FAQ: Answer

How much will the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) be for a Ground Source Heat Pump?

The UK Government’s Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) is calculated by the space heating requirement of the property (detailed on your Energy Performance Certificate)and the efficiency of the heat pump that we install. You can expect payments between £2,000 – £4,500 per annum. Your specific payment will be calculated based on your individual property.

More Questions About Ground Source Heat Pumps

Can you retrofit a Ground Source Heat Pump into a property?

Yes, we can fit a ground source heat pump to most properties, so long as there is enough land for the pipework to be laid outside for the collector or enough area of land to drill boreholes. As an example for a 4 bedroom property with 12 radiators, you would likely need 600sq metres of land or 2 x 150 metre boreholes.

Will you carry out a fault-finding service for my ground source heat pump?

Our staff are very experienced with heat pump systems and will attend and identify potential problems – initially there will be a call our charge and then additional work and/or parts can be estimated for.

I have a water borehole, can this be used for a Ground Source Heat Pump?

Water boreholes are generally only about 20 metres – 50 metres deep. A Geothermal borehole will need to be at least 100 metres deep and often more than 1 borehole is required.

What does MCS approved mean?

MCS stands for Microgeneration Certification Scheme MCS is a standards certification which certifies low-carbon products and installations used to produce electricity and heat from renewable sources. 

MCS is a mark of quality. Membership of MCS demonstrates adherence to these recognised industry standards; highlighting quality, competency and compliance. 

Why should I switch to a renewable heating system?

If you are interested in sustaining the world we live in, switching to a renewable heating system, such as an air source or ground source heat pump, means you are using a naturally replenished source of energy (i.e. the sun).  

Using renewable energy rather than oil or LPG helps the UK reduce its carbon emissions and meet their carbon reduction targets. 

The government pays an incentive to property owners who install a renewable heating if their system meets certain energy-efficiency requirements, the homeowner can then apply for the incentive via OFGEM. 

How do Ground Source Heat Pumps work?

A GSHP uses solar energy naturally stored in the ground. With a stable temperature of between 8 – 12 degrees throughout the year it is a perfect environment to extract energy from. The energy collected from either the ground or water source via collector pipes is converted into useable heat via refrigerant gases and a compressor. This useable heat is used to heat your home in the same way as a conventional boiler sends heat to the radiators, underfloor heating or hot water cylinder so it is ready whenever it is needed.

How do I get an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)?

An Energy Performance Certificate will need to be completed by a local energy assessor. 

You can find an energy assessor by using the EPC Register Find a local Energy Assessor near you.

How much do boreholes cost for a Ground Source Heat Pump?

Boreholes are drilled to a depth of 100 – 150 metres. There can be 2 or more boreholes required dependent on the energy required for the property.

The cost of the drilling and the pipework connections with trenching back to the plant area will cost on average between £10,000 – £18,000 depending on the number of holes required.

Do I need a 3-phase electrical supply to run a Ground Source Heat Pump?

For ground source heat pumps that are 16kw or above, a 3-phase electrical supply will generally be required.

Which Accreditation should my Installer have?

If you wish to apply for the Green Home Grant Scheme, tradespeople must register for Trustmark or Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) accreditation to take part in the scheme. Therefore, make sure your installer has the Trustmark or MCS accreditation.

If you wish to apply for the Renewable Heat Incentive your installer must be MCS approved.

How much does a Ground Source Heat Pump installation cost?

An example of a typical 4 bedroom property with 12 radiators, with a ground source heat pump installation will cost in the region of £28 – £30k.

How do I apply for the RHI?

The application for the renewable heat incentive (RHI) is made via OFGEM, it is the homeowners responsibility to make the application, the application cannot be made by the installer on the homeowners behalf.

If you have already installed a renewable heating system, you have up to 12 months to apply to the scheme from the date it is commissioned.  This is the date that the date the installer tests and signs off the system (you will find this date on your Microgeneration Certification Scheme certificate)

Please see the OFGEM essential guide for applications for full details and guidance.

Before you apply, you can use this OFGEM resource which is a helpsheet on how to answer the RHI application form OFGEM application form helpsheet.

When you are ready to apply, you can apply on the OFGEM website here Apply for the RHI here on the OFGEM website.

What is Seasonal Performance Factor (SPF)?

The SPF measures the energy efficiency of the property and is calculated by looking at heat losses, room size and output of the heat emitters.   

The more accurately sized the heat emitters you have, the higher the SPF – as the heating will be as energy efficient as possible. 

The governments default Seasonal Performance Factor (SPF) is 2.5. 

How much space do I need for the Ground Source Heat Pump collector?

For a horizontal collector you will need to install pipes 1m apart and 1.2m deep in the ground. The maximum length for a loop of pipe will be 400m but depending on the size of the heat pump required you may require 2 or more ground loops. The average system will require between 600 and 1200 square metres of land. This land must be clear of trees and buildings.

How much does a Ground Source Heat pump cost to run?

Ground source heat pumps are effectively the cheapest form of heating to run. They can be 400 – 500% efficient or more.

A ground source heat pump generates 4-5 times the energy it consumes. This means that for every 1kw of electricity that you pay for, a GSHP can produce 4-5kw of heat for your home.

What information do I need to complete my RHI application?

Before you apply for the RHI, you will need to make sure you have followed any requirements and gathered all the relevant information you need to complete your application.

Applicants will need to make sure they install an eligible system and meet minimum insulation requirements to be eligible for the Domestic RHI and provide a valid Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) which is no more than 24 months old, the application must be made by the homeowner as this is an application based on your property details. 

To make this easier and so you have the most up to date and relevant information needed for your application, please see the link below to OFGEM which provides a factsheet to guide you through the application process.

Factsheet from OFGEM for the information required to make your application.

There is also a step by step application form helpsheet which is useful to demystify the application from

OFGEM helpsheet for application form questions.

 

How many years will my GSHP run for?

Ground loops have an exceptionally long lifespan and are built to last 50-100 years.

Indoor components usually last up to 20 years – double that of oil or conventional gas boiler components.

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