently extract heat; hence, I scoured my property for a spot that was not only on solid ground but also a distance from potential obstructions such as plants and neighbours fencing. Mounting it to an external wall was also an option I considered, I was told by the installers that the wall brackets have in-built rubber mounts to stop vibrations, however I did have ground space at my house to situate the heat pump and I personally think sitting a heat pump on the ground should always be first choice, using a wall only as a last resort. I even checked planning regulations to ensure that the installation would comply with both the town and country planning act, as well as MCS requirements.

The main planning rules for air source heat pumps include some location based requirements, as well as other regulations around the heat pump size and noise necessities, which are already manufacturer built into the design and engineering of the air source heat pump.

  • The volume of the air source heat pump’s outdoor compressor unit (including housing) must not exceed 0.6 cubic metres
  • Only the first installation of an air source heat pump would be permitted development, and only if there is no existing wind turbine on a building or within the curtilage of that property. Additional wind turbines or air source heat pumps at the same property requires an application for planning permission
  • All parts of the air source heat pump must be at least one metre from the property boundary
  • Installations on pitched roofs are not permitted development. If installed on a flat roof all parts of the air source heat pump must be at least one metre from the external edge of that roof
  • Permitted development rights do not apply for installations within the curtilage of a Listed Building or within a site designated as a Scheduled Monument
  • On land within a Conservation Area or World Heritage Site the air source heat pump must not be installed on a wall or roof which fronts a highway or be nearer to any highway which bounds the property than any part of the building
  • On land that is not within a Conservation Area or World Heritage Site, the air source heat pump must not be installed on any part of a wall above the level of the ground floor storey if that wall fronts a highway.

(Source: Planning Portal, 2024)

Where Will The Hot Water Cylinder Go?

Next, I needed to consider the placement of the hot water cylinder required for storing domestic hot water, the air source heat pump is heating the hot water cylinder, so the location was equally crucial. My intent was to have it within close proximity to the pump to mitigate heat loss in transfer, the airing cupboard seemed an ideal space, and with my property’s layout I did have a space in the corner of my utility room that could house the cylinder, which is actually closer to the heat pump than the airing cupboard. The cylinder would however be intruding upon the storage space downstairs, so I decided that a slightly higher heat loss, due to increased distance between the units, does seem like trade off which I am willing to accept for the extra space I have saved downstairs.

Installing an Air Source Heat Pump: Size and Model Considerations

When it comes to upgrading your home with an efficient heating solution, picking correct size and model of an air source heat pump is essential for both correct functioning and efficiency. This process requires balancing the unique aspects of your property and total heat demand, against the offerings in the UK market. In my experience, thorough research coupled with professional advice from air source heat pump installers near me, ensures that your investment pays off in terms of performance and energy savings, with two areas to make a choice in, heat pump size (power), then the manufacturer brand.

Determining the Correct Heat Pump Size for Your Home

On this occasion, size truly matters! A unit too small will be overworked and will become less efficient, usually lasting much less than the suggested life expectancy, while an oversized pump again will consume too much power, think of it as of taking a monster truck to your local supermarket once a week, its just not necessary. Therefore the heat loss calculation, once the survey is done, will give you a good idea of the heat requirements of your home, then you can make a specific to you, information based decision on choosing the right size heat pump.

Comparing Models: The Mitsubishi Ecodan Example

The Mitsubishi Ecodan range stands out as a fitting example of how different models cater to varied heating needs. As I’ve navigated the vast number of heat pumps out there, comparing features and performance against the upfront heat pump installation cost is crucial in making an informed decision. The Ecodan models are renowned for their reliability and eco-friendliness, as well as their ability to mesh with existing heating systems. The main advantage of Mitsubishi is their incredible performance of 1kw input, to 4kw of heat output, with the water flow temperature at 50 degrees, however the Mitsubishi Ecodan is in a league of its own because this performance doesn’t deteriorate until the outside temperature is below minus -7 degrees, there is no other heat pump out there that comes close to that level of performance in cold conditions.

 I always suggest reaching out to air source heat pump installers for tailor-made quotations that reflect your particular circumstances, which you can do with Compare Renewables! Just fill in your details  to receive more information and prices from local installers.

Financial Incentives: Renewable Heat Incentive and Boiler Upgrade Scheme

As the UK general public are slowly opening up to the utilisation of renewable technologies for home heating, most are not aware of the financial commitments involved. However, the availability of incentives like the now concluded Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) and the current Boiler Upgrade Scheme have made a significant difference, by easing the impact of the initial heat pump cost on homeowners in the UK.

How the Boiler Upgrade Scheme Benefits Homeowners

Let me explain how the current Boiler Upgrade Scheme benefits homeowners across the country. This incentive is designed as a succour to those embracing greener living through the adoption of air source heat pumps. Unlike the RHI, which gave back investment over several years, this newer initiative provides an upfront grant—substantially reducing the initial financial outlay and propelling the shift towards sustainable energy adoption. Below is a tabular peek into how these schemes compare and their implications for a typical homeowner.

 

AspectRenewable Heat Incentive (now closed)Boiler Upgrade Scheme (until 31 March 2025)
Type of BenefitQuarterly paymentsOne-off grant
Duration7 yearsAt installation, deducted from invoice
ObjectiveIncentivise sustained renewable heat productionLower upfront cost for fast adoption
Benefit to HomeownerLong-term financial return based on heat outputImmediate reduction in installation cost

While the RHI has promoted the generation of renewable heat and subsequently recompensed the homeowner, the Boiler Upgrade Scheme’s instant financial support is a compelling motivator for interested homeowners who are wary of steep upfront expenditures, especially in times of high interest rates for borrowing. The Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS) is a huge step towards a low-carbon future for the UK, and is further sweetened by the long-term savings achieved through reduced energy bills.

Integrating Air Source Heating with Existing Systems

When considering an upgrade to a heat pump system, many homeowners are keen to understand the integration process with their existing heating infrastructure and I see a lot of questions surrounding the disruption. It’s no secret that the air source heat pump will need a  significant amount of work to install, so ensuring that the integration to what is currently there is important. Below, I outline the key factors to bear in mind when combining an air source heating system with your current setup.

One of the main issues people are concerned about is pipework, well I have good news, 99% of homes in the UK that have a heat pump retro fitted do not need replacement pipework, there is only a few homes which have a single pipe system, which isn’t compatible, and a few more where the existing plumbing work is ancient and needs upgrading. While air source heat pumps operate most effectively with low-temperature heating solutions, such as underfloor heating, the reality is that many houses are fitted with more traditional radiator systems, which is perfectly fine, but will require some radiators upgrades for optimal efficiency. Below is a table of what can be kept from exiting systems, plus what needs to be replaced.

Heating System ComponentCompatibility with Air Source Heat PumpPotential Modification RequiredEstimated Modification Cost
Traditional RadiatorsMediumsome replacement radiators with larger, higher output radiatorsVaries per household
Underfloor HeatingHighNoneN/A – if system already in place
Hot Water CylinderNot CompatibleCylinder replacement with installation of heat pump for compatibilityFrom £1000 to £2500 included in the total cost
Storage HeatersNot CompatibleFull wet system to be installedChanged to a traditional wet radiators, as above

Calculating the Heat Pump Installation Cost and Potential Savings

When considering a switch to an environmentally friendly heating system for your home, scrutinising the heat pump installation cost against the potential savings is usually the area which influences a decision the most. An air source heat pump cost may appear steep; however, the long-term financial picture, when you include government grants, and savings over time are a good reason to invest.

Breaking Down the Air Source Heat Pump Cost

The initial outlay for an air source heat pump (ASHP) typically ranges between £12,000 and £17,000, fully installed. The price is dictated by the complexity of installation, the size of the unit needed for your home, number of replacement radiators, and the chosen brand of your heat pump. However, there is financial incentive on offer from the government, through a scheme designed to fast forward the transition to low carbon heating, the Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS) was launched on the 1st April 2022 and is a 3 year scheme, ending in 2025. When the Boiler Upgrade Scheme was launched, the offer was a £5000 voucher which can be redeemed against the installation costs. Due to the low uptake of the vouchers, the voucher was increased in October 2023 by a further £2500, to a total of £7500.

Here’s what a typical cost breakdown might include:

  • The heat pump unit itself
  • A heat pump compatible hot water cylinder
  • Replacement radiators
  • Technical survey
  • Smart controllers, filters & isolators

Long-Term Financial Benefits and ROI

While the initial expense merits consideration, add in the £7500 boiler upgrade scheme voucher and the long-term savings do tip the scales in our favour. Efficiently engineered ASHPs such as the Mitsubishi’s & Vaillant’s, can run at significantly lower costs when compared with traditional heating systems such as gas boilers. On average, users might see a saving of up to 50% on running costs, thus a lower overall heat pump cost in the long run, when compared to gas and oil boilers.

The Boiler Upgrade Scheme is a great offer to help keep costs down, when adding in longer term performance savings the outcome results in a convincing return on investment (ROI). But the scheme won’t be around forever, so with the change to low carbon heating coming fast and strong, I would urge you to take the offer as soon as possible, if you can.

You can get a quote from local suppliers, sent to you directly from Compare Renewables. Just press the button below and fill in your contact details!

Year-Round Performance: Can Heat Pumps Cope in Winter?

As we tread through the ever-changing climes of our British weather, one question lingers among those pondering a leap into renewable heating: can air to water heat pumps indeed provide comfort during the icy chills of winter? I’ve delved into the depths of this topic, exploring how these innovative systems fair when the winter hits hard.

Understanding the Performance of Air to Water Heat Pumps in Cold Weather

In the heart of winter, when British weather really gets it reputation, the robustness of air source heating is put to the test. But fear not, air to water heat pumps are engineered to meet these challenges head-on. They draw thermal energy from the air – yes, even when it feels baltic outside – and concentrate it to warm our homes as good as it does in the other three seasons.

Remarkably, the best heat pumps achieve this with a steadfast efficiency down to -25 degrees Celsius. Though you correctly may envisage a dip in their efficiency as temperatures plummet, air source heating systems are designed with a tactical approach, but not all models are great in cold conditions, this is where the men separate themselves from the boys, as they would say. Please don’t try to buy a heat pump off amazon, because you will be cold! Mitsubishis are the best heat pumps you can buy for cold weather so even though there might be a premium with a better heat pump, I promise it will be money well spent, as you will be warm, and your running costs will be lower than with any other heat pump.

The ingenuity of these systems lies not only in their capacity to combat the cold but also in their versatility. They integrate harmoniously with most standard heating solutions, from conventional radiator systems to modern wet underfloor heating systems, distributing warmth evenly and effectively throughout every corner of our homes.

Installation Process: What To Expect From Air Source Heat Pump Installers Near You

Once that you have made the decision to  transition to a heat pump system, it’s crucial to understand the complete scope of the installation process. As someone who has spent a long period of time looking for reputable air source heat pump installers, let me impart some practical insights into what you can typically expect during the setup of your new system. Firstly, be prepared for the process to take up to 3 days for an average-sized home. During this period, my home’s heating and hot water supply may be interrupted for 1 to 2 days. This might seem inconvenient, but with the long-term benefits of upgrading to air to water heat pump, a little patience goes a long way.

Having an installation undertaken by MCS-certified professionals will ensure that the process is streamlined and meets all the necessary compliance standards, you will also need an MCS accredited installer to get access to the boiler upgrade scheme. Good two way communication and thorough planning before the work begins are essential. Below is a table outlining the key phases you can expect during the installation of an air source heat pump:

DayPhaseActivities
1Removal of existing heating systemOnsite preparation, and removal of current heating system
1-2External workInstallation of the outdoor unit which needs a solid base, or wall fixings for wall-mounted units.
2Internal workHanging new radiators, plumbing the new cylinder in.
5Electrical work & CommissioningWiring of the new controls and heat pump. Complete system testing, final checks, and handover to homeowner with guidance on use.

I personally believe that embracing a greener heating solution like an air to water heat pump system is a positive step towards energy efficiency and environmental sustainability, which personally feels good! Finding reputable air source heat pump installers is just the beginning of a journey and it is import you check out their Trustpilot Reviews before making a decision, as unfortunately there are some cowboys out there. With the right preparation and understanding of the installation process, I’m confident that my investment will pay off both financially and environmentally in the years to come.

Combining An Air Source Heat Pump With Solar PV Panels

Now here’s for the magic part, air source heating is a fantastic upgrade, but a heat pump still needs electrical power to run, so what if you could get free running of your system from solar power! Combining an air source heat pump (ASHP) with solar PV panels is a genius idea. It’s not just about being eco-friendly — it’s a cost-effective solution that significantly reduces my dependence on the traditional power grid, which means I don’t have to buy much, if any, electricity at all.

Mitsubishi Ecodan heat pump, solar panel companies, solar panel and battery installation, solar panel battery storage cost

 Solar PV panels are a whole topic for another time, but the principle is, a good size solar PV system could financially run a heat pump, as well as your other electrical appliances throughout the year. Now I know what you’re thinking, we don’t get much sun in the winter, and that is when we need the heating the most. Smart meters have enabled the emergence of ‘smart electricity tariffs’, which when coupled up with storage batteries gives a game changing solution.

Using Storage Batteries to Power Your Heat Pump In the Evening

The first priority of a solar storage battery is to store excess solar electricity in the battery for use at a later time, that’s the simple bit. Now over the last couple of years, energy companies such as Octopus, have brought tariffs to market based on different kinds of usage, such as consumers with heat pumps, electric cars & solar PV. One innovative part of all the tariffs, is that you can buy electricity through the night, usually around 00:30 to 5am with heavily reduced rates, sometimes up to 75% less than the average cost. In the winter when your solar panels can’t generate enough power too heat your home for a full day, you can use the reduced rate electricity in the night to fill your solar batteries up, which means that in the day time you are using electricity from your storage battery, charged up the night before costing you a quarter of it what it would have cost you to buy electricity throughout the day time. This means that the heat pump installation cost pays off more than twice as fast as before, as it continues to function using the free solar power or heavily reduced price electricity from the grid purchased the previous night.

Growatt Hybrid inverter solar battery 3.3kwh solar panels, solar installer

The possibilities are not just exciting; they’re tangible. With the right home setup, your heat pump can be more than a heating solution; it can be part of a comprehensive home energy ecosystem. The upfront heat pump installation cost is mitigated over time, thanks to the lower operating expenses and the overnight charging savings, while solar panels can potentially provide all the power your heat pump needs for 6-8 months a year, and maybe more.

The Longevity and Maintenance of Air Source Heat Pumps

When it comes to ensuring the longevity of air source heating systems, I must stress the importance of regular servicing. By choosing an experienced air source heat pump installer, you can also use the same company for  annual inspections, which not only keeps your system in good working order and extending the heat pumps life span, it is in the t&c’s of most heat pump warranty documents to have an annual service to keep your warranty in tact.

Expected Lifespan of Air Heat Pumps

The expected lifespan for a correctly maintained air source heat pump is between 15 and 25 years—an impressive term for such a significant component of your home’s heating system. That said, longevity hinges on the consistency of regular checks and the expertise of the technicians carrying out maintenance.

Regular Maintenance for Optimal Efficiency

Here in the United Kingdom, the varying weather patterns and consistent use mean our heat pumps are working hard all year round. To maintain peak performance, I find it best to set up a schedule for heat pump maintenance with a trusted technician. This entails a full system inspection, removing leafs and debris from the exterior,  cleaning or replacing filters, checking refrigerant levels and ensuring electronic components are functioning as they should.

Conclusion

In summary, it’s clear that air source heat pumps offer a formidable and affordable over the long term solution for sustainable home heating. From understanding the functionalities of heat pumps and their integration with existing home pipework, to exploring financial incentives and the importance of proper insulation, we’ve covered off all of the essentials of what is included in the switch over to an air source heat pump.

Let Compare Renewables Do The Hard Work

This article is aimed to give clarity and a first person view on how air source heat pumps and the process works, which is what this platform Compare Renewables aims to do. This service is completely free and here to connect homeowners with local MCS certified installers, who have been checked out and verified by compare renewables, so you don’t have to!

Find a Local Heat Pump Installer With Compare Renewables

Locating proficient air source heat pump installers near me was a challenge, but with Compare Renewables you simply enter you contact details, and then you will receive up to three prices from companies operating in your area. For any homeowner in the United Kingdom looking to make the change and wanting to know if it will work on your home, click the button below and fill in the form, then that is step 1 of your heat pump journey complete.

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How Do Air Source Heat Pumps Work? draft

If you’re looking for a cost effective and eco-friendly heating alternative to gas and oil boilers, look no further than air source heat pumps. These environmentally friendly heating systems work by extracting heat from the outside air and converting it into usable heat for your home. Unlike traditional British heating solutions that burn fossil fuels, air source heat pumps operate using electricity which can be 100% sustainable, if your energy supplier offers this, reducing your carbon footprint and helping combat climate change.

In this article, we’ll take a deeper look at air source heat pumps, including what they are, how they work, and the benefits they offer. We’ll also discuss the importance of different heat pumps brands such as the Mitsubishi Ecodan, a top-performing brand known for reliability and efficiency. Whether you’re considering upgrading your current heating system or looking for a new build solution, this guide will provide key insights into making an informed decision on air source heat pumps.

Key Points

 

Mitsubishi are the market leaders in heat pumps are a high-performance brand known for reliability and efficiency.

Air source heat pumps are cost-effective in the long term and can help reduce your carbon footprint.

Installing an air source heat pump may make you eligible for financial incentives through the Boiler Upgrade Scheme scheme.

Heat pumps are low maintenance and tend to last much longer than traditional gas boilers.

  •  

What is an Air Source Heat Pump?

An air source heat pump is an energy-efficient heating system that uses the outside air as a heat source to warm your home. It harvests heat energy from the air, even in temperatures as low as -25°C, to produce usable heat for your radiators, underfloor heating, or hot water cylinder. Air source heat pumps come in two main types: air-to-water heat pumps and air-to-air heat pumps.

Air-to-Water Heat Pumps

Air-to-water heat pumps are the most popular type of air source heat pump that transfers the heat from the outside air to the water running through your home heating system. As the water circulates through the system, it delivers heat to your radiators or underfloor heating in a similar way to how fossil fuel systems do using heated water. These systems are perfect for homes that have good insulations measures already taken, such as cavity or solid wall insulation, love insulation and at double glazed windows as a minimum . Brands like Mitsubishi, Samsung & Vaillant  offer various air-to-water heat pump models what are related to the heating needs of the house, but are also affordable and offer great efficiency.

Air-to-Air Heat Pumps

Air-to-air heat pumps work similar to to air-to-water heat pumps, by taking air from outside and using it to heat the air inside your home instead of the water in the radiators. These heat pumps operate in the same way as air conditioning units but can also work in reverse to warm the air inside. This type of heat pump is mostly used for homes that do not have a central heating system and rely on room heaters or electric fires. During summers, it can also provide cool air to make your home comfortable, which is a bonus, but isn’t viewed as an environmentally friendly product as it isn’t usually a necessity in the UK.

Overall, air source heat pumps offer several benefits when compared to traditional heating systems. Not only do they help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve air quality, but they can also save you money on your heating bills. By choosing a reliable brand like Mitsubishi  and hiring experienced installers, you can enjoy efficient heating and greater comfort in your home.

You can find local installers by leaving your details with compare renewables and will get you prices from trusted heat pump installers in your area.

The Advantages of Air Source Heat Pumps

If you are considering upgrading your home heating system, air source heat pumps offer several advantages over traditional heating solutions. Here are some of the main benefits of choosing air source heating:

Cost-Effectiveness

One of the most significant advantages of air source heat pumps is their lower running costs in comparison to the ever rising fossil fuels. While the initial installation cost may be higher than some other heating systems, air source heat pumps can save you money on your energy bills in the long term. This is because they require less energy to operate and can produce up to five times more heat energy than they consume. Additionally, the installation of an air source heat pump cost can be partially offset by the Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS), a government scheme that offers £7,500 to homeowners who install renewable heating systems, which should cover at least 50% of the cost.

Sustainability

Another advantage of air source heating is its sustainability. By using the heat from the air outside, air source heat pumps produce renewable energy and contribute to reducing carbon emissions. This makes them an environmentally friendly heating option that can help you reduce your carbon footprint and do your part for the planet.

Future Proofing

Installing an air source heat pump is a great step towards future proofing against future regulatory requirement as well a social aspect to consider whereby in our world which is changing to a more sustainable one, we may see a day where it is considered bad practice to continue using fossil fuels for the sake of our future generations. It is highly likely that in the future it will be common sense that forces a change to sustainable heating rather than law, by authorities continually changing the environment to mean that sustainable heating becomes a no brainer, because gas and oil prices have increased to a point that it is completely unaffordable to continue using them over a heat pump. 

Advantages of Air Source Heat Pumps  
Cost-effective Saves money on energy bills in the long term, installation partially offset by the £7500 BUS voucher
Sustainable Uses renewable energy from the air, reduces carbon emissions
Future Proofing Gas boiler ban on new builds from March 2025, Total ban on gas boilers in 2035

Overall, choosing an air source heat pump for your home heating solution can offer cost-effectiveness, sustainability, and future proofing. It’s a smart choice for long term thinking homeowners who want to reduce their carbon footprint and save money on energy bills.

Understanding Heat Pump Systems

Heat pump systems are the new normal alternative to traditional home heating systems, providing energy-efficient heat. The unique principle behind heat pumps is their ability to extract heat from the air outside your home and transfer that heat to the inside, generating warmth and transferring that to the inside of our buildings.

When considering the cost of heat pump systems, it’s essential to calculated the cost over the next 20 years, you should keep in mind that they may be more expensive to install than traditional systems. However, the cost is offset over time as heat pumps conserve energy and reduce utility bills. Besides, there is a £7500 towards the cost for homeowners from the Boiler Upgrade Scheme and most installers have finance options available to make these systems a more affordable choice for homeowners.

There are two basic types of heat pump systems: air-to-air and air-to-water. Air-to-air pumps extract heat from the outside air and release it indoors by blowing it through ducts or air handlers. They are intended to distribute heated or cooled air evenly throughout the home. Air-to-water pumps work similarly but transfer the extracted heat to a water-based distribution system, which heats the home’s radiators or underfloor heating.

Air-to-Water Heat Pump Price

“Air-to-Water heat pumps are the most common and most cost efficient system when compared to other traditional ways of home heating”

Heat Pump Type Installation Cost Maintenance Cost
Air-to-Water Small House £12,000 £14,000 £150 £200 annually
Air-to-Water Large House £13,000 £17,000 £150 – £250 annually

Heat Pump Cost and Efficiency

The cost of a heat pump system varies depending on the capacity of pump, the complexity of the installation, and other factors such as the number of radiators. Still, the energy savings and reduced operating costs over time more than make up for the initial outlay. With an operating efficiency of over 400%, these systems typically help save upto two-thirds of the annual heating bill costs.

It is unlikely that heat pump prices will come down due to the the logistics and complexity of installations, most heat pumps are made in Asia, with Mitsuibishi in Japan & Samsung in South Korea, which means there is always shipping costs involved, many other parts such as copper pipes, radiators, hot water cylinders have the same costs attached and installations usually take a few days, which means that there are plumbers and electricians to pay for their services. There is currently a £7500 voucher available from the government which is to be made available until March 2025, so the the net costs are now currently much less than they are proposed to be in the future. 

Exploring Mitsubishi Ecodan Heat Pumps

When it comes to air source heat pumps, Mitsubishi Electric manufacture heat pumps and are a top-performing, reliable brand. These heat pumps are renowned for their energy efficiency, sustainability, and consistent performance even in really low temperatures. Let’s take a look at some of the features and benefits of Mitsubishi Ecodan heat pumps:

Features Benefits
Advanced technology Efficient and reliable operation
Noise reduction technology Won the ‘Quiet Mark Award’ on the Ecodan Model
Wide range of models Model sizes of: 5kw, 6kw, 8.5kw, 11.2kw & 14kw
Best performer in low temperatures  Maintains optimal COP  efficiency at -7 degrees!

Mitsubishi Ecodan heat pumps also come with a range of smart controls, allowing homeowners to easily manage and monitor their heating system from their devices through the MELcloud app. The brand’s focus on Japanese innovation and sustainability has earned it a reputation as a leader in the market, and homeowners looking for a reliable and efficient heating solution should certainly consider Mitsubishi Ecodan heat pumps.

Air Source Heat Pump Installation Process

Installing an air source heat pump requires careful planning and professional expertise. The process typically involves several stages, from initial site assessment to final commissioning and testing. Here is an overview of the installation process:

    1. Site assessment: A qualified installer will visit your home to assess the suitability of your property and identify the best location for your heat pump. They will consider factors such as insulation, heat demand, available space and access, as well as any planning or building regulations that may be relevant.

    1. Design and specification: Based on the site assessment, the installer will provide a tailored system design and specification that meets your heating needs and budget. They will also provide an estimate of the total cost, which will depend on the size and complexity of the installation.

    1. Installation: Once you have agreed on the design and cost, the installer will begin the installation process. This typically involves installing the outdoor and indoor units, connecting the refrigerant pipework and electrical cabling, and commissioning the system for optimal performance.

    1. Testing and certification: The installer will perform a series of functional tests to ensure that the heat pump system is working as expected and meets the relevant safety standards. They will also provide you with the necessary MCS certification and documentation for warranty, maintenance and compliance purposes.

The cost of air source heat pump installation can vary depending on several factors, such as the size and complexity of the system, the location of the property, and the installer’s fees. As a rough guide, a typical installation can cost between £12,000 to £18,000. However, it is worth noting that the installation cost can be recouped over time through energy savings and potential financial incentives, such as the £7500 boiler upgrade scheme.

When choosing an installer for your air source heat pump, it is important to work with a reputable and experienced professional who is accredited by relevant industry bodies, such as the Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS). You can find qualified air source heat pump installers near you by using search facilities, such as the Compare Renewables!

The Economic Benefits of Heat Pump Systems

Installing a heat pump system can have numerous economic benefits for homeowners. In addition to saving money on their heating bills, they may also be eligible for a £7500 grant through the Boiler Upgrade Scheme, which aims to encourage homeowners to switch to more energy-efficient heating options.

The Boiler Upgrade Scheme

The Boiler Upgrade Scheme offers a grant of up to £7500 to homeowners who replace their old and inefficient heating systems with a renewable heating source like an air source heat pump. The scheme is designed to help households reduce their energy usage and costs while also contributing to the UK’s goal of reaching net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

To qualify for the grant, homeowners must meet specific criteria, including owning their property and having non-renewable heating system. They must also use an MCS accredited installer and have a product installed which is on the approved list. The grant covers the cost of purchasing and installing the new heat pump system.

Energy Savings

Another significant economic benefit of installing a heat pump system is the energy savings it provides. Heat pumps are much more efficient than traditional heating systems, which can lead to significant reductions in energy usage and costs. According to the Energy Saving Trust, replacing an outdated heating system with an air source heat pump could result in savings of around £800 per year based on a standard house, more if you live in a larger house and more if you use one the top heat pumps with better efficiency. These savings can help homeowners recoup their initial investment in the system more quickly.

Air source heat pumps are renowned for their remarkable efficiency, the coefficient of performance (COP) that can reach up to 400%. This astounding efficiency is attributed to the technology’s ability to extract heat from the ambient air unlike traditional heating systems that rely on fuel combustion, air source heat pumps leverage the principles of thermodynamics to amplify the heat absorbed from the outside air. With a COP of 4, for instance, these systems produce four units of heat for every unit of electricity consumed, While gas and oil boilers typically operate at efficiency levels ranging from 80% to 95% which on the same measure is 0.85 to 0.95. This high efficiency not only translates to significant energy savings but also contributes to a reduced carbon footprint, making air source heat pumps an environmentally friendly and sustainable solution for heating needs. As the world embraces cleaner and more energy-efficient technologies, the 400% efficiency of air source heat pumps positions them as the number one choice in the transition to more sustainable heating alternatives.

Overall, installing a heat pump system can have significant economic benefits for homeowners. From government grants to energy savings and protection from having no choice but to upgrade in the future, it is an investment that can lead to long-term financial benefits and a greener, more future friendly home heating option.

Air Source Heat Pump Maintenance and Care

Regular maintenance is essential to ensure air source heat pumps operate at their peak performance and maintain their longevity. By taking simple steps to care for your system, you can also protect your investment and minimize repair expenses. Here are some tips for maintaining and caring for your air source heat pump:

    • Inspect the outdoor unit regularly for debris, such as leaves or twigs, and clear them away to prevent damage to the fan blades.

    • Keep the outdoor unit free from snow and ice accumulation during the winter months to prevent damage to the system.

    • Regularly check the refrigerant level to ensure it is within the recommended range and add more if necessary, this is usually done an annual service.

    • Have a professional service your system yearly to ensure that all components are operating properly and that there are no leaks, damages, or malfunctions.

By following these simple steps, you can help ensure that your air source heat pump operates efficiently, effectively, and reliably for years to come.

Air Source Heat Pumps vs. Traditional Heating Systems

When it comes to heating your home or business, the choice between air source heat pumps (ASHP) and traditional heating systems can be challenging, as its a change from the normal right?! While traditional heating systems such as gas boilers or electric heaters have been in use for decades, the growing concern of environmental and sustainable living, and escalating energy costs have made air source heat pumps an increasingly attractive option, very similar to how electric vehicles are slowly becoming normal and have many advantages of petrol and diesel vehicles (and a few disadvantages too right now!).

One of the major advantages of air source heat pumps is their energy efficiency. A good heat pump will give you 4x output for every 1 kilowatt inputted, compared to gas boiler which gives an output of around 0.8 to 0.9 for every kilowatt inputted, which makes heat pumps around 4.5x more efficient than a gas boiler, resulting in significant energy cost savings over time.

In terms of environmental impact, ASHPs have a considerable advantage over traditional systems. Unlike gas and electric heating sources, which rely on non-renewable fossil fuels and contribute to harmful emissions, air source heat pumps rely on electricity which can be sourced from renewable sources such as wind and solar. By harnessing the renewable energy available in the air, ASHPs can help reduce carbon emissions and combat climate change.

  Energy Efficiency Environmental Impact Cost-effectiveness
Air Source Heat Pumps Good Low Great (over time)
Gas Boilers Bad High Poor (in the long run)
Electric Heaters Very Bad Low Very Poor (in the short and long run)

Table: Comparison of air source heat pumps versus traditional heating systems in terms of energy efficiency, environmental impact, and cost-effectiveness.

When it comes to cost-effectiveness, ASHPs might require an initial investment higher than traditional heating systems of around £12,000 to £18,000. Still, with government grants like the Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS) the cost of installation will around £4,500 to £9,500 including new radiators, the cost-effectiveness of air source heat pumps is comparable to traditional heating sources over time.

Overall, it’s clear that air source heat pumps have several advantages over traditional heating systems in terms of energy efficiency, environmental impact, and cost-effectiveness. Moreover, ASHPs can help transition towards a greener future by reducing carbon emissions and minimizing energy costs over time.

The Environmental Impact of Air Source Heat Pumps

By reading this far you will now know that air source heat pumps are an eco-friendly alternative to traditional heating systems, a significant step towards helping combat climate change, but how good are they?

According to a report by the Energy Saving Trust, a typical air source heat pump for a well-insulated home could save up to 4.6 tonnes of carbon emissions per year compared to an oil boiler. The same report revealed that air source heat pumps have a much lower carbon footprint than gas boilers and electric heaters, making them a more environmentally friendly choice.

Beyond reducing carbon emissions, heat pumps can provide a reliable and renewable alternative that’s accessible to homeowners across the country, such as areas that are off-grid and rely on oil or bottled gas.

An Example of Reduction in Carbon Emissions

Heating System Type Carbon Emissions (kg CO2/year)
Air source heat pump 880 (if electricity isn’t renewably sourced, 0 if it is)
Gas boiler 2740
Oil boiler 5410
Electric heaters 6180

As the table illustrates, air source heat pumps have a significantly lower carbon footprint than traditional heating systems, even without using solar or wind power to generate the electricity. 

Installing an air source heat pump not only benefits the environment but also provides long-term financial savings. Choosing renewable energy systems such as air source heat pumps can also increase the value of your property and reduce your dependence on non-renewable energy sources, helping you lead a greener lifestyle.

 the Renewable Heat Incentive has now ended(RHI)

The Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) was a government-backed scheme in England, designed to encourage the adoption of rair and ground source heat pumps, as well as biomass boilers. Under the RHI, individuals and businesses were eligible to receive financial incentives for installing and using renewable heating systems spread over a 7 year period from the day of installation, which offset the overall installation costs. On the RHI scheme residents could receive up to £12,000 in 28 instalments, however there were a number of factors which when calculated meant that some households may only receive £2000. The scheme was designed to give the biggest homes the largest funding by using their total heat demand, as their installation costs were higher. However in our opinion this scheme was flawed, as a lot of the funding ended up going to the worst homes for a heat pump, the homes the least insulation as they had high heat demands too. The aftermath of this has given heat pumps somewhat of a bad reputation, as not being fit for purpose, when in fact they have simply been fitted to houses not suitable for low carbon heating.

However, as of 31st March 2022, the Renewable Heat Incentive has come to an end. The decision to conclude the program was made in 2021, and has been replaced with the Boiler Upgrade Scheme, which stared out as an up front payment towards the installation costs of £5000. 

On the 23rd October 2023 the Prime Minister Rishi Sunak increased the £5000 grant to £7500 across the board.

FAQ

How does an air source heat pump work?

An air source heat pump works by extracting heat from the outdoor air and transferring it indoors to heat your home and provide hot water. It uses a refrigeration cycle similar to a fridge to absorb heat from the outdoor air, which is then compressed to a higher temperature and released inside your home through a heat exchanger. This technology allows the heat pump to provide efficient heating all year round, even in colder climates right down to -25 degrees.

What are the advantages of using an air source heat pump?

There are several advantages to using an air source heat pump. Firstly, they are highly energy-efficient and can significantly reduce your heating costs compared to traditional heating systems. They also provide both heating and hot water, eliminating the need for separate systems. Air source heat pumps run off of electricity and can be 100% carbon neutral in operation, as they completely remove the need for gas, oil or solid fuels. Additionally, homeowners are eligible for financial incentives through the Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS) scheme when installing air source heat pumps.

How much does an air source heat pump system cost?

The cost of an air source heat pump system can vary depending on several factors, including the size of your home, the complexity of the installation, and the specific model you choose. On average, the cost of a typical air source heat pump system installation ranges from £12,000 to £15,000, but is part funded to the tune of £7500 by the government, which if you are needing a new heating system, leaves the costs at similar levels for heat pumps and traditional fossil fuel heating systems and almost a no brainer in which to choose.

What is the difference between air-to-water and air-to-air heat pump systems?

Air-to-water and air-to-air heat pump systems are two different types of air source heat pumps. An air-to-water heat pump system transfers heat from the outdoor air to a water-based heating system, such as underfloor heating or radiators, to provide central heating and hot water. On the other hand, an air-to-air heat pump system uses the heat extracted from the outdoor air to directly heat the air inside your home, providing warmth through a network of fans or ducts. The choice between the two systems depends on your specific heating requirements and existing infrastructure, however most homes are built with wet radiator systems unlike other countries in Europe and the USA who have ventilation ducts running through the buildings. 

It is also worth noting that the £7500 Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS) voucher isn’t eligible on air-to-air systems.

What is the Mitsubishi Ecodan heat pump?

The Mitsubishi Ecodan is a popular choice of air source heat pump known for their reliability, performance, and energy efficiency. The Ecodan range offers various models suitable for different property sizes and heating needs. Mitsubishi Ecodan heat pumps utilize advanced inverter-driven technology to optimize energy consumption and maximize heating efficiency of 1:4 at 50 degrees flow temperature. Mitsubishi has a proven track record of innovative features and Japanese engineering, the Ecodan heat pumps are a trusted choice for homeowners looking for a the best in the market high-quality air source heat pump system.

 

What maintenance does an air source heat pump require?

Air source heat pumps are low maintenance heating systems, You will need to get it serviced once a year which includes basic maintenance tasks such as cleaning or replacing filters, checking refrigerant levels, and inspecting electrical connections. You should also make sure leafs and other debris are sweat away from the heat pump periodically.

How do air source heat pumps compare to traditional heating systems?

Air source heat pumps offer several advantages over traditional heating systems. Firstly, they are much more energy-efficient, as they transfer heat from the outdoor air rather than relying on fossil fuels. This can result in significant cost savings on your heating bills. Air source heat pumps also have a lower environmental impact, as they produce fewer carbon emissions. They provide both heating and hot water, eliminating the need for separate systems. The regulation is also changing too and will eventually outlaw fossil fuel heating, this is starting with the banning of gas, by law, in the UK on new build properties from the 1st April 2025.

How can I embrace sustainable energy with an air source heat pump?

Embracing sustainable energy starts with exploring energy-efficient heating solutions like air source heat pumps, however the next step would be to look at carbon neutral ways to power your heat pump, with the most popular choice being solar PV panels, combined with battery storage! Air source heat pump and solar panels are the perfect combination. 

You can read our full solar panel guide here – https://www.comparerenewables.co.uk/solar-panels/

Mitsubishi Ecodan, Air Source Heat Pump, heat source pump, air source heating, ECODAN, compare renewables

The Mitsubishi Ecodan Air Source Heat Pump

You can download the specification sheets with all the technical information here.

The Mitsubishi Ecodan is an air source heat pump that provides heating and hot water for homes and buildings. It works by extracting heat from the outside air and using it to heat the interior. The heat pump system is highly efficient and can provide over four times the energy it consumes, making it an eco-friendly alternative to traditional heating systems. The Ecodan can also be integrated with a solar photovoltaic system to further reduce energy consumption and costs. The system is easy to install and requires minimal maintenance, making it a convenient and cost-effective solution for homeowners looking to reduce their carbon footprint.

Air source heat pumps like the Mitsubishi Ecodan can work effectively in English weather. However, the performance of the heat pump may be affected by extremely low temperatures. In general, air source heat pumps are most efficient when the outdoor temperature is above freezing, and their efficiency decreases as the temperature drops, although the Ecodan is an exception to rule, as it maintains its efficiency level right down to -7 degrees. To maintain good performance in cold weather, it’s important to properly size the system and properly insulate the building. Some heat pumps may also have supplementary heating elements to provide additional warmth when needed. It’s always best to consult your local heating and cooling professional to determine if an air source heat pump is a good fit for your specific climate and heating needs.

The Mitsubishi Ecodan air source heat pump comes in a range of sizes to meet the heating and hot water needs of different buildings and homes. The size of the heat pump is determined by its heating capacity, which is measured in kilowatts (kW). The specific sizes offered by Mitsubishi may vary, but common options include:

  • 5kW
  • 6kW
  • 8.5kW
  • 11.2kW
  • 14kW

The right size for your home will depend on factors such as the size of your home, insulation levels, number of occupants, and your heating and hot water needs. A technical survey is normally required before installation to help you determine the appropriate size heat pump for your specific requirements.

The Coefficient of Performance (COP) of a Mitsubishi Ecodan air source heat pump is a measure of its energy efficiency. It represents the ratio of energy output (heat) to energy input (electrical power). A higher COP means that the heat pump is producing more heat per unit of electrical energy consumed.

What Is The COP of a Mitsubishi Ecodan?

The actual COP of a Mitsubishi Ecodan heat pump will depend on several factors, including outdoor temperature, insulation levels, and system configuration. According to Mitsubishi, the COP of the Ecodan heat pump can range from 3.5 to 4.5 in average conditions. This means that for every 1 kilowatt (kW) of electrical energy consumed, the heat pump can produce 3.5 to 4.5 kW of heat.

It’s important to note that the COP of an air source heat pump will vary depending on the specific conditions and use, so the actual COP of a specific system may be different from the average. A heating and cooling professional can provide more accurate and specific information on the COP of a particular heat pump based on the specific installation and operating conditions.

Do You Get A Warranty With The Mitsubishi Ecodan Heat Pump?

The Mitsubishi Ecodan air source heat pump typically comes with a warranty. The exact terms of the warranty, including its duration and coverage, will depend on the specific model and the purchasing agreement.

It is common for air source heat pumps to come with a manufacturer’s warranty that covers the system components and workmanship for a set period of time, typically between 5 and 7 years. Some manufacturers may also offer extended warranties that provide coverage for a longer period.

It’s important to review the warranty terms carefully and to understand what is and is not covered, as well as any conditions or limitations that apply. If you have any questions or concerns, it is best to consult the manufacturer or your heating and cooling professional.

Will I Need A New Water Cylinder And New Radiators WIth A Heat Pump?

Whether or not you will need a new water cylinder and radiators with a Mitsubishi Ecodan air source heat pump depends on several factors, including your existing heating system and the requirements of the heat pump.

In some cases, you may be able to use your existing water cylinder and radiators with the heat pump. However, if your existing heating system is not compatible with the heat pump, you may need to upgrade to a more appropriate system. This will depend on the specific requirements of the heat pump and the compatibility of your existing system.

The local installer that you choose who is experienced with air source heat pumps will be able to determine if you will need new water cylinder and radiators and what is required for a successful installation. They can assess your specific heating needs and requirements, and make recommendations for any upgrades or changes that may be necessary.

How Much Does A Mitsubishi Ecodan Cost To Install?

The cost of a Mitsubishi Ecodan air source heat pump will depend on several factors, including the size of the system, the specific model, and the installation and operating costs.

As a rough estimate, the cost of a Mitsubishi Ecodan air source heat pump can range from around £10,000 to £15,000 or more, depending on the size of the system and the specific requirements of the installation, the lower end would be a small heat pump and no radiators, to the larger side being a bigger heat pump with all new radiators. The cost of installation will also vary, depending on the complexity of the installation, the materials and labour required, and the location of the installation.

It’s important to keep in mind that while the upfront cost of an air source heat pump may be higher than other heating systems, it can be offset by the energy savings and reduced operating costs over time. An experienced heating and cooling professional can provide a more accurate estimate of the cost of a Mitsubishi Ecodan air source heat pump, including the cost of installation, based on your specific heating needs and requirements.

Are There Any Grants Towards The Cost Of A Heat Pump?

Air source heat pumps, including the Mitsubishi Ecodan, can be eligible for the UK government’s Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS), which replaced the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) program from April 2022.

The Boiler Upgrade Scheme provides funding to support home energy efficiency improvements, including the installation of low-carbon heating systems such as air source heat pumps. To be eligible for the grant, the heating system must meet certain requirements, such as a minimum efficiency rating noise and emissions standards, which is a test that Mitsubishi’s Ecodan Heat Pump passes with flying colours.

You see our article here announcing the ‘Boiler Upgrade Scheme‘ grant increasing from £5000 to £7500. – £7500 Air Source Heat Pump Voucher Update

Does The Mitsubishi Ecodan Have A Mobile App?

The Mitsubishi Ecodan air source heat pump can work with the Melcloud mobile app. Melcloud is a cloud-based platform developed by Mitsubishi Electric that allows you to control and monitor your heating and cooling system remotely using a smartphone, tablet, or computer.

The Melcloud app provides real-time access to your heating and cooling system, so you can adjust the temperature and settings from anywhere, at any time. You can also set schedules, view energy usage data, and receive alerts and notifications if there is a problem with your system.

To use the Melcloud app with your Mitsubishi Ecodan air source heat pump, you will need to have a compatible control system installed and set up, then you will need to create an account on the Melcloud platform. Once your account is set up, you can connect your heating and cooling system to the app and start using it to manage your system remotely.

You also must have home wifi system with a signal that reaches to the control box.

Do I Need An Installer That is A Business Solutions Partner of Mitsubishi?

A Business Solutions Partner (BSP) with Mitsubishi is a company or organization that has been authorized by Mitsubishi Electric to offer their products and services to customers in a specific region or market.

BSPs are typically experienced and knowledgeable in the products and services offered by Mitsubishi Electric, and they work closely with the manufacturer to provide customers with high-quality products, support, and services. BSPs also have access to training and resources from Mitsubishi Electric to help them stay up-to-date on the latest products and technologies, and to ensure that they are able to provide the best possible solutions and support to their customers.

Working with a BSP can provide customers with several benefits, including access to a wider range of products and services, experienced and knowledgeable support, and a direct connection to the manufacturer. It can also provide customers with peace of mind, knowing that they are working with an authorized and experienced company that is backed by Mitsubishi Electric.

If you are interested in working with a Business Solutions Partner with Mitsubishi, you can visit the Mitsubishi Electric website or contact the manufacturer directly to find a BSP in your area.

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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!