Heat Pumps: What you need to know and our low carbon heating alternatives

Heat Pumps: What you need to know and our low carbon heating alternatives

26th October 2021

Heat Pumps: What you need to know and our low carbon heating alternatives

With the announcement of the new Government scheme to provide 90,000 homes with Heat Pumps as a more eco-friendly alternative to Gas Boilers, we’ve looked in to some other low carbon alternatives so that you can heat your home while doing your bit for the planet.

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The Carbon Crisis

According to The Guardian: “About 85% of UK homes use gas boilers for heating, making it one of the most polluting sectors of the economy. The fossil fuels used in our homes for heating, hot water and cooking make up more than a fifth of the UK’s carbon emissions.”¹

This creates an issue when it comes to the UK Governments target of net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. Even though carbon emissions in 2020 were “51% below 1990 levels” according to CarbonBrief², we still have a long way to go. With everyone from big business to homeowners needing to do their bit to cut carbon emissions, the UK Government have come up with installing Heat Pumps in 90,000 homes across the country, but this plan has not been without some doubts and concerns.

The Hassle of Heat Pumps

Heat Pumps function by extracting thermal energy from outside, and distributing it inside. This thermal energy can be generated from the air, the ground or even sometimes water, using a small amount of electricity to keep the system running.

So, what is the issue? Even though the Government is planning to award £5,000 grants to install Heat Pumps in to a small group of homes, multiple sources have quoted the cost of a Heat Pump to be anywhere between £8,000 and £45,000 for complete installation according to GreenMatch³, depending on the type of Heat Pump used. Even though it has been proven that Heat Pumps do reduce energy bills in the long term and do reduce carbon emissions, the upfront cost is just too high for many to be able to afford, even with the grant.

Other smaller issues raised in regards to Heat Pumps include being difficult to install, causing significant disruption to the home, and requiring planning permission to have one installed. (Note: In England and Scotland, this is dependant on the size and location of your property)

Our Low Carbon Heating Heroes

So if you can’t afford to have a Heat Pump installed on your property, what else can you do to reduce your carbon emissions? We have researched alternative methods for low carbon heating that won’t break the bank.

Underfloor Heating

As the name suggests, Underfloor Heating is a type of electric heating that runs under the floor of your home. According to Warmafloor: “Underfloor heating has been shown to be 15-20% more efficient than traditional heating systems over the life of the building. This rises to 30-50% for high ceiling spaces.”⁴

Our HeatMat Underfloor Heating System comes in at just £67 per 1.5m², meaning according to the average size of a UK home of 76m², the cost of your Underfloor Heating system will be just shy of £3,400. Although not the smallest of price tags, it is still cheaper than even the lower end of Heat Pump costs, and has a number of other additional benefits. To find out more about Underfloor Heating, see our article on the topic here.

Underfloor Heating

Electric Radiators

It seems that many of the steps being taken to reduce carbon emissions over the past few years have involved switching to electric power, and it looks like heating homes and business looks to be following suit with Electric Radiators not only becoming more popular, but also becoming more innovative in their design and features.

A more recent addition to our Electric Radiator range boasts several smart features to make heating a home or business not only more energy efficient, but easier to control.

The Rointe D Series 550W Wi-Fi Electric Radiator has not only the lower emissions of standard Electric Radiators, but is backed up by being Lot 20 compliant, meaning that the product meets the energy efficiency requirements for heating.

As well as being superior to gas operated radiators in terms of efficiency, this particular Electric Radiator includes several smart features that not only further boost energy efficiency, but make heating as fuss-free as possible.

These features include a consumption meter, Wi-Fi and smartphone control capabilities and open window technology. This means that the radiator can detect when a window is open, which signals it to shut off to conserve energy.

Rointe Wi-Fi Radiator

The climate crisis is a problem that affects everyone, and switching to electric heating methods can be easier and cheaper than you think, without having to invest in a Heat Pump.