This article provides a detailed breakdown of the costs associated with installing an air-source heat pump in your home.
With rising energy prices, many homeowners are considering heat pumps as an efficient heating and hot water alternative to traditional gas boilers.
How Much Are Air Source Heat Pumps?
The cost of installing an air source heat pump can range from £5,500 to £20,000 depending on the size of the system required and installation complexity.
While more expensive upfront than a gas boiler, an air source heat pump can provide long-term savings on energy bills.
- Air source heat pump installation costs £5,500 – £20,000
- More expensive upfront than a gas boiler
- Can provide long-term energy bill savings
While air-source heat pumps have a higher upfront cost, we believe they are a smart long-term investment for many homes.
The energy savings and environmental benefits can make the extra initial expense worthwhile.
Get quotes from reputable installers to find the best system for your home.
Average Cost of An Air Source Heat Pump
The average cost of an air source heat pump system ranges from £7,000 to £13,000 including installation.
This factors in:
- The upfront cost of the heat pump unit itself (£2,500 to £5,000)
- Installation fees including labour, fittings and minor building work (£4,500 to £8,000)
The total expense depends on:
- House size and insulation – Larger, poorly insulated homes need a more powerful and therefore more expensive heat pump system.
- Location and accessibility – Installation costs are higher if extensive scaffolding is needed to position the external heat pump unit.
- Heating system complexity – Linking the heat pump to existing radiators or underfloor heating impacts labour fees.
While the initial cost is more than a new gas boiler, an air-source heat pump can provide long-term savings on annual heating and hot water bills of £300 to £700.
When budgeting for an air source heat pump, the installation fees are a major component. This covers the labour, materials, and building work needed to properly set up the system.
For a typical 4-bedroom detached house, installation costs often fall between £4,500 and £8,000.
Key factors include:
- Location of the outdoor unit – More complex scaffolding and access equipment bumps up labour time if positioning it high up or far from the property.
- System design – Linking the heat pump to your existing radiators or underfloor heating impacts the complexity of the installation.
- Minor building work – Upgrades like bigger radiators or extra insulation may be recommended, adding to costs.
Getting quotes from at least 3 MCS certified installers is advisable. Those accredited under the Microgeneration Certification Scheme must meet rigorous standards for heat pump installation.
While upfront installation fees are high, the long-term energy savings from heat pumps compared to gas boilers make them a smart investment for many homes.
Unlike gas and oil boilers, air-source heat pumps require little maintenance. There are no pipes, tanks, or burners to service and inspect.
An annual check-up by a qualified technician is recommended to keep your system running efficiently. This usually costs around £75-£150 per visit.
Every 3-5 years, the heat pump’s refrigerant levels and air filters should be examined and topped up if needed – budget £150-£300 for this service.
The fan motors in the outdoor unit have an average lifespan of 10-15 years. Replacing these can cost £200-£600 in parts and labour.
Overall, expect to set aside £200-£300 annually for maintenance costs. While not insignificant, it’s usually far less than the £500-£1000+ required annually for gas/oil boiler servicing, repairs and parts.
Choosing a renewable heating system like an air source heat pump is a long-term investment. Their minimal maintenance costs and free ‘fuel’ from the air can lead to significant savings versus a gas or oil boiler over time.
Cost comparisons with Other Heating Systems
When weighing up heating options for your home, it’s important to look beyond just the upfront costs. The long-term running costs can vary widely between systems.
An air source heat pump has higher initial purchase and installation costs than a gas or oil boiler. However, it requires no fuel other than electricity. This means you benefit from stable, predictable running costs not vulnerable to fossil fuel price volatility.
An air source heat pump uses around 1kWh of electricity to provide 3-4kWh of heat. Even taking into account the UK’s relatively high electricity prices, this results in much lower running costs than direct electric, oil or LPG heating.
Compared to mains gas, an air source heat pump can achieve comparable or even lower overall costs in a well-insulated property. And as electricity continues to decarbonize, the running costs of a heat pump will fall further.
There are also financial incentives like the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) which can help offset the upfront investment in an air source heat pump. Overall lifetime costs are competitive, with the added benefit of low-carbon heating.
Additional Factors Impacting Overall Costs
When considering the total costs of an air source heat pump, there are a few additional factors to keep in mind.
First, installation costs can vary depending on the complexity of integrating the system with your existing heating setup and home layout. Getting multiple quotes is advisable.
You may also need to upgrade your home’s insulation and radiators, so your heating system doesn’t have to work as hard. Though this increases upfront costs, it enhances efficiency and can significantly reduce running costs.
Ongoing maintenance is required, usually in the form of an annual service to keep the system working at peak performance. Though this adds a small ongoing cost, it prevents bigger issues down the line.
Finally, costs can be reduced through incentives like the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI), which provides payments for generating and using renewable energy. Grants are also sometimes available for heat pump installation.
Considering all these factors will give you a full picture of the costs. Though air source heat pumps have higher upfront costs, the low running costs and incentives can make them cost-effective long-term.
How much would it cost to install an air source heat pump?
The cost of installing an air source heat pump can range from £2,000 to £20,000. Air-to-water heat pumps are generally more expensive.
How much do air heat pumps cost in the UK?
The price of an air source heat pump, including installation costs and a government grant, can be between £5,500 and £13,000.
Why is my electric bill so high with an air source heat pump?
In a poorly insulated home, running a heat pump can cost up to 40% more than a traditional boiler.
Is it expensive to run an air-source heat pump?
Installation costs for air-source heat pumps can vary from £8,000 to £18,000, while ground-source heat pump costs can range from £14,500 to £45,000.
The installation cost for an air source heat pump is typically between £7,000 and £13,000. It is important to consider potential energy savings when deciding to install an air-source heat pump. On average, air-source heat pumps generate three or more units of heat for each unit of electricity used. The cost of a heat pump and its installation is generally more expensive than a gas boiler. Replacing a gas boiler can cost a few thousand pounds, whereas installing an air source heat pump involves a significant change.