Ground Source Heat Pump Heating System: Pros, Cons and Costs

Ground Source Heat Pump Heating System: Pros, Cons and Costs


Warming your home by extracting natural heat from the ground makes ground source heat pumps one of the most efficient heating systems available, and after installing you’ll see the benefits almost instantly.

We’ll take you through all of the advantages that a ground source heat pump can bring to your home, the things you’ll need to consider and how much they’re likely to cost.


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What are the Benefits of a Ground Source Heat Pump System?

It’s well known that a ground source heat pump system can make your home more efficient, lowering your energy bills as a result, but they also have many more benefits:

  • Normally require very little maintenance
  • You can receive government payments through the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI)
  • Could lower the carbon dioxide emissions of your home by 2 – 8 tonnes each year
  • Quiet operation
  • Longer lifetime than traditional heating systems
  • Potential to increase the value of your home

So, with a ground source heat pump providing heating to your home, you’ll have a system that you can rely on throughout its lengthy lifetime and you’ll be making use of a renewable energy source that can reduce your bills.

What is the Renewable Heat Incentive?

Launched in 2014, the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) is a government initiative to encourage homeowners to invest in renewable technologies. Through the scheme, you could receive payments every quarter over 7 years should you have a renewable heating technology installed.

The scheme is part of a wider initiative to reduce the carbon emissions of the UK and meet renewable energy targets.


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Things to Consider Before Installing a Ground Source Heat Pump System

While there are many benefits, it’s worth considering the potential downsides before investing in a ground source heat pump system.

You’ll only feel the full benefits of a ground source heat pump system if your home is well insulated, this is because they operate at low temperatures. Due to this, it’s worth remembering that radiators are only effective at high temperatures so this system is better suited to homes with underfloor heating.

One of the big plus points of having a ground source heat pump installed is the potential savings on your energy bills. If you’re looking to replace a gas system then you’re unlikely to see the same sort of savings as someone replacing an electric or coal powered heating system.

Finally, the system requires underground pipes in the garden which means that you’ll need to consider if your garden is big enough and whether digging machinery can gain access.

How Much do Ground Source Heat Pumps Cost?

A ground source heat pump is likely to cost somewhere between £8,000 and £12,000 but the price will vary depending on the model and manufacturer. You can find out the best ground source heat pump manufacturers with our guide.

The cost of installing a ground source heat pump system will differ depending on who you hire to carry out the work but the Energy Saving Trust estimate the total installation costs to fall between £10,000-£18,000. To help lower these costs, the best time to install a ground source heat pump system is when you have other building work taking place, so if you’re planning a renovation that’s an ideal time.

Take a look at the potential savings you could be making depending on the current system in your home.

Existing System Energy Bill Saving per year Existing System
Gas Boiler (G-rated) £505 – £580 £2,335 to £2,750
Gas boiler (A-rated) £65 £2,335 to £2,750
Oil boiler (G-Rated) £900 to £1,110 £2,335 to £2,750
Oil boiler (A-rated) £570 to £665 £2,335 to £2,750
LPG boiler (G-rated) £560 to £665 £2,335 to £2,750
LPG boiler (A-rated) Increase of £55 to £65 £2,335 to £2,750
Coal £525 to £645 £2,335 to £2,750

Source: The Energy Saving Trust

If you’ve had your current heating system for a number of years then the potential savings on your energy bills will make a massive difference. In addition to the savings, you could also receive RHI payments which are beneficial to those upgrading any type of system, not just old ones.

What do Customer Reviews of Ground Source Heat Pumps Say?

Many homeowners that have had a ground source heat pump system installed say that the system has met and even exceeded their expectations. Thanks to the little maintenance they require, homeowners don’t have to worry about them as they quietly provide heating in an extremely efficient way.

Should You Install a Ground Source Heat Pump?

It could be easy for the initial cost of a ground source heat pump to put you off installing one in your home. However, the potential savings you’ll be making on your energy bills will deliver a return on your investment year after year, especially if you’re looking to replace an old inefficient oil boiler. Add on the RHI payments and you’ll soon be wondering why you were hesitant about the initial costs.

As ground source heat pumps have a much longer lifetime than other heating systems, you’ll be able to reap these rewards for many years to come.

What is a Ground Source Heat Pump?

Everything you need to know about this renewable heating system.

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Best Ground Source Heat Pump Manufacturers

Find the right system for your home.

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