Electrically powered heat pumps are seen by many as a key technology to transition domestic heating away from the gas-fired boilers that are widely in place across today’s UK housing stock. Commissioned by Baxi – a manufacturer of both boilers and heat pumps – the report comes in the wake of government plans to roll out the installation of 600,000 domestic heat pumps a year by 2028.
The leading concern amongst installers was the question of customer demand, with 56 per cent of respondents saying this was an area that needed to be addressed. Although government support for heat pump installation is available, there have been claims that the scheme is confusing and that the financial incentives on offer are not adequate to meet the government’s rollout targets. The current Boiler Upgrade Scheme pays a max £5,000 grant to support air source heat pump installations and ends in 2025.
In addition to customer demand, training costs were another prominent concern. Almost two out of five (39 per cent) respondents said they would be more likely to install heat pumps if they received help with training costs, with engineers currently paying the full cost of training and forgoing work in order to receive heat pump training. Adjacent to this, 44 per cent wanted support to reduce the burden of paperwork, for example in applying for government assistance schemes.
“Installers will play an important role as we decarbonise the nation’s heating and it will be vital that the government and industry support them with the right information, incentives and training,” said Karen Boswell, managing director of Baxi UK & Ireland.
“They will need to be advocates for low carbon sources of heat and recommend to the nation’s homeowners that they should make the leap to a heat pump. To achieve this, we will need to address their concerns, support them with training, and explain more clearly the financial and non-financial benefits of these appliances.”
The full report "Heating Installers: Taking the Leap to a Low Carbon Future” can be found here.