Air Source Heat Pumps

Working with Space Air PLC, who are a leading name in the heat pump market in the UK, we install your system to the best possible design, price and quality. We do not offer a half hearted job and complete the whole installation; plumbing, refrigeration and electrical works. Careful of distributors only offering heat pumps without the installation included!

How do air source heat pumps work?

Air source heat pumps work on the same principles of an air conditioning unit, the outdoor unit looks the same as an external air conditioning unit, the only difference being the air source heat pumps produce heat and exhaust cold air instead of producing cool air and exhausting hot air like air conditioning. The energy generation method uses refrigerant gases to work. These units are very efficient, for every 1kW of energy you put in, you get around 3.5kW of energy back, making them around 350% efficient.

That beats common condensing boilers 92% efficiency by a vast margin. Using this type of energy means you only pay for electricity to heat your home, eliminating you current fuel type used to heat your home and hot water. It can extract heat from the air even when the outside temperature is as low as minus 20° C.

 

There are two main types of air source heat pump system:

  • An air-to-water system distributes heat via your wet central heating system. Heat pumps work much more efficiently at a lower temperature than a standard boiler system would. So they are more suitable for underfloor heating systems or larger radiators, which give out heat at lower temperatures over longer periods of time.

  • An air-to-air system produces warm air which is circulated by fans to heat your home. They are unlikely to provide you with hot water as well. They can provide cooling though, so are ideal for spaces like conservatories or loft extensions etc.
  • Heat from the air is absorbed into a fluid which is pumped through a heat exchanger in the heat pump. Low grade heat is then extracted by the refrigeration system and, after passing through the heat pump compressor, is concentrated into a higher temperature useful heat capable of heating water for the heating and hot water circuits of the house.


Unlike gas or oil boilers, heat pumps deliver heat at lower temperatures over much longer periods. This means that during the winter they may need to be left on 24/7 to heat your home efficiently. It also means that radiators should never feel as hot to the touch as they would do when using a gas or oil boiler, although the latest systems from Daikin are getting more advanced, they now offer a high temperature model that can produce flow temperatures of up to 80 degrees, eliminating common hot water worries and low flow temperatures in heating systems

The benefits of air source heat pumps

Can lower fuel bills, especially if you are using conventional electric heating.

Can reduce your carbon footprint: heat pumps can lower your home’s carbon emissions, depending on which fuel you are replacing.

No fuel deliveries required.

Can provide space heating and hot water

It’s often classed as a ‘fit and forget’ technology because it needs little maintenance or human control.

Easier to install than a ground source heat pump, but efficiencies can be lower.

Is an air source heat pump suitable for my home?

To tell if an air source heat pump is right for you, there are a few key questions to consider:


Do you have somewhere to put it? You'll need a place outside your house where a unit can be fitted to a wall or placed on the ground. It will need plenty of space around it to get a good flow of air. A sunny wall is ideal.

Is your home well insulated? Since air source heat pumps work best when producing heat at a lower temperature than traditional boilers, it's essential that your home is insulated pretty well for the heating system to be as effective as possible.

What fuel will you be replacing? The system will pay for itself much more quickly if it's replacing an electric, coal or oil heating system.

What type of heating system will you use? Air source heat pumps perform better with under floor heating systems than radiator-based systems because of the lower water temperatures required, although we have had no problems with lack of heating power as sizing the heat pump correctly eliminates problems.

Is the system intended for a new development? Combining the installation with other building work can reduce the cost of installing the system, running any necessary pipe work or heating systems alterations can be invasive, the same as a heating system renewal for instance.

 

 

Costs and savings

Costs for installing a typical system suitable for a detached home range from about £6,000 to £10,000 including installation. Running costs will vary depending on a number of factors - including the size of your home and how well insulated it is.

Savings - will vary depending on many factors, some are outlined below. It is important that the system is controlled appropriately for your needs. Actual savings figures will depend on your exact fuel prices.

The heat distribution system: If you have the opportunity, under floor heating can provide greater efficiencies than radiators because the water doesn’t need to be heated to such a high temperature. This is fast becoming a myth; as mentioned due to the fact heat pump manufacturers are greatly improving the performance of their heat pumps ability to achieve higher temperatures.

Fuel costs: you will still have to pay fuel bills with a heat pump because they are powered by electricity. The saving you achieve can be affected by the price of the fuel you are replacing and the price of the electricity for the heat pump.

Efficiency of old and new system: the efficiency of the old heating system will affect how much you spent on heating bills previously. If the old heating system was inefficient heating bills could have been high and the difference between the new running costs and the old running costs will be greater, therefore providing a greater saving.

Temperature setting: if you heat your home to much higher temperatures with a new heat pump system than you did with an old heating system then your home will be warmer, but heating bills could be higher than if you continued with the same heating pattern. It’s a good idea to set thermostats to around 18 to 21 degrees centigrade.

Using the controls: learn how to control the system so you can get the most out of it. Your installer should explain to you how to control the system so you can use it most effectively. Most are based on weather compensation systems so are running at the most efficient settings according to how it’s been set up at all times.

Southern Counties
Heating & Plumbing

Copyright © 2015

Office Telephone: 02392 640883
Fax: 02392 361700
Email: lloyd.emery@sc-hp.co.uk

41 Brecon Avenue
Portsmouth
Hampshire
PO6 2AN

Measures taken to ensure quality in our services:

  • Gas Safe registered No. 179300
  • Plumbing NVQ to Level 3 City and Guilds
  • ACS Gas Certificate completed
  • Green Energy qualifications
  • General Knowledge of Plumbing, Heating and Gas installations
  • Public Liability Insurance to £2million

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