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Tips for new build homes

Moving into a new build is a very exciting time, however it's important you choose the correct heating system to suit your home.
new build property with the lights on through the window

If you’re moving into a new build, you should be able to add your own personal touches to make it your own. However, one very important factor you need to consider is what type of heating system do you install?

Choosing the right heating system for your home is important as it can impact how efficient your heating works to save you energy. If you install the wrong heating system, you could lose performance if it struggles to heat a larger home.

aroTHERM plus heat pump outside a white wall

To ensure you install a modern, low carbon heating solution, a heat pump is a great choice for new build developments. Heat pumps use a renewable source of energy either from the air, ground or water. This makes them a highly efficient option to help heat your home.

Heat pumps utilise renewable energy as their primary energy source, they are a sustainable choice to generate heating and hot water for your home in an efficient way.

There are three different types of heat pumps available:

Each comes with benefits and points to consider before installation. Keep on reading to find out more about the correct heating system to install in your new build home.

THINGS TO CONSIDER Start the planning stage in good time

Deciding on the correct type of heating system as early as possible when planning your new home is key. This gives you time to carry out the necessary construction based on the system you choose.

Whatever type of heat pump you chose, it’s a good idea to scope out the installation space and what you will need to do beforehand..

For advice and guidance before deciding on your new system, consult your local Vaillant installer. They will talk you through the process from what to do before your heat pump is fitted, if it’s best to install radiators or underfloor heating and what to expect during the installation process.

You can also read 'is my home suitable for my heat pump' here for further information.

Choosing the right energy source

If you decide a heat pump is the best heating solution for your home, Vaillant offers three different types of heat pumps; air source, ground source or water source heat pump. All use natural energy (from either the air, ground or water) and electricity to generate heat and hot water.

Heat pumps are more environmentally friendly compared to gas boiler systems as they don’t use fossil fuels to heat your home making them a popular choice amongst homeowners in the UK.

To find the perfect solution for your home, read our heat pump advice for further information or speak to your local Vaillant installer for further advice and support.

Financing and funding

A new heating system is an investment but when you’re buying other things for your new home, you want to try and save as much money as you can. If you were to opt for a heat pump, you may qualify for government funding through the Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS) if you live in England or Wales or HES funding if you live in Scotland.

Both schemes help to save you money on the cost of installation of a heat pump. You can read more about BUS and how to apply here.

Once your heat pump is installed, heat pumps are more cost effective to run as they only use 25% electricity to run meaning your household bills should be lower. As heat pumps are robust in design, the maintenance costs should be lower. However, like a gas boiler, it’s important to have your heat pump serviced every year.

top of a new build building

Your heating and hot water needs

It's important to consider the long term and what your heating and hot water demands could be in the future. The number of people in your home and the size of your property are the primary determiners for the amount of heat your system needs to generate.

It's better to plan for slightly more than your maximum requirements, as this will ensure that you’re covered if your heating circumstances suddenly change.

A rule of thumb applies when calculating your energy requirements. The kilowatt hour (kWh) is the billing unit for energy delivered to consumers by electric utilities:

kW heating capacity (number of m² x 50 W/m²: 1,000)

+ kW hot water output (approx. 30% of the above value)

= kW rated heat output

According to this formula, for a low energy house with 130 m² living space the result is 8.5 to 9 kW rated heat output. The rated heat output is the maximum attainable power output of a heating system in continuous operation.

Your Vaillant installer can help determine your exact requirements, based on your property and hot water system demand.

Size and locationn of your heat pump

There are many different hot water and heating solutions available, for all sorts of requirements. Whether it’s with space-saving or an immediate hot water supply, we have a solution that will meet your needs.

flexoTHERM heat pump under the stairs

Where to locate your new heating system

Air source heat pumps are suitable for a large majority of properties as they don’t require much outdoor space. Ground source heat pumps are ideal for homes that have a large outdoor space and water source heat pumps are great for homes located near to a body of water including a lake, river or stream.

Modern heating systems are built with space in mind. For heat pumps, as well as the external unit, you will also need space inside for at least a hot water cylinder, a buffer tank and a heating control. Different types of heat pumps may require further accessories. Therefore, we recommend storing your full heat pump system in a utility room, basement or garage, meaning you can maximise your living space.

For more information about what is included in a full heat pump system, contact your local Vaillant heat pump installer.

The output of your heating system

Energy consumption is a big consideration and understanding how efficient different systems are. It’s crucial for your new heating system to meet the needs of your family and size of your home. It’s also equally as important to consider your hot water supply and the demand you expect to put on it day-to-day.

The vast majority of new systems available today are capable of ensuring hot water is available from any tap, at all times, as and when it’s needed.

Larger homes with multiple bathrooms will put a lot of pressure upon the system meaning a bigger output heat pump will be required. If the output size is too small, it can have an impact on performance.

By selecting a heating system that can be upgraded, it means your requirements can always be met, even if they increase. View our different range of heat pump sizes here.

Preferred heat distribution

The larger the heating surface is, the lower the temperature the new type of system must produce and the more efficiently it operates.

Underfloor heating works perfectly with heat pump technology as it is space saving and has a lower flow temperature.

We recommend considering which rooms you would need to have underfloor heating in. Many homeowners choose to install underfloor heating in their bathrooms or under solid flooring in living rooms to avoid getting cold feet during the winter months. Always consider your budget and what rooms you are in most often.

Can I install a boiler in my new home?

The government’s Future Homes Standard states that new builds from 2025 onwards will not use fossil fuels as a source of heating. However, heat pumps are not always a suitable option.

Modern gas boilers are reliable and trustworthy and are made with efficiency in mind. If you don’t have space or budget for a heat pump, you can install a boiler in your new build home.