Heat Pumps

Heat pumps can be divided into two main types, namely:

  1. Ground Source Heat Pumps, and
  2. Air source Heat Pumps

Ground source heat pumps transfer heat from the ground into a building providing space heating and in some cases domestic hot water. Typical statistics indicate that for every unit of electricity used to run the system, 3-4 units of heat are produced.

There are three main elements to a ground source heat pump:

  • A ground loop which is a length of pipe (vertical or horizontal) laid in the ground within which a mixture of water and antifreeze is pumped which absorbs the surrounding heat;
  • A heat pump which removes the captured heat from the ground loop delivering it to the heat distribution system, and
  • The heat distribution system, consisting of under floor heating or radiators for space heating and in some cases water storage for hot water.

A typical 8-12kW system costs £8,000-£12,000 plus connection to the distribution system.

Air Source Heat Pumps

Air source heat pumps work by absorbing external heat to warm internal accommodation with a typical domestic system, suitable for a well insulated detached property costing in the region of £6,000 to £9,000.

There are two types of air-source heating systems available, namely:

  • Air-to-air systems that provide internal warm air ducted through the building, and
  • Air-to-water systems providing the heating to a building through radiators or an under floor system.