What Are Heat Pumps?

Our reliance on fossil fuels has been a major contributing factor to climate change, and it has become very important to find green alternatives for heating our households, especially with the installation of new gas central heating boilers to be prohibited by 2035.

To this end, the government has set out plans to offer £5,000 grants to help 90,000 UK households to install home heat pumps and other low-carbon heating solutions over the next three years, as part of its plan to cut the UK’s reliance on fossil fuel heating, reports the Mirror.

It is estimated that as gas boilers are phased out, heat pump installations could reach 600,000 a year in the 2030s. But what is a heat pump?

In the simplest of terms, a heat pump works like a reverse fridge. It extracts warmth from the air outside, the ground, or a nearby water source, then concentrates the heat and transferring it indoors. They look like a standard air conditioning unit.

As for why we need heat pumps, around 85 per cent of UK homes use gas boilers for heating, making it one of the most polluting sectors of the UK economy.

The fossil fuels we use for heating, hot water, and cooking account for more than a fifth of the country’s CO2 emissions, which means finding low-carbon alternatives are crucial for achieving the UK’s climate targets.

However, heat pumps cost far more than traditional gas boilers, starting at £6,000 for an air source pump, and at least £10,000 for a ground source pump. It is expected that these prices will significantly fall in the coming years as more are installed.

In the meantime, the government’s grant scheme should help bridge the difference.


If you’re looking for local plumbers in north London, get in touch today.