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Modernise your home with a heat pump

Replace your current gas boiler with a low carbon heating solution.

a heat pump outside a red house

What you'll learn

  • Advantages of modernising with a heat pump
  • What does modernisation with a heat pump involve?
  • Replacing your old boiler with a heat pump

Revolutionary heat pump technology

Heat pumps offer heating, hot water and cooling. They use 75% of natural resources from the air, ground or a water source to provide heating and hot water comfort for your home. The remaining 25% is powered through electricty in order to operate.

Air source heat pumps are the common type of heat pump in the UK as the are suitable for a wide range of homes. The external unit can easily be installed and is less disruptive to install.

Your advantages of modernising with a heat pump

  • Cut your heating expenses significantly

    Profit from low operating costs due to the use of free environmental energy.
  • Enjoy triple comfort: heating, hot water, and in some cases even cooling

    Choose your own comfortable temperature, regardless of the outside temperature, all year round.
  • The Boiler Upgrade Scheme

    The Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS) is aimed to encourage homeowners in England and Wales to upgrade their existing heating system to a more energy-efficient option, such as a heat pump in an effort to decarbonise their home’s heating.
  • Financial security due to independency

    Being independent of fossil energy prices means that there will be less surprises for you in terms of price fluctuations.

What does modernisation with a heat pump involve?

Replacing your traditional gas boiler system with a heat pump can be a great sustainable decision.

Heat pumps can improve your home's energy efficiency by an additional 250%* depending on your home's requirements, helping to lower future energy costs whilst also reducing the environmental impact.

However, there is some preparation involved prior to the installation of a heat pump.

The first thing you should do is talk to your local Vaillant installer who will be able to advise you on what is the best heating solution for your home. They will scope out your home whilst taking into consideration your type of home, heating and hot water demands. They will be able to provide you will a no-obligation quote so you have an idea of costs.

The installation of an air source heat pump can typically be completed in one to two days whereas ground source and water source heat pump may take around three to four days due to the excavation and/or drilling work.

CASE STUDY Peacehaven - system boiler to air source heat pump

three people standing around a heat pump

  • Property Type: 3 Bedroom Semi-Detached
  • Age of Property: Built 1967
  • Location: East Sussex
  • Product Installed: aroTHERM plus
  • Installer: Optimus Heating
  • Product Replaced: System Boiler
  • Funding: Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS)

Built in the 60’s, this property perfectly showcases how heat pump technology can be used in all property types. Now renovated with cavity walls, insulation and double glazing, a Vaillant aroTHERM plus has been installed in this property to not only lower carbon emissions, but also help the homeowner to save up to 40% on their energy bills.

Replacing oil heating with an air source heat pump

Replacing your old oil boiler heating system can be a bit more complicated due to the removal of the oil tank. The tank must be completely emptied, cleaned and removed. Make sure you contact a professional to remove the tank, but also disposes of it for you.

When this is done, the rest of the work, including the installation of the indoor unit and connecting it to the outdoor unit can be completed.

Replacing gas heating with an air source heat pump

Before you can install a new heat pump heating system, your existing gas heating system must first be removed. An experienced heating engineer routinely does this and can carry it out in a short period of time.

The indoor unit of the heat pump can then be installed where the old heating system once stood. This can be either a compact unit with all hydraulic components or several parts.

The indoor unit is connected to the outdoor unit through openings in the exterior wall of the boiler room. With careful planning and professional installation by a qualified company, the exchange should be successfully completed within one day.

Watch our video on Heat pump considerations and expected costs.

FAQs

  • Is a heat pump suitable for my home?

    Heat pumps can work efficiently in new and old homes. The more energy saving features you have in your home the better, e.g. underfloor heating instead of radiators.

    A hybrid system which consists of a heat pump and also a gas condensing boiler can also offer a high supply of energy efficiency.

  • How quiet is a heat pump?

    Vaillant heat pumps are among the quietest on the market. To showcase how quiet our heat pumps are, we have created the “Vaillant Soundbox” which simulates the sound of a heat pump within a suburban environment.

    Listen to the silence yourself here.

    The low noise level allows the outdoor unit of a Vaillant heat pump to be installed without trouble even in housing estates with strict noise restrictions.

  • Is an underfloor heating system an essential for the integration of a heat pump?

    No, it is not essential, but we do recommend having underfloor heating. The reason why we recommend to have it is because it helps with the efficiency of a heat pump by making the flow temperature of your system as low as possible.

    Nevertheless, there shouldn’t be a problem with combining a heat pump with radiators – however, we recommend that you consult with your architect or installer for the best possible option.

  • What does 'flow temperature' mean?

    The flow temperature is the temperature in which the water is supplied from the heat source (a heat pump or a boiler) into the pipework. Radiators work with an average flow temperature of 50°C whilst underfloor heating only needs 35°C. The lower the flow temperature, the more efficient the heating system is. A flow temperature of 45°C or below will result in a very efficient system.

    If your home is well insulated, this will also improve the flow temperature of your heating system. Buildings with poor insulation require more energy to heat up to the desired temperature, resulting in higher energy bills.

  • How much space do I need to be able to install a heat pump?

    Inside your property, you will need enough space for a hot water cylinder, and depending on the system a small buffer tank (a buffer tank is not required for all systems).

    Outside the property depends on the heat pump you choose. With an air source heat pump like the aroTHERM you need a small section of garden close the building wall. When selecting the site to place the air to water heat pump, you need to consider your neighbours and ensure the heat pump does not exceed 42dB (decibels) from their closet window or door. Your installer or architect will advise you on this.

    If you are looking ground source heat pump such as the flexoTHERM, inside you will need space for the flexoTHERM heat pump, outside you will see a small ‘drain’ cover which will be the top of your collector which will be underground.

  • What is COP and SCOP?

    COP (coefficient of performance) and SCOP (seasonal coefficient of performance) are the major ratios indicating the efficiency of a heat pump. They are calculated based on the thermal energy generated by the heat pump divided by the electric power used for the pump operation.

    For instance, if a heat pump provides 12 kW output and consumes 3 kW current to do so, the COP will be 12 / 3 = 4. The COP results from a highly simplified calculation with assumed values. This ratio is used to compare the efficiency of different heat pumps. The higher the COP is, the lower the consumption of electric power used for the heat pump.

    The SCOP follows the same principle. However, it considers the entire year with all existing temperature variations. Therefore, it can only be calculated retrospectively. An installed heat pump will show a different SCOP for every year – depending on the usage pattern and the weather conditions. A mild winter, for example, will result in a significantly better SCOP than a long and hard winter with many cold days and temperatures below 0°C.

  • Which heat pump types are available?

    Heat pumps are distinguished based on the type of heat source they use.

    Air source heat pumps use the heat from the ambient air. There are two versions; air-to-water and air-to-air. Air-to-water transfers the absorbed heat to radiators or an underfloor heating and will also provide hot water. Air-to-air heat pumps transfer the heat to a fan installation that serves to heat the house.

    Ground source heat pumps use the environmental heat stored in the ground. They can only be used in combination with a water-based heat distribution system (radiators or underfloor heating) and therefore are called brine-to-water heat pumps.

    Water-to-water heat pumps use the heat contained in the groundwater. Water source heat pump systems are ideal for homeowners that have a suitable water source onsite, such as a lake, river or stream.

  • Will a heat pump save me money?

    Whilst heat pumps have a higher upfront cost than traditional boilers, they have a great energy efficiency rating, and can therefore significantly reduce energy costs long term. Heat pumps also typically have double the life expectancy of a boiler, helping to balance the upfront cost.

    The Government's Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS) provides funding in the form of a grant of up to £7,500. BUS operates in the form of a grant voucher which is provided to the installer after installation and commissioning, with the expected amount deducted from the homeowners upfront cost. To find out more, click here.

Start your heat pump journey today