Is an Air Source Heat Pump for you?
An Air Source Heat Pump is located outdoors at the side or back of the property. It takes heat from the air and boosts it to a higher temperature using a heat pump. The pump needs electricity to run, however it will use less electrical energy than the heat it produces, and this is referred to as the Coefficient of Performance (CoP) the higher the CoP the more efficient, this varies throughout the seasons of the year (seasonal performance).
Heat from the air is absorbed at low temperature into a fluid. This fluid then passes through a compressor where its temperature is increased, and transfers its higher temperature heat to the heating and hot water circuits of the house.
Air Source Heat Pumps allow you to use renewable heat for your heating systems and hot water in your home. Heat pumps are compatible with a variety of heating systems, including radiators, underfloor heating or warm air convectors.
Unlike gas and oil boilers, heat pumps deliver heat at a lower temperature over longer periods, to keep your rooms at their ideal environment throughout the day
The benefits of air source heat pumps are:
• Lower fuel bills, especially if you are replacing conventional electric heating
• Receive an income through the UK government’s Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI)
• Lower home carbon emissions, depending on which fuel you are replacing
• No fuel deliveries needed
• They heat your home as well as your domestic water
• Minimal maintenance required
• Easier to install than a ground source heat pump
First and foremost one of our accredited contractors* would sit with you and answer any immediate questions you may have about air source heat pumps such as:
• What are the benefits of an air source heat pump system
• Explain the disadvantages of such a system
• How much does an ASHP system cost
• Level of RHI payments you could receive
• Savings you would achieve after installation of an ASHP
They would then provide you with additional information on the range of ASHP they would be able to supply and then walk your property with you to undertake an initial property assessment which would cover:
• Review of current energy costs for the property, for which we would require recent energy bills.
• Assessment of current heating & hot water system, including boiler, cylinder and radiators.
• Assess where the air source heat pump components could be installed and mark on a sketch as appropriate.
Following the initial property assessment they would be able to provide you with a recommendation, pricing, timescale for installation for your air source heat pump as well as an indication of the RHI payments you would receive.
Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)
Unless you have a recent Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) we will arrange for an EPC to be undertaken as this is a requirement for your RHI payments. An EPC is a report that assesses the energy efficiency of a property and recommends specific ways in which the efficiency of your property could be improved.
An EPC reference number is required as part of the application process for the Domestic RHI. The EPC is used to:
• determine whether the property can be considered domestic.
• confirm that the required loft and cavity wall insulation measures have been installed.
• determine the heat demand figure used for the payment calculations for non-metered heat pump applicants.
Any existing EPC must include a heat demand figure and has to be less than 24 months old at the date of application for your RHI payments. If over 24 months we will need to arrange for a new EPC to be completed.
Once we have the EPC the final assessment stage would be for a full technical survey and heat loss calculation on your property by one of the engineers who will discuss the installation process in detail with you and provide you with an installation date.
The Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI)
The government Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) scheme is designed to encourage homeowners to choose renewable technologies to heat their house over more conventional fossil fuel systems. The concept is for the RHI payments to help homeowners offset the initial cost in replacing their existing technology with a renewable alternative. The RHI payments will be paid to the registered owner quarterly by direct debit for a period of 7 years.
- The RHI scheme covers retrofit and self-built properties only, new builds are not covered, however if a new build property has a heat pump retrofitted after the first owner moves in is will be covered by the RHI.
- You will need an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) to be completed prior to any renewable technology is installed to claim RHI payments. The EPC determines what level of RHI payments you would be eligible to receive.
- Both the technology and the installer must be MCS (Microgeneration Certification Scheme) registered*.
- You can only receive RHI payments for one thermal technology + solar thermal hot water. If you are looking to install a selection of heat technologies seek the advice of your installation company.
- You must have an annual maintenance agreement in place to receive your RHI payments and be able to declare that nothing has changed since installation to continue receiving payments.
The government has recently announced that the RHI scheme will cease on 31st March 2022 so now is the time to upgrade your current heating system and benefit from the RHI payments.
Please Note: *Alternative Energy Services do not hold any contracts with customers in regards to Heat Pumps and do not sign off any agreements regarding RHI or arrange any government payments. We only use MCs accredited contractors who this is completed by. Please contact us should you require more information on our accredited contractors.