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Housing: Heat Pumps

Question for Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy

UIN 56720, tabled on 15 October 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment his Department has made of the steps people need to take to ensure that their home heating infrastructure can function with an air source heat pump.

This answer is the replacement for a previous holding answer.

Answered on

22 October 2021

There will be no single policy or technology that cuts carbon emissions to virtually zero, but a diverse mix of technology, such as heat pumps and potentially heating appliances fuelled by hydrogen, alongside green projects like heat networks, that will combine to decarbonise heat in buildings over the next three decades.

Our analysis of off gas grid homes suggests that around 80% of homes have sufficient energy efficiency and electrical connections to accommodate a low temperature heat pump system. This potentially rises to around 90% with fabric upgrades including draught-proofing, cavity wall insulation, floor and loft insulation, and external wall insulation. For homes on the gas grid, our analysis shows that 90% of homes have sufficient energy efficiency and electrical connections, which could increase further with fabric upgrades. However, in both off and on gas grid homes, our analysis does not account for noise and space considerations.

In some cases, accommodating a heat pump may also require changes to the size or specification of pipework and radiators to ensure they can deliver the levels of thermal comfort required by consumers. A qualified installer will be able to advise on the specific measures that might be needed to prepare a home for a heat pump.

Through the Government’s £14.6 million Electrification of Heat Demonstration Project and £60 million Heat Pump Ready Innovation Programme, we are exploring where innovation can help enable the deployment of heat pumps in a range of housing archetypes.

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