Are There Any Financial Considerations?
Cost (of both the heating system & installation costs)
Based on the average figures for 2013 of heat pump costs, including installation, the prices for Ground Heat Pump varied between £9.000 - £16.000, while the Air Source Heat Pump prices varied between £6000 - £10.000.
The major factors determining the total cost of heat pump and installation are the price of the system and whether additional heating source like underfloor heating system or huge radiators are part of the solution.
Owners with preferences for entirely green heating solutions often choose to combine a heat pump with solar panels in order to avoid conventional heating alternatives. In these cases, operating costs are expected to be minimal, especially when considering the government and local support.
In comparison, LPG, gas and oil prices fluctuate and are expected to remain relatively high in the future.
Grants and Incentives
Government grants are an important part of the UK government’s program for supporting environmentally-friendly heating solutions and heat pumps are an essential part of it.
The Renewable Heat Incentive is one of the grants for installing Ground Heat Pump that would save you between £2325 - £3690 annually. Remember that in order to apply for the RHI payments, you first need to obtain and Energy Performance Certificate that will prove the energy efficiency rate of your home.
The cheaper Economy 7 tariff can further lower the cost of energy that power the heat pump for both ASHP and GSHP. You also need to check if there are special heat pump tariffs available from local energy suppliers.
According to the Energy Saving Trust, typical Ground Heat Pump saves between £395 and £2000 annually, depending on the conventional heating system you have chosen to replace. As explained before, the grants and incentives lead to further savings.
Savings with conventional heating systems can be achieved if you insulate your home and change your habits.
If the heat pump has been installed in compliance with the installation regulations, meaning that the house was optimally insulated, the heat pump was consistent with the heating space of your home and the installation was performed by a certified installer, then the heat pump would require minimal annual maintenance.
Remember that Air Source Heat Pumps need to be free of debris, leaves or plants that may grow around it. The only thing that the installer will need to ensure is that the level of anti-freeze is sufficient so that the pump does not freeze if temperatures drop below freezing in the winter. Since most of the heat pumps are supplied with a warranty, the maintenance costs are expected to be low.
Ground Source Heat Pumps have about twenty years of life span. They usually come with ten years warranty and no need for maintenance, besides an annual check. That highlights their durability and high-cost efficiency.
Conventional heating systems, however, require periodic maintenance and if you want to avoid costly maintenance, you might consider alternative, environmentally friendly solutions.
Are There Any Lifestyle Issues to Consider?
Level of Comfort
The level of comfort describes your preferred heating level. Because fossil fuels are more efficient than sustainable fuels, it is recommended that you choose an energy mix comprised of renewable and conventional energy source. This will allow you to adjust the heating levels based on the weather conditions and at the same time to save money, whenever possible.
Level of Noise
If your heating solution incorporates Air Source Heat Pump as part of the heating mix, it is recommended that you consider the level of noise of the brand you decide to install. Because of their small size, Air Heat Pumps are widely used in urban areas, in both flats and houses. Yet some types generate noise that would disturb your neighbours. For that reason, you may consider either situating it away from doors and windows or placing it on a noise-absorbing base.
3 Important Reasons to Consider Environmentally Friendly Solutions Like Heat Pumps
First, because they are cost-effective, easy to maintain and will save you money in the long run.
Secondly, because of the effect, climate change has on our planet. Heat pumps are a better green solution as opposed to fossils in conventional heating systems because they extract heat from the ground, air or water and they constantly renew it. By using environmentally-friendly heating solutions like solar panels, wind turbines or heat pumps that generate less carbon dioxide than conventional heating systems, we can give our small contribution for the preservation of the life on our planet.
Thirdly, renewable energy sources are sustainable. That means that they depend only on natural resources, that are constant and access free, and are therefore expected to be indefinitely accessible to humans.