The government’s offer of grants to replace gas boilers with heat pumps will be useless for most consumers, experts reveal.
Myles Robinson, heating expert at Boiler Central, said: “The plan is misleading for UK consumers. The government is suggesting that all homes can have heat pumps to replace gas boilers, when in fact only a small percentage of UK homes are suitable for them.
“As well as the fact that government grants would only fund heat pumps in 90,000 homes in the first place, the rollout of heat pumps is not a viable long-term solution for the energy crisis given that most households can’t use them.
“For homes to be suitable to have a heat pump installed, there would need to be enough outside space to fit the large unit of the pump. The floor inside the home would also need insulation to make using a heat pump worthwhile. We estimate that only 50% of homes would be suitable currently, but when you take into account the costs and inadequate funding offered, this will be a much lesser percentage.
“The government is looking into using hydrogen as a suitable alternative, which is much more suited to UK homes. However, as progress is slow on getting gas grids to switch to hydrogen, the UK is pushing heat pumps as a solution when they are just a sticking plaster on a serious problem.
“In the coming years, the government are planning on introducing 20% hydrogen and 80% gas as a way of fuelling homes, with a long-term view to using 100% hydrogen. However, the technology is decades away from being fully rolled out.
“Like the ‘green grants’ launched last year half-way through the COVID-19 pandemic, we can expect consumer confusion and no clear progression on what exactly will be fuelling our homes in 20 years”