New ‘visit a heat pump’ scheme aims to help householders make clean tech switch

11 April 2024, 00:04

A domestic air source heat pump outside a back door
Domestic air source heat pump outside a backdoor (Alamy/PA). Picture: PA

A new website enables people to visit homes near them with a working heat pump to see it and ask users about the low-carbon technology.

A new “visit a heat pump” scheme allows people to see the clean heating tech in a home near them to help families make the switch from boilers.

Innovation charity Nesta has teamed up with heat pump owners to launch the website, to enable householders considering installing the technology to visit a property where one is already in and working.

Nesta said the move from polluting gas boilers to low-carbon heating such as heat pumps will be essential for the UK to meet its climate-tackling goals – but most people in the UK have never even seen one.

The charity says it hopes giving more people the chance to see a heat pump in a real-world setting, and ask an existing user about it, will give them confidence that it is the right fit for their home.

Users of the service can search and book a visit in their local area via the website, with 150 heat pump owners – from Bristol to Falkirk – already signed up to host viewings and answer questions about their heating systems.

The scheme has been described as a “fantastic new service” by minister for energy efficiency and green finance Lord Callanan, while Octopus Energy founder Greg Jackson said it will help break down the myths surrounding heat pumps.

Previous research from Nesta found that four-fifths (81%) of people who have had a heat pump installed in their current home were as satisfied or more satisfied with the new technology than their previous heating system.

It also found the figure was similar (83%) for owners of Victorian or older properties, making it likely the technology is suitable for the full range of British homes, the charity said.

Katy King, director of sustainable future at Nesta, said: “Changing the way we heat our homes is one of the most meaningful things we can do to cut carbon emissions.

“Many homeowners are keen to make green improvements but don’t get the opportunity to see how low-carbon technologies, such as heat pumps, work in action.

“Our new service makes it easier for prospective heat pump owners to visit a heat pump near them and ask an actual heat pump user any questions they might have.

“We hope that, if more people can see heat pumps in real-life settings, then more people will have confidence that a heat pump is the right fit to heat their home.”

Lord Callanan said applications to the Government’s boiler upgrade scheme, which provides £7,500 grants to install heat pumps, are up 75% on last February

“This fantastic new service will help families work out whether a heat pump is right for them, and we’ll continue supporting households to make the switch with our £7,500 grant,” he said.

Mr Jackson said: “Survey after survey shows owners prefer them to their old gas boilers, but the UK is still way behind other countries in adoption due to misinformation campaigns.

“Initiatives like Nesta’s Visit A Heat Pump help to break down the myths, allowing potential buyers to learn about them from people who know best – those who already have them and love them.”

To find out more, or book a visit, people can go to:

By Press Association

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